Total Time
2hrs 30mins
Prep 30 mins
Cook 2 hrs

This recipe was printed in the "Arizona Republic" newspaper when Chasen's closed its doors. Chasens was a Hollywood hangout. Elizabeth Taylor liked this chili so much that when she was on a movie set out of the country, she would have them ship it to her on location.

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Pour the beans in a saucepan and cook until tender, adding water if necessary Heat the oil in the skillet, add the peppers and onions and cook until the onions are translucent.
  2. Add the garlic and parsley.
  3. Heat oil and butter in a pot large enough for all the ingredients.
  4. Add the beef and cook about 25 minutes, stirring to break up the lumps.
  5. Add the chili powder and cumin about halfway through the cooking process.
  6. Add the peppers and onions to the meat.
  7. Add the tomatoes, salt, and pepper.
  8. Simmer for 60 minutes, stirring often.
  9. Add the beans and water and continue cooking for an additional 30 minutes.
  10. Skim off fat.
  11. Serve with sour cream, chopped onions, shredded cheddar cheese and crackers.
Most Helpful

My family has been making this chili recipe since I was a small child more than 50 years ago. It's a recipe that stands up well. However, over the years, I've altered it a little. Here are my changes:

Instead of pinto beans, we use red beans. Red kidneys are okay but actually use red beans which are smaller and more tender.

Instead of parsley we use cilantro. When this recipe was first developed, cilantro was not commonly available in the US. Gives it a more authentic flavor.

Instead of canned whole tomatoes, use crushed tomatoes. makes the chili less watery.

Add chopped Chipotle peppers to give it a smoky, spicier flavor.

Now, we usually triple the recipe and don't add beans, and then freeze the chili in quart containers. Then when we thaw it out, we add the beans. Keeps them from losing their texture.

Hope you enjoy my suggestions.

jheath53 October 05, 2012

OMG! I just made this chili and this is my new favorite chili! I agree with the other reviewer about cooking the meat with the spices brings out a wonderful flavor! I cut the recipe roughly in half and made it all in one pot instead of the three and it still came out GREAT! I cooked the beef in the oil and butter and then added the spices halfway through the meat being done then added the peppers, onions, garlic and parsley. I let that cook until the green pepper and onion started softening and then I followed the rest of the recipe adding all the other stuff in. (Except for the beans that went in after simmering for an hour) I used canned pinto beans so there was no need to precook the beans in step one. I just threw the can in after the chili simmered for an hour. Came out EXCELLENT! Very easy! Thank you for sharing this recipe, James!! I finally have a chili recipe that I actually really like now!

Mary N. February 17, 2008

This recipe is so close to the one I had used for 30 years. Then the last 15 years I kept trying new recipes. So, last night I made this. The only difference was I added (1) small can of tomato sauce, and (1) small can of paste, like I use to. My husband said this is the best chili he has ever had, and I remembered how good the chili was I use to make. This made me wonder why I ever swayed away from it. Wonderful!!

jhmlhill February 11, 2014