Doesn't that title sound horrible? I think it does. But we did it with our small group, and it was GOOD.
My husband got this idea from a friend at work (which is funny because I also heard this idea from a completely different friend and I dismissed it because it didn't sound good at all!). A chili dump is when you have everyone make some chili, bring it all together, mix it up, and eat it! Even when the recipes are different, even when one has corn and one has bacon and one has butter beans (my favorite!). We had four varieties, and the one Micheal made had freshly smoked tomatoes & peppers, beef, Italian sausage, bacon, Bushes baked beans, and butter beans. Smoking the veggies was INGENIOUS and made the chili smell so good!
My husband also makes salsa with smoked veggies and it. is. GOOD. But back to the chili.
The chili was mixed in the big stock pot of a turkey fryer and kept hot with the gas burner. The group members also brought chili fixings like sour cream, cheese, cilantro, smoked hot peppers for heat lovers, Fritos, cornbread, and other stuff I'm probably missing... The chili was really excellent and everyone kept saying how good it was (I think we were all surprised.) We ate it outside around a bonfire and made S'mores for dessert.
If you need an idea to feed a group, you should try a Chili Dump, I think you'll like it!