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Secret Ingredient Chili in a mug

Secret Ingredient Chili

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 5 from 2 reviews
  • Author: Karen
  • Prep Time: 10
  • Cook Time: 45
  • Total Time: 55 minutes
  • Yield: 6 1x
  • Category: Beef
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Southwest
  • Diet: Gluten Free


This delicious and easy chili recipe contains a secret ingredient that provides an exciting flavor boost. Toasting the dry spices also unleash their aromatics for a deep flavor profile. Chili is a great recipe for extras because terrific leftovers taste better the second day. If you want to make it a special meal, add cornbread and coleslaw, but it is excellent as a one-pot meal.


Units Scale
  • 1.5 pounds of grass-fed ground beef
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 Tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 2 large red or yellow onions, chopped
  • 1 green pepper, chopped
  • 28 oz. diced tomatoes
  • 6 oz. can of tomato paste
  • 12 oz. of pilsner or lager beer*
  • 12 oz. of beef broth
  • 16 oz. of red beans or kidney beans**


  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 cup Greek yogurt, plain or sour cream
  • Cilantro, chopped – optional
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, thinly sliced and seeded, optional. Wash hands after slicing to remove any residual


  1. Cook ground beef in a Dutch oven over medium heat until brown and crumbly. Pour off fat.
  2. Toast Spices – add olive oil to the Dutch oven, keep beef in a pan, and heat for a minute. Add garlic, salt, chili powder, and cumin. Toast the spices for one minute to release their oils and bring out the flavors.
  3. Add onions and green peppers and sauté until soft; careful not to burn the spices. Add some oil if necessary. Sauté for approximately 5 minutes over medium heat.
  4. Stir in canned tomatoes, tomato paste, beer, and broth. Bring to a boil and reduce heat to simmer.
  5. Simmer on low for 30 minutes.
  6. Pour rinsed beans during the last 5 minutes.
  7. Serve in bowls and top with grated cheese and sour cream, and garnish with cilantro and jalapeno slices.


Serve with cornbread and coleslaw. If avoiding wheat, use gluten-free cornbread mix;

*GF diet – use gluten-free beer

**SCD – use legally prepped soaked and cooked bean recipe

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