KEY POINTS

  • Many Americans love chili as hearty winter food and comfort food
  • This year’s National Chili Day is celebrated on Feb. 25
  • Below are some interesting facts to celebrate the occasion with

National Chili Day is celebrated every fourth Thursday in the month of February and it’s the perfect time for chili lovers all over the country to enjoy their favorite dish.

Chili is certainly one of America’s favorites, whether as a winter dish or comfort food. Although its basic ingredients include tomatoes, beans, chili peppers, garlic and onions, many families have their own, unique version of the dish that features other ingredients.

Whether you like your chili with cheese, the polarizing coriander or tortilla chips, National Chili Day is the perfect time to enjoy a bowl of chili and perhaps learn some interesting facts about it.

To celebrate the occasion, let’s have a look at some trivia about chili, courtesy of National Today, National Day Calendar and National Chili Day:

  • Texas loves chili so much that it’s actually the state’s official dish. According to National Day Calendar, it was in 1977 when the 65th Texas Legislature made it official.
  • Chili is more than just comfort food. In fact, it is quite healthy. According to National Chili Day, a green chili pod can contain as much vitamin C as six oranges. What’s more, hot chili peppers can help burn calories by speeding up the metabolism through the thermodynamic burn.
  • A survey conducted by National Today found just how much Americans like chili. Among 1,000 people who participated in the survey, 68% said they love chili, while 27% said that they like it. Only 4% noted their dislike of the dish, while only 1% said that they actually hate it.
  • In the same survey, cheese was found to be the most preferred chili topping. This is followed by crackers and cornbread, which both got 15%. They were followed by sour cream and tortilla chips.
  • There have been many chili cooking competitions through the years, but the first one was held in 1967 in Terlingua, Texas. According to National Chili Day, the contest ended in a tie between a New Yorker and a native Texan.
  • American frontier settlers used to create dried bricks of chili to take and boil on the trails, National Day Calendar said. They pounded together dried beef, dried chili peppers, salt and suet. They then turned the mixture into bricks and dried them.
  • In the 1880s, “chili queens” became popular in chili stands in San Antonio, Texas. As National Today explained, the dressed-up chili queens would serve the chili to the stands’ customers.

On National Chili Day, celebrate the occasion by sharing your love for the dish and using #NationalChiliDay on social media. Perhaps you can also try new ways to enjoy your favorite chili recipe.

No matter how you spend the special day, there will surely be many others who will celebrate one of America’s favorite comfort foods with you.

Chili Con Carne Pictured: Representative image of a bowl of chili. Photo: Pixabay

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