The Washington Post

Meats and Foods Chili

Meats and Foods Chili 16.000

Renee Comet for The Washington Post; styling by Bonnie S. Benwick

Plate Lab Mar 3, 2016

This is a pure, evenly textured, slow-heat chili that works just as well served in a bowl as it does spooned over a half-smoke.

Make Ahead: The chili can be refrigerated for up to 1 week; it can be frozen, preferably in portion-size, vacuum-sealed containers, for up to 1 year. Defrost overnight in the refrigerator

Where to Buy: Halal ground beef is of good quality and is finely ground, so that's why it's preferred in this recipe. It is available at halal markets and at Restaurant Depot in Alexandria.


When you scale a recipe, keep in mind that cooking times and temperatures, pan sizes and seasonings may be affected, so adjust accordingly. Also, amounts listed in the directions will not reflect the changes made to ingredient amounts.

Tested size: 16 servings; makes 4 quarts

  • 4 pounds (80-20) ground beef, preferably halal top sirloin (see headnote)
  • 1 cup flour
  • 7 cups no-salt-added beef broth
  • 5 tablespoons pure chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons ground cayenne pepper
  • 2 teaspoons sweet paprika
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 2 medium yellow onions, cut into small dice (2 cups)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons minced garlic


Place the meat in a 6-quart Dutch oven or heavy-bottomed stock pot over medium-low heat. Cook for about 25 minutes or until the meat is evenly browned, with no trace of pink remaining, stirring as needed.

Seat a large colander over a wide mixing bowl. Transfer the browned ground beef to the colander. Let it sit for about 5 minutes, so the fat and juices thoroughly drain into the bowl. Return the drippings to the pot, over low heat.

Slowly whisk the flour into the pot to form a roux with the consistency of a thick, smooth cake batter. (You might not have to use all the flour; that's okay.) Add the broth, whisking as you go to get rid of any remaining lumps.

Combine the chili powder, salt, cayenne pepper, paprika and cumin in a small bowl, then whisk into the now-looser roux until well incorporated. Add the onions and garlic, stirring and and scraping the bottom and sides of the pot as you go.

Return the drained ground beef to the pot, stirring until well blended. Increase the heat to medium-low; cook, uncovered, for about 1 hour, stirring vigorously and occasionally, until the onions have softened. Once the chili's done, it will have an almost-chocolate brown sheen.

Remove from the heat; use right away, or cool to below 90 degrees before storing. (The chili retains heat, so you may wish to portion it in containers and seat them in ice to help the cool-down.)

Rate it

Recipe Source

From Scott McIntosh and Ana Marin, co-founders of Meats and Foods in the District's Bloomingdale neighborhood.

Tested by Bonnie S. Benwick.

Email questions to the Food Section.

Email questions to the Food Section at

Avg. Rating (10)

Rate this recipe

Nutritional Facts

Calories per serving: 340

% Daily Values*

Total Fat: 23g 35%

Saturated Fat: 9g 45%

Cholesterol: 80mg 27%

Sodium: 410mg 17%

Total Carbohydrates: 10g 3%

Dietary Fiber: 2g 8%

Sugar: 2g

Protein: 22g

*Percent Daily Value based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Total Fat: Less than 65g

Saturated Fat: Less than 20g

Cholesterol: Less than 300mg

Sodium: Less than 2,400mg

Total Carbohydrates: 300g

Dietary Fiber: 25g

Most Read Lifestyle