Texas-Style Chili


Texans debate whether their style of chili should have tomatoes or if the beef should be ground or in pieces, but the one unifying rule is absolutely no beans allowed. We like the fresh sweetness that tomatoes bring to this spicy concoction, but we kept them on the side so folks can fix their own perfect bowl of chili.

Texas-Style Chili
Makes about 3 quarts
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil, plus more as needed
  • 4 pounds beef chuck roast, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons ground coriander
  • 2 teaspoons ancho chile powder
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 cups chopped yellow onion
  • 1 cup diced seeded assorted chile peppers
  • ¼ cup minced garlic
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 2 tablespoons masa harina
  • 2 (12-ounce) bottles dark lager beer
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon puréed canned chipotles in adobo sauce
  • Sliced red onion, sliced fresh jalapeño, halved cherry tomatoes, shredded cheese, fresh cilantro, flour tortillas, and lime wedges, to serve
  1. In a 4-to 6-quart cast-iron Dutch oven, heat oil over medium-high heat.
  2. In a large bowl, stir together beef, cumin, coriander, ancho chile powder, salt, and black pepper until well combined. Working in 3 to 4 batches, cook beef pieces until browned all over, 1 to 2 minutes per side, adding more oil as needed between batches. Transfer all beef to a bowl.
  3. Add onion, chile peppers, garlic, and oregano to pot. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until softened, 3 to 5 minutes. Stir in masa harina. Stir in beer, 1 cup water, puréed chipotles, and beef; bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat to medium-low; cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until beef is tender, about 1 hour. Uncover and cook, stirring occasionally, until beef is very tender and liquid is slightly thickened and reduced, 20 to 30 minutes. Serve with desired toppings.
Use any assortment of chile peppers you like to customize your heat level. Freeze remaining puréed chipotles in adobo in 1-tablespoon portions for easy future us. Also called corn flour (but not to be confused with cornstarch), masa harina is finely ground corn that is most commonly used to make tortillas, but it’s used here to help thicken the chili. Masa harina is widely available in grocery stores, but finely ground cornmeal can be substituted or it can be omitted if you prefer a thinner consistency.