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Willie's Chili

Willie's Chili
This is the recipe my father, Willie, passed down to me. Beginning around age 4 our outings together always included a trip to the Spice House to get all the fixings for the next project. 40 years later I now have the privilege of working in the Milwaukee store.

Submitted by: Kate from Milwaukee, Wi
Yield: 4 quarts


Featured in this Recipe


Preparation Instructions:

In a heavy bottomed soup pot (Dutch oven works well), heat the oil. Add all the cut vegetables and saute until the onions are translucent. Add the ground beef and sausage, mixing often to break up the larger chunks. Once the meat is fully cooked, drain off the excess fat. Add all the spices and chilis, and stir until evenly distributed. Leave the whole chilies whole, if the chili seems to be getting too hot, just take them out. Stir in the tomatoes and bring to a simmer. Stir in 2 cups of beef broth and let simmer until reduced by half, stirring often. Do the same with the V-8 juice. Repeat. This process can take up to four hours. Check the seasoning and add salt if necessary. Mix in the cornmeal, constantly stirring until chili is the desired thickness. Add the beans and let simmer a few minutes more. Serve with any sides: crackers, cheese, sour cream, onions, noodles....


Based on 2 reviews

Customer Reviews

William DeLind

My favorite chili recipe! I substitute 2 Serrano peppers for the green pepper, and try to find very course grind beef. To finish add 1/2 cup cider vinegar. And usually make a double batch. I’ve won ‘Chili competitions’ with this recipe! It’s the abundance of the spices that make it so fantastic.


Please don’t take my rating as a dig to this recipe. Everyone has different tastes, some might rave about this chili. Don’t let my changes deter you from trying it as you wish.

Made with the exact ingredients in the same manner, I found it to be very pasty early on with so much chili powder. There was nothing to simmer, so I had to add a bit of water.

Not knowing what to do with the dried peppers (leave whole? Slice? Grind? Take out when finished??) I decided to cut the Guajillo in tiny bits, which turned out well, but because it imparts a sweet flavor, I would only add half a pepper next time.

“2-3 Tien Tsin peppers” Err on the side of caution. I used two of the smallest peppers in the batch and wow! Maybe we’re just wimps.

We enjoy spicy foods, but next time, I will reduce the chili powder and the chili con carne seasoning. It just seemed overpowered with powder, but worth mentioning – to each his own.

Other than draining and rinsing the black beans and adding a can of dark red kidney beans (rinsed and drained) to reduce some of the heat, we find ourselves with a huge pot of chili to share, and any signs of nasal congestion are entirely gone. Good with macaroni noodles or corn chips.

Sign me, a fussy eater, but will keep this recipe with my adaptations. :-)

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