Beef Chili with Cinnamon & Chocolate
Recipe type: Soups, Stews & Chilis
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 10 servings
An easy flavorful chili with 2 unconventional ingredients! Loaded with ground beef, smoky chipotle chili, sweet carrots, fragrant cumin and oregano, and a hint of cinnamon and dark chocolate.
  • 6 tablespoons olive oil or coconut oil
  • 3 pounds grass-fed beef chuck, cut into half inch chunks or ground for chili or, ground grass-fed beef
  • 2 large onions, chopped
  • 2 large carrots, peeled and diced
  • 8 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and de-ribbed if you don't want it too spicy, and finely chopped
  • 3 tablespoons all purpose flour (or gluten free all purpose)
  • ¼ cup chili powder
  • 1½ tablespoons ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon ground oregano
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 5 cups homemade or organic beef broth
  • 1 bottle dark beer
  • 1 28 ounce can organic plum tomatoes, drained and chopped
  • 1 28 ounce can organic crushed tomatoes
  • 2 chipotle chilis in adobo sauce (find in cans in the Mexican food aisle in your grocery store)
  • 2 15 ounce cans organic black beans
  • ½ ounce half of a square unsweetened chocolate, grated
  • Condiments
  • 1 cup shredded Monterey Jack or cheddar cheese
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • ½ cup chopped cilantro
  • 2 avocados, chopped
  • 1 sweet onion, chopped
  • Tortilla chips or cornbread
  • ½ cup chopped jalapeno peppers
  1. In a large, deep, heavy dutch oven, heat 2 tablespoons of the oil over medium heat. Cook the meat in 2 batches, turning often, until browned on all sides. Add more oil as necessary. Transfer the meat to a bowl.
  2. Add 2 more tablespoons of oil and cook the onions, carrots, jalapenos and garlic until softened, about 2 or 3 minutes. Return the browned meat to the pot.
  3. Sprinkle the meat and vegetable mixture with the flour and stir and cook for 1 minute.
  4. Add the chili powder, cumin, oregano, cinnamon, salt, red pepper flakes, beer, tomatoes and beef broth.
  5. If you have latex gloves, you might want to put them on. You're going to add a couple of the chipotle chilies from the can that you have. These are very, very hot! I removed the seeds from one of them and chopped it and put it in the chili. I put in the other one whole and fished it out when the chili was done. If you like your chili spicy, add the whole can but be warned, they are HOT!!! The adobo sauce is wonderfully smoky so I added about a tablespoon of sauce from the can.
  6. Simmer partially covered over low heat for about 1 to 1½ hours or until the meat is tender and the chili has cooked down. You want it thick but not soupy. Stir it occasionally. It will probably stick a bit on the bottom and that's to be expected. Just make sure your heat isn't on too high and use a diffuser underneath your pot if you have one. (See Kate's Tips for the one I use.)
  7. Open your 2 cans of black beans, drain them and add them to the chili. Grate the chocolate and add it as well. Taste and adjust seasonings.
  8. Serve garnished with Monterey Jack or cheddar cheese, chopped cilantro, fresh sour cream, chopped onion, chopped avocado, chopped jalapenos and tortilla chips or homemade skillet cornbread. Stay warm and enjoy!
Recipe by Kate Battistelli at