Award Winning Southwestern Chili

Daddo's Recipes Southwestern Favorites American

This chili recipe has been the most requested recipe from the family clan.  My brother, Mike, always requested for me to make the chili when he came to dinner. At work one of my friends used this recipe in his inter-office Chili Cook-off contest; he won the first place blue ribbon and trophy. Work friends of Mama Dew would request for her to bring this chili to the special school events they would have. The original recipe was given to me by Ethel Gramma which she served at their deli in New York. Over the years I tweaked the original recipe to develop a deeper and richer,  milder flavor version to accommodate and appeal to all who have a delicate taste for a not so spicy chili. This bean-rich, ground beef chili will not only be delicious today, but it might even taste better tomorrow if there are any leftovers!


  • 4 to 6 Lbs. of 90% lean ground beef (ground pork, ground turkey, chicken or combination can be substituted)
  • 1 large green bell pepper diced ½” pieces
  • ¼ C red bell pepper diced ½” pieces
  • ¼ C yellow bell pepper diced ½” pieces
  • ¼ C orange bell pepper diced ½” pieces
  • 1 large yellow onion diced ½” pieces
  • 1 can diced green chilies 7 oz.
  • 2 cans diced tomatoes 14.5 oz.
  • 2 cans tomato sauce 14.5 oz.
  • 2 cans dark red kidney beans (washed and drained) to be added during last 15 minutes before serving  (variation:  one can each, or use black beans)
  • 2 cans light kidney beans (washed and drained) to be added during last 15 minutes  before serving (variation: one can each, or use black beans)
  • ¼ C tomato paste
  • 2 cans beef, chicken, or vegetable stock
  • 2 T chili powder or favorite taco seasoning* 
  • 1 T garlic powder
  • 2 T onion powder
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • ½ tsp coarse ground black pepper
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 2 T paprika
  • 2 T prepared yellow mustard
  • 1 C ketchup
  • 2 T Worcestershire sauce
  • 3 T canola cooking oil for blooming spices
  • 3 T canola cooking oil for browning ground meat.
  • ½ tsp unsweetened baking cocoa (optional)**


  1. Wash, cut and place in a large mixing bowl the various bell peppers and yellow onion
  2. Place all dry spices together in a separate small mixing bowl.
  3. Open cans of tomatoes, diced tomatoes, tomato paste, beef stock, diced green chilies and set aside to be added to Dutch oven or stock pot later during the cooking process.



  1. Preheat 3 tablespoons canola oil in a large Dutch oven or large stock pot on medium high heat until oil shimmers.
  2. Next, we want to add the following spices to the heated cooking oil to bloom flavors  (placing the spices in the heated cooking oil releases the flavor of the spices into the oil and brings out a more intensified flavor). Combine the following spices in a small mixing bowl and thoroughly mix: chili powder, garlic powder, onion powder, kosher salt, black pepper, cumin, and paprika. When adding these spices to the heated oil,  stir continually for 30 seconds. (We do not want to burn the spices)
  3. Next,  we want to sauté the diced bell peppers and onion into the spice infusion; again, remember to stir continually until all are blended together;  continue to cook for about Oh… 3 or 4 minutes until the onion and peppers are lightly soft. Remove onions and peppers from pot and place in a large mixing bowl
  4. Now we can begin to brown the meat mixture; cook beef, chicken, turkey or a combination of each. Using the same Dutch oven or stock pot add 3 tablespoons of canola cooking oil and preheat to a medium high heat. Place the ground meat into the pot,  stir until meat is thoroughly cooked. Next add the can diced green chilis and onion and pepper mixture; completely blend together while adding the Worcestershire sauce and tomato paste.
  5. We are almost done. Add to the ground meat canned tomatoes, canned tomato sauce, yellow mustard, ketchup, and beef stock, completely blend, bring to a light boil over medium heat and continue stirring. If the mixture seems to be too thick,  add water to achieve your desired thickness consistency.  Reduce heat to low level, cover and let simmer for about one to two hours. Stir occasionally, until desired thickness.***
  6. 15 minutes before serving add and blend in kidney beans. Turn off heat, cover with lid. Serve with desired toppings.

* Ingredient adjustment on quantities may be required as to your family needs; spice amounts may be tweaked to desired taste during the cooking process

** ½ teaspoon unsweetened baking cocoa (optional) this adds deeper flavor richness to the chili

*** During the one to two hour cooking cycle the heat may need to be adjusted to a very low heat setting (warm) we want to achieve a very low simmer process to avoid the chili from scorching the bottom of the chili pot. Cooking time can be adjusted as needed. Remember to stir the chili.


Serving Suggestions

Serve with optional toppings: sour cream, guacamole, red, green or white diced onions, black olives, shredded sharp, Colby or Pepper Jack cheese, salsa, sliced jalapeno rounds, crushed red pepper flakes, fresh cilantro leaves

Side dishes: corn bread, mini corn muffins, corn chips, warm soft flour tortillas, butter crackers


Daddo Says:

OH YEAH! All of the above!