Chili con Carne Recipe from Mexico - Ingredients and Steps

Chili con Carne

Chili con Carne Recipe from Mexico - Ingredients and Steps
Region / culture: Mexico | Preparation time: 15 minutes | Cooking time: 30 minutes | Servings: 6


Chili con Carne
Chili con Carne

Chili con Carne is a classic dish that is loved by many for its hearty and flavorful combination of beef, beans, and spices. This dish is perfect for a cozy night in or for feeding a crowd at a party or gathering.


Chili con Carne has its origins in the American Southwest, where it was traditionally made by cowboys and settlers as a hearty and filling meal. Over the years, the recipe has evolved and adapted to include a variety of ingredients and flavors.


How to prepare

  1. In a deep skillet or Dutch oven, brown the beef.
  2. Remove the beef from the skillet.
  3. In the same skillet, cook and stir the onion, garlic, and peppers until soft, about 5 minutes. Add bacon fat if needed.
  4. Return the beef to the skillet.
  5. Add tomatoes, tomato paste, broth, and Tex-Mex spice.
  6. Bring the mixture to a boil, then cover and cook over medium heat for 25 to 30 minutes.


  • Vegetarian option: Substitute the beef with cooked lentils or black beans for a meatless version of the dish.
  • Turkey chili: Use ground turkey instead of beef for a lighter and leaner version of Chili con Carne.
  • White chili: Use chicken, white beans, and green chilies for a milder and creamier version of the dish.

Cooking Tips & Tricks

For a richer flavor, use a combination of ground beef and ground pork in the recipe.

- To add a smoky flavor to the dish, try using smoked paprika or chipotle peppers in adobo sauce.

- For a spicier chili, increase the amount of chili powder or add a diced jalapeno pepper to the mix.

Serving Suggestions

Serve Chili con Carne with a dollop of sour cream, shredded cheese, and chopped fresh cilantro. It pairs well with cornbread, rice, or tortilla chips.

Cooking Techniques

Browning the beef before adding the other ingredients helps to develop a rich and deep flavor in the dish.

- Simmering the chili over low heat for an extended period of time allows the flavors to meld together and intensify.

Ingredient Substitutions

If you don't have Tex-Mex chili powder, you can use regular chili powder or a combination of cumin, paprika, and cayenne pepper.

- Feel free to customize the recipe with your favorite beans, such as kidney beans, black beans, or pinto beans.

Make Ahead Tips

Chili con Carne can be made ahead of time and stored in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Reheat the chili on the stovetop or in the microwave before serving.

Presentation Ideas

Garnish the chili with sliced green onions, diced avocado, or a squeeze of lime juice for a fresh and colorful presentation.

Pairing Recommendations

Chili con Carne pairs well with a cold beer, a glass of red wine, or a refreshing iced tea.

Storage and Reheating Instructions

Store any leftover chili in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Reheat the chili on the stovetop over low heat, stirring occasionally, until heated through.

Nutrition Information

Calories per serving

Each serving of Chili con Carne contains approximately 350 calories.


Each serving of Chili con Carne contains approximately 25 grams of carbohydrates.


Each serving of Chili con Carne contains approximately 15 grams of fat.


Each serving of Chili con Carne contains approximately 30 grams of protein.

Vitamins and minerals

Chili con Carne is a good source of vitamin C, vitamin A, iron, and potassium.


Chili con Carne may contain allergens such as soy and wheat, depending on the ingredients used.


Chili con Carne is a nutritious and filling dish that is high in protein and low in carbohydrates. It is a great option for those looking for a hearty and satisfying meal.


Chili con Carne is a classic and comforting dish that is perfect for any occasion. Whether you're looking for a hearty meal to warm you up on a cold day or a crowd-pleasing dish to serve at a party, this recipe is sure to satisfy. Enjoy!

How did I get this recipe?

I can still picture the first time I came across this recipe for Chili con Carne. It was a brisk autumn day, and I was visiting my dear friend Maria in her cozy kitchen. The aroma of simmering spices and savory meat filled the air, and I couldn't resist asking her what she was cooking.

Maria smiled and handed me a spoonful of her steaming chili. As I took my first bite, the flavors exploded in my mouth - the perfect balance of heat, sweetness, and depth. I immediately knew I had to learn how to make this dish myself.

Maria chuckled at my enthusiasm and invited me to stay for dinner. As we sat down to eat, she shared the story of how she had learned to make her famous Chili con Carne. Her grandmother had passed down the recipe to her, and she had been perfecting it ever since.

I listened intently as Maria explained the key ingredients and cooking techniques that made her chili so delicious. She showed me how to brown the ground beef, sauté the onions and garlic, and add the perfect blend of spices – chili powder, cumin, paprika, and oregano.

I was fascinated by the way Maria effortlessly combined these ingredients to create a rich and flavorful dish. I asked her if she would be willing to teach me how to make her Chili con Carne, and she happily agreed.

Over the next few weeks, I spent countless hours in Maria's kitchen, learning the ins and outs of making the perfect chili. She patiently guided me through each step, from selecting the freshest ingredients to adjusting the seasonings to taste.

I quickly discovered that making Chili con Carne was more than just following a recipe – it was a labor of love. It required patience, attention to detail, and a deep understanding of how different flavors worked together to create a harmonious dish.

As I practiced making Chili con Carne under Maria's watchful eye, I began to develop my own unique style. I experimented with adding different types of beans, using ground turkey instead of beef, and even throwing in a handful of corn for a touch of sweetness.

Each time I made Chili con Carne, I felt a sense of satisfaction and pride. I had mastered a recipe that had been passed down through generations, and I knew that I was carrying on a tradition that was dear to my heart.

Years passed, and I continued to make Maria's Chili con Carne for my family and friends. It became a staple at gatherings and celebrations, always eliciting rave reviews and requests for seconds.

But as much as I loved Maria's recipe, I couldn't help but put my own spin on it. I started experimenting with different types of meat, varying the levels of spice, and even adding a splash of beer for an extra depth of flavor.

My Chili con Carne had evolved into a dish that was uniquely mine, a reflection of my own tastes and culinary style. And yet, at its core, it remained true to the recipe that Maria had so generously shared with me all those years ago.

As I look back on my journey with Chili con Carne, I can't help but feel grateful for the opportunity to learn from a dear friend and carry on a cherished tradition. The recipe may have originated with Maria's grandmother, but it has now become a part of my own culinary heritage – one that I will pass down to future generations with pride and joy.


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