Chuck Steak Chili
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Remember - leave plenty of time for this chili to cook - a minimum of 4 to 5 hours
Recipe type: Soups, Stews & One Pot Meals
Cuisine: Tex-Mex
Serves: 12
  • 3 large Gaujillo peppers
  • 3 large Ancho peppers
  • 2 cups boiling water
  • 2 pounds chuck steak
  • several tablespoons of olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper
  • 2 cups of diced white or yellow onion
  • 1 heaping cup of diced celery
  • 5 - 6 large garlic cloves
  • 2 28 ounce cans whole tomatoes
  • 2 cups beef broth or water
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon, plus 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 2 & ½ teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 large sweet green pepper, cut in ¼ inch dice
  • 1 large sweet red pepper, cut in ¼ inch dice
  • 4 cans of beans - whatever combination you like: kidney beans, pinto beans, black beans, chick peas, cannellini beans, etc.
  • up to 1 teaspoon chipotle chili powder
  • 1 ounce bittersweet chocolate
  1. Lightly toast the chilies in an iron or stainless steel skillet. Remove the stems and shake out most of the seeds and discard. Place the the chilies in a bowl, and cover with the boiling water for about 15 minutes.
  2. Place the chilies and water in a blender, and blend on high speed until liquified.
  3. Pour the chili mixture into a mesh strainer to remove the bits of skin and the seeds, pushing the mixture around with a spoon or rubber spatula. Set aside, but keep the blender handy.
  4. Trim large bits if fat from the steak, and remove any gristle or silver skin. You don't want to remove all the fat by any means, but large areas can be removed and discarded.
  5. Cut the meat into ½ to ¾ inch pieces. [I like the steak to be about the same size as the largest beans I'm using]
  6. Pat all the surfaces of the meat with a folded paper towel to remove any moisture.
  7. Sprinkle the steak cubes with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper.
  8. Heat about 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large pot - 8 quarts will hold everything nicely.
  9. Keeping the heat under the pan fairly high, brown the steak in small batches, making sure there is ample space around the chunks. Don't stir it at all when you first put the chunks in - wait until the first side has a really good sear on it. If you crowd the pan, the steak will begin to give off too much juice for it to brown properly. If that does happen, increase the heat and let the moisture boil away - once it does, the meat will begin to brown again. As it is done, the batches in a medium bowl and set aside. Repeat until all the steak is deeply browned, adding more oil as necessary.
  10. Once all of the steak is out of the pan, lower the heat to medium, add another tablespoon of oil and the onions and celery. Cook and stir to deglaze the pan, and soften the vegetables - about 5 minutes or so.
  11. Add the garlic and cook another minute.
  12. Place 1 can of the tomatoes in the blender and blend on high speed for 30 seconds or so to completely break them down - add to the pan.
  13. Place the second can of tomatoes in the blender and pulse a few times to get them down to large chunks - add to the pan.
  14. Add back the meat, the beef broth or water and the chili paste you made.
  15. Stir and taste the mixture - add salt of needed.
  16. Add the ground cumin, smoked paprika and oregano.
  17. Bring up to a simmer, cover the pan [leave the lid a little tilted so steam can escape, or it will sputter] and cook for about an hour, stirring a couple times.
  18. Add the diced green and red sweet peppers, stir, cover as before and cook 2 more hours.
  19. Check the steak to see if it is tender. If not, cook another 45 mins to an hour. When the steak is tender, cool off a little bit of chili to taste it and check on the heat level. If needed, add the chipotle chili powder - keeping in mind this will add a fair amount of heat, so only add as much as you think it needs.
  20. Drain and rinse the beans and add them to the pot. Cover as before, bring back up to simmer and cook for the final hour.
  21. Chop the chocolate, and add to the chili, stirring until completely melted.
  22. Remove the pan from the heat, and allow to sit for at least 10 minutes, or up to several hours, if you began early in the day. If it's for the longer time [which will improve the flavor], reheat again before serving.
  23. Serve with whatever topping you like - grated sharp cheese, sour cream, cubed avocado, chopped green onions, crumbled tortilla chips, etc.
  24. Refrigerate or freeze leftovers.
Recipe by The Creekside Cook at