Do you cook a mean pot of chili? Think it has what it takes to win you an awesome prize? Then read the rules and register below. Judging is to take place at 1pm on the Saturday of the event. Registration is FREE! Prizes in the past have include Camp Chef stoves, Yeti coolers, & more. Good luck!
2023 Bear Lake Monster Winterfest Chili Cook-off Rules
Contestant sign up and registration may be done ahead of time. Please sign up online at the BearLakeMonsterWinterfest.com website. Registrations may also be turned in before 11:00 am on the day of the contest.
Set Up and Tear Down Information
- Contestants may begin setting up their booths/tables on Saturday, January 28 after 9:00am. The contest area will be designated and marked prior to the event. Contestants may not begin any food preparation before 10:00 am. Prior to 10:00 am check-in, vendors may park their vehicle close to the cooking area in order to unload their equipment, but must then park in a designated parking stall immediately after unloading to help avoid congestion in the contest area.
- Chili cooks must provide their own display tents/canopies, chairs, tables, etc. Bear Lake Monster Winterfest will provide the tasting/sampling cups. Your tent/canopy must be anchored with adequate weight or a method to secure it in the event of high winds. Please create a visually pleasing booth area, with good signage and a trash receptacle.
- Chili cooks typically run out of chili before the end of the event. We kindly request that you do not tear down your booth/table until the judging has officially ended. Winners will be announced later that evening at the awards ceremony.
Chili Cooking Rules
- Chili Cooking Equipment. Cooks are expected to provide their own propane cook stoves, serving utensils, pot, fire extinguishers, etc. There is little to no electricity available. Each cook is expected to utilize safe and clean stoves, pots, utensils and other equipment. Event organizers reserve the right to disqualify any contestant for food or equipment safety reasons if deemed necessary. Food service gloves will be provided for contestants.
- Chili Cooked On Site. Pre-cooking may not be done ahead of time. All chili must be prepared and cooked in the open within plain view of organizers, judges, and the public. Chili may not be prepared or cooked in a motor home, enclosed tent, or a trailer that would block the view of anyone interested in viewing the preparation.
- Ingredients. Commercial chili powder is permissible, however complete chili mixes (just add meat mixes) that contain pre-measured spices are NOT permitted. Due to time constraints, presoaked, precooked, and canned beans ARE permitted and may be used. Meat and vegetables may be diced at home, but need to be brought in separate containers to avoid cross contamination.
- Cooks Must Be Willing To Taste Their Own Chili. If requested to do so by a judge or event organizer, a contestant must taste their own chili. Within reason, failure to do so may result in disqualification. It is also requested that your chili be labeled as to its heat for the publics benefit.
- One Chili Per Entry. Each head cook is responsible for serving a sufficient amount of chili that he/she intends to be judged and turning in one cup from that pot. No more than one judging sample may be taken from any one pot.
Cooks are asked to prepare three gallons or more of chili for the event.
- Cooks Must Sign Number Slips. Chili cooks will be assigned a random, anonymous number in order to keep each chili cook confidential.
- Filling Cups. Judging cups will be filled to 3/4 full prior to being turned in to the judges.
- Judging rules. A complete set of judging rules will be given to the judges on the morning of the event. A single score will be computed for each entry, with consideration given to the five criteria for scoring chili. These criteria are Aroma, Consistency, Color, Taste, and texture. NOTE: Heat is not a grading scale factor!
- Penalties. Failure to comply with event rules is subject to disqualification of that entry. The decision of the officials is final. In the event of a disqualification, the official monitoring the event must immediately notify the head cook and give a reason for disqualification.
Public’s Choice award
There will be a Publics Choice Award for the best chili. This will be determined by the amount of tips in a blacked-out tip jar that will be provided to each contestant at the beginning of the contest. It’s simple, the jar with the most tips at the end of the contest will be declared the winner and the tips will be donated to the charitable organization that is being spotlighted this year.
Any questions can be directed to: