This is my first chili recipe, but we like it so much I've stuck to this recipe each time I've made chili since. I make it with short ribs. It's a fair amount of work but it produces quite a bit of chili which I freeze in 1 qt bags. It freezes well and tastes good when slowly warmed back up.

The full recipe is on the Serious Eats site.

short ribs

short ribs

It's a fair amount of work to sear, debone and cut up the short rib, but it's worth it.

short ribs

Before it goes in for the slow cook in the oven.


  • 1 pound (450g) dried dark red kidney beans
  • Kosher salt
  • 4 quarts (3.8L) water
  • 3 whole ancho, pasilla, or mulato chilies, seeded and torn into rough 1-inch pieces (about 1/2 ounce)
  • 2 whole New Mexico red, California, costeño, or choricero chilies, seeded and torn into rough 1-inch pieces (about 1/8 ounce)
  • 1 whole cascabel, árbol, or pequin chili, seeded and torn in half
  • 5 pounds (2.3kg) bone-in beef short ribs, trimmed of silver skin and excess fat
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons (30ml) vegetable oil
  • 1 quart (900ml) low-sodium chicken broth (preferably homemade), divided
  • 2 whole anchovy fillets
  • 1 teaspoon (5ml) Marmite
  • 2 teaspoons (10ml) soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons (30ml) tomato paste
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons whole cumin seeds, toasted, then ground
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons whole coriander seeds, toasted, then ground
  • 2 whole cloves, toasted and ground
  • 1 star anise, toasted and ground
  • 1 tablespoon extra-finely ground coffee beans
  • 1 ounce chopped unsweetened chocolate
  • 1 large yellow onion, diced fine (about 1 1/2 cups)
  • 3 fresh Thai bird chilies or 1 jalapeño, finely chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced (about 1 tablespoon)
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano leaves
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 (28-ounce; 794g) can crushed tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup (60ml) cider vinegar, plus more to taste
  • 1/4 cup (60ml) vodka or bourbon
  • 1 tablespoon (15ml) Buffalo-style hot sauce, such as Frank's RedHot (or more to taste)
  • 2 tablespoons dark brown sugar
  • For the Garnish (all suggestions optional):
  • Scallions, sliced finely
  • Cheddar, Jack, or Colby cheese, grated
  • Sour cream
  • Jalapeño or Poblano peppers, diced and seeded
  • Onion, diced
  • Avocado, diced
  • Saltines
  • Fritos