Spicy Chipotle Chili

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Spicy Chipotle Chili made in cast iron brings the heat for dinnertime, over and over again. Prepare to fall in love with a flavor fit for colder weather.

Spicy Chipotle Chili is a twist on classic beef chili that your whole family will keep asking for. It’s the perfect hug on a chilly day and an epic side dish to a summer BBQ!


Chili has long been the classic dish we turn to when the weather starts to head into colder territory. Did you know that Chili Con Carne (or at least the earliest variation of it) has been around since the 1850s?!

In fact, chili appears to have been an old school meal prep! Beef, peppers, suet and salt were pounded together and dried, then heated/boiled in pots out on the trail.

Thankfully, modern chili has more appear to our cast iron palates. Beef chili in cast iron is the perfect blend of juicy, hot flavor and perfectly cooked meat. This Spicy Chipotle Chili pays homage to the old fashion chili with flavor rooted in Southwest culinary history.


What type of cast iron: We whipped out our trusty Dutch Oven for this recipe.

About cast iron dutch oven: The great thing about Dutch Ovens is how versatile they are. They are heavy and can be a little intimidating to new users, but we encourage you not to be. A dutch oven can be used on stove top and in the oven. This type of cast iron is perfect for meat, soups, sauces, stews and of course, chili.

Where to find Chipotle chili powder: The key to flavor of this chili is definitely in the Chipotle. It’s easy to find at your local grocery store. If you go to a smaller store, you may have to venture to a bigger box tore. Our go-to is the *** brand.

What does Chipotle taste like? It’s a very distinct spice with a smokey flavor, perfect for slow cooking like with chili.

How do you make chili with ground beef? My secret to making ground beef chili is picking a slightly leaner style of ground beef so you can season, cook, and skip the draining of the fat. Similar to how you would add a cut of butter to a sauce to give it that glossy feel, is the same reason why I choose not to drain the fat from my burger meat. Choosing a leaner package such as 90/10, minimizes the fat oils and allows you to add the seasonings at the same time as browning. This trick allows for the meat to spend as much time with the flavors at possible and to cook out that raw spice taste.


Proper storage of your chili: Allow your chili to cool off before transferring to an airtight plastic or glass container. You can keep chili fresh for up to 3 days.

Can you freeze Chipotle Chili? Yes, you can. Portion your chili accordingly and place into freezer bags, be sure to push out the extra air.

How to reheat chili: A cast iron skillet can come in handy to reheat your chili. Bring your skillet up to medium to high temp and make sure it is well greased. Stir your chili until it is heated through and enjoy!


We love the heat this chili brings and have a few suggestions for you as far as sides go. Our personal favorite pairing is our skillet cornbread. The sweet, savory flavor goes SO well with the heat this chili brings to the table.

If you’re looking for a solid dessert option, we’re fans of skillet apple crisp. There is something about cinnamon and spice that makes our kitchen smell so nice.

Looking for a way to bring it all together for a full meal plan? This section found in every post will help you pair the recipe you’re viewing, with other flavorful dishes to make your mealtime that much easier. Enjoy this section of posts? Leave a comment below and let me know!

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Spicy Chipotle Chili

Course Chili, Dinner, Main Course, Soup
Cuisine American
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Servings 8 people
Smokey and spicy, this ground beef chili has it all – even some hidden vegetables! Got a family member that loves spice but refuses their vegetables? Us too! This Spicy Chipotle Chili has grated carrots, petite diced tomatoes, and classic diced peppers and onions. This Dutch Oven classic is HOT, HOT, HOT!


  • 2 pounds ground beef
  • 1 green bell pepper medium diced
  • 1 yellow onion medium diced
  • 1/2-1 cup carrots peeled and grated
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 14.5 ounce canned petite diced tomatoes
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne
  • 1/2 teaspoon Chipotle Chile
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon molasses
  • 1 teaspoon liquid smoke
  • 2 teaspoons worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 cup of BBQ sauce
  • 1 cup of pasta sauce


  • Heat your dutch oven on the stovetop over medium heat. Add ground beef and spices. Brown almost all the way.
  • Just before meat is thoroughly browned, add in the green peppers and cook for 5 minutes. Then add in onion. Give a good stir and allow to become tender.
  • Add carrots and tomatoes. Give a quick stir. Pour in the BBQ sauce and pasta sauce. Cover and allow to simmer for at least 30 minutes, longer if possible. Serve with your favorite chili toppings.


*If using ground beef with a higher fat content, brown the meat first and drain the fat, then add your spices. If substituting ground beef with a leaner cut of meat such as ground turkey, add 2 Tablespoons of oil during the browning process. 


Calories: 363kcal | Carbohydrates: 17g | Protein: 21g | Fat: 23g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Cholesterol: 81mg | Sodium: 802mg | Potassium: 705mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 12g | Vitamin A: 1727IU | Vitamin C: 21mg | Calcium: 67mg | Iron: 4mg

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