Big, beefy flavor and lots of heat is how we like our chili con carne, but if you don’t like yours quite so spicy, simply dial down the heat.

Serves 6


  • 2 pounds lean sirloin or bison steak
  • 2 tablespoons beef tallow or lard
  • 1 small yellow onion, peeled and diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper (or to taste)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup sliced white button mushrooms, fresh or canned
  • 1 tablespoon sun-dried tomato paste
  • 1 can (4 ounces) diced green chilis, fire roasted, hot or mild
  • 1 can (15 ounces) diced tomatoes
  • 1 can (15 ounces) black soybeans, rinsed and drained (optional)
  • 1 quart beef broth
  • 1 cup dry red wine (optional)
  • 4 tablespoons grated Mexican four-cheese blend
  • 2 green onions, chopped, green and white parts
  • 2 tablespoons sliced jalapeños (optional)


  1. Put the meat into the freezer for about 30 minutes to make it easier to dice into 1/2-inch cubes.  Remove and dice.
  2. In a large skillet or soup pot, melt the tallow or lard over medium heat; add the onion and garlic and sauté until limp.
  3. Add the meat, chili powder, cumin, cayenne, salt, and pepper and sauté until brown on all sides, about 4 to 5 minutes.
  4. Add the mushrooms and continue to cook until the mushrooms give up their juices.
  5. Stir in the tomato paste, green chilis, tomatoes, and (if using) soybeans.
  6. Add the beef broth and (if using) wine and increase the heat to medium-high and bring to a boil.
  7. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, for 45 minutes.
  8. To serve, ladle into bowls and top each serving with some grated cheese, green onions, and, for the adventurous a few sliced jalapeños.

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