Game Day Brisket Chili


  • 2 to 4 jalapeños, roasted, skin removed, seeded if desired, diced
  • 1 poblano pepper roasted, skin removed, seeded, diced (sub a small can of green chiles)
  • 1 tablespoon oil (or additional drippings if available
  • 4 slices bacon, chopped
  • 2 large onions, diced
  • 6 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 2 chipotle peppers from a can of Chipotle Peppers in Adobo Sauce, diced
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder (may go up to 4)
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • 1 teaspoon cocoa, preferably Hersheys Special Dark
  • 1/2 teaspoon oregano, preferably Mexican
  • 1 28 ounce can of whole tomatoes & juice, tomatoes crushed by hand
  • 1 28 ounce can of crushed tomatoes and juice
  • 1 28 ounce can of diced tomatoes and juice
  • 2 tomato cans of water (7 cups) (may use beef broth or add beef base if desired or replace some of the liquid with a beer)
  • 1 pound dried pinto beans, soaked or brined overnight
  • 1 & a half tablespoons Rib Rub, preferably Essential Rib Rub
  • 2 to 4 cups total chopped smoked brisket & or other smoked meats
  • salt & pepper to taste


Prepare Jalapenos & Poblano pepper, instructions below. Set aside. (Any juices let off by the peppers while steaming may be reserved added into the chili.)

Add 1 tablespoon of oil to a large pot or Dutch oven and heat over medium-high heat. Add bacon and saute until rendered. Remove bacon from pan and reserve. Add the onions and cook, stirring until softened and translucent, about eight to 10 minutes. Add in the garlic and cook, stirring, until garlic is fragrant, then the chipotle pepper.

In the meantime, measure out the spices (except the Rib Rub) the chili powder, cumin, cocoa, and oregano and have them ready. Have ready the tomato products, opened.

Push the onions, garlic and chipotle to the side of the pan and add the spices and herbs all at once. Stir for a minute or two until slightly darkened and fragrant then immediately (so the spices won’t burn in the heat) add in the three cans of tomato products. Stir in the water (and/or beef base, broth or beer).

Add the pintos, the jalapeno, and poblano and any juices from steaming if using. Bring to a boil, turn down to a simmer and place lid partially over the pot. Adjust to a good simmer and simmer until beans are tender, about 2 to 2 1/2 hours, stirring and adding water little by little as needed.

Once the beans are tender, turn down the heat to a bare simmer and add the Rib Rub, brisket and reserved bacon. Continue to gently simmer until brisket is tender and chili has reached desired consistency, about 30 minutes. Taste for salt and pepper and add as needed.
To soak or brine beans:
An overnight soak or brine is recommended for this recipe. Sort beans, removing any debris. Rinse.
  • To Soak, add to a large pot. Cover with two inches of water and leave overnight.
  • To Brine, dissolve 3 tablespoon table salt in one gallon of water (that’s enough to cover beans by about 2 inches). Add beans and leave overnight.

To roast jalapenos & poblano:

  • Arrange jalapenos in a row on a foil-lined cookie sheet, just touching each other with the poblano at one end. Place about 4 inches under the broiler. Broil until blistered, two to three minutes, then turn the poblano and jalapenos a quarter turn, broil again until blistered. Repeat until all sides are blistered and slightly charred. The poblano will probably char more quickly than the jalapenos.
  • Place in a small paper bag and close or in a small bowl covered with a plate and let sit for about 10 minutes to steam. When cool enough to handle, remove the majority of the charred skin. Deseed if desired. Generally, poblanos are de-seeded and jalapenos may or may not be depending on the heat level you prefer.
  • Roasted peppers freeze well;  a great shortcut is to make more than needed, then divide in small portions and freeze.

Keywords: Alcohol, Bacon, Bargain Meal of the Week, Beef, Beer, brisket, canned tomatoes, Chili, Chipotle, Dried Beans, Hot Peppers, Jalapeno, pinto beans, Poblano Peppers, Tomatoes

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