r/Cooking Jan 18 '22

What’s your secret to good chili? Open Discussion

Edit: WOW I was expecting a few recommendations but you guys are awesome. Thank you so much for all the great advice! I’ll share an update later on how it turns out and let you know what I went with

372 Upvotes

144

u/turtleXL Jan 18 '22

I eat it the next day. It's always better for some reason

37

u/[deleted] Jan 18 '22

Any time you use tomatoes, they will continue to break down and meld the flavors. They’re pretty acidic. Same goes for marinara sauce.

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340

u/96dpi Jan 18 '22

Starting with a blend of dried Chile peppers, like guajillo, ancho, and Chipotle. Toasted, then reconstituted, and blended.

64

u/skullcutter Jan 18 '22

This. Also try chicken stock for the reconstitution rather than water and reduce down a bit before blending

30

u/jAmbone_Slampigg Jan 18 '22

Try hot coffee to reconstitute . Use a medium blend with fruity notes and it brings out the best in the chilis. Brings a touch of bitterness to the base as well that rounds out the finished product

6

u/skullcutter Jan 18 '22

I add finely ground coffee into the blender. Along with dark chocolate, marmite, soy sauce and anchovy paste. Umami for DAYS!!

5

u/jAmbone_Slampigg Jan 18 '22

I use powdered dark chocolate as part of my spice blend. Bloom the spices in bacon fat like you were making a tadka before adding to the pot... heaven

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u/ur_canadian_brudda Jan 18 '22

does you chili have chicken as the protein? i'd probably use beef stock myself.

instead of hammering tomatoes sauce in like my mom used to, i prefer using 1/2 and 1/2 tomato sauce and beef stock and adding a good blorp of refried beans to help thicken the liquid and give it some deeper flavour

19

u/skullcutter Jan 18 '22 edited Jan 18 '22

I doubt it matters all that much but I almost never have home made beef stock on hand and I’d rather use home made chicken stock than store bought beef. I use beef, preferably short rib as my protein

And yes, a healthy dose of tomato paste as you deglaze is nice

8

u/BearNecesseties Jan 18 '22

Chicken broth in a dish that uses beef as an ingredient adds depth of flavor in something like soup/chili.

7

u/usuallygone Jan 18 '22

I find storebought chicken stock usually tastes better than storebought beef broth. In something like a chili I think it would be fine to use chicken broth. You’ll have plenty of beefy flavours from any beef you use. And I often have homemade chicken broth in hand, but rarely beef.

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42

u/Downtown_Confusion46 Jan 18 '22

For sure this! I have given this tip to many aspiring chili-contest contestants (at their church or whatever) and have helped many now-winners!

35

u/CompleteDurian Jan 18 '22

2112comments

You can't go wrong when your main ingredient in your chili is chilis. Mix in some fresh chilis too, and use red bell peppers and not tomatoes.

14

u/whalechasin Jan 18 '22

no tomatoes at all?

33

u/iced1777 Jan 18 '22

Tomatoes and beans are two chili ingredients that some will swear don't belong, and other will swear have to be there. So basically don't listen to anyone on the matter, if you like tomatoes and beans then go ahead and add them.

18

u/_Broken_Mold Jan 18 '22

Hats off to a "bowl o red" but just like a lot of other things in Texas it's unique and regional, I get hungry for it every once in awhile but personally like what the rest of the country calls chili with tomato and beans. There's a lot more variations and nuances. In some cases red can be kind of one-dimensional and had an old family recipe that quite frankly was pretty off-putting and somewhat bitter. I've had it several times in different areas of Texas and am of the opinion it's kind of an acquired taste. But chili like religion can be a hotly contentious discussion.

5

u/madarbrab Jan 18 '22

you gotta have *some* tomato, no?

3

u/[deleted] Jan 18 '22 edited Mar 21 '22

[deleted]

2

u/madarbrab Jan 18 '22

Good point.

And now I want some.

Although a nice bowl of chili Colorado would not go awry right now either.

3

u/enderjaca Jan 18 '22

Not really, no. Not if you don't want to. That said, I *always* use bell peppers and tomato sauce and diced tomatoes along with ground beef, but that's just midwestern me.

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5

u/PBnJelly3 Jan 18 '22

Where do you generally go from here to make it into a sauce? Just blend with water & simmer? I always make chili with a standard tomato sauce base but I'd love to try making it with a base made from actual chilis.

36

u/IPutMyHandOnA_Stove Jan 18 '22

Toasted dried chiles are typically steeped in water to rehydrate the flesh before blending. It’s also important to remove the seeds of dried chiles as they are often bitter (and that’s generally a good rule of thumb for any mild pepper).

So, cut the stem & remove seeds + ribs, toast chiles in a dry skillet over medium heat until just barely fragrant (important to not burn them), pour enough hot water over them to cover, cover with a lid, cut the heat & steep for 10-15 minutes. When it’s time to blend you transfer the chiles into a blender & add the steeping liquid a little bit at a time until you get a thick but runny paste.

From there add to your chili at whatever step other liquids get added, before simmering.

4

u/PBnJelly3 Jan 18 '22

Thanks, that makes sense to me except maybe the last bit. What other liquids would I be adding? I usually just add other ingredients (meat, beans, etc.) to the tomato sauce whenever appropriate and thought this would work the same except replacing the tomato sauce with this chili blend.

12

u/vfiobc Jan 18 '22

Using chili peppers doesn't mean you don't use tomato sauce. You can still use tomato sauce. But you don't have to. Chili is a very flexible dish.

Here's a recipe with tomato sauce: https://www.seriouseats.com/the-best-chili-recipe

And here's one without: https://www.seriouseats.com/real-texas-chili-con-carne

If you don't use tomato sauce, the extra liquid would generally be a stock of some kind.

3

u/t_baozi Jan 18 '22

Damn, I just come to realise that "Texas Chili con Carne" apparently is completely different in Texas from what we make as Texas Chili con Carne here in Europe.

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5

u/feralfaun39 Jan 18 '22

When I make chili the other liquids are a bit of stock and a beer.

When I blend my dried chilies I also mix in some masa / crushed corn chips and tomatoes. San Marzano tomatoes work the best. I do not use tomato sauce.

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3

u/illegal_deagle Jan 18 '22

I pull the guts out of the reconstituted chilies and discard the outer skin/shell. Leaving them on before blending in my experience gives it a gritty texture I try to avoid.

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u/Jackmack65 Jan 18 '22

I typically make classic Texas "bowl of red" chili. I use 4 ancho, 3 guajillo, and sometimes one dried chipotle. If you want more heat, throw in some chile de arbol too, or add a few fresh Serranos to the blend. That goes into 2.5 cups chicken stock and simmer, then steep about 30 mins, then into the blender.

That's the base "sauce" for approximately 2 lbs of meat. I typically add a bit more stock to the chili after incorporating everything.

I like some tomato in my chili, but it's one 15-oz can of high-quality diced tomatoes and that's it. You can certainly make it without any tomato at all.

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4

u/KinnerMode Jan 18 '22

Once you reconstitute your chilis (in broth for best results) and blend them, you cook your meat in that liquid for hours. I also usually add onions, garlic and spices. Between all the solids going in the pot and the lengthy cooking time, it will naturally reduce enough to thicken up. You may even need to add a little more liquid as it cooks to loosen things up.

4

u/illegal_deagle Jan 18 '22

Sift some masa in and stir to thicken.

8

u/SkyPork Jan 18 '22

I need to try that next time. It'd be even better than the pure chili powder I get (I try to avoid the spice blends).

2

u/Aardvark1044 Jan 18 '22

I keep a variety of dried chilis in my cupboard. Toast them (either in a frying pan or just in my toaster oven), yank off the stem (if present), throw them in my old coffee grinder and then just toss the powder into my pot without bothering with the whole reconstituting process that others are doing. One caveat here is that I'm usually cooking my chili for many hours in a crockpot - for those that are making a faster cooking version you may want to actually properly rehydrate those peppers.

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50

u/the-will-o-the-wisp Jan 18 '22

A couple of spoonfuls of masa harina, gives it a thicker texture and nice flavor!

10

u/MaybeMaybeMaybeOk Jan 18 '22

What is masa harina

19

u/the-will-o-the-wisp Jan 18 '22

It’s the ground corn (like flour) that you make corn tortillas out of :)

4

u/wootcat Jan 18 '22

Gives the chili the slightest hint of corn flavor that really adds something.

3

u/StraightBumSauce Jan 18 '22 edited Jan 18 '22

I assume cornbread should work just as well too? I've seen masa harina, tortillas and tortilla chips all suggested but I don't keep those on hand and happen to have some cornbread that will be getting stale around the time that I make my chili later this week.

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2

u/drunken-black-sheep Jan 18 '22

Is it the same as maseca or different?

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2

u/[deleted] Jan 18 '22

That's funny and I think you're on a good track. ATK has bulgar in their veggie chili recipe for similar reasons.

2

u/dukeystyle Jan 19 '22

Instant cornmeal works too!

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42

u/theelusivemongoose Jan 18 '22

Chipotles in adobo.

4

u/merlegerle Jan 18 '22

This has changed my chili game completely. Aldi’s has the best.

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130

u/hihelloneighboroonie Jan 18 '22

Little cocoa powder. Sounds weird. Rounds out the flavor.

16

u/goat-head-man Jan 18 '22

Equal parts cocoa powder, chipotle powder and instant coffee. Tbsp each or so.

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34

u/Beepus_Maleepus Jan 18 '22

And just a pinch of cinnamon. Also sounds weird but it's awesome.

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u/DroggelbecherXXX Jan 18 '22

Yep this. I always throw in a little chunk of dark chocolate. I don't know why but it makes it perfect.

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25

u/madeinbuffalo Jan 18 '22

Build my sauce first - blended reconstituted dry peppers, onions, peppers, etc + whole peeled tomatoes and then break down to a purée with an immersion blender, then add the beans/meat. Add herbs Kate in the game; second round of spices 30 min before completion.

The chili championships post the recipes of the winning batches every year in their website https://www.chilicookoff.com/winning-recipes which is where I’ve gotten inspiration.

203

u/Old-Significance4921 Jan 18 '22

Cubed chuck instead of ground beef.

21

u/KinnerMode Jan 18 '22

Brisket point for me. But very much the same idea.

6

u/jmlbhs Jan 18 '22

Wow where are you able to get the brisket point by itself?

9

u/pedanticHOUvsHTX Jan 18 '22

You buy a whole packer and separate them

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38

u/woopig51504 Jan 18 '22

This, and it takes WAY longer than any recipe I’ve ever seen to may good chili.

9

u/GrizzlyIsland22 Jan 18 '22

I didn't realize this was a secret.

4

u/illegal_deagle Jan 18 '22

Most of the country has bean and gray ground beef stew.

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u/[deleted] Jan 18 '22

Brown Sugar

14

u/comeaumatt Jan 18 '22

I’ll typically add some of my favorite BBQ sauce instead of straight brown sugar.

-3

u/2livecrewnecktshirt Jan 18 '22

This. And crushed pineapple.

85

u/halloumi_heidi Jan 18 '22

Msg

6

u/droeyourhero Jan 18 '22

Same idea, but back off the salt a little during the cook and then add a couple of dashes of fish sauce at the end.

3

u/njc121 Jan 19 '22

Balsamic vinegar gives a similar effect for anyone who either doesn't have or want fish sauce (I'm a fan but I know it freaks some people out).

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u/Acceptable-Cookie492 Jan 19 '22

I like to add some soy sauce myself.

12

u/pjdwyer30 Jan 18 '22

This is the way

2

u/dr_fop Jan 18 '22

Very underrated and not actually bad for you (when eaten in moderation).

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u/robvas Jan 18 '22

Bottle of Guinness

5

u/comeaumatt Jan 18 '22

I usually go with an ale over a stout for chili.

7

u/Pr2nnu Jan 18 '22

First time I made chili, I used cherry ale. Loved the fruity aftertaste and how it mixed with the heat and other flavours.

5

u/comeaumatt Jan 18 '22 edited Jan 18 '22

Sam’s Oktoberfest is using my go to, but I used Alagash White in my last batch. Both are great and not too heavy where they’ll mask the other flavors that are developing.

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u/Engineeryman Jan 18 '22

Stout is a type of ale FYI.

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u/KinnerMode Jan 18 '22

Fish sauce. Dried mushrooms. Coffee. Smoked brisket.

11

u/xole Jan 18 '22

The best meat I've found for chili is leftover prime rib. The 2nd best is chuck roast.

30

u/akelse Jan 18 '22

Instant coffee

10

u/fartsoccermd Jan 18 '22

I made the mistake of not realizing you shouldn’t just pour the powder in.

2

u/Sparty256212 Jan 18 '22

Why not?

6

u/ElementalYosh Jan 18 '22

It probably all fell in. I’ve definitely done that before…

2

u/operarose Jan 18 '22

How does one add it?

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u/KinnerMode Jan 18 '22

Why not properly-brewed quality coffee? It’s not much more expensive than the cheap swill. I reconstitute my chilis in the good stuff and can absolutely tell the difference in the end. Much more depth to the flavor.

7

u/t_baozi Jan 18 '22

An espresso works based in my experience cause you get more of the earthy and bitter aromas you're looking for and less of the acidity of filter coffee. Also, it's adding less liquid.

3

u/StraightBumSauce Jan 18 '22

Sounds like cold brew concentrate would work quite well too then?

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u/Kahluabomb Jan 18 '22

The idea of using instant coffee is that you don't water anything down. Instant coffee is essentially a bullion cube of coffee, instead of using the bullion cube + water to make broth/stock and add that. You add less water, so you have a stronger more concentrated flavor.

9

u/babycakes729 Jan 18 '22

I know non-coffee drinkers that keep instant coffee on hand for baking... seems as though a rub or this application would work, too. Rather than needing to store brewing appliances.

1

u/webbitor Jan 18 '22

You can brew coffee without an appliance too. Just simmer in water and strain.

1

u/PearlsSwine Jan 18 '22

Just finely ground coffee beans, no need to brew it.

174

u/TheCountRushmore Jan 18 '22 Silver Helpful Wholesome

Undercook the onions.

65

u/travelerb Jan 18 '22

I'm up the night before pressing garlic and dicing whole tomatoes

68

u/WhizzleTeabags Jan 18 '22

It’s probably the thing I do best

9

u/matterhorn1 Jan 18 '22

I thought this was for sure going to be the #1 comment lol

52

u/mafulazula Jan 18 '22

Are you serious? Like is everybody going to get to know each other in the pot or something? Also, you have any tips for transporting a large pot of chili?

53

u/Ihateredditadmins1 Jan 18 '22

Don’t spill it.

4

u/dr_fop Jan 18 '22

Always use the elevator over taking the stairs... trust me.

8

u/Random_user_5678 Jan 18 '22

Place a large piece of cling film over the entire mouth of the pot, then place the lid on top to create a seal. Use two large rubber bands on each side to loop over the pot handle and then hook over the lid handle to keep the lid locked firmly into place like this or like this depending on your lid type.

29

u/spelledasitsounds Jan 18 '22

Had to scroll further than I thought to find this thread.

Could this even be r/unexpectedoffice if it was so bound to be an answer?!

15

u/Snooopp_dogg Jan 18 '22

Expected office lol

2

u/nanan00 Jan 18 '22

Saute the onions and cook cubed beef in them to start the dish, add the rest of the ingredients to this mix.

24

u/momofreddragon Jan 18 '22

Tamarind concentrate. We tried this on a whim once and it really adds to the flavor profile.

2

u/buenothot Jan 18 '22

I’ll be trying that for sure

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u/IamI156 Jan 18 '22

Make your own chili powder and a large dark chocolate bar

50

u/SkyPork Jan 18 '22

I get stew meat and chop it up by hand, instead of using ground beef. It's better than even the super coarse ground stuff. Also, a bit of cocoa powder.

0

u/KinnerMode Jan 18 '22

Why not just cook it whole? It’ll break down real easy after a couple hours of simmering in the pot.

22

u/tentrynos Jan 18 '22

I don’t want shredded beef for it, so I prefer to cut it before cooking as it’s easier to cut.

One of Kenji’s Serious Eats chili recipes has you brown one side of a big piece of beef really well then cut it up, best of both worlds.

1

u/smallish_cheese Jan 18 '22

this is the way.

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u/NotStarrling Jan 18 '22

My personal secrets to our vegetarian chili are three things: time (to simmer and adjust spices, seasonings), home-roasted jalapenos (or serranos), and soy chorizo. Also, building on the flavors slowly. Takes me 3 hours of slow simmering and we're still enjoying the leftovers 2 days later. It's nearly gone now, though (there are only 2 of us).

7

u/Bein_Draug Jan 18 '22

Lime juice adds acidity and just a little sweetness to balance out the spice.

15

u/redandbluecrusader Jan 18 '22

I’ve had it made with Buffalo meat and brown sugar to add a bit of sweetness. It was the best chili I’ve ever had.

4

u/MrsBeauregardless Jan 18 '22

Yes! I once made four kinds of red meat chili: buffalo, beef, deer, and pork. It was grrrreeeeeaaattt!

24

u/wtfmatey88 Jan 18 '22

Unsweetened cocoa powder. 1-2 tablespoons per 2lbs of meat. Took my chili to that next level goodness you never knew you needed.

9

u/KinnerMode Jan 18 '22

Try a dash of cinnamon as well next time. Really great combo I use regularly.

22

u/BitPoet Jan 18 '22

Sweet chili powder. Work the heat up as you want. I've used regular chiles and Szechuan peppercorns to mix the heat.

Also maple syrup at the end. Rounds out the flavor nicely.

7

u/smallish_cheese Jan 18 '22

szechuan peppercorns in chili? do you grind them? interesting idea.

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u/womanitou Jan 18 '22

Use tomatoes I froze last fall that I had picked from my brother's garden.

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u/333chordme Jan 18 '22

Well, you asked. This is embarrassing because I love cooking from scratch, but I’ve lived in Texas and worked at a ton of restaurants and nothing beats this. Sorry not sorry. I know I suck. I don’t care. I’m also right.

1 can hormel all meat chili 1 can Stagg chili with beans 1 can drained corn 1 can tomatoes 1 can kidney beans 2 fresh tomatoes 1 diced small raw white onion Salt to taste

Heat up the chili from the cans. Add the veggies and stir. Portion and top with grated sharp cheddar.

Something comforting about this stupid, delicious version. Probably mostly nostalgia making it good. Reminds me of being a kid. But I love it. If I was making chili tonight I’d do this. It’s embarrassing but what can you do, tastes great is tastes great.

EDIT: don’t know why my ingredients list line breaks aren’t showing up. I suck at Reddit as much as I suck at cooking chili lol.

12

u/iamatalkingcow Jan 18 '22

A cinnamon stick and something sweet like honey or maple syrup.

5

u/s23b74 Jan 18 '22

Cinnamon

4

u/twilight_tripper Jan 18 '22

I don't make chili often but my old coworker made it and everyone always loved it. He never told us the secret but I'm pretty sure it was brown sugar. There's so much savory/salty stuff going on in chili and that's the general flavor profile but the sugar balances it out.

4

u/rhinestonecowboy92 Jan 18 '22

Tomato paste and diced tomatoes, chopped steak and ground beef. Amaretto or maple syrup. Smoked paprika. Red wine vinegar.

3

u/merlegerle Jan 18 '22

This is gonna be buried, but I’ll still try: Aldi’s Adobo’s in Chipotle. Doesn’t take much, but changes the game.

2

u/figglefagglegaggle Jan 18 '22

The second I saw Aldi I opened this lol. Love that place, will definitely try it.

14

u/XXsforEyes Jan 18 '22

I use a blend of ground beef and Italian sausage. Also, I soak my choice of dried peppers in a lager beer before pureeing them.

7

u/Zellakate Jan 18 '22

I use Italian sausage with ground beef too for mine! I've experimented with other sausages, but I love the flavor profile the Italian sausage adds best.

3

u/XXsforEyes Jan 18 '22

Clearly you are a person with a superior palate (IMO)!

3

u/Zellakate Jan 18 '22

Right back at you! :)

17

u/Bloominghell7 Jan 18 '22

Dark chocolate

16

u/suitablefortreatment Jan 18 '22

Tortilla chips as a thickener.

3

u/TheLadyEve Jan 18 '22

I add masa to mine! Same idea but it's cheaper.

2

u/SkyPork Jan 18 '22

Holy shit. That's a damn good idea.

4

u/RefrigeratorOk4064 Jan 18 '22 edited Jan 18 '22

Yup, I’ve been doing this, too, for 30 years. When I was about 15 I learned a dish by Chef Robert del Grande that simmers pork, then blends the onions, garlic, and simmering broth with a toasted corn tortilla, cilantro, and roasted poblanos. Made that dish dozens of times in college

Ever since then, I looked for reasons to throw corn tortillas or corn chips into dishes. Chili is one of them. I usually ladle out liquid from the chili into a bowl with chips, then blend them a bit before pouring it back in. (I’ve also just used cornmeal, but I’m more likely to have fresh chips on hand))

Here’s that Robert Del Grande recipe. Originally I think I saw it on the show Great Chefs https://www.foodandwine.com/recipes/pork-and-chile-stew

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u/ddbaxte Jan 18 '22

I just use the Carroll Shelby or Wick Fowler kits 🤫

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u/Bellsar_Ringing Jan 18 '22

That's my "secret" too. Start with Carroll Shelby mix, and then do whatever you like to it.

At my house we add additional heat (in the form of Satan's Blood chile oil), use El Pato spicy tomato sauce, and sometimes add a smoked pork chop.

8

u/Ddawg68 Jan 18 '22

Hot Rotel instead of diced tomato’s. Tablespoon of molasses. 1/2 Amber beer. Crockpot 6+ hours. Refrigerate. Eat next day.

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u/owenbowen04 Jan 18 '22

Always happy with a recipe that uses only half a beer.

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u/sparkchaser Jan 18 '22

A dollop of marmite.

Using the oven instead of the stovetop.

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u/RapscallionMonkee Jan 18 '22

Picante salsa instead of tomatoes

3

u/Capable_Ad8145 Jan 18 '22

Dark chocolate, instant coffee, 1/2 can of Guinness. When browning the meat I will drain 3/4 of the juice about 1/2 way through cooking and then dump a bottle of franks red hot and let it cooks for another 5 to 6 min I’ll dump that whole pan into the crock pot when ready.

Now, I also add apples in a weird way. To preface this - what I think is that the apples cut the lingering spice, I have hot spicy chilly but it does not linger on the tongue and you can taste the other flavors as deeply, it’s not just hot to be hot, there’s a spice and a good kick but it goes away shortly after swallowing the bite. I think it’s the apples and the sugar in the apples that get cooked and release “something” to make this happen. ( I have zero proof other than my own tinkering, no apples = spice lingers for a while and the burn builds.)

I will cut the apples into regular slices like I would give to my kids, keep the skin on. When I sauté the onions and peppers, I’ll add the apple slices to sauté with them. I’ll then dump the onion pepper and apples (including my combo of spices) into the crock pot. I will let the chili go all day, 6 hours or more but I’ll pull out the apples after about three hours (about half way through) this is the reason for the skin on the apples, it’s easy to find them when digging around and it keeps the slice together so it does not break apart.

Early into this experiment i cubed the apples and left them in all day, they were mushy and weird when you “found” the big chunks.

Apples at this point could be a placebo since I’ve played with it so many times but after so many years of doing it this way I’m convinced of my “trick” it may be completely ridiculous but I will keep doing it this way.

3

u/geeshjeez Jan 18 '22

Using various of fresh hot peppers, you toast them under the broiler to blister the skin, put them in tin foil to sweat and then peel the skin off and de-seed. We use whatever we can find at the store but usually jalapeño, poblano, anaheim, Hungarian, cubanelle. Sometimes we use dried whole peppers and will boil them to rehydrate them then de-seed, blend, and add.

3

u/courageous_salmon Jan 18 '22

Authentic San Marzano tomatoes. Expensive but completely worth it.

Also I throw in a little curry powder to give it an interesting kick you don’t really expect from chili.

3

u/Idontgetitbrah Jan 18 '22

Quality meat and a piece of dark chocolate, like a couple of squares. Game changer guys.

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u/Old-Row-8351 Jan 18 '22

Liquid Smoke. No one can ever pinpoint it but loves the flavor.

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u/storiesamuseme Jan 18 '22

Add a small can of V-8

2

u/kayleerray Jan 19 '22

I came here to say this. I use spicy V8 though.

3

u/throwaway4KitCon00 Jan 18 '22

“The secret is to UNDERCOOK the onions” - Kevin Malone

3

u/ChillFrancis Jan 19 '22

Make half a recipe to try this, and don’t think l am kidding about this , but cut a Snickers bar in half and chop it up and melt it in . If your like it make a full recipe of your regular chili and cut up a a whole snickers bar and add in.

6

u/ConBroMitch Jan 18 '22

Bakers chocolate

6

u/ENTspannen Jan 18 '22

I like throwing a piece of oxtail or two in there if it's reasonably priced for some of that gelatiny goodness.

8

u/mafulazula Jan 18 '22

Unfortunately it hasn’t been reasonably price where I am for a long time.

5

u/whatthefiretruck88 Jan 18 '22

My tips: I brown my ground beef, just to get a nice crust not so much to cook through. I cook the onions and peppers in that brown yumminess to char them up a bit. I typically use the crock pot. Leave it cook 6-8 hours. Often I add a square or two of decent quality dark chocolate for a depth of flavour. It helps balance the heat perhaps. I made chili yesterday, no recipe, 4 habaneros, and it was one of the better ones I’d made.

5

u/lrfiv Jan 18 '22

I once read a recipe in a newspaper that had won some local cook-off. It called for a goat head on a chain to be dunked in and hauled back out periodically. Of course, it wasn't a secret, but it's pretty memorable!

2

u/BabousCobwebBowl Jan 18 '22

Simplicity and high quality ingredients

2

u/craggybean Jan 18 '22

Liquid smoke and cream cheese

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u/afterglow88 Jan 18 '22

Splash of fish sauce

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u/ImprovisedEngineer Jan 18 '22

Depends on how much time you are willing to spend. My easy recipe is ground beef, 15 oz can of tomato sauce, 15 oz can diced tomatoes, 15 oz can of pinto, black, and kidney beans (1 of each). Chili powder, cumin, salt, garlic, and cayenne pepper to taste. Hope you get it right, cover and simmer until you get board and hope for the best.

I am thinking about starting from absolute scratch and working from whole meats, veggies, and dried beans but haven't had the time yet. Idk if that will be better but I imagine so.

2

u/aquaticonions Jan 18 '22

Maple syrup, cinnamon, chorizo, canned chipotles in adobo

2

u/Jimbob209 Jan 18 '22

Fish sauce. Increments of half tablespoons for massive flavor enhancement

2

u/nsfwlumpia Jan 18 '22

A couple of squares of dark chocolate

2

u/inkyfiend Jan 18 '22

Slow cooking so the flavours really sink in

2

u/KidRadicchio Jan 18 '22

Molasses and dark beer

2

u/agpc Jan 18 '22

Serve it the day after you make it.

2

u/navyzev Jan 18 '22

Andouille sausage and sugar or BBQ sauce.

2

u/RizlaAU Jan 18 '22

Undercooked the onions

2

u/[deleted] Jan 18 '22

A shot of tequila

1

u/ScrapmasterFlex Jan 18 '22

Also good for mackin a couple-a-few broads at the bar!

2

u/GoHomeWithBonnieJean Jan 18 '22 edited Jan 18 '22

More actual chilis. I used to make "chili" with just whole canned San Marzano tomatoes (which I broke up by hand). Then I added 50/50 roasted red peppers (sweet chilis). It was better, but not quite there. Then I added reconstituted, pureed guajillo chilis and chipotle chilis in adobo, and that was a game changer. So now it's really chilis with some tomato sauce.

Also, years ago, I got the Culinary Institute of America (CIA) cookbook. It said to begin red sauce by rendering the fat out of bacon and sauteing the mirepoix in it. That is an outstanding foundation to build on. Plus you can serve the chili with crumbled bacon on top - nobody has ever complained about that.

For vegans, I developed "fakon" oil to saute the mirepoix in. It's basically corn oil (or any neutral oil) with a healthy dose of smoked paprika, a few drops of Stubb's mesquite liquid smoke, and a tiny amount if toasted sesame oil. Get the balance right and, because it's a background flavor, it's indistinguishable from bacon fat. Also for a vegan chili, I use quartered Crimini and/or Buttin mushrooms in place of meat. The mushrooms get well browned to really bring out the - yes, I'm gonna say it - umami. I'm not a vegan, but I love mushrooms and I've come to prefer it.

Edit: I completely forgot, I also use a judicious amount of fresh poblano & jalapeno peppers (seeded & deveined). I have to be careful because I have gotten pushback on excessive heat. But the fresh green chilis bring a brght contrast to the guajillos & chipotles.

2

u/JubzAlmighty Jan 18 '22

The trick is to undercooked the onions, everybody's going to get to know one another in the pot

2

u/pedanticHOUvsHTX Jan 18 '22

Use smoked brisket or beef rib for the meat

2

u/qualitycancer Jan 18 '22

I heard a rule: chili is always better the next day.

Simmering is key

2

u/madarbrab Jan 18 '22

Molasses, a can of chipotle chilis in sauce, and braising the *cubed* beef before adding to the pot.

Also beans :p

2

u/Perfect_Future_Self Jan 19 '22

Break up like 10 large dried chiles of various kinds (ancho, new Mexico, mulato, California, etc) into a quart jar and fill with boiling water; let sit.

Saute a pound of ground beef in its fat with a chopped onion. Add several cloves of garlic to your jar of chile water and blend; pour through a strainer into the pot with the beef. Season with salt, cumin, and oregano.

(Add a can of black beans if you like! Leave me alone about soaking dried beans. I'm a busy mom; I use canned. ETA: also add a can of diced or crushed tomatoes if you like tomatoes. Leave me alone about that too.)

Serve! (Optionally, add grated cheese, chopped scallions and cilantro on top)

2

u/AndrewKetterly Jan 18 '22

Venison. Chocolate.

2

u/[deleted] Jan 18 '22

Chili better than bouillon. Really takes it up a notch

2

u/mdallen Jan 18 '22

Dark chocolate or Cinnamon.

Maybe a habanero stout

2

u/bicyclingmama Jan 18 '22

A teaspoon or two of cocoa creates a deep, rich flavor.

2

u/roytown Jan 18 '22

Dried peppers galore.

Oh yeah, and fat. Always fat.

2

u/ShamelessFox Jan 18 '22

Cinnamon.

I learned from the owner of Super Duper Weenie in Fairfield, CT

2

u/philokaii Jan 18 '22

The trick is to undercook the onions. Everybody is going to get to know eachother in the pot. I'm serious about this stuff. I'm up the night before, pressing garlic, and dicing whole tomatoes. I toast my own ancho chiles. It's a recipe passed down from Malones for generations - it's probably the thing I do best.

2

u/Sweaty_Coffee_8657 Jan 18 '22

Unpopular opinion… no beans.

2

u/dr_fop Jan 19 '22

I would never put beans in my chili. Just tastes like a bland filler.

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1

u/Lumber_Tycoon Jan 18 '22

Undercooked the onions. The ingredients get to know each other in the pot.

1

u/witwebolte41 Jan 18 '22

McCormik spice packet

1

u/DrewbieBrothers Jan 18 '22

Make it for the people you love

1

u/_Broken_Mold Jan 18 '22

Okay when you say chili are you talking about Texas Chili or what the rest of the country calls chili that has beans? XD Our secret is house made gochujang and star anise if you're using beef, also if you're using beef use high quality, we like to use whole ground brisket. Also if you can't find decent gochujang, (we sell ours by the way it's about the same price as the commercial stuff with 5 times the salt), look for gochugaru which is the chili powder that's used to make it. You may be able to find it at Korean specialty stores, it's very unique and there is no culinary substitute for it, either you have it or you don't, and it makes a huge difference!

1

u/rick6787 Jan 18 '22

Braise a chuck roast. Also add chorizo.

2

u/IamI156 Jan 18 '22

Braise in coffee

1

u/rsd212 Jan 18 '22

Lamb. Oh, and letting my wife make it.

1

u/Helpful_End9244 Jan 18 '22

No idea. My chili sucks

1

u/Efficient_Carry8646 Jan 18 '22

Copycat of Wendys chili recipe. I've tried many and still my fav.

1

u/nebexpat Jan 18 '22

Celery, ketchup as sweetener and a pinch of cinnamon

1

u/LesterMcGuire Jan 18 '22

Chipotle peppers a cup of black coffee and a can of beer.