This beef chili recipe is made without any beans. It is all beef and spices. It cooks very slowly and is absolutely exquisite.
We are going to make this recipe with beef chuck. Beef chuck tends to be marbled and tough. That is fine. We need the fat for taste and it cooks long enough to make it very tender.
We will also mix the spices we will use for this. You can go ahead and store any leftover spices in a closed jar in a cupboard. It will last for months. I did not have ground ancho chili for this so I used paprika. If you can find it use it. I also only added 1/2 a tsp. of cayenne. Feel free to make it as hot as you want.
Finally, we will simmer this beef with cinnamon sticks and bay leaves. You will have an explosion of flavors in your mouth. Guaranteed.
This beef chili goes beautifully with cornbread.
This is what you are going to need for this finger licking good beef chili recipe:
FOR THE SPICES:
2 TBS paprika or ground ancho chili
½ tsp. cayenne pepper
1 TBS oregano
1 TBS ground cumin
1 TBS garlic powder
a pinch of cloves
Mix all the spices well. You can keep these in a jar with a lid in a dark, dry place for months.
FOR THE CHILI:
2 TBS oil
1 small yellow onion – chopped
4 garlic cloves – minced
2 jalapeño peppers – chopped (if you want it to be spicy you can leave the seeds and membrane in – if not remove them)
2.5 pounds of chuck beef – trimmed and cut into small chunks
1 – 12 oz. bottle of dark ale
2 cups chicken stock
1 TBS dark molasses
1 tsp. dark cocoa powder (unsweetened)
2 cinnamon sticks
2 bay leaves
Salt & Pepper
Optional toppings – sour cream, finely chopped red onion, grated cheese, corn chips, tortilla chips, chopped tomatoes
Heat a TBS of oil in a skillet and add the onion. Cook for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the onion is softened and translucent. Add the garlic and jalapeño and cook for about 2 minutes until you can smell the garlic. Stir occasionally. Remove the onions and garlic and set them aside. Wipe the pan.
Generously season the meat with salt and pepper and mix it well.
Add the remaining oil to the skillet and start browning the beef in batches. Set each batch aside when they are ready.
Mix the beer with the chicken stock. Pour a little bit of the liquid in the pan and scrape the brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Let the liquid reduce for a few minutes.
Return the onions to the pan and mix. Add 3 TBS of the spices and mix well. Cook for about a minute constantly stirring. Return the cooked beef into the skillet and mix. Add the liquid and the molasses and mix well.
Place the cocoa powder in a small bowl and dilute it with a little bit of the liquid from your skillet. Add it to the skillet and mix well. Add a generous amount of pepper and the cinnamon sticks and bay leaves.
Bring the chili to a simmer and cover the pot. Cook for 2.5 hours on low heat. Make sure the liquid is not drying up too fast.
Taste for salt and adjust. Remove the cinnamon sticks and the bay leaves. Serve with your toppings of choice and enjoy.