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Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Maw-Maw's Chili Mac Soup #SoupWeek

      Believe it or not, this soup is what we knew as chili growing up.  Of course, the chili I make for the football watching crew these days is quite a bit different than this.  But you can certainly see why a mom with 6 hungry kids would whip up this more kid friendly version.  A mild chili flavor with just enough beans to make it a complete meal and plenty of macaroni to make it kid friendly makes it accessible to everyone.

      Of course we knew the difference between chili and this, that is why this was always chili soup and chili was just chili.  We used to eat a lot of chili soup and not much chili.  Now we eat a lot of chili, but every once in a while you still need to break out some chili soup.  When you do, be sure to have oyster crackers and cheese on hand.  It's the only way to fix it!

     You want to know the funny thing about chili soup?  If you put a lot of macaroni in it, like I normally do, the leftovers are practically goulash.  The pasta soaks up a lot of the "juice" and magically it turns into something new.  Voila!  It's like a whole different second meal with no extra effort.

    I will have to ask my mom to confirm, but I am pretty sure this is the chili she grew up with as well.  I know she refers to it as Maw-Maw's recipe, so that has to be the case!  No matter where the recipe came from, it is sure to be a budge friendly family pleaser on a cold day.

Chili Mac Soup


1 small onion, chopped
1 pound ground beef
2 cans chili beans or kidney beans
1 can chopped tomatoes
2 T chili powder
8 cups tomato juice
6 oz macaroni noodles, boiled and drained

  1. In a large stock pot, cook the ground beef and onions with a bit of salt and pepper until meat is brown and onions are soft.
  2. Stir in beans, tomatoes, chili powder and tomato juice.  Simmer for at least a half hour or as long as you'd like.  Be sure to stir occasionally.  
  3. Before serving, stir in macaroni noodles.
  4. Garnish with shredded cheddar and oyster crackers, if desired. 
Welcome to the #SoupWeek, hosted by Palatable Pastime. This week is all about delicious and warming soups. Be sure to check out some of the recipes below or you can follow along on FaceBook, Twitter, Google+ and Instagram using the hashtag #SoupWeek. We also have a #SoupWeek Pinterest Board where you can see all of the offerings in one easy to access spot! What a great way to stay warm in cold weather!




  1. This recipe looks exactly like what the hubby's family calls "chili". Without the macaroni though. My family always put macaroni in our chili (thanks to our midwest dad) but there was never tomatoes in our chili. It seems that's the big difference in my dad's chili and my in-law's chili- tomatoes. I like it both ways, although now I'm thinking adding macaroni to my mother-in-law's chili would be delicious! 😁

    1. That is one of my favorite things about soups... you can just keep adding until the pot is full! Plus it is so much fun to see people's variations on the same theme. Maybe that is why there is macaroni in Maw-Maw's chili too. We are about as midwestern as it gets!

  2. Wow, this brings back memories, my daddy used to make something similar. I'll have to ask him if he still makes this, Your recipe looks scrumptious!!

  3. Our family had chili soup too. We never had pasta with it, but lots of soda crackers and cheese.
    This looks yummy.

    Wishes for tasty dishes,

    1. For some reason we always had pasta in ours... but there was definitely still room for oyster crackers too!

  4. I have never had chili mac but the granddaughter is a noodle nut so I will have to try it.

    1. I am sure she'll love it! Besides, a few noodles never hurt anything!

  5. Hearty. filling, cheap and easy - the perfect thing to have after all our indulgences over the holidays, right? And something that ISN'T turkey or ham, lol!! I know we had something like this when I was growing up!

    1. Isn't that the truth?! This week is full of parties for me too as a coworker is retiring and there is something every day... after that it is time to clean up my act a bit (for at least a couple of days!)

  6. Hi Carlee, this sounds like a nice satisfying soup that would cook nicely in the slow cooker. I do enjoy thick, warming winter soups.


    1. It is great for the slow cooker! Thank you, Debbie!

  7. This would be perfect on a cold day like today!

  8. Maw-Maw had the right idea! Looks amazing! Thanks for linkin' up with What's Cookin' Wednesday!

  9. I was just googling to see if my mother's version of chili was unique. She used stewed tomatoes though. I remember her telling me that she learned the recipe from my dad's mother. She thought it odd to add mac to chili but she did. She told me she drew a line at adding corn to it like my grandmother did.

    I wonder if it is a regional variation. I grew up eating Delmarva-style chicken and dumplings (again my father's mother's recipe) and I wonder if this style of chili was common in the region. My own children prefer this style chili over their dad's texas style chili.

    I'm making this style chili tonight but have to forgo the mac. It is still tasty even without the comforting pasta addition.


Thank you so much for taking the time to read and comment. I love reading your ideas!