Boilermaker Chili

January 13, 2010

A few weeks ago I wanted to make chili, and I’m always struggling to find a good chili recipe. I’d seen this one on allrecipes.com before, but for some reason had never used it. If you want to see the original, with comments, you can find it here, but I adapted it to suit my family, so my recipe is quite different from the original. That’s how I roll 😛 It turned out to be the best chili I’ve ever made, and since I actually had Fritos in the house, I served it with those. I may never eat chili without Fritos again. Yum! I also served it with cornbread on the side.

Boilermaker Chili (adapted from allrecipes.com)


* 2 pounds ground beef chuck
* 1 pound bulk Italian sausage
* 3 (15 ounce) cans chili beans, drained (chili beans = pinto. You can sub kidney if you like)
* 1 (28 ounce) cans diced tomatoes with juice

* 2 (15 oz) cans Rotel tomatoes
* 1 (6 ounce) can tomato paste
* 1 large yellow onion, chopped
* 2 green chile peppers, seeded and chopped (optional, I didn’t use these but I would for variation)
* 4 tablespoons real bacon bits (Sam’s Club sells a huge bag for $6 that’s awesome to use in recipes)
* 4 tsp beef base (different and so much better than bouillon!)
* 1 cup beer (the darker the better, don’t leave the beer out)
* 1/4 cup chili powder (more to taste, once it’s had a while to cook and blend)
* 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
* 1 tablespoon minced garlic
* 1 tablespoon dried oregano
* 2 teaspoons ground cumin
* 2 teaspoons hot pepper sauce (e.g. Tabasco™)
* 1 teaspoon dried basil
* 1 teaspoon salt
* 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
* 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
* 1 teaspoon paprika
* 1 teaspoon white sugar

*1/4 cup bittersweet chocolate (or 1-2 Tbsp unsweet cocoa powder)
* 1 (10.5 ounce) bag corn chips such as Fritos®
* 1 (8 ounce) package shredded Cheddar cheese


*The directions are for stovetop but you could easily make this in the crockpot. I was short on time, so did stovetop, but next time if I plan ahead right, I’ll do crockpot chili.

1. Heat a large stock pot over medium-high heat. Crumble the ground chuck and sausage into the hot pan, and cook until evenly browned. Drain off excess grease.
2. Pour in the chili beans,  tomatoes and tomato paste. Add the onion, celery, bacon bits, bouillon, and beer. Season with chili powder, Worcestershire sauce, garlic, oregano, cumin, hot pepper sauce, basil, salt, pepper, cayenne, paprika, and sugar. Stir to blend, then cover and simmer over low heat for at least 2 hours, stirring occasionally.
3. After 2 hours, taste, and adjust salt, pepper, and chili powder if necessary. The longer the chili simmers, the better it will taste. Remove from heat and serve, or refrigerate, and serve the next day.
4. To serve, ladle into bowls, and top with corn chips and shredded Cheddar cheese.

All recipes at a glance: