by Texas Homesteader ~
I love chili that contains beans, but RancherMan typically declares that it’s not ‘real chili’ if it contains beans. To appease his purist NO BEANS IN THE CHILI mindset I include one of his favorites in my recipe – dark beer!
Chili Recipe Wins An Award
Recently a call went out by Working Ranch Magazine for our favorite recipe to be included in their Dinner Bell feature. And of course I submitted this chili recipe.
I’m so humbled to say that it won the contest! (blushes) What an honor.
I’ve been asked several times to share my recipe so here it goes!
(NOTE: I often serve this delicious bone-warming meal with a big batch of homemade Jalapeno Cornbread cooked up fresh in my grandmother’s cast-iron skillet!)
I will say that this cornbread recipe is light, fluffy & moist – not like the dry cornbread we’ve all been forced to choke down at one time or another. It’s one of RancherMan’s favorite bread sides and he brags about it all time time.
(Blushes) Awwwww RancherMan, you sweet-talking man, you…
What Meat Is Used In Chili?
Is the recipe flexible? Well of course, or else it would have never made it in my kitchen! I prefer chili ground meat, but regular ground meat works too.
Ground Beef – the standard for this recipe
Beef Brisket – marbling works well in chili
Chunked beef – Round, chuck or sirloin work well
Ground Venison – I often substitute with chili-ground venison
Ground Pork – RancherMan’s a hunter, so I often have ground pork
Ground Chicken or Turkey – a lower-fat meat alternative
Beans or No Beans In Chili?
Whether you add beans to your chili or not is a very personal choice. Here in Texas most chili connoisseurs prefer it with lots of meat and no beans.
But I much prefer to add beans. Pure meat chili just seems too fatty, too greasy and too heavy to me.
The recipe below calls for black beans. But you can use pinto beans if desired. Or leave the beans out if you prefer – it’s all up to you!
What Vegetables Do You Add To Chili?
The heavy hitters for vegetables typically added to chili are:
What Seasonings Go In Chili?
There are many recipes out there with any variety of seasoning mixtures. But the most popular seasonings for a pot of homemade chili are:
Crushed Red Pepper
How To Thicken Chili
RancherMan likes thick, hearty chili. There are a couple of ways I make sure it’s thick and hearty:
Tomato Paste – Added at the beginning
Masa Harina – Masa harina is made from a dough made of corn soaked in lime water, then dried & ground. I stir in 1/4 cup of masa harina in the last hour of cooking.
Optional Toppings For Chili
You don’t have to top your homemade chili with anything, but there are a few fun toppings to add if you’re a mind to:
Chopped jalapenos or onions
Sour cream (I make my own Homemade Sour Cream using yogurt)
Creamy Hatch Chile Sauce
Quick Garlic Herb Sauce
Simple Pico de Gallo in minutes
What Sides Go With Chili?
Looking for side additions with your chili supper? Here are a few of our favorites.
Mix & bake Cheddar Sour Cream Biscuits
or any of our Homemade Bread recipes really!
Any of a variety of Flavored Rice
Homemade Corn Tortillas
So without further adieu – here’s my RancherMan-Pleasing chili recipe:
Did you make this chili? Please rate the recipe in your comment below!
Cowboy Beef, Beer & Bean Chili Recipe
Thick, hearty chili made with beef, black beans and dark beer. This recipe won an award in 'Working Ranch Magazine'. #TexasHomesteader
- 2 Pounds 95% lean ground beef (I often use chili-ground venison or pork)
- 1 Large onion, chopped (about 1.5 cups)
- 2 Cloves garlic, minced
- 2 Medium bell peppers, chopped
- 1 Large jalapeno pepper, seeded & finely chopped (omit seeding if you like the heat)
- 1/4 Cup chili powder
- 1 Tablespoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon dried crushed oregano
- 1 teaspoon dried crushed thyme
- 1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper
- 1½ Cups beef broth (or 14-oz can )
- 1 28-oz can crushed tomatoes, undrained
- 1 14-oz can zesty-style diced tomatoes, undrained
- 1½ Cups dark beer (or 12-oz bottle)
- 1/3 Cup tomato paste
- 1 15-oz can black beans, drained & rinsed (about 1.5 cups)
- Salt & Pepper to taste (I start with 1½ tsp each)
- 2 Tablespoons honey optional
- chopped fresh cilantro optional
- ¼ Cup Masa Harina , optional (To thicken during final hour of cooking)
Brown ground meat in stockpot over medium heat until meat is no longer pink, breaking up into crumbles. Remove with slotted spoon and set aside. Pour off all but a tablespoon of the grease.
Add onions and garlic; cook and stir 3 to 5 minutes or until onions are tender. Then add bell peppers and jalapeño; cook and stir 3 to 5 minutes more, or until peppers are tender.
Return beef crumbles to stockpot. Add chili powder, cumin, oregano, thyme and red pepper. Stir in crushed tomatoes, diced tomatoes, black beans, broth, beer, tomato paste and honey; bring to a boil.
Reduce heat; cover and simmer 45 minutes.
Uncover stockpot; add masa harina if desired & continue simmering 30 minutes or until thickened to desired consistency, stirring occasionally.
Stir in beans; cook 5 to 10 minutes or until beans are heated through. Season with salt and black pepper, as desired. Garnish with cilantro, if desired.
I like to ladle this hearty chili into big bowls and top with spicy sliced peppers and include our favorite homemade Jalapeno Cornbread. Yum. Bon Appetite!
Our Favorite Soups
- Endless Soup For A Weeks’ Worth Of Lunches
- Faster, EASIER Homemade Broth In An Instant Pot
- (Pressure Canning Broth)
- 10 Delicious Quick Soup Ideas
- Beef Stew Dry Seasoning Mix
- Chicken & Dumplings
- MYO Cream Of Chicken Soup In A SNAP!
- Easy Chicken Broth
- Planned Leftovers: Chicken Tortilla Soup
Other Meal Ideas
- Poor Man’s Stuffed Steak (hamburger)
- Savory Meatloaf
- Lazy Cook’s Chile Relleno
- Slow Cooker Enchilada Casserole
- Meat-Stuffed Ravioli
- Taco-Stuffed Bell Peppers
- Meat & Cheese-Stuffed Zucchini Boats
- Quick Southwest Quesadillas
- Taco Spaghetti – Simple 1-Pot Meal
- Cheesy Spaghetti Squash Lasagne Cooked In Its Shell
- Homemade Chicken & Dumplings
- Chicken Pot Pie
- Leftover Chicken Into Quick Chicken Fried Rice
- Healthier Crispy Fried Chicken in an Air Fryer
- Slow-Cooker Spicy Sticky Chicken
- Pecan Smoking A Whole, Spatchcock Turkey
- Instant Pot Goulash – Comfort Food FAST!
- Homemade Tamales (includes Instant-Pot shortcut)
- Instant Pot Spaghetti
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