Lamb Chili

Photo by: Joseph De Leo

by Whole Foods Market

over 2 years ago

Enjoy tender lamb slowly simmered along with a variety of chile peppers and spices in this not so common chili version. Interestingly, lamb meat in chili dates back to the 1880's versions cooked by some of the San Antonio Chili Queens. Try substituting dark Mexican beer for the chicken stock, adding it once you've cooked all the spices in the pepper mixture. Let it reduce for a few minutes and continue with the recipe.

Recipe Variation: To add a smoky depth of flavor, you can roast the Poblano or Anaheim pepper before adding. Using tongs, hold the pepper over a high heat gas flame, charring all over for about five minutes. You want the pepper skin to have a very dark color on all sides. When done, place in an airtight container and let stand to "sweat" for about 5 minutes. Using plastic gloves to protect your fingers, rub the skin off and discard. Open the pepper and remove veins and seeds and discard the top or stem. Chop and add to recipe along with the jalapeno pepper.

Serves 6-8

  • 2 pounds lamb stew meat, cut into chunks
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 tablespoon expeller-pressed canola oil
  • 1 green bell pepper, cored, seeded and chopped
  • 1 Poblano or Anaheim pepper, seeded and chopped (optional)
  • 1 red bell pepper, cored, seeded and chopped
  • 1/2 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon ancho chile powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 [14.5 oz.] can crushed fire roasted tomatoes
  • 1 [7 oz.] can chipotle sauce OR 2 Tbs. adobo sauce from a can of chipotles in adobo
  • 1 dried bay leaf
  • 1 [15 oz.] can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 [15 oz.] can red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1/3 bunch green onions, green parts only, thinly sliced
  • 3 tablespoons chopped cilantro
  1. In a large bowl, season lamb with salt and pepper. In a large pot, heat oil over medium heat. Working in batches, add lamb and cook about 2 minutes per side, until golden brown. Transfer lamb to a large plate as done. Discard excess fat leaving only about 1 tablespoon in the pot.
  2. Bring back to medium heat, add green bell peppers, Poblano or Anaheim pepper (if using), red bell peppers, and onions and cook over medium heat for about 5 minutes, scraping bottom from time to time to get all the browned bits of meat folded in with the vegetables. Add jalapeño and cook for another 3 minutes, stirring from time to time. Add garlic, cook for 1 minute more, and add chile powder, oregano, coriander, cumin, salt and pepper. Let spices cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minute.
  3. Return lamb to pot. Stir in broth, Worcestershire, sugar, tomatoes, chipotle sauce, and bay leaf and raise heat and bring to a boil. Once boiling, taste sauce and adjust seasonings. Lower to a slow simmer, cover and cook for about 30 minutes. Check on the consistency of the sauce and add water 1/2 cup at a time to reach desired thickness. Add beans and continue simmering, covered, for another 10 minutes or until beans are warmed through.
  4. Ladle chili into bowls and garnish with green onions and chopped cilantro.

Nutrition Info:


  • 1551 calories
  • 109g total fat
  • 54g saturated fat
  • 117mg cholesterol
  • 676mg sodium
  • 102g carbohydrate (33g dietary fiber, 10g sugar)
  • 45g protein
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