Chili Cook-Off

Chili Cook-Off

Sunday, September 26, 2021

On Sunday, September 26, check in by 11:00 AM in Paonia Town Park, close to the stage, for your space location and supplies.  Judging will begin promptly at 11:45 AM.  All cooks must supply at least 2 gallons of chili.  Remember: The more chili you make, the more people can taste it and vote for it!



  • Best Green $75
  • Best Red $75
  • Best Meatless $75
  • Best Exotic $75
  • People’s Choice $100


Judging Criteria

Fine chili should look good, smell good, and taste good. Accordingly, each chili will be judged on the following criteria to arrive at a whole number score for each category of 0 to 10 with 10 being the highest. The secret panel of three culinary specialists will judge your delectable delights for: aroma, color, consistency, taste, after taste.
Note: Judges will begin tasting promptly at 11:45 AM, so be prepared to serve your chili shortly after set up.  The public will start tasting at 12:00 PM. 

The People’s Choice award will be determined by the tasting public.  The cook with the most public votes will receive the highly coveted People’s Choice award.


Deadline to Register

The deadline to register as a cook is Wednesday, September 22.  The entry fee is $10.  Late registration will be from September 23-24, with a late fee of $25, and park locations will be allocated by the Chili Cook off coordinator for late entries.


What You Need

The day of the event you will need to provide your own method of heating your minimum of 2 gallons chili (propane stove, grill), ladle, a table for your stuff, table cloth, and an umbrella or canopy if you desire.  We won’t have electricity.  Please no generators, as they make too much noise.


What We Provide

Tasting cups (2 oz), napkins, a plastic table cloth, and a can for your People’s Choice votes.


About the Set Up

A small plastic table cloth, that visually identifies the category of your chili for the tasting public, can be used over your own table cloth.  If you will be sharing equipment with someone, please note so on your entry form, so that we can make sure to place you at the same location.  We will do our best to accommodate other requests for placement.


Where to Register

Registration forms are available at Don’s and City Markets’ bulletin boards, Paonia Farm and Home Supply, and the Blue Sage in Paonia. Mail your registration to ​Mountain Harvest Festival, PO Box 1771, Paonia CO 81428 ​  ​ or drop it off at Paonia Farm and Home Supply.