Wild Thing Texas Chili

January 28, 2015 Updated: January 28, 2015

This delicious, hearty Texas chili pairs game meat with a thick sauce of spices, onions, tomatoes, garlic, and bell peppers.

Makes 6 servings

Prep & Cook Time: 60 minutes

  • 1 pound ground bison
  • 1 pound ground venison
  • 1 pound ground wild boar
  • 3 slices of bacon
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 4 cloves of garlic
  • 2 bell peppers, cored and chopped
  • 3 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon ground chipotle pepper
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 1 teaspoon chili flakes
  • 2 cups tomato purée
  • 1 6-ounce can tomato paste
  • 1/2 cup strong black coffee
  • 2 cups broth
  • 2 teaspoons fish sauce

In a large dry skillet over medium-high heat, cook the bacon until browned and crispy. Transfer to a plate to cool, and empty the fat from the skillet but reserve for later use.

Brown the bison, venison, and wild boar briefly on each side. Transfer out of the skillet after the meat has a nicely seared brown color but before it has cooked fully.

While the meat browns, load the onions, garlic, bell peppers, and bacon into a food processor and then pulse until finely shredded. If you prefer a chunkier chili, chop the vegetables by hand into 1/2-inch pieces.

When the meat is finished, sauté the bacon and vegetable mixture in the skillet until very soft. While it cooks, heat 1 tablespoon of the reserved bacon fat in a large stew pot over medium heat. Add the chili powder, cumin, chipotle powder, oregano, paprika, salt, and chili flakes. Cook until fragrant, then stir in the meat, vegetable mixture, puréed tomatoes, tomato paste, coffee, broth, and fish sauce.

Combine thoroughly, allow to simmer for 10 minutes until the flavors meld, then serve warm with sliced jalapeños, cilantro, and shaved red onion if desired.

I used salted broth in my version, if your broth is unsalted you may need to increase the salt to 2 teaspoons.

Rachel Ball is the creator of GrokGrub.com, the source for healthy, tasty recipes crafted in a tiny San Francisco kitchen.