WSHS culinary students take part in chili competition

Chili competition

WSHS Family and Consumer Sciences Teacher Shelly Spallees Hansen and her husband prepared the students' recipes and had family members serve as judges.

Winona Senior High School culinary classes competed in an optional chili competition before the winter break. Students were asked to create their own recipes using what they learned in class about seasonings, spices, simmering and boiling. 

The recipes were put to the test by Family and Consumer Sciences Teacher teacher Shelly Spallees Hansen and her husband, who purchased all of the supplies and had their family serve as contest judges. 

“It was quite a production,” Hansen said. 

There are two sections of the class — fourth hour and fifth hour — and prizes were awarded to the top finishers. 

The grand prize winner was ninth-grader Teis Larsen, who designed a black bean chili. Coral Bausman (Grade 9) won first prize for the fourth-hour class for her chili with beef and bacon.

The “Unique Ingredients” award went to Devon Olson (Grade 9) for beef chili with vanilla and dried cranberries.

The “Outside of the Box” award went to Carly Conway (Grade 9), who had a white chicken chili.

Second place in fourth hour went to Lauren Kimmerle (Grade 9), while Olson received second place for fifth hour. 

Other participants included Magdalyn Blahnik (Grade 9), Nicholas Schulz (Grade 9), Ben Beier (Grade 9) and a team of Devyn Beier (Grade 12) and Kayla Robinson (Grade 11).

Overall winner: Black Bean Chilli Recipe
By Teis Larsen


  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • ¼   onion
  • 3- 15 oz cans black beans
  • ½ pound ground beef
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 1- 15 oz diced tomatoes can
  • 3 oz tomato paste
  • 1 tbsp chile powder
  • ½ tbsp cumin
  • ½ tsp of paprika
  • ½ tsp of dried oregano
  • ½ tsp salt to add if needed


  • Dice the onion and mince all the garlic. Add the onion and the garlic to a relatively large pot with 1 Tbsp olive oil and cook over medium heat until just softened a tad.
  • Add the ground beef to the pot and continue to sauté until the beef is cooked thoroughly. 
  • Add the three cans of beans (undrained), the diced tomatoes (undrained), tomato paste, and also all the spices as well.
  • Let the chili simmer for about 10 minutes to let the flavors blend and help the liquid thicken slightly. Add Salt if necessary but not necessary if it doesnt need it.

Hour 4 winner: Chili with beef and bacon
By Coral Bausman


  • 1 lb ground beef
  • ½ lb thick sliced bacon, cut into bite sized pieces
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 can (15 oz) whole kernel corn
  • 1 can (15 oz) black beans
  • 1 can (15 oz) dark red kidney beans
  • 2 cans (15 oz each) diced tomatoes
  • 1 can tomato soup (Yes, soup)
  • 2 Tbsp Chili powder
  • 2 tsp Onion Powder 

Optional toppings 

  • Nacho Cheese Doritos
  • Shredded Cheese
  • Sour cream or Plain Greek Yogurt
  • Horseradish


  • Place ground beef and bacon in chosen pot (I used a cast iron dutch oven, but you can use any large pot) and cook for 2 Minutes. Add onion and cook until beef is browned.  
  • Take all canned foods except diced tomatoes, and drain. Add all canned vegetables, and stir together. Bring to a boil, then simmer for 20 minutes. Add ½ cup tomato soup and bring back to a boil. If mixture is not to desired thickness, sprinkle flour in. 
  • Cook for 10 more minutes. 
  • Add onion salt and chili powder, and mix thoroughly. Serve with Doritos, cheese, sour cream, horseradish or desired toppings.

Unique Ingredients winner: Beef chili with vanilla and dried cranberries
By Devon Olson


  • 1 pound ground beef
  • ½ can kidney beans
  • ½ can pinto beans
  • 1 ¼ cup crushed tomatoes
  • 1 ¼ cup diced tomatoes
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 small yellow onion diced
  • ⅔ cup beef broth
  • 1 teaspoon tomato paste
  • 2 teaspoons oregano
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 carrot chopped (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon craisins (dried cranberries)


Brown the beef, put in large pot, add both beans, both tomatoes, onion beef broth, carrot (if added) and tomato paste, bring to a boil, once at a boil add in remaining ingredients. Bring down to a simmer and let it simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Outside the Box winner: White Chicken Chili
By Carly Conway


1 Tbsp. vegetable oil 
2 med. onions, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced 
2 cans 4oz. each green chiles 
1 Tbsp. + 1 tsp. ground cumin 
1 ½ tsp. dried oregano leaves
¼ tsp. ground cloves 
¼ tsp. cayenne pepper 
6 cups chicken broth or stock (I used broth)
4 cups diced cooked chicken 
2 cans (16oz. each) lg. white beans 
salt and pepper to taste 
Grated cheddar cheese, salsa, and sour cream to garnish


  • Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium high heat.
  • Add the onion and garlic and cook for about five minutes.
  • Add chilies, cumin, oregano, cloves and cayenne pepper. Cook about one minute longer.
  • Add 4 cups chicken stock. Cook for 40 minutes longer.
  • Add in chicken and beans.
  • Garnish and enjoy!