Papa Chili’s Better Frito Chili Pizza

It is sad, really. I labor under the delusion that corporate America has my best interests (chili interests) in mind.  Case in point- upon seeing a commercial for a fritos chili pizza offered by a national pizza chain, I was audibly excited.  My exhilaration boiled over and I was forced to bounce about the house chanting, “I want some, I want some.”  (Much to the annoyance of Mrs. Chili365 and anyone else within earshot or sightline.)  It wasn’t long before I was able to get my sweaty, chili-stained mitts on a large (with a side order of cookie pizza).

To be perfectly succinct, the chili Frito pizza was prom.  Weird analogy?  Hardly. The metaphor withstands any and all scrutiny.  There had been some manic excitement, followed by a lusty build-up which, of course, culminated in some sweaty anticipation.  In the end, however, it was an unqualified disappointment.  Somehow it always looks way better on TV.




½ lb ground beef

¼ C barbecue sauce

½ C tomato sauce

¾ C diced sweet red pepper

1 T chili powder

½ t garlic powder

½ t onion powder

½ t paprika

½ t Mexican oregano

1 pizza crust (prepared according to package directions)

8 oz shredded mozzarella cheese

Chili cheese Fritos




  1. Brown ground beef and drain the fat.
  2. Add sauces, seasonings, and pepper. Simmer for 30 minutes.
  3. Bake the prepared pizza crust at 425F for 5 minutes.
  4. Remove crust from the oven and top with chili and then top with cheese.
  5. Bake at 425 for 7 minutes.
  6. Top liberally with chili cheese Fritos and bake one minute longer.


Papa Chili’s Better Frito Chili Pizza

Papa Chili’s Better Frito Chili Pizza

Tasting Notes:


The restaurant bought pizza had the flavor of bad chili and a shortage of cheese. Furthermore, the chips topping the pizza were plain Fritos- not the Chili Cheese variety.  Strange.


My humble offering boasted real chili flavor- as it sports a full spectrum of chili seasonings. I replaced the beans (not good on pizza) with red peppers (very good on pizza).  The Mozzarella cheese was heaped generously and the chips were of the chili-cheese persuasion.


The fact is that no one would touch the take-out chili pizza (except for me, but only because I am too stubborn to throw food away.  I would have fed it to the chickens, but I didn’t want those poor birds, who are quite accustomed to eating off the ground, to suffer something so vile tasting.)  Contrast this with my pizza which, laden with delicious chili, cheese, and chips, was a pure delight to eat.  When I once again get around to making the Better Fritos Chili Pizza, I’ll be sure to rent a tux.




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