Chipotle Chili is the BEST Ever!

Chipotle Chili

I don’t know about you but I seldom make Chili the same every time. So much depends on what I have in the pantry and fridge so things just sort of get thrown together and that is that. Until now. Boy did we love this Chipotle Chili! I like lots of condiments to develop a real depth of flavor in the sauce but I don’t think I’ve every thought to include the canned chiles in Adobo sauce. I’m guessing because I would probably more likely use some fresh Poblano or maybe Hatch chiles instead. They delivered such a nice touch of flavor and heat they’ve become my new favorite.

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I also like chili with meat in it; even if I’ve heard that the original chili did not include it. It was only after someone tried it that Chili con Carne (Chili with Meat) became popular. I supposed I could have done some discovery to determine the validity of this but I’m heading into eye surgery tomorrow for the 2nd week in a row so I’m a bit frazzled and trying to get SO much done today in preparation for another couple of days off the 2nd week in a row.

Part of my efforts have included making some dishes to freeze in individual portions so that I don’t have to cook. It’s ‘only’ cataract surgery but it’s still an invasion and last week a did appreciate a couple of days of taking it a bit easier than usual. Ever contemplated cataract surgery? I simply could not wrap my arms around how on earth someone was going to tape my eye open, come towards my eye, cut a small slit in in, remove the bad lens and put a new one in…all without me totally freaking out!

Now I want to write a primer about how EASY it is. If I had known they would totally numb my eye with drops and then blind me with a light and all I would see would be pretty lights I would not have fidgeted for two nights prior and gone in there exhausted. I think I had to recuperate more from the exhaustion than anything else…I’m serious; it was SO easy.

Chipotle Chili

But I enjoyed having this chili, some Indian Dal and a cream of chicken soup in individual freezer packets that I just had to pop in the microwave. For the chili, all I had to do was garnish it with a bit of sour cream (or yogurt), cheddar cheese and chopped green onion and I had a great, easy meal in 5 minutes. Without it? Well, one night I did have some Brown Sugar Pop Tarts and applesauce for dinner. I felt like I was seven. 🙂

My daughter made a chili a while back that used some tomato juice instead of water and I loved that idea. I took it a step further and made it with V-8…all those additional veggies sure didn’t hurt. Neither did a touch of bourbon. But you know me…if I can throw in a bit of bourbon I will…it’s entirely optional (no it’s not!).

Now that the seasons are changing it’s the perfect time to start making warm and comforting foods. This fits the bill perfectly.

Chipotle Chili

Chipotle Chili is the BEST Ever!

Creative Culinary
1 average from less than 50 votes
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours
Total Time 2 hours 30 minutes
Servings 10 -12 servings
Calories 351 kcal


  • 2 pounds lean ground beef
  • 4 slices thick cut bacon 6 strips if using regular bacon
  • 1 onion chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic minced
  • 2 Chipotle Peppers in Adobo Sauce chopped (Note...2 peppers not 2 cans!)
  • ¼ cup flat-leaf parsley finely chopped
  • 3 Tbsp chili powder
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • ¼ tsp cayenne pepper
  • 46 oz. can V-8 juice
  • ¼ cup bourbon optional
  • 2 Tbsp molasses
  • 28 oz. can diced tomatoes
  • 15 oz. can tomato sauce
  • 16 oz. can kidney beans drained and rinsed
  • 16 oz. can pinto beans drained and rinsed
  • 16 oz. can black beans drained and rinsed

To Garnish:

  • Shredded cheese
  • Sour cream you can substitute plain yogurt
  • Green onions finely sliced


  • In a large pot, cook the ground beef over medium-high heat until no longer pink. Transfer the meat to a bowl. Drain any grease from the pot and add the bacon. Cook until firm but not crisp. Remove all but 2 Tablespoons of fat from the pot and add the onion, red bell pepper, garlic, Chipotle peppers, and parsley and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until onions are fragrant and softened (about 5 minutes). Turn heat to low and add the chili powder, cumin, oregano, salt, pepper and cayenne pepper. Stir until combined and saute on low for 2 more minutes.
  • Put the ground beef back into the pot. Add the V-8 juice, bourbon, molasses, diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, kidney beans, pinto beans and black beans to the pot. Slowly bring to a boil and then turn heat down to medium low, cover with some venting and simmer for 2 hours; stirring occasionally. If sauce needs to thicken a bit, remove lid and cook for another 15-20 minutes.
  • Serve warm with cheese, sour cream and chopped green onions.


Slow Cooker: In slow cooker, saute beef, bacon and vegetable before combining in a crockpot with remaining ingredients. Cook on low for 7 to 8 hours.


Nutrition Facts
Chipotle Chili is the BEST Ever!
Amount per Serving
% Daily Value*
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
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The theme for this week’s #FallFest is Chili…go figure huh? Need some inspiration? Check out my friends and the fantastic recipes they’ve come up with too!

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  1. Looks delicious, Barb. Of course I’d like a bowl now. Glad to hear the surgery was a breeze. I think I’d get pretty worked up myself over that! As for what came first, the beans or the meat, and going back a very long time, chilies + meat is authentic chili. But Boracho beans, or Frijoles Charros which often has bacon and chilies, maybe some tomato depending on the recipe is a traditional recipe from Mexico. I’m thinking the two just became combined over time. Now I’m really hungry 😉

    1. Good to hear. I don’t think I’ve ever had chili without meat in it; it’s how my mom made it and that’s just what I knew!

  2. I had cataract surgery a few years ago. Wow, what a change! I’m incredibly near-sighted, and had worn glasses since the 3rd grade. No more glasses! Except for reading. And you’re right that it’s really easy surgery. I was freaked out before my first eye was done too, however. The thought of it is pretty scary. Anyway, great chili! I’m more apt to use chipotle powder in my chili, but the canned ones add more depth of flavor, IMO. This looks great — thanks.

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