Recipe: Slake's Chili

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Slake's Chili


I’ve made The Chili recipe dozens of times. I’ve won multiple chili contests with it. I’ve never come home with leftovers. A double-batch fits into a large-sized dutch oven pretty nicely. It’s a real Texas chili.

However, it’s not my recipe. The original creator and namesake, Slake, takes the credit. Here’s his recipe, unedited, below:


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 pounds sirloin steak, cut into 1-inch cubes (editor’s note: short ribs are also great here)
  • ½ pound ground beef
  • 12 ounces chorizo sausage, casing removed, cut into ½ cubes
  • 1 large yellow onion, coarsely chopped
  • ¼ cup chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon garlic salt
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 2 (14.5 oz) cans beef broth
  • 2 (14.5 oz) cans whole tomatoes, drained
  • ½ (12 oz) can Coca-Cola
  • ½ (12 oz) can beer (your choice here, doesn’t have a huge impact what you use, just make sure it’s not too shitty)
  • 1 cup cilantro, chopped
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 2-4 green jalapenos, slit lengthwise 3 times each (alternately, 1 habanero and 1 jalapeno)
  • 1 tablespoon yellow cornmeal
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

Mise En Place


Directions: Place oil in a large, heavy pot over medium heat. Brown the sirloin in batches. Remove to a bowl with a slotted spoon.

Add ground beef, chorizo and onions to the pot and brown. Make sure to break up the meat.

Browning Meat and Onions

Return sirloin to the pot and stir in remaining ingredients, except for garnishes.

Simmering Chili

Bring to a boil, reduce heat, simmer for 3-5 hours (longer is better). Stir occasionally, breaking up tomatoes.

Reduced Chili

Before serving, discard cinnamon stick and bay leaves (and habanero if you used it, don’t want someone biting into that!). Garnish with cheese and sour cream, if desired.

Seriously though that chili is amazing. I usually eat it with some kind of carbohydrates, be it rice, pasta, or a baked potato. The longer you let it reduce the richer the flavors become and the less ‘sharp’ the spices are.


I like to reduce the chili to a very thick consistency, and I find that a little bit goes a long way. My favorite preparation is to scoop out an avocado, fill it with chili, and top with sour cream and cheese. Also makes a great Frito Pie.

For the Coca-Cola, use Mexican Coke (real sugar) for the best effect. For the beer, I typically use Shiner or Guinness.

I’ve used a variety of meats for the “sirloin steak” portion, including short ribs, etc. Since you’re braising it so long, most beef cuts will work out pretty well here. I personally usually add more than the 2lbs quoted above, making it a little steak-ier.

I’m not a big jalepeno person, but I find that slicing them and removing them after does add a nice spiciness. I usually do 3 jalepenos, as someone who likes mild-to-medium spiciness.

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