Truck Stop Chili


The Tex-Mex Cookbook

Published by Ten Speed Press

This image courtesy of Joseph DeLeo

Here’s a more elaborate diner-style chili made with bacon and chipotles. It tastes great all by itself, over tamales, with a side order of beans, or as an enchilada sauce.

Serves9 to 10 Cups

Cooking MethodStewing


Total Timeunder 4 hours

OccasionGame Day

Recipe CourseMain Course, Side Dish


Taste and TextureHot & Spicy, Meaty


  • ¼ pound bacon
  • 3 pounds trimmed beef brisket, cut into ¼-inch cubes
  • 1 pound onions, chopped
  • 1½ tablespoons ground cumin
  • 3½ tablespoons chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons paprika
  • 1 teaspoon dried Mexican oregano
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • ½ teaspoon dried thyme
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 4 large garlic cloves, minced
  • One 13.75-ounce can beef broth
  • One 28-ounce can plum tomatoes in puree
  • 2 dried chipotle chiles


  1. Cook the bacon in a large skillet until crisp. Remove the bacon and reserve. Over high heat, brown the beef in the bacon drippings left in the skillet and set the meat aside. Over medium heat, sauté the onions in the remaining drippings for 8 to 10 minutes, until lightly browned.

  2. Toast the cumin in a small skillet over medium heat, stirring constantly for 1 minute or until fragrant.

  3. Add the toasted cumin, chili powder, paprika, oregano, black pepper, thyme, salt, and garlic to the cooked onions and sauté for 1 minute. Crumble in the bacon, add the beef broth, 1 cup water, tomatoes, chiles, and the beef. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat, cover partially, and simmer for 3 hours or until the meat is very tender, adding water as needed to maintain the desired consistency.


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