Chile Colorado

Inigo+Montoya+from+The+Princess+BrideChile Colorado. It’s the local variation on your favorite Tex-Mex stew, served in Denver, right?


Even though Chile Colorado is a popular dish that you’ll find at Mexican restaurants around the state of Colorado, the name literally means “chili that is red-colored.” We’ll claim it as a Colorado dish for our purposes here, since that is where we first encountered it.

Plus, it’s what we wanted to eat while we watch the Denver Broncos play in the Super Bowl this year (2016).

Also, Chile Colorado purists point out that it uses *beef,* not pork, and does not include beans in the recipe.


2 – 3 lbs beef shoulder roast, cubed
1/2 Cup all-purpose flour
4 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
5 tsp Medium Chili Powder
2 tsp Ground Cumin
2 tsp Garlic Powder
1 tsp Onion Powder
6 oz (1 small can) Tomato Paste
2 Cups water
Salt and pepper to taste


Denver_BroncosSprinkle flour evenly across a broad flat bowl or dinner plate, and add the beef cubes, tossing gently to completely coat the meat. Shake off any excess flour before adding cubes to a large skillet or heavy Dutch oven, where the olive oil has been heated on medium-high heat.

Brown the beef in the hot skillet, turning pieces frequently to make sure each side gets browned, about 15 min. Add the ground spices, tomato paste, and the water. Stir to thoroughly incorporate ingredients into the browned beef cubes.  Bring the pot of chili to a low simmer.

Put the lid on the simmering chili and cook over a “low and slow” heat for about 1-1/2 to 2 hours. You will know the beef is done when, if you place a cube of it on your cutting board, it is fork-tender and falling apart.

Serve chili in bowls, and/or with fresh corn tortillas, with rice and beans, or as a filling in a loaded burrito.