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beef chili colorado with rice in a white bowl with a folded flour tortilla
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5 from 33 votes

Beef Chilli Colorado

Don't think because you hear the word Chili that it's got to be hot. It's all about picking the right chili for the right dish. Of course, you can always dial up the heat, but if you're looking for the earthy rich flavor that only chilis can give a dish, then my Beef Chili Colorado is just what you're looking for.
Prep Time25 mins
Cook Time3 hrs 45 mins
Course: Entree
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Beef Chili, beef colorado, chili colorado
Servings: 4
Calories: 589kcal
Author: Chef Dennis Littley


Chili Sauce

  • 3 dried Guajillo chilies stems removed and seeded
  • 3 dried Ancho chilies stems removed and seeded
  • 2 New Mexico chilies (or pasilla) stems removed and seeded
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • ½ sweet Vidalia onion chopped
  • 3 clove garlic finely chopped
  • 3 cups beef broth 1 cup reserved (chicken or vegetable broth can be substituted)
  • 3 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt or more to taste
  • teaspoon dried oregano
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 cup fire-roasted tomato


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 pounds beef chuck cut into 1 inch squares
  • 1 tablespoon masa harina


Red Chili Sauce

  • In a large sauté pan or wide bottom pot, toast the chilies over medium heat for 1-2 minutes to bring out the flavor of the peppers. Remove from the pan until needed.
  • Add olive oil to the hot pan and sauté the onions for 2-3 minutes then add in the garlic and continue to sauté for 1 minute.
  • Add the toasted chilies, fire-roasted tomatoes, seasonings and beef stock to the pan.
  • Bring the mixture to a gentle boil. Turn off heat, cover the pot and let it steep for 45 minutes.
  • Reserve one cup of the stock. Add the remainder of the ingredients to a blender and blend until smooth at the highest setting.
    Add additional liquid if the mixture is too thick for your blender. Reserve the remainder of the liquid till needed.
    **Depending on the power of the blender it may completely puree all the ingredients. If it has bits and pieces remaining, run the sauce through a sieve to take out and pieces that didn't get pureed.


  • Heat a large pot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add the oil and half of the meat and brown on all sides so they have a good sear, about 5-7 minutes. Transfer the browned beef into a bowl and repeat the process with the remaining uncooked meat.
  • When all the beef has browned, return all the meat to the pot. Add in the red chile sauce, and reserved beef broth. Stir to combine and bring the mixture to a boil. Once the mixture has begun to boil, reduce the heat to simmer. Cover the pot and continue to simmer for 2 hours.
  • Uncover, taste and reseason as necessary.
  • Mix the masa harina with 2 tablespoons of the broth from the pot to make a slurry. Add the slurry back into the pot and mix well.
  • Raise to medium heat and cook for another 15 to 30 minutes, until the sauce has reduced and thickened slightly. If you prefer a thicker sauce, cook longer.
  • Serve with rice, tortillas and beans and enjoy!


Calories: 589kcal | Carbohydrates: 9g | Protein: 47g | Fat: 41g | Saturated Fat: 14g | Cholesterol: 156mg | Sodium: 1540mg | Potassium: 916mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 586IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 105mg | Iron: 7mg