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What does it take to reign supreme?

Garlic, onions, bell peppers, tomatoes, hot sauce, garlic, chili powder, kidney beans, garlic, pepper, cumin, garlic. Ok, ok. We know garlic is generally a key ingredient, but we also know that nine of Extensis’ “iron chefs” used more than that when they brought their best chili recipes to the ultimate taste test for the 2016 Extensis Chili Cook-Off.

So, what does it take to win?

A unique blend? A perfect union of savory and spice? More beans, less meat? More meat, less beans? Add corn? Plus potato? All of the above? Out of our nine contestants, all Extensis employees, every single chili seemed to have a different take on what makes a winning chili, but all nine varieties were delicious.

And the winner is…hold on. Not so fast. Before the winner is announced, you need to know what makes a winning chili here at Extensis.

Crockpots at Extensis

It starts with a good nose/aroma

Before 9 am, all nine crockpots were plugged in. By 9:30 am, the whole lobby was filled with the smell of chili goodness. By 10 am, we were already hungry.

Make it interesting

They say variety is the spice of life. From Pork and Greens, to Spicy Turkey and from Elk to pineapple vegetarian (getting name), we weren’t short of creativity which made choosing a top chef even harder.

Extensis Veggie Chili




Every crockpot was numbered so participants were kept anonymous.

Preparation is key

As the crockpots warmed, chefs added more spice, stirred their chili, and tasted their masterpieces.

Extensis Chili Cook-Off

Make it the tastiest

At noon, the Extensis Chili Cook-Off began. The lounge was filled with people and bowls began filling with chili…taste by taste.

Whose chili reigns supreme

By 1 pm, employees voted for their favorite chili. Chicken Enchilada? Well, Pork Chili Verde had a nice twist. Spicy Turkey was unique and delicious while the pineapple vegetarian was awesome, but we had to pick one. The winner is…

Elk Chili!

Extensis Cook-Off Winner

Jim Kidwell, Extensis chili cook-off winner, showing off his apron


Jim Kidwell, Sr. Product Marketing Manager, made his famous Elk Chili. It had a smoky flavor that won taste testers over. Congrats Chef Kidwell! Jim won an apron and an Amazon gift card.

Coming in a close 2nd and 3rd were Spicy Turkey and Meat Lovers Medley. Extensis would like to thank all chefs for providing their fellow teammates with a delicious lunch. We can’t wait until next year.

Here, at Extensis, we develop font management and digital asset management software and we have a blast doing it. To learn more about what we do and our company culture, follow us on Twitter and Facebook. Interested in joining our team? Check out our careers page.

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