Chili is always a hit, and if you live in a colder climate it is that much more welcome. Super Bowl parties are coming up and this recipe can be made in advance and reheated, just as with all stewed recipes, and tastes even better the next day or so. If reheating, just make sure it has ample time to heat through, as it is a large amount.
Variations on a Theme
My recipe is quite large, using 3 pounds of meat, so it will feed quite a few, making it a great party food. It will require a large pot, Dutch oven, or a very large crock pot to make. When making this chili, I looked for flavorings to enhance the richness of the final flavor. A high quality stout beer was my choice, because it has that richness, though the recipe can be made equally well with any other beer of choice or with just water or beef stock. If someone with gluten intolerance is looking at this recipe, they would need to eliminate the beer completely.
I used Anaheim chilies in this recipe, and this particular batch of Anaheims was quite spicy. If you are not up to the spiciness, use either 3 whole bell peppers in place of the 1 bell pepper and 8 Anaheims called for, or use one bell pepper and 4 small cans of chopped green chilies, which have no heat to them.
My Beer Chili con Carne
Serves 8 to 12, depending on portion size
2 pounds ground beef
1 pound ground pork (or pork sausage, if desired)
2 tablespoons olive oil
6 to 8 ounces bacon, fried and crumbled
2 tablespoons bacon grease reserved in pan
2 large onions, chopped
6 cloves garlic, minced
1 green bell pepper, seeds, stem and membranes removed, chopped
8 Anaheim chilies, seeds, stems and membranes removed, chopped
1 bottle stout beer, or other beer of choice, or water or beef stock
1 can tomato sauce,15 ounces
2 cans tomato paste, 6 ounces each
3 tablespoons chili powder
1 tablespoon Kosher salt. Use less, if using regular table salt
2 bay leaves
1 teaspoon oregano flakes, rubbed between fingers before adding
1 teaspoon whole fennel seeds
1 teaspoon whole cumin seeds
12 to 15 ounces more liquid, or as desired (beer, water, stock)
This can be made in a large crock pot, or in a large Dutch Oven that is stove top or oven safe.
In a large skillet, preferably non stick, fry the meats in the olive oil on high, small batches at a time, until nicely browned, removing them to the crock pot or Dutch Oven as they are done. Fry the bacon in the same pan, until nicely crisp. Crisper is better as it will get soggy in the chili as it cooks. Remove the crisp bacon to drain, then crumble into smaller bits, or chop, then add to the pot. Reserve 1 to 2 tablespoons of the bacon grease in the skillet and add in the chopped onions, tossing over medium high heat until light golden. Add in the garlic and continue to saute until the onions are light browned and the garlic is fragrant. Add to the pot.
Chop the bell peppers and Anaheim chilies and add to the pot. In a mortar and pestle, crush the fennel and cumin seeds. These are helpful as an aid to digestion, and I prefer them nearly whole, though ground spices may be used. Add in the rest of the ingredients and stir well.
In Crock Pot, cook on high for about 4 hours, or 6 or more hours on low until bubbling vigorously. If using a Dutch Oven or other large pot, this can be cooked on top of the stove. Bring to boil, then reduce to a simmer for at least an hour or more if possible. The pot, once maintaining a simmer, can be placed into a low oven, around 275 degrees, for 2 or more hours, as desired. Check for liquid levels!
This is excellent with a nice dollop of sour cream, particularly to cool the heat of the chilies, or shredded cheese, or chopped onions. Wonderful served with corn bread on the side or in a bread bowl.
Thank you for taking the time to read my article. I hope it was informative and helped you along your own culinary journey.
My passion is to teach people how to create a harmony of flavors with their cooking and help pass along my love and joy of food. I would love to hear from you! Join my "e-family" and share recipes, stories and good times in the kitchen. Visit my Web site http://www.aharmonyofflavors.com/ my Blog at http://www.aharmonyofflavors.blogspot.com/ my Marketplace at or join me on Facebook. Let me know, and I will send you a copy of my monthly news letter full of recipes the latest tips.