This bean chowder is similar to chili. It's one of the most popular dishes at Tulsa Public Schools. Those of us growing up in the 60's and 70's remember it fondly as a favorite treat. A real stick-to-your-ribs comfort food. Tradition dictates that it is served with cinnamon rolls. This was given to me by my grandmother who was a dietician/cook for over 40 years.

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Recipe Summary

prep:
10 mins
cook:
3 hrs
total:
3 hrs 10 mins
Servings:
12
Yield:
3 quarts
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Ingredients

12
Original recipe yields 12 servings
The ingredient list now reflects the servings specified
Ingredient Checklist

Directions

Instructions Checklist
  • Place the beans and water in a large pot. Bring to a boil, and cook until the beans are almost tender, about 1 1/2 hours. Season with 1 1/2 teaspoons of chili powder, and 1 1/2 teaspoons of salt.

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  • While the beans are cooking, crumble the ground beef into a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic; cook and stir until onion is tender and meat is browned. Drain off excess grease, and stir in the tomato puree, 1 tablespoon chili powder, 1 tablespoon salt and bread crumbs. Stir into the pot with the beans, adding more water if needed to achieve your desired thickness. Taste and adjust seasonings if you like before serving.

Nutrition Facts

253 calories; protein 16.6g 33% DV; carbohydrates 34.9g 11% DV; fat 5.8g 9% DV; cholesterol 23mg 8% DV; sodium 1116.5mg 45% DV. Full Nutrition

Reviews (33)

Read More Reviews

Most helpful positive review

Rating: 5 stars
03/08/2008
I was one of those kids growing up in the 60s & 70s in Tulsa and have wanted this recipe for years. It is one of the best. Thank you so much for sharing this recipe...what wonderful memories this brings back...and yes you have to have cinnamon rolls with it for "tradition". My husband will be thrilled (he went to school in Tulsa in the 70s)as this was one of his favorites. Read More
(22)

Most helpful critical review

Rating: 3 stars
02/05/2012
This was cheap and fairly easy. I thought it was a decent base recipes but it needed some spice. The whole thing took a long time from start to finish. I was left thinking that the flavor wasn't that good. Something to do with the beans. Read More
(5)
38 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 20
  • 4 star values: 13
  • 3 star values: 3
  • 2 star values: 1
  • 1 star values: 1
Rating: 5 stars
03/08/2008
I was one of those kids growing up in the 60s & 70s in Tulsa and have wanted this recipe for years. It is one of the best. Thank you so much for sharing this recipe...what wonderful memories this brings back...and yes you have to have cinnamon rolls with it for "tradition". My husband will be thrilled (he went to school in Tulsa in the 70s)as this was one of his favorites. Read More
(22)
Rating: 5 stars
06/15/2012
This is my dear Grandma's recipe. She was a dietician and ran Tulsa's John Ross Elem school cafeteria for several generations. This tastes very similar to Campbell's fiesta chili beef soup. I let it cook about 30 min longer for flavors to blend. I cut the salt down to only a tsp. but you can do this to taste. Great for picky eaters as there are no chunks of tomato or onion or other undesirable veggie. I serve this with cinnamon rolls because that is how the schools always served it so it's tradition. Delicious! Never any leftovers here. Read More
(16)
Rating: 5 stars
10/06/2005
It is really good and filling. has a lot of room for personalization Read More
(13)
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Rating: 5 stars
09/09/2007
This is a classic I found this recipe last winter when we were snowed in and needed variety with stuff we had on hand this simple recipe can be easily divided so kids get mild and add to the adults for spice I personally use a envelope of Williams chili seasoning to give it the spice I like and I have used canned pinto beans to make it during the week its always a hit and my husband who hates tomatoes loves this chili; great with saltines or tortilla chips awesome with fritos and cheese with extra minced onion so possibilities are endless great with rice like a 3way or noodles; experiment and enjoy just for kids sake great protein and lower fat than most chili. Read More
(10)
Rating: 5 stars
10/17/2007
This is an all time favorite at our house. Read More
(9)
Rating: 5 stars
01/29/2010
This McKinley Elementary grad thanks you. I have been trying for years to recreate this recipe. Also don't forget you must crush saltine crackers into your bowl to get the full effect! Read More
(7)
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Rating: 5 stars
10/21/2010
This recipe is fantastic! I'm not from Tulsa so I'd never had it before but even my picky non-bean-eating teenager gobbled it up. My only suggestion is to add a little hot sauce to the bowl when serving. This is going into the rotation folder. Thanks! Read More
(7)
Rating: 4 stars
09/09/2008
I made this with canned pinto beans played around with the seasonings until it was how we like them and I omitted the breadcrumbs as it was plenty thick enough already. Served over plain steamed white rice this was a quick inexpensive and hearty meal. Thanks Tonysgirl! Read More
(7)
Rating: 5 stars
09/09/2008
OMG This is sooooooo yummy. It is so filling and was a TPS kid of the 60's & 70's and longed to taste it again!! Just as I remembered. I only wish I had that cheesy noodle casserole recipe from Tulsa Public Schools from that era as well. It was my 2nd fav. If anyone reads this and has it please post it as TPS Cheesy noodle casserole! THANKS Read More
(7)
Rating: 3 stars
02/05/2012
This was cheap and fairly easy. I thought it was a decent base recipes but it needed some spice. The whole thing took a long time from start to finish. I was left thinking that the flavor wasn't that good. Something to do with the beans. Read More
(5)