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The Best Ever Chili

My dad and my father-in-law are the gurus in our chili-loving clan. But after my honeymoon to New Mexico, inspired by the fresh and fragrant chile peppers at the Santa Fe farmers market, I felt it was time to introduce them to my spicy, meaty version with a touch of masa harina. —Sarah Farmer, Taste of Home Culinary Director
  • Total Time
    Prep: 20 min. Cook: 1 hour 20 min.
  • Makes
    8 servings

Ingredients

  • 3 dried ancho or guajillo chiles
  • 1 to 2 cups boiling water
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 1/4 cup chili powder
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons Montreal steak seasoning
  • 2 pounds beef tri-tip roast, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 2 teaspoons salt, divided
  • 2 teaspoons coarsely ground pepper, divided
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil, divided
  • 1 large onion, chopped (about 2 cups)
  • 1 poblano pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons crushed red pepper flakes
  • 3 cups beef stock
  • 1 bottle (12 ounces) beer
  • 2 cans (14-1/2 ounces each ) fire-roasted diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1 can (16 ounces) kidney beans, drained
  • 3 tablespoons masa harina
  • American cheese slices, sour cream, shredded cheddar cheese, diced red onion and corn chips, optional

Directions

  • Combine chiles and enough boiling water to cover; let stand until softened, about 15 minutes. Drain, reserving 1/3 cup of the soaking liquid. Discard stems and seeds. Process chiles, tomato paste, garlic and reserved liquid until smooth.
  • In a small skillet, toast chili powder, paprika and cumin over medium heat until aromatic, 3-4 minutes; remove and set aside. In a Dutch oven, cook and stir ground beef and steak seasoning over medium-high heat until beef is no longer pink, about 5 minutes; remove and drain.
  • Sprinkle steak cubes with 1 teaspoon each salt and pepper. In same Dutch oven, brown beef in batches in 1 tablespoon oil over medium-high heat; remove and set aside. Saute onion and poblano pepper in the remaining 1 tablespoon oil until tender, about 5 minutes. Stir in toasted spices, oregano and pepper flakes. Add the cooked meats along with stock, beer, tomatoes, beans, remaining salt and pepper, and chile paste mixture. Cook over medium heat 20 minutes; reduce heat to low. Stir in masa and simmer 30-45 minutes longer. Serve with desired toppings.
    Freeze option: Freeze cooled chili in freezer containers. To use, partially thaw in refrigerator overnight. Heat through in a saucepan, stirring occasionally; add a little broth or water if necessary.

Test Kitchen tips

  • Adding the masa harina at the end helps thicken the chili and give it a subtle corn flavor.
  • While this chili is fantastic right out of the pot, as with a lot of soups, stews and other chilis, it tastes even better the next day.
  • For a smart make-ahead option, double the batch and freeze the leftovers in individual portions. They'll keep for at least 6 months.
  • Nutrition Facts
    1-3/4 cups: 473 calories, 20g fat (6g saturated fat), 103mg cholesterol, 1554mg sodium, 29g carbohydrate (8g sugars, 7g fiber), 41g protein.

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    Reviews

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    Average Rating:
    • NH-rescue
      Dec 13, 2018

      This was my first chili with steak tips in it, and it was worth the try! This is tasty and hearty and spicy. I used whatever steak seasoning I had on hand and, being somewhat timid, only used the water from the dried chilies instead of incorporating the chilies themselves. Next time, I will process them in along with the tomato paste and garlic. I also used a bit more masa harina to make the chili a little thicker. This chili is even better the next day, when the flavors have had time to meld.

    • curlylis85
      Dec 10, 2018

      Our family loved the smoky flavor and how beefy it was. It is a little spicy, but topping it with cheese or sour cream made it work well for my younger children.

    • willeystevens
      Nov 23, 2018

      No comment left

    • Kymberly
      Oct 23, 2018

      My husband LOVED this and said it was akin to Texas Roadhouse chili. We will probably reduce the spices by 1/4 as it was a bit spicy but worth the heat. The beef tips are AMAZING. Serve it with cornbread to give your taste buds a break from the heat!