The Best Chili Ever

  • Author:
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 1 hour
  • Total Time: 1 hour 20 minutes


This is the absolute best homemade chili recipe! It’s rich, hearty and full of flavor! Perfect for a chilly fall or cold winter’s night.


  • 2 ½ pounds ground beef
  • 1 red bell pepper, seeded and diced
  • 1 large yellow sweet onion, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 medium jalapeño pepper, seeded and diced (optional but it really adds a delicious kick to the chili)
  • 3 tablespoons chili powder 
  • ½ tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder 
  • ½ tablespoon cumin 
  • 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano 
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 ½ teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper 
  • 2 (15-ounce) cans diced tomatoes with juice 
  • 1 (15-ounce) can tomato sauce
  • 1 (6-ounce) can tomato paste
  • 1 ½ cups beef broth
  • 1 tablespoon Worcheshire sauce 
  • 1 (14.5-ounce) can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 (14.5-ounce) can black beans or dark kidney beans, drained and rinsed 
  • 1 (14.5-ounce) can chili beans with sauce 

Toppings and Condiments (optional)

  • Sour cream
  • Shredded Cheddar cheese 
  • Chopped green onions or diced yellow onions 
  • 1 fresh tomato, diced 
  • Frito or tortilla chips
  • Lime wedges


  1. In a large heavy soup pot, brown ground beef over medium heat. When beef is slightly browned, add the red bell pepper, onions, garlic and jalapeño pepper. Cook ground beef until completely browned and the vegetables are tender. Drain the excess fat off the meat. 
  2. Add chili powder, cocoa, sugar, cumin, paprika, oregano, cayenne pepper, salt and black pepper to the brown ground beef and sautéed vegetables. Mix well.
  3. Next add diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, tomato paste, beef broth and Worcestershire sauce. Stir well and simmer for 40 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent scorching.
  4. After the chili has simmered for 40 minutes, add the pinto beans, black beans and chili beans. Simmer for an additional 20 minutes. 
  5. Serve hot with all your favorite toppings! Enjoy!


Do ahead and freeze tips: You can make this chili up several days ahead. Store it in the refrigerator in an airtight container. Reheat on low heat on the stove, in the microwave or if you have plenty of time, place it in the crockpot on medium heat and let it simmer for a few hours.

Note: You may need to add a little more beef broth or water to the chili. This recipe makes a big pot of chili so if you have leftovers it freezes very well for up to 3 months. I like to freeze the chili in freezer ziplock bags. To reheat, let it thaw overnight in the refrigerator and then reheat.