A true Texas chili will always include meat (chili con carne), and the flavor of the meat along with the flavor of the chili pepper will dominate the dish. There are rarely a lot of fillers included, like beans or added vegetables, which can dull the flavor. We've got a great Texas chili recipe for you, so let's get right into it.
The History of Chili
When many of us think of chili, we associate it with Mexican cuisine. However, Mexicans, in general, consider the dish an imitation of their cuisine that is available in the United States.
The origin of chili is unknown, but many believe the first recipe may have been written by a mysterious nun in Southwestern America back in the 17th century.
While there is no evidence of this, what is a bit more believable is that families emigrated from the Canary Islands to Texas, where they made a spicy Spanish stew that is similar to chili in the early 1730s.
If we continue following history, there are many more who lay claim to the invention of chili throughout the 1800s, including a Dallas millionaire and those residing in Texas prisons. But whatever the origin of the food may be, it certainly is a popular and well-loved dish today.
So, although the origin of chili may be up for debate, most sources seem to give Texas credit for coming up with the recipe. That being said, the Texas recipe is arguably most true to what chili is all about.
Other types of chili include Cincinnati chili, which has spices like cinnamon and even cocoa, that can bring a certain sweetness to the dish. Classic chili is another version and generally has more vegetables added.
Real Texas Chili
This recipe is obviously a representation of the classic Texas chili we all know and love. It has just the right kick and the perfect blend of ingredients that lets the flavor be the star. Try cooking some up for your family tonight to find out how much they enjoy this timeless recipe.
2 Tablespoons vegetable oil
2 pounds ground beef
2 medium onions, chopped
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
28 ounces whole tomatoes
12 ounces beer
5 Tablespoons chili powder
2 jalapeño chili, seeded and chopped
1 Tablespoon cumin
2 teaspoons paprika
1 teaspoon sugar
cayenne pepper, optional
cheddar cheese, shredded
red onion, chopped
1. Heat oil in 6 quart saucepan. Add ground beef, onions and garlic and sauté until meat is browned.
2. Stir in next 7 ingredients and bring to boil over medium-high heat.
3. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, uncovered, about 45 to 55 minutes.
4. Taste and season with salt, pepper, and cayenne pepper, if desired. Ladle into bowls. Garnish with cheese, onion and avocado, if desired.
Storing Leftover Chili
No matter how good a chili recipe might be, there's always a chance for leftovers. Storing your leftover chili correctly is very important. If you store it improperly, it may not last as long as you want it to. First, make sure you store your chili no later than two hours after it has been prepared. Leaving chili out to sit for longer than two hours is a recipe for disaster.
Grab a plastic, sealable container and fill with the leftover chili. Of course, you can also partition the leftovers out into multiple small containers, if you wish. Once you've transitioned the chili from pot to container, seal it up tight. It's very important that you seal the container properly, since otherwise your chili won't keep well.
We don't recommend using a Ziploc bag or similar. While these can work in a pinch if you have nothing else, they aren't ideal. Bags can break open easily, especially when very full. Not only will this result in improperly-stored chili, but it will potentially leave a mess all over your fridge. Stick to regular containers!
Once stored, chili can be kept refrigerated for up to four days or frozen for four to six months. Frozen chili can still be safe to eat beyond six months, but it will take a sharp decline in quality after the six month mark. Make sure you put the date of freezing on each container of chili, so that you can accurately track how long it has been frozen for.