Cowboy Stampedin’ Chili

August 30, 2013 § 5 Comments

Or Stampedin’ Cowboy Chili… not sure which one sounds better. ūüôā


This is an ode to my hometown Calgary, Alberta. I have searched high and low for the greatest chili concoction, and finally found it. This is a combination of sweet, smoky, and spicy. I have 2 very special ingredients that cannot be left out that I will share soon. Keep reading.

I love chili for a number of reasons.

  1. You can make ahead of time and smell the chili goodness all day long. I find I am busier in the afternoon with a 3-year-old then I am in the morning so the morning is when I do all my prepping throw everything into a pot and then let simmer all day long. Come 6 o’clock when my child is hungry and my husband walks in the door, I throw dinner into a bowl. Done.
  2. Chili makes great frozen lunches for my husband when I don’t have any leftover dinner for the next day. I throw leftovers into Tupperware containers,¬†and toss into the¬†freezer. That’s it.
  3. Chili makes a great meal the next night for dinner. Chili nachos, chili dogs, chili quesadillas, chili cheese sliders…..

We all know everyone has their special ingredients when it comes to chili, but what about special instructions.These tips are probably even more important than special ingredients.  Listen read closely, I am about to share a few of my secrets..

  1. Just when you think you’ve added enough chili powder, add more.
  2. A chili that is not spicy, is not chili.
  3. Brown your meat properly. Take it out of the fridge and let it sit at room temperature. Heat up your oil to medium high. Put your meat in and let it sit there for 5 minutes. Then start flipping and separating. It is not a good thing when your husband or significant other asks if you boiled the meat.
  4. Use chili’s in your chili. Seems kind of straight-forward but a lot of people don’t. (I am exempt from this rule as I live in a town of 250 people¬†and cannot find chili’s anywhere.) Ancho’s, chipotle’s, pasilla’s…
  5. Garnish. Eating chili without a dollop of sour cream, some shredded cheese and healthy handful of cilantro is a crime.

Everyone has a special ingredient. As do I. The first time I made my chili with this special ingredient, my husband finally admitted that my chili was better than his…. victory!!

Here is a hint…

Make extra coffee in the morning the day you plan to make chili…¬† why?


Because¬†COFFEE in my chili is my special ingredient!! Why? Who cares! It works! Don’t leave it out.

Dump in your coffee! Go ahead, be brave.



This is after a few hours of simmering. Hmmmmm.. chili. I wish you could SMELL just how much flavor is in that pot.

I made this chili on a day where it was almost 40 out with the humidex and there were¬†zero complaints from the husband! Who serves chili on a hot day?? ūüôā I’m turning into my mom. Don’t forget to top with cilantro. I cannot get enough of that herb. Anyone else the same way? Oh, and sour cream is a must. It is the perfect way to balance and cool off the spice. 115

Cowboy Stampedin’ Chili

Serves: 6 – 8

Prep time: 15 min

Cook time: 3 – 6 hours


1 lb lean ground beef

1 lb ground turkey, or chicken or pork

1 onion, chopped

3 stalks celery, chopped

5 cloves garlic, minced

1 14oz can diced tomatoes

2 6oz cans tomato paste

1 can kidney or black or 6 bean mix

1 cup strong coffee

1 tablespoon cocoa

6 tablespoons chili powder

1 tablespoon cumin

2 tablespoons oregano

1 teaspoon coriander

1 teaspoon cayenne

1 tablespoon honey or brown sugar

two shakes of Tabasco Chipotle

a dash of Worcestershire

salt and pepper

3 cups homemade stock or water, enough to cover meat

Directions: 1. Heat oil and brown meat at high temperature without burning. Drain fat when needed. Toss into chili pot. 2. Add a little more oil and sauté onions, celery and garlic. Toss into pot. 3. Add the rest of the ingredients on the list. 4. Stir well, bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. 5. Simmer for 3 Р6 hours adding water or stock if needed. 6. Garnish with sour cream, green onion and cilantro.


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