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Texas Chili Recipe
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4.82 from 16 votes

Texas Chili Recipe

This Texas chili recipe is authentic, meaty, just the right amount of spicy, and not a chili bean in sight. Learn how to make your own Texas chili.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time2 hrs 40 mins
Total Time2 hrs 50 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: chili, recipe, spicy, Tex-Mex
Servings: 6
Calories: 447kcal


  • 3 ancho peppers
  • 3 pasilla peppers
  • 3 New Mexican dried peppers See my NOTES above on the dried pepper choices – I prefer a variety
  • 2.5 pounds beef chuck cut into bite-sized cubes
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium white onion chopped
  • 3 jalapeno peppers chopped
  • 2 serrano peppers chopped (optional for extra heat – use extra jalapenos for milder)
  • 4 cloves garlic chopped
  • 2 cups beef stock or use a dark beer
  • 2.5 cups water + more as needed (or use chicken or beef stock, or beer)
  • 2 tablespoons masa harina corn flour, for thickening, if desired
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire
  • FOR SERVING: Chopped onion, spicy chili flakes, freshly chopped cilantro, lime wedges, crema or sour cream, Fritos or tortilla chips, whatever else you desire


  • Start your chili paste first by lightly toasting the dried peppers in a dry pan about a minute or 2 per side. This will help to release the oils.
  • Remove from heat and cool enough to handle. Remove the stems and pour out the seeds.
  • Soak the peppers in hot water for 20 minutes, or until they are nice and soft.
  • Add them to a food processor with 1/2 to 1 cup of the soaking water and a bit of salt to taste. Process until nice and smooth. Set aside for now.
  • Add the cubed beef to a large bowl and toss with the cumin and a bit of salt and pepper. Make sure everything is nice and coated.
  • Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large pot and add the seasoned beef. Cook 6-7 minutes, searing the beef all over. Remove the beef and set aside.
  • Add the remaining olive oil along with the jalapenos, serranos and onion. Cook them down about 5 minutes.
  • Add the garlic and stir. Cook another minute.
  • Return the beef to the pot and stir in the reserved chili paste. Cook it for 2-3 minutes to let the flavor develop a bit.
  • Stir in the beef broth (or beer), 2 cups of water, brown sugar, Worcestershire, and masa and bring to a quick boil. If you are using the optional additions (see my NOTES above), add them in now.
  • Reduce the heat, cover and simmer for about 2 hours, or until the beef is very tender. It could take longer if you are using tougher cuts of beef (see NOTES above). Give it a stir once every 30 minutes or so. If it becomes too thick, add in a ΒΌ cup of water and stir. Thicken with more masa.
  • Serve with your favorite fixins!



Heat Factor: Mild-Medium, but Texas chili is HUGE on flavor.


Calories: 447kcal | Carbohydrates: 12g | Protein: 39g | Fat: 27g | Saturated Fat: 10g | Cholesterol: 130mg | Sodium: 352mg | Potassium: 987mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 1910IU | Vitamin C: 12.3mg | Calcium: 67mg | Iron: 5.5mg