Uncle Walter's Chili

Uncle Walter's Chili

13 reviews, 3.8 star(s). 67% would make again

Ready in 45 minutes

This is one of my uncle's recipes for his ultimate comfort food...chili. Nothing too fancy or too complicated, just a great pot of chili with complex flavors and a generous amount of heat. Like most soups and stews, this chili tastes best when it's cooked low and slow for a few hours, allowing the flavors an opportunity to meld together and intensify.


1 tablespoon olive oil
2 large onions; - coarsely chopped (about 2 cups)
5 cloves garlic; - minced
2 tablespoons Chili powder
1 tablespoon ground cumin
2 teaspoons ground Mexican oregano
1 teaspoon ground thyme
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon chipotle chili powder; (or, substitute cayenne)
1 tablespoon chipotle chiles in adobo sauce; - chopped
3 pounds ground chuck*
1 can (6 oz) Tomato paste
2 28-oz cans crushed tomatoes
1 1/2 cups beef broth; or stock (preferably homemade, or low-sodium)
1 12-oz bottle beer; (your choice, my uncle used a lager)
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 15-oz cans kidney beans; - drained and rinsed
Salt; to taste

Original recipe makes 8



Heat oil in a large Dutch over medium heat. Add onions and garlic and saute, stirring occasionally, until translucent, about 5 minutes. Add chili powder, cumin, oregano, thyme, coriander, chipotle chili powder and chipotle chiles in adobo. Cook for another few minutes, until spices are fragrant. Increase heat to medium-high, add half the ground beef and season lightly with salt. Use a wooden spatula to break up meat and saute until no longer pink and starting to brown, about 4 to 5 minutes. Add remainder of ground beef and again, season lightly with salt, break up meat with spatula, and saute until no longer pink, another 4 to 5 minutes. Stir in tomato paste and cook for a few more minutes. Add crushed tomatoes, beef broth or stock, beer, brown sugar and kidney beans. Bring chili to a boil, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat to low and simmer, partially uncovered, stirring often, until chili has thickened, about 1 1/2 to 2 hours. Taste for seasoning and adjust salt as needed. Ladle chili into bowls. Serve with homemade tortilla chips, sour cream, chopped green onions, grated extra-sharp cheddar cheese and vinegar or lime juice to add a splash of tang, if desired.

Makes 8 to 10 servings.

* For the best results, pick out a three-pound boneless chuck roast and grind it yourself or have your butcher grind it for you.

Make Ahead Note: You can make the chile a day ahead if you like. Cool slightly. Refrigerate uncovered until cold, then cover and keep refrigerated for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 1 month. Rewarm over medium-low heat.


IF you find the use of beer objectionable, it can be replaced with an additional 1 1/2 cups beef broth, stock, or water.

Alert editor   

A delicious chili laced with the smoky chile heat of chipotles...ready to enjoy.

Saute onions and garlic until translucent.

Use a wooden spatula to break up meat and saute until no longer pink and starting to brown.

When cooking with beer most of the alcohol evaporates off while simmering, leaving behind a subtle yet flavorful undertone. IF you find the use of beer objectionable, it can be replaced with an additional 1 1/2 cups beef broth, stock, or water.

Calories Per Serving: 656 Get detailed nutrition information, including line-by-line nutrition insights?  Try BigOven Pro for Free for 14 days!

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Recipe Links

Emma Peel's Chili con Carne (Beef Chili with Beans)

Personally, I prefer making it this way

"This is a chili recipe from one of my favorite people here. It's simple, with traditional flavors and can either simmer for a little or a lot and taste great!" — MinnaPepina MinnaPepina

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Loved it, great on a cold night. Thanks Uncle Walter
Lwtsn7 2y ago

Love this chili,this recipe is spot on. It's not greasy or fatty at all. "What you put into it, is what you get out of it".
Orr21 3y ago

My family likes our chili and I try many different versions frequently. I made this chili and it was very good. It is a basic chili recipe that has good flavor, a good heat to it and a good proportion of meat to beans. So, I disagree with the earlier negative reviewer. I don't know how seasonings can completely overpowered each other or how beer can give chili a weird taste (unless you choose to use some weird exotic highbrow beer). I also disagree with a couple of the previous reviews for criticizing the recipe for greasiness. A recipe does not make chili greasy. A cook makes chili greasy by using fatty meat and not draining it or basically by not knowing how to cook.
nathanmena 4y ago

Fantastic! Uncle Walter, you're wonderful!
Laura6320 4y ago

Made this cos the ingredients looked interesting and very similar to one of my favorite chili recipes plus I had adobo chilis in a can that I didn't know what to do with! Sadly the seasonings completely overpowered each other and were kinda incompatible. Beer gave it a wierd taste to, and greasy beer beans is not what my family likes! Would make again only after a massive overhaul that would make it like my old recipe anyway :(
MinnaPepina 4y ago

Excellent seasonings and the right amount of zing. I used this recipe to win a family/friends Chili cook off. There were 19 entries and over 70 people judged the chilis.
Marthahippie 4y ago

Really really good, just a little greasy. I suggest draining the fat after all the meat has been cooked.
Suprwomn95 5y ago

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