Dad’s Badass Chili

Well folks, it’s half-past time I posted another family favorite recipe.  This recipe is a huge crowd pleaser and doesn’t take too much effort on your part.  But it does involve some beer drinking, so make sure your party hat is on before you start the cooking.

I frequently get asked for the recipe, so here it is for all my lovely readers.

This chili always gives me warm fuzzies of snowy weekends in Minneapolis, breaking up the monotony of Thanksgiving leftovers, and helping my dad taste test in the kitchen.  The recipe pulls on my heartstrings.

It will pull on yours too.  I mean, it’s called “Dad’s Badass Chili” for goodness sakes!

As a note, I have never actually measured any of these ingredients.  Make sure you do many taste tests throughout to make sure it isn’t too sweet or salty or spicy.  In fact, my batch last night was too sweet, so I added salt, garlic powder, and a little more chili powder.

Do what tastes right.

You will need:
28 oz. canned diced tomatoes
28 oz. canned crushed tomatoes
4 oz. tomato paste
14 oz. tomato sauce
1 can light red kidney beans (drained)
1 can dark red kidney beans (drained)
1 can black beans (drained)
1 lb. chorizo or hot Italian sausage
1 lb. ground beef
2 cans beer (1 for the chili and 1 for you!) — I used Heineken, but you can get creative.  I would steer clear from overly hoppy beers, but that might just be my personal preference.
1-2 cups diced carrots
1-2 cups diced celery
1 cup diced onions
1/2 cup brown sugar to taste
1/4 cup ketchup (or a few big squirts)
1 tsp brown gravy base (I used the packet of dried mix from the store.  You can also substitute this for liquid smoke, but I have no idea where my dad finds that.)
1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
2-3 Tbsp olive oil
1 Tbsp butter
3-4-8 Tbsp chili powder (This is the most important ingredient, but each batch seems to widely vary on how much it needs.  Again, taste testing along the way is key here.)
Optional sides:
-sharp cheddar cheese
-sour cream or nonfat plain Greek yogurt
-hot dogs

This is where a sous-chef comes in handy…force them to open the billion canned ingredients 🙂

-Brown the sausage and beef in a big pot.  Drain and set meat aside on paper towels to soak up any remaining grease.

-Saute the onions and celery in the olive oil and butter until slightly opaque.

-Then add the carrots to the mix until the whole batch is sizzling.

-Return the meat to the big pot and add all of the remaining ingredients.  Bring to a boil.  Then reduce heat and simmer for 20-30 minutes.  Stir regularly to prevent burning on bottom.

Don’t forget the main ingredient:

Or the secret ingredient:

-At this point you might want to add some water to get the chili to your preferred consistency.

You can try Ancho chili powder for a different taste, but don’t use “hot chili powder”.  You will be sad with the results and your friends will disown you.  Things like cayenne pepper and hot red pepper will make this too spicy!  Maybe it’s just ’cause we’re from Minnesota, but it has not gone over well in the past.

-Get your sides ready.

And enjoy!


p.s. Eating leftovers on top of hot dogs is a really good idea.  This stuff also freezes very well.

p.p.s. When referring to this recipe in the future, feel free to call it “Mads’ Dad’s Badass Chili”

16 thoughts on “Dad’s Badass Chili

  1. I can now be at peace and leave this world – I’ve raised my children right. They BOTH make king-size batches of Bad Ass chili with a flair. Woohoo! This stuff is fun to make, if for no other reason that you can put in, take out, add to whatever ingredients you wish.

    Chili dogs are mandatory – on hot dog buns…with midget sweet pickles and a big glass of ice cold milk. Mmmm.

  2. Hey Mads,

    I’m so pumped about this chilli recipe. I tried it last night (with a bunch of alterations because of my poor planning) and it still managed to turn out awesome!! Thanks for sharing this and I can’t wait to tell you all about my chilli making (mis)adventure. : )


  3. Pingback: Guest Post: Basic Guide to Canning Dill Pickles | La Petite Pancake

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