I hope you like a thick bowl of chili.

Uhh… because this pot contains all of this. Above and below.

Yep. Yes sirree.

Oh! And it also has beer in it.

It’s my third Fall writing this blog and oddly enough, this is my third chili recipe. But I’ve told you this little secret before… I never use a recipe for chili.

Ever. Blah blah blah, old news.

Yet here I am, semi-lying to you because technically this is the third time I’ve had to use a recipe; the other two being for my previous posts in order to share them with you.

It’s cool because I like you.

Soon after I got married, I quizzed my mom on how to make the perfect pot of chili. Over the phone she gave me a rundown of what she uses: ground beef, tomato puree, tomato sauce, tomato paste, assorted vegetables and seasonings, kidney beans and the like. Ever since, I have used a mish mash of those ingredients, give or take my own substitutions, never measuring a dang thing and tasting until it’s flavored just right.


This is my ideal way to cook anything and as far as I know, I’ve never made a “bad” pot of chili. Except for that one night last November when the lid to my salt shaker was loose and yes… it alllll went streaming down into my pot. I tried the trendy trick of adding potatoes to to soak up the salt, but uh… that didn’t really work out. Instead, I watched my 15 cups of chili swirl down the drain and then went to Five Guys for dinner.

Best burger ever.

This is one of those pots that is going to taste best after cooking all day. Use your crock pot or your dutch oven, and cook it for hours upon hours ’til the beef pulls apart and melts in your mouth. If you’re looking for an incredibly easy, “weeknight” recipe, this isn’t it. But you’re in luck – I made some easy 5-step chili last year which is much more my usual speed.

So I’m warning you: this makes a massive pot of comfort. Leave out the beans, add in some chipotles, up the cayenne or dive in and swim. Make it your own, and tomorrow I’ll share something totally dunkable and delicious to go on top of your bowl. Then after that, I’ll show you something even better. Pinky swear.

Hearty Chili

makes a giant pot, at least 12 servings

3-4 tablespoons of olive oil

2 pounds of beef chuck roast, cut into cubes

1 pound of boneless pork short ribs, cut into cubes

1 1/2 pounds of lean ground beef

1 onion, chopped

1 green pepper, chopped

4 cloves of garlic, pressed or minced

2 jalapenos, chopped or sliced

2 28-ounce cans of tomato puree

2 28-ounce cans of crushed tomatoes

1 6-ounce can of tomato paste

2 15-ounce cans of light red kidney beans, drained and rinsed

12 ounces of beer

5 1/2 tablespoons of chili powder

3 tablespoons of cumin

1/2 tablespoons cayenne pepper

1/2 tablespoon black pepper

salt for layering flavor and seasoning

+ your favorite chili toppings

[I began this recipe by searing both my beef roast and the pork ribs (not the ground beef). I seasoned them both with a sprinkle of salt and pepper, then added about 1-2 tablespoons of olive oil to the bottom of my giant stock pot and seared them over high heat on all sides for 1-2 minutes, until color developed. Before I seared them, I did NOT remove the fat. Both meats were fairly lean and I found that the fat added so much flavor. None of the meat ended up tasting “fatty” in the chili whatsoever. Searing took me 4 batches, but was completely worth it and resulted in super tender meat. I removed each batch and let it drain on a paper towel while the other batch seared. This is why there is a bit of extra olive oil listed in the recipe, for searing purposes.]

After searing the beef and pork, turn the heat on your large stock pot down to medium and add one tablespoon of olive oil. Add onions and peppers with a sprinkle of salt, and cook for 5 minutes until soft. Add garlic and jalapenos, and cook for another 2 minutes while stirring every so often. Turn the heat up to medium-high and season the ground beef with salt and pepper. Add it to the pot and crumble it with a wooden spoon, then cook it for 6-8 minutes, tossing occasionally until it browns through and the liquid cooks off.

Turn the heat back down to medium-low and add the pork and beef roast back in, the beans, the tomato sauce, paste, and puree, and stir to combine. Add in the beer and the seasonings (chili powder, cumin, cayenne, and 1/2 tablespoon black pepper) , stirring once more. Cover and let simmer for 1-2 hours. Once that time has passed, taste the chili and determine if you would like more seasonings. I did not add in any additional salt because I layered every flavor with salt: the meats and the sauteed veggies. Turn the heat down to low and cook chili for an additional 2-4 hours, or longer.

Will keep in the refrigerator for up to 5 days, but I recommend immediately filling a few containers to freeze.

Three bowls for me please!

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147 Responses to “Super Hearty Chili. {Dinner Tonight: Part 1}”

  1. #
    Katie D. — September 15, 2011 @ 7:02 am

    Looks delicious! Does the beer really make that big of a flavor difference? If so, I’ve got to try it out!


    • Jessica — September 15th, 2011 @ 7:10 am

      Yep, we could definitely taste a hint of it!


  2. #
    Khushboo — September 15, 2011 @ 7:04 am

    This looks great. I am not good with measuring ingredients and follow the try, taste, test strategy – works everytime! :)


  3. #
    Erica — September 15, 2011 @ 7:09 am

    Making chili sunday and i cannnnot wait! Yours looks amazeballs-especially those toppings. I never follow a recipe either


  4. #
    Kathryn — September 15, 2011 @ 7:14 am

    Man I could really go for a bowl of chilli right now – that looks so good. Love the idea of adding beer as well.


  5. #
    Julie H. of Spinach and Sprinkles — September 15, 2011 @ 7:15 am

    Don’t mom’s hold all the chili secrets?!? -I remember calling my mom after I first got married to ask the same questions :) ….Those moms are so smart!
    So much going on- that’s what I like in a chili!


  6. #
    Erika - The Teenage Taste — September 15, 2011 @ 7:16 am

    Now this is what I call chili! Love it! :-D


  7. #
    Averie @ Love Veggies and Yoga — September 15, 2011 @ 7:21 am

    Wow that does look like it would make a massive amount! But as I always say, cook once, eat twice. Or in this case, cook once, and eat about 15 times. Love planned leftovers and freezer meals!


  8. #
    Blog is the New Black — September 15, 2011 @ 7:22 am

    Mr. HS must have LOVED this one! I can’t wait to make some delicious chili…


  9. #
    Nicole, RD — September 15, 2011 @ 7:28 am

    I’m making my first batch of chili this weekend…can’t wait!


  10. #
    MiKovach — September 15, 2011 @ 7:31 am

    Wow! I made chili last night (it was cold here all day) and it was great, but your chili takes things to the next level, for sure! Got to try this…very soon!!


  11. #
    Cassie (Bake Your Day) — September 15, 2011 @ 7:33 am

    I can’t believe I’ve never put beer in chili. That will be remedied soon. This sounds so good and the weather is totally appropriate for chili right now!


  12. #
    Holly @ The Runny Egg — September 15, 2011 @ 7:35 am

    YUM! I’m actually making some crockpot chili today while I”m at work — I can’t wait to come home and smell the deliciousness.


  13. #
    Brittany @ Itty Bits of Balance — September 15, 2011 @ 7:35 am

    I’ve always been so intimidated with creating chili with no recipe in the kitchen! I need to overcome my fears :(


    • Jessica — September 15th, 2011 @ 8:51 am

      Yes you do!


  14. #
    Caroline @ chocolate & carrots — September 15, 2011 @ 7:37 am

    Woah…the ultimate chili. My husband would love this. Mmm!


  15. #
    Heather (Heather's Dish) — September 15, 2011 @ 7:47 am

    i’ll take a massive pot of comfort any day please and thank you very much!


  16. #
    J3nn (Jenn's Menu and Lifestyle Blog) — September 15, 2011 @ 7:48 am

    That looks amazing! With the chilly weather rolling in, I’ve been thinking about making chili in the crock pot and my toppings would be very similar to yours. :)


  17. #
    Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat — September 15, 2011 @ 7:57 am

    Oooh looks lovely! I’m not a red meat eater so I think I’d have to swap the beef and pork out for chicken and turkey or more beans or something, but meat aside, it looks great!! Mish-mash ingredient recipes are my favourite way to cook too. :)


  18. #
    Kelly — September 15, 2011 @ 7:59 am

    I grew up on beer chili…my mom always made it for us. Although until we get below 98 degrees I am not making chili!


  19. #
    Jodi @ Southern Flavored Life — September 15, 2011 @ 8:14 am

    I have never made chili with anything but ground beef, so this sounds like a ha-yuge treat! Can’t wait!


    • Jessica — September 15th, 2011 @ 8:49 am

      Same here… you must try!


  20. #
    Gen — September 15, 2011 @ 8:14 am

    Yummy that looks delicious!!! Sounds like something that my dad would absolutely love!!! :D Oh and I made that soda bread last night to have with dinner, and we LOVED it!


    • Jessica — September 15th, 2011 @ 8:49 am

      Awesome! So glad you guys liked it.


  21. #
    Claire — September 15, 2011 @ 8:16 am

    Why have I never thought of adding huge chunks of meat like that into chili?! Talk about man food!


    • Jessica — September 15th, 2011 @ 8:48 am

      It was my first time doing it too – I really loved it!


  22. #
    Rachel @ Not Rachael Ray — September 15, 2011 @ 8:23 am

    This looks fabulous! I love the meat that you added–amazing! I also love all the toppings. Perfect football food!


  23. #
    Katrina — September 15, 2011 @ 8:26 am

    I ONLY like a thick bowl of chili. The thin stuff is just tortilla soup to me. This sounds lovely! Yum!


  24. #
    Lynne @ 365 Days of Baking — September 15, 2011 @ 8:30 am

    Fall, football, apple pies, and delicious chili!!
    I’m ready, bring it on!!!


  25. #
    Andrea L. — September 15, 2011 @ 8:33 am

    This looks fantastic!! I noticed you used Leinie’s…what flavor did you use in the recipe?


    • Jessica — September 15th, 2011 @ 8:47 am

      I used classic amber – happened to be what was in my fridge.


  26. #
    Jessica @ Stylish Stealthy and Healthy — September 15, 2011 @ 8:35 am

    I never use a recipe for chili either and mine is also my momma’s recipe consisting of most of the same items. I tried an Adobo turkey chili recipe last year for the first time… turns using recipes kind of kicks ass.


    • Jessica — September 15th, 2011 @ 8:47 am

      That sounds delish!


  27. #
    Kelli — September 15, 2011 @ 8:40 am

    CAN’T WAIT to try this!! I have so many peppers in my garden and this will be the perfect recipe to use them on!! My son LOVES chili.Usually I just throw stuff together…and make it! This looks delish!Thanks!!


  28. #
    Yammie @ Yammie's Noshery — September 15, 2011 @ 8:46 am

    Whoa, that looks awesome. Chili is one of the most fun things to make because it turns out completely different every time but it’s hard to go wrong.


    • Jessica — September 15th, 2011 @ 8:52 am

      Very true.


  29. #
    Anna @ On Anna's Plate — September 15, 2011 @ 8:57 am

    Posts like this make me glad that I’m eating meat again :-)


  30. #
    Bev Weidner — September 15, 2011 @ 9:00 am

    Is there a sign up form for the swimming you mentioned? Because I’d be happy to take lessons in this bowl of sex. I have my suit. I need to practice my sidestroke.

    I’ll wear flippers, even.


  31. #
    Kacy — September 15, 2011 @ 9:00 am

    Looks wonnnderful! I’m making chili for the first time this year on Sunday and I can’t wait! It’s definitely going to have beer in there.


  32. #
    Natalie — September 15, 2011 @ 9:01 am

    Oh wow this looks like such a good chili recipe! Perfect for the cold weather.


  33. #
    Hilliary @ Happily Ever Healthy — September 15, 2011 @ 9:07 am

    It is freezing here in Minnesota! Perfect Chili weather!


  34. #
    sherri lynn @ life of a wife — September 15, 2011 @ 9:13 am

    Chili is one of my favorite things to eat all fall and winter!


  35. #
    Kim in MD — September 15, 2011 @ 9:19 am

    This has got to be the best chili EVER! I always use beer in my chili- it makes it taste so good! I am putting this on my “must make” list. It’s going to be in the 60’s this weekend here in Maryland-perfect chili weather. Thanks for sharing, Jessica!


  36. #
    Brooke @ BittersweetBrooke — September 15, 2011 @ 9:25 am

    That’s how I like to cook too, taste as you go! I don’t really understand the whole measuring thing. Even with baking I can’t really seem to level flour off and such. And I’m pretty sure that if you add beer to anything including marshmallows hehe it’s delicious!


  37. #
    The Mrs @ Success Along the Weigh — September 15, 2011 @ 9:26 am

    I’m glad you said THICK chili because I can’t stand runny chili. It’s always good to have an extra chili recipe or two on hand because there’s nothing better to cuddle up with!


  38. #
    Cait's Plate — September 15, 2011 @ 9:36 am

    Oh my. My boyfriend would absolutely ADORE this.


  39. #
    Deborah — September 15, 2011 @ 9:38 am

    That is one of the hard parts of blogging – when you just want to cook and not have to measure everything, but you know you have to measure to share it on your blog! But I’m glad you shared, because this sounds so good and comforting.


  40. #
    Liz @ Tip Top Shape — September 15, 2011 @ 9:40 am

    Oh wow, you were not kidding about this being hearty. Looks great!


  41. #
    Encore — September 15, 2011 @ 9:46 am

    Your timing couldn’t be more perfect! Last night I asked my Special Lady what she wanted this weekend and seeing as how we were under our first freeze warning (I know, right?!?!? I mean it’s not even fall yet!) last night, chili was her answer…and BAM! here you are with a loaded recipe (in more ways than one!). I’ll give it a go this weekend and let you know. Thanks and cheers!

    P.S. The beer goes in the chili and not my belly, right?


    • Encore — September 22nd, 2011 @ 11:46 am

      As promised, I totally knocked this out this past weekend, but took the easy way out as noted in my post. Don’t judge. ;) Thanks for the recipe and I will totally be making this again, but with a little more kick because I am such a sucker for spice. Seriously, if someone gave me a poblano or jalapeno for a present, I would probably wet myself with excitement. (insert awkward silence here) Okay, moving on…thanks again!


  42. #
    Lisa @ Life in Green — September 15, 2011 @ 9:50 am

    Three meats and beer? Now that’s a way to a boy’s heart.


  43. #
    Lindsey :) — September 15, 2011 @ 9:56 am

    Love chili!! Our recipes look similar, if I had to write it down, but I add chocolate chips in mine too! Have you tried that? I had to once b/c I was in a panic b/c the Mr. put chili powder in when I already did (hot tamale) and the sweetness helped curb the spiciness…. sorta…but I think I was more in love w/the fact there was chocolate in it (winning) now it’s a staple ingredient! Try it sometime :)


  44. #
    Casey @ Pocket Full of Sunshine — September 15, 2011 @ 10:08 am

    Haha those pics of meat chunks are awesome! This sounds delicious. The meatier my chili is, the better!


  45. #
    april — September 15, 2011 @ 10:16 am

    Well I love making chili on a cool fall day. Last time I went a lil overboard with the pepper sauce. My husbands neck was covered with sweat drops. But it was sooo good! You couldn’t stop eating it even though you felt like your mouth was on fire.


    • Jessica — September 15th, 2011 @ 3:38 pm

      Oops! Haha.


  46. #
    Liz @ Southern Charm — September 15, 2011 @ 10:42 am

    Talk about a hearty chilli. Love it! This looks SO GOOD!


  47. #
    Ashley — September 15, 2011 @ 10:43 am

    Beer…mmmmm You need to come visit. There are about 8 breweries within 2 miles of my house. hehe And it’s currently 67* in our house…I need a bowl of chili!! Well, maybe in a few hours. I just finished my oats. And, hold the meat. ;)


  48. #
    Jenn @ Frost Bites — September 15, 2011 @ 10:54 am

    Yummm! Never thought of beer in chili. Can’t wait to try…chili season is here!


  49. #
    Gina @ Running to the Kitchen — September 15, 2011 @ 10:54 am

    No chili is complete without avocado + cheddar as toppings, glad you agree ;)
    Beer chilis are my favorite, they make it interesting and of course when you cook with beer, you must consumer some alongside too :)


    • Jessica — September 15th, 2011 @ 3:38 pm

      Obviously. ;)


  50. #
    Caitlin @ Cake with Love — September 15, 2011 @ 11:20 am

    Believe it or not but I have never has a bowl of chili, never looked to appealing, and I eat first with my eyes! this one looks heavenly!! I really plan on trying it!


    • Jessica — September 15th, 2011 @ 3:37 pm

      Never? You gotta try!


      • Caitlin @ Cake with Love — September 15th, 2011 @ 5:33 pm

        Jessica, believe I will after your post!!! Your blog is like my food bible, every recipe of yours that I have tried was really good, I would say amazing so I am making this chili!!!! :)

        • Jessica — September 15th, 2011 @ 6:00 pm

          You are so sweet – thanks!

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