Beef brisket chili is a thick and hearty chili, boldly seasoned with your favorite BBQ flavors and tender cubes of smoked beef brisket. This is an incredible recipe to make with leftover smoked brisket, or simply buy some at your local grocery store.
What is it?
My BBQ beef brisket chili recipe combines a traditional chili with the bold flavor of barbecue. Trust me, it is a match made in heaven that will bring your chili to the next level! Each saucy spoonful is a little sweet, a little spicy, and packs a deep smoky flavor!
Beef brisket is the best meat to add to chili if you are craving something a little different that is absolutely packed with flavor. The smoking process transforms the tough cut of beef into delectably tender morsels that are infused with smoke flavor. This really transforms a simple pot of chili into something special.
Ingredients and Substitutions
- Smoked beef brisket - I recommend using leftover barbecue brisket to create a flavorful Texas brisket chili, but any smoked BBQ meats will work very well. BBQ ribs, pulled pork, smoked beef short ribs, or country-style ribs are all excellent substitutions. If using a raw beef roast (brisket or otherwise), I recommend using my shredded beef chili recipe instead.
- Vegetable oil - I use canola oil or olive oil. However, using bacon fat would be a great flavor enhancer.
- Red onions - I think the stronger flavor of red onions is best for this recipe, but sweet onions or a yellow onion can also be substituted.
- Jalapeno peppers - The gentle heat of jalapenos offsets the sweetness of the BBQ sauce, but you can use poblano peppers or bell peppers for less heat.
- Fresh garlic cloves
- Black coffee - More beef broth can be used instead.
- Beef broth - Beef stock is a great substitute.
- Canned chili beans - The secret to making a good chili is using canned chili beans. Not only do the beans make for a heartier chili, but the liquid in the can is also an incredible thickener, giving your chili that perfectly thick and saucy texture. Chili beans come in a variety of spice levels, buy the heat level that fits your personal preference. Black beans in chili sauce is a good substitute for traditional chili beans.
- Canned fire roasted tomatoes - Diced tomatoes can be substituted, but will have a little less flavor. I don't recommend substituting fresh tomatoes from the grocery store as they typically lack any flavor.
- Tomato sauce
- Tomato paste
- Worcestershire sauce
- Barbecue sauce - Use your favorite storebought or homemade BBQ sauce.
- All-purpose flour - Masa harina is a great substitute.
- Brown sugar - This can be omitted if you are using a really sweet BBQ sauce, or simply want your smoked brisket chili to be less sweet.
- Bay leaf
You can substitute store-bought or homemade chili seasoning, but I highly recommend using the custom blend listed in the recipe. It is specifically crafted to highlight the sweet and smoky BBQ flavors in this chili.
- Kosher salt
- Ground cumin
- Dried oregano - Mexican oregano would be a great substitute.
- Chili powder - Ancho chili powder is my preferred substitution.
- Onion powder
- Smoked paprika - Any other paprika can be substituted.
- Garlic powder
- Cayenne Pepper - This can be removed for a more mild chili. Otherwise, crushed red pepper flakes can be substituted.
- Fresh ground black pepper - Fresh ground pepper has a much better flavor than pre-ground black pepper.
How to make it
First, saute your diced onions and peppers with vegetable oil in a Dutch oven or large stock pot set over medium heat. Let the vegetables saute until tender, then add your minced garlic and cook for a couple of minutes, or until the garlic is fragrant.
Next, we add the chopped brisket and all the remaining ingredients to the large pot. I prefer to add in all of the seasonings and spices first to ensure they are well combined. Cooking them briefly before adding any liquid also helps the flavors bloom. Be sure to scape the bottom of the pot when the liquid is added to ensure any burnt-on bits get incorporated into the sauce.
Once all of your chili ingredients and seasonings have been added, bring the pot to a simmer and let cook uncovered for two hours. This can be simmered even longer if desired. Then serve in bowls with a dollop of sour cream and your favorite toppings.
Leftover brisket chili is even better the next day, so it is one of those recipes I actually prefer to make in advance when I am trying to make the best chili possible. The flavors continue to meld as they sit in your refrigerator and everything is extremely easy to reheat when you are ready to serve it. (You can also freeze your brisket chili for up to three months.)
Store your chili in a large airtight container in the fridge and enjoy it within five days. It can be reheated in individual servings in the microwave, or gently reheat the entire pot on the stovetop. If I am serving this for a large gathering I will reheat everything in a slow cooker set on high heat, then use the keep warm setting on my Crockpot when serving guests.
More Chili Recipes
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Beef Brisket Chili
- 2 pounds smoked beef brisket choppped
- 1 tablespoon cooking oil
- 2 medium red onions chopped
- 3 jalapeno peppers chopped
- 4 garlic cloves minced
- 1 ½ cups black coffee
- 1 ½ cups beef broth
- 30 ounces canned chili beans
- 28 ounces canned fire roasted tomatoes
- 15 ounces canned tomato sauce
- 6 ounces tomato paste
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- ½ cup BBQ sauce
- 2 tablespoons flour
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 ½ tablespoons kosher salt
- 1 ½ tablespoons cumin
- 2 teaspoons oregano
- 2 teaspoons chili powder
- 1 ½ teaspoons onion powder
- 1 ½ teaspoons smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon cayenne Pepper
- ½ teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
- Add vegetable oil to a large soup pot or Dutch oven set over medium heat, along with the chopped onions and peppers. Saute the vegetables until tender, then add the minced garlic and cook for an additional two minutes.
- Stir in the flour, brown sugar, bay leaf, tomato paste, and all of the chili seasoning. Mix together until everything is well combined and let cook for one minute, then add the cubed brisket and all remaining ingredients.
- Bring the chili pot to a simmer, and let cook uncovered for two hours. Stir occasionally with a wooden spoon to prevent the bottom from scorching.
- Serve with your favorite chili toppings.
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