Recipe: Texas Red Chili

Javelina's Richard Caruso shares his recipe for the ultimate Tex-Mex comfort food

Few things will combat a chilly day like this comforting dish of ground beef simmered in aromatic vegetables and spices: chef Richard Caruso's Tex-Mex take on classic chili at the New York City restaurant, Javelina. It's also perfect for feeding a crowd during, say, the biggest football game of the year: You can make it in advance, freeze it, then heat it back up for game day. The most important part is having plenty of topping options, including cheese, cilantro, white onion and tortilla chips.

The masa paste added into the chili is key to thickening the dish to the right consistency. If you can't find masa flour, use two tablespoons of finely ground cornmeal instead. However, do make sure to use ancho chile powder and not just whichever chile powder you have on hand. Ancho chile powder is typically lower in heat than other varieties and does not have other spices mixed in, like many generic chile powders.

To learn more, read "Snacks vs. Skins."

Recipe adapted from Richard Caruso, Javelina, New York, NY

Texas Red Chili
4.7 from 92 ratings
Learn the secret spice blend to make a rich and spicy Tex-Mex staple: chili.
Prep Time
Cook Time
Total time: 1 hour, 15 minutes
  • ½ cup lard or vegetable oil
  • 1 cup chopped white onion, plus more for garnish
  • 8 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
  • 2 red bell peppers—stemmed, seeded and diced
  • 2 green bell peppers—stemmed, seeded and diced
  • 1 vine-ripe tomato, cored and roughly chopped
  • 2½ pounds ground beef
  • ¾ cup ancho chile powder
  • ½ cup cumin
  • ¼ cup dried oregano
  • ¼ cup paprika
  • Kosher salt, to taste
  • 1¾ cups beef stock
  • 2 tablespoons masa flour
  • 2 tablespoons warm water
  • Sour cream, for garnish
  • Shredded cheddar and Monterey Jack cheese, for garnish
  • Crushed tortilla chips, for garnish
  • Cilantro leaves, for garnish
  1. In a large saucepan, heat the lard over medium-high heat. Add the onion, garlic, peppers and tomato, and cook until soft, 6 to 8 minutes.
  2. Add the ground beef and cook, breaking up the beef with a wooden spoon, until the meat is no longer pink, 5 minutes. Add the ancho chile powder, cumin, oregano, paprika and a large pinch of salt, and cook until fragrant, 2 minutes. Pour in the stock and bring to a simmer. Cook until the liquid has reduced slightly, 30 minutes.
  3. In a small bowl, mix the masa flour with the water until a paste forms. Stir the paste into the chili and continue to cook until thickened, 15 minutes more. Season with salt.
  4. Divide the chili among bowls; top with the onions, sour cream, shredded cheese, tortilla chips and cilantro; and serve.
Calories per Serving 299
Total Fat 23.1 g
Saturated Fat 6.1 g
Trans Fat 0.9 g
Cholesterol 50.3 mg
Total Carbohydrates 10.2 g
Dietary Fiber 4.2 g
Total Sugars 2.5 g
Sodium 392.2 mg
Protein 15.0 g
The information shown is Edamam’s estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.
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