Our 22 Best Chili Recipes
Chili benefits from being simmered low and slow. And if you want to use dried beans instead of canned, it's effortless to make in a slow cooker. Add them with the ground beef, tomatoes, and spices, and just six hours later, you have delicious chili. For a spicier dish, add a minced, seeded poblano chile or two minced, seeded chipotle chiles in adobo and the jalapeños.
Vegetarian Black Bean Chili with Ancho and Orange
This vegetarian chili from Ellie Krieger starts with canned black beans and a simple tomato sauce with crushed tomatoes and tomato paste. A hit of fresh orange adds a warm, sweet note to the rich spices.
Fire-and-Ice Ohio Chili
Jeni Britton Bauer adds richness to this beautiful chili with a surprise ingredient: ice cream. Brown the ground beef over medium-high heat, add the onions, tomatoes, and spice ingredients and bring to a simmer before finally adding a hefty dollop of dark chocolate ice cream. She loves serving the chili over pasta because it has a great sauce-like consistency.
Winter Vegetable Chili
This vegetable chili, thick with kidney beans and hominy (dried, hulled corn kernels), is deliciously smoky and spicy. It will also keep in the fridge for a few days, so you can make it ahead of time or enjoy leftovers as needed.
This chili is made with ground turkey, olive oil, pinto beans, and plenty of vegetables. “The turkey chili is a big favorite of Oprah’s,” says Art Smith. “It’s got some spice, which I think kids love just as much as adults do.”
Quick Three-Bean Chili
Some chilis need to simmer for a long time to help the flavors develop. This one doesn’t because Melissa Rubel Jacobson mixes in a little bit of bacon, which instantly adds meatiness and a smoky flavor.
Pork Cheek and Black-Eyed Pea Chili
For his delicious chili, Michael Symon uses incredibly flavorful pork cheeks—an unusual cut worth seeking out. If pork cheeks aren’t available, pork shoulder (cut into 2-inch pieces) can be substituted.
Chili con Tofu
Spicy chili seasonings work wonders for the bland flavor of tofu. For a more substantial, spicy chili, use the same weight of tempeh in place of the tofu. Since tempeh is not packed in water, there is no need to pat it dry before sautéing, but stir in up to one extra cup of water in Step 4 when adding the beans.
Julie's Texas-Style Chili with Beer
A blend of ancho, guajillo, and pasilla chiles helps build this bold short-rib chili. Bittersweet chocolate, a pale ale, and brewed coffee also add layers of flavor to the dish.
Beef Chili with Beans
This smoky, spicy version of chili is a slightly modified version of Grant Achatz’s mother’s chili, made with ancho, pasilla, and chipotle powders, plus a homemade blend of seasonings and fresh herbs.
Black-Bean Turkey Chili
Ronnie Killen started having real meals with lean proteins, like this turkey chili. The recipe is relatively simple, and a lighter option if you’re avoiding heavier meals during the week.
Goat Chili with Eye of the Goat Beans
Spiced with árbol and guajillo chiles, this mellow, satisfying chili contains both braised goat shoulder and Rancho Gordo’s Ojo de Cabra (Eye of the Goat) beans. The recipe is also excellent with pork shoulder in place of the goat and ordinary kidney beans instead of the heirloom kind.
Chili with Guajillo and Ancho Chiles and Hominy
Butcher Tom Mylan of the Meat Hook in Brooklyn flavors his chili with three kinds of dried chiles: fruity guajillos, smoky anchos and a New Mexico chile. After he soaks the chiles in water to plump them, he blends them to form a silky puree, which gives the chili a complex flavor.
Turkey Chili Soup with Hominy
Determined to strike a balance between a soup and a stew, Grace Parisi started with a basic recipe and added a bit of tomato paste and flour to thicken the broth. She gives it a kick of flavor with cumin, chile powder, and chipotle powder.
You’ll get a bright taste of cumin in this great cold-weather chili made with ground beef, beans, and green bell pepper. If you want a hotter chili, add as much cayenne as you like.
Ground sirloin, jalapeño, ancho, chipotle, and paprika play a key role in this spicy chile, combined with beans and beef broth. It’ll keep in the fridge for up to four days, or you can freeze it for two months if needed. The best ready-made meal there is.
Chickpea and Swiss Chard Chili
This smoky, rich chili from Justin Chapple is a simple one-pot dish. It takes only 30 minutes to make and requires only ten ingredients (salt and pepper included), and it’s perfect for saving leftovers for lunch the next day.
Three-Chile Beef Chili
With coffee, stout beer, smoky bacon, and three kinds of chiles, this recipe makes one vibrant pot of chili. Two pounds of ground beef and three cans of pinto beans add plenty of heft and make this the ultimate cold-weather meal.
In Kansas City, Missouri, chef Colby Garrelts makes a giant pot of chili for his family’s Sunday supper, often using venison that he has hunted himself. Here, he uses a mix of pork shoulder and brisket for a super-decadent and satisfying bowl of chili. Anything using Rancho Gordo beans is a winner in our book.
Classic Beef Chili
If you don’t have a favorite chili recipe, make this one your go-to for game day. Fresh poblano and toasty ancho chile powder provide a tame level of heat, making this a crowd-friendly dish that guests crank up by topping with a few slices of fresh jalapeño. And thanks to convenient canned beans, you can get this on the table in under an hour.
Spicy Chicken Chili
Serving this spicy stew is a surefire way to please everyone at the table. You can also substitute leftover turkey or chicken for the chicken thighs.
Chicken Chili with Beer and Hominy
This chili recipe is less about beans and more about chicken, beer, and hominy simmering in a spicy tomato-based stew. Serve it with sour cream, chopped onions, and cilantro.