This Best Classic Chili Recipe will bring the heat to warm you from the inside out on chilly days. Serve it with assorted toppings, tortilla chips and cornbread for game day eats or any day when hearty meals are on the menu.
Best Classic Chili Recipe
Chili usually brings with it strong opinions about what type of meat should be used and if it should include beans. Some feel it should only be beef, and not ground beef but, chunks of prime beef stewed in a delicious spicy sauce. Some chili lovers feel it should never include beans of any kind, and some say only pintos, or only red beans or only kidney beans. I say, to each their own. I love each and every variation of chili. Whether it's made with or without beans, spicy or mild, tomato based or not. I even enjoy the occasional bowl of the step-child of chili, white chicken chili. They all have their place, and this classic chili recipe is for those who enjoy a flavorful chili using ground beef and beans.
Best Ground Beef Chili
One of the many things I love about chili is, that it gets better and better with each passing day. Much like soup, the flavors become even more intense as they marry. This recipe is my go-to when I need to whip-up a pot for my family to serve along with cornbread or tortilla chips for a cold weather meal.
Tips for making:
- Use a quality mix of beef such as a mix of ground chuck and ground sirloin for the best flavor.
- You may thicken the chili further, or less, to your liking by adjusting the amount of tomato paste used. You can also add additional beans that have been mashed to thicken.
- Prepared chili powder often has other seasonings included in addition to a variety of ground chilies. You can use your favorite blend and adjust the amount used to your liking as the level of heat may vary, too. Checkout Alton Brown's homemade chili powder recipe, if you'd like to make your own.
- This chili can be made up to 2 days in advance and reheated.
- You can freeze this chili for up to 2 months.
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Helpful Kitchen Items:
Best Classic Chile Recipe
- 3 lbs lean ground beef
- 1 medium onion diced
- 1 medium poblano pepper seeded and diced
- 1 small jalapeno pepper seeded and diced
- olive oil
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 2 15 oz cans light red kidney beans rinsed
- 2 15 oz cans diced chili seasoned tomatoes
- 1 16 oz container beef bone broth
- 1 6 oz can tomato paste
- 1 medium lime juiced
- 3 Tbsp dark chili powder
- 2 Tbsp ground cumin
- 1 Tbsp cocoa powder
- 2 tsp Mexican oregano
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp black pepper
- ⅛ tsp ground cinnamon
- ¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro
- In a large pot or 6 quart dutch oven cook together beef, onion, poblano and jalapeno in a few drizzles of olive oil. Cook over medium-high until no pink remains, about 8-10 minutes. Add garlic, cook for 1 minute longer. Drain excess fat from pot.
- To the pot add beans, tomatoes, broth, tomato paste, lime juice, chili powder, cumin, cocoa powder, oregano, salt, pepper and cinnamon. Mix well.
- Bring to a boil, then lower heat to medium-low and simmer covered for 30 minutes. Uncover, taste and adjust salt and pepper to your taste. Simmer uncovered for 15-20 minutes.
- Mix in cilantro at the end of cooking. Serve with shredded cheese, green onion, sour cream and tortilla chips, if desired.