Cowboy Chili

I absolutely love the cooler weather we have been having. Rain and thunderstorms happen to be my absolute favorite weather.

It has been rainy and cold here the past few days and all I have wanted is a warm bowl of soup and chili. It is like my total heaven. Curling up with a blanket and sipping on soup while listening to the rain.

This version of chili was created by my talented mother and packed with flavor and kick of heat and spice- perfect for those chilly and cold days.

Cowboy Chili from ...This recipe is packed with amazing flavor and heat! It is SO good!

5.0 from 11 reviews
Cowboy Chili
This recipe is packed with amazing flavor and heat! It is SO good!
Recipe type: Dinner
  • 2 lbs. ground beef
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 large bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 3 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon pepper
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 (28 oz.) can of crushed tomatoes
  • 1 (14.5 oz.) can of stewed tomatoes
  • 2 cans of drained kidney beans
  • ⅓ cup chili powder
  • ¼ to ½ teaspoon cayenne (optional)
  • 2 teaspoon cumin
For thicker chili
  • ⅓ cup cold water
  • 2 Tablespoons masa flour
  1. Brown ground beef. Add onion, bell pepper, garlic and sauté for 1 minute. Add salt, pepper, water, crushed tomatoes, stewed tomatoes, beans, chili powder, cayenne and cumin. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat and simmer 20 min. If you would like a thicker chili mix ⅓ cup water and 2 Tablespoons masa flour together and add to the chili after it has simmered 20 minutes and cook an additional 5 minutes.


If you make this recipe, snap a photo and hashtag it #chefintraining and/or #chefintrainingblog. I would love to see how these recipes take shape in your kitchens.

Filed under: chili, dinner

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  1. Darlene

    Oh I love chili! I am excited to make this!

  2. Averie @ Averie Cooks

    Oh this looks so hearty and perfect for chilly weather! I can't believe you like rain! I like it for about 3 minutes and then I need my sunshine :) Pinned!

  3. Joanna Hunt

    That looks yummy! Do you use a salt-free chili powder? If not, can I ask what brand do you prefer? Can't wait to give this recipe a try!!

  4. Maxine Miller

    I use half can of refried beans in the chili==or mashed potatoes under the chili in the bowl.

    1. Laura

      Yum! Love this idea!

  5. Sue Wilson

    What is mesa flour? and if not available, can regular flour, or cornstarch be used to thicken?
    Just want to be sure - 1/3 C. +2 T. chili powder

    1. Chef in Training

      It is like a corn flour found in the Hispanic food section of the grocery store. You can definitely use regular flour in its place, it just has a unique and yummy flavor to the chili. Also I just changed it to 1/3 cup chili powder :)

  6. Elaine

    Waiting and waiting for chili weather here in San Antonio. Maybe tomorrow! My chili recipe calls for mesa flour also. I actually add it before adding any liquids so it doesn't clump up. It adds a delicious flavor to the chili. Going to try your recipe tomorrow!

  7. Liz

    Thanks Nikki for the great chili.

  8. Irene


    This was a really great recipe

  9. Jennifer

    Can I make this in the slow cooker?

  10. Debbie


    This chili is soooo good! I love it, and I'm looking forward to trying some of your other recipes!

  11. Faith

    How many will this serve?

  12. V

    Hubby on new diet for health reasons...hoping this chili will curb his need for comfort food! Did it all to a tee except used ground turkey instead of beef. Wish me luck!

  13. V

    Hubby on new diet for health reasons...hoping this chili will curb his need for comfort food! Did it all to a tee except used ground turkey instead of beef n ommitted salt. Figured he could add it later... Wish me luck!

  14. V

    Yay!! Hit the spot. Hubby approved. Recipe is a keeper. Thank u

  15. Angie Pinnon

    I like your chili recipe. My husband is the chili maker in our house. But I wanted a chili I could make. This is good. My husband even approves. In place of the cayenne, we use our own spice mix. Dried cayenne peppers (maybe other kinds of peppers too) all ground up. Delicious even on fried eggs in the morning! But I love your chili recipe. Will be making this in the months to come. Delish!!!

  16. Misty


    Made this the other day and Everyone LOVED it! Ate leftovers tonight and husband said was best chili he ever had :). It really was great. Only difference I did was a can of Rotel instead of stewed tomatoes

  17. dee

    Confused? For thicker chili it should be 1/3C chili powder, (NOT water) and 2 Tablespoons mesa flour. Please confirm. Thanks!

  18. Chrissy

    Can anyone tell me how many servings 1 recipe makes? Thanks :)

  19. William McGrath


    I made this recipe as written last Spring and thought it was pretty good. I came back to it a couple nights ago when I really wanted a good bowl of chili and decided to riff on the original a little bit. Instead of stewed tomatoes I used fire roasted diced tomatoes. The stewed tomatoes made it a bit too sweet for my tastes. I also doubled the cumin and used a 12 oz. bottle of Warsteiner Dunkel in place of the water. The dark beer and extra cumin really takes this recipe to the next level, in my opinion. Thank you so much for providing a really good starting point for an awesome bowl of chili.

  20. Jamie Baker


    This is a great chili! Went together quickly. I tried to leave out a little of the salt, but nope, it needed all of it.

  21. Kaleigh

    Believe it or not, I've never made chili! My husband usually makes the chili in our house, but he's out of town tonight so I'm trying this recipe! Thanks! :)

  22. Kasilla

    Can this be made in the crock pot? I'm looking to serve for Christmas Eve. I don't have time to be in the kitchen HAHA

  23. Janie

    Oh my gosh! I make it pretty much the same way except I use 1 can chili beans, 1 can ranch style beans & 1 can kidney beans. The masa is my secret ingredient, well, not anymore! It's delicious! I make a box of jiffy cornbread with some creamed corn & honey stirred into the mix as well. Perfection on cold, drizzly days!

  24. Becky


    Thank you for this delicious recipe! I followed it almost to a T (I used less chili powder), and it was so incredibly delicious. You helped me make dinner for my husband whose been working so hard lately. I loved that this recipe was easy and super tasty. Thanks again!

  25. Val

    Should'nt it read masa flour (used in making tamales and tortillas) , not Mesa flour. Been using masa flour in my chili for years. Adds a great ground corn taste. Thanks.

    1. Chef in Training

      yes thank you. All fixed now :)

  26. Priscilla

    I added one extra can of beans, cannellini beans. Browned my chopped 1lb.stew meat in small pieces salted and peppered then browned for 4minutes then added onions,peppers,and garlic chopped finely. Poured this in crockpot. In my sauté pan I added the can tomatoes with water and all the spices then added beans. Then poured all liquids in to crockpot mixed well.
    Let cook on high for three hours. Made cornbread to go with.

  27. Meg


    I've been using this recipe for a couple years now and wanted you to know how much we like it! I substitute a can of black beans for one of the cans of kidney beans because black beans are my favorite. I also substitute fresh tomatoes for the stewed tomatoes because they go over better here if they are cut up smaller. Overall this is a hearty meal that lasts for a few leftover lunches and it's always been a hit! Thanks for a great recipe that I know I can always count on!

  28. Mike


    Omg me aa my gf love this recipe been making it for a year now...we been using a onion an green an red pepper blend... absolutely the best chilli ive ever had hands dwn! Thanx!

  29. Cindy Vieira


    We love this recipe!!! I make it in my slow cooker. Love when it gets cold so we can make it!!!

  30. Rita


    The only things that I could improve on in this chili (not that I was asked or anything ??) are to simmer it an hour to let the meat tenderize more, and a can of beef broth in place of water, and twice the fresh minced garlic! Otherwise, that is the chili recipe that I use and friends and family LOVE!!

  31. Thomene

    This is my favorite chili recipe. I have made it several times and it is loved by all!!

  32. Claudia

    I have made this “cowboy chili” several times and it is delicious! My family loves it. FYI: I only put in 1/4 cup chili powder instead of 1/3 cup and it is great.

  33. Thomene


    This is my go to chili recipe, absolutely the best. My brother in law says it is his favorite. I like to double the spices. I have substituted elk for hamburger, tasted great! Thank you for a wonderful recipe.