The challenge is accepted and date is marked on the calendar. Either a family member, spouse, or close friend has convinced you that entering a chili cook off would be a good idea. Fortunately, the secret “family recipe” discovered on Pinterest 15 minutes ago is sure to leave you hoisting a coveted chili cook-off championship belt… or at the very least have you walking away with a fancy looking certificate and bragging rights.

Either way the date is set, the recipe is in hand, the only thing left is come up a team name to rally around. That’s where we come in.

Selecting the right team name is a lot like cooking championship level chili. The venue of chili contest will dictate what name selection of the team.

As you might expect, a friendly competition among college fraternity brothers will yield different ideas than the one sponsored by Father Brown. As a result, we’ve organized name ideas by category so you can select the best choice for your situation. We’ve even included a worst list so you know what to avoid!

chili cookoff

Help Coming up with a Name for Your Chili Cookoff Team Name. Photo credit: Pinterest

Through the combination of a unique recipe, quality ingredients, and the right team name, I hope you find yourself in the winners circle of the annual cook off. Let’s do this!

Best Names for All Occasions

There are hundreds, if not thousands of chili cook-offs held across the United States annually. These are time-tested names that can work well in any of these events. These names offer a nod to ingredients or style of chili being made. Just like a timeless Beatles hit, these names will be well received anywhere you compete.

  • Eddie and the Eaters
  • The Kidney Beans
  • Crock Pot Pals
  • Chili, but Warming Up
  • Chili Weather
  • Band of Beans
  • Rockin’ Red Chili
  • Call the Fire Department
  • Chili from Chile
  • Voluntary Chili
  • Hill Billy Chili
  • Silly Chili
  • Billy Loves Chili
  • Chill Out Chili
  • The Pinto Party
  • Chicks with Chili Powder
  • Cayenne Pepper People
  • Game Day Gourmet
  • Chopped Cheddar
  • Slow Simmer Gang
  • Stirring Together
  • Momma’s Top Secret Chili Club
  • Grandma’s Gaggle
  • Ground Beef Bros
  • The Spicy Sisters

Worst Cook-off Names

Do not use these team names under any situation. You’ve been warned!

  • Chip and Dale Chili
  • Straight Outta the Can
  • You Might Chuck Chili
  • Bowl o’ Bland
  • Toilet Bowl Chili
  • Satan’s Chili
  • Chili Willie
  • Kill The Chili
  • Better Than Your Wife’s
  • Sea Lilly Chili

Funny Names

Most chili cook-offs are just for fun. As a result, coming up with laugh-out-loud name can be ideal for your local competition. The example in this list also attempt to be HR-friendly in case you’re entering a competition at work. Each of these clever names will are guaranteed to get a slight chuckle out of the toughest audience.

  • Chili Ray Cyrus – Perfect for the 90s country fan.
  • Chili Joel – The piano man returns for his greatest meal yet!
  • No Beans about It. – Ideal for an all meat dish.
  • Chili Vacation – No one can take offense to this one.
  • The McChili – Ideal if employed in the fast food industry.
  • A Chilion in the Bank – May cause eye rolls and groans from the audience.
  • Twilly Chili – May get a smile among the university professor crowd.
  • Rockabilly Chili – We are done here.

Traditional Names

Here’s another list of names that work anywhere. They aren’t funny. They aren’t clever. But they bring to mind themes consistently associated with chili cook-offs like being spicy or hail from a specific region like Texas.

  • Lone Star Chili Chiefs
  • Sour Cream Coasters
  • West Texas Kettle
  • The Black Kettle
  • Big Rooster Chili
  • Hot Hot Chili
  • Chili Power Champs
  • Hopped up Jalapeño
  • Chili Con Carne Cadets
  • The Passive Pinto
  • Warm Up Express
  • The Chili Chaps
  • Down South Kettle
  • The Big Black Kettle
  • All American Cookers
  • Slow Cook, Fast Eat
  • Alabama Kettle
  • Triple Fire Chili
  • Where’s the Firehose?
  • Bubble and Simmer
  • Black Pepper Cookers
  • Kicking Cowboy Chili
  • Classic Cookers
  • Moderatley Mild
  • Chili Verde All Day
  • Alabama Chili Champs
  • Mouthwatering in Florida
  • Hot Steam Chefs
  • The Steam Whistles
  • All the Fixings Club
  • Feasting in Florida
  • The Ghost Peppers
  • Chili Masters
  • Delicious Megaphone
  • The Chili Spoon
  • Cheesey Chili
  • The Dynamite Bite
  • Meal in a Bowl
  • The Ultimate Food Science Experience

Related Reading: 101 Creative Bakery Names You Can Use Right Now

Heavenly Names Appropriate for Church

Each year annual chili cook-offs are held at churches. These events are usually tied to fundraisers for different causes or special events. Here are some ideas that will make every member of the congregation happy and hopefully not offend anyone.

  • Chaplin’s Chili
  • Heavenly Chili
  • Church of Chili
  • Angel’s Delight
  • A Taste of Heaven
  • The Minister’s Kettle
  • The Priest’s Prize
  • The Biblical Kidney Bean
  • Passages Chili Powder
  • The Steeple Spoons
  • A Bowl of Heaven
  • Slow Cooked Baptist
  • A Taste of the Truth
  • Chili Blessings
  • The Genesis of Chili
  • Sin-Free Taste
  • The Chili of Eden
  • Pinto Beans from Heaven
  • Adam and Eve’s Chili Beans
  • The Exodus of Chili
  • Give us this Day our Daily Chili
  • Our Father’s Choice
  • Heavenly Bread and Chili
  • The Ten Chili Commandments
  • The Choir’s Song
  • Eating in the Pew’s

How to Find Chili Cook-Offs in Your Area

Now that you’ve picked a name, it’s time to find chili competitions in your area. For the smaller competitions, like those at church or at work, you’ve got to hear about them through word of mouth. The smaller competitions like this usually aren’t found online unless you’re in the right Facebook group or friends with the organizer of an event.

chili contest ballot

Chili Contest Secret Ballot. Photo Credit: Pinterest

As you gain confidence and experience winning smaller events, you may decide to get more serious. Here are a few resources that will connect you with more competitive cook offs:

  • World Champion Chili Cook-Offs: This resource provides a list of updated competitions across the United States. They even differentiate adult from youth events in case you have a kid that wants to compete. You’ll find the highest density of events if you live on the East or West coast using this website. Another gem   published on this website is a list of winning chili recipes (traditional red, homestyle, and chili verde) from past competitions. This could be your secret weapon for winning an office cooking battle!
  • California Chili Cook Offs: If you live in or want to travel to California this is a great resource for up-t0-day events.
  • America’s Top 10 Chili Cook Offs: A list of 10 of the top Chili Cook Offs in the United States. Warning: You’ll want to bring your A game and perfect your chili making process before entering any of these contests. This is for veteran chili makers only.

Last but certainly not least, don’t forget to have fun with the process of selecting your team name. Unless you’ve got lofty goals of winning a national competition, sticking with your gut and selecting a name you like is a winning approach.

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