Soups Tex-Mex

Chile verde con carne (beef green chili)

Chile verde con carne (beef green chili) | Homesick Texan

Like most people, I grew up eating food cooked in a slow cooker. Whether it was an easy way to have dinner on the table after a long day of work, or a place to park your queso during a party, slow cookers were a large part of my life in Texas. Yet for some reason I never bought my own. I’m not quite sure why though I think it’s probably a space issue more than anything. My kitchen is small and as it is now, my stand mixer lives on my desk. Whenever I thought about getting a slow cooker I wondered where it would go.

Then a bunch of friends started reading a popular book about tidying up and only keeping objects that bring you joy, and I opened my hall closet and realized it was filled with empty shoe boxes and other silly things that would make room for a slow cooker if I threw them away. So I did.

The next morning, I went to the cookware store and bought my slow cooker. As I was checking out in line the cashier asked me what was the first thing I was going to make and I told her I had no idea. She suggested chili. “It’s perfect this time of year.”

Chile verde con carne (Beef green chili) | Homesick Texan

Indeed, a few weeks ago I’d made a chile verde con carne (beef green chili) on the stove, which I’d loved and had been eager to make again. And fortunately at home I had all the ingredients to make this green chili, and so began the process of adapting my stovetop recipe for the slow cooker instead.

First I roasted my green chiles, a mix of Anaheims, poblanos, and jalapeños, then peeled and chopped them. Meanwhile, I browned my meat along with my aromatics. Then, because I was trying out my new slow cooker, instead of cooking everything on the stove in a big pot, I just threw my ingredients into the slow cooker, put on the lid, and walked away, confident that a little over four hours later, I’d have an excellent meal.

As the chili simmered, I decided to read the instruction manual and it suggested adding fresh herbs at then end of cooking for more flavor. I had used up all my cilantro and as I’m one of those who loves it, I realized I would need more. Ordinarily, this wouldn’t be a big deal, but a huge storm was supposed to hit New York the following evening and people were panicked. When I walked into the grocery store, the lines to check out circled the perimeter and the shelves were bare. I’d never seen it so crowded, not even before Thanksgiving.

Chile verde con carne (beef green chili) | Homesick Texan

I thought about just walking away but sometimes I’m stubborn and knew that I’d never be happy with the beef green chili unless I made it the way I wanted to make it. So I grabbed a bunch of cilantro (despite the bare shelves there was still plenty of my favorite herb, though this being New York there was no kale) and went to pay. As I was looking for the end of the line, someone grabbed my arm and said, “Are you only getting one thing? You can pay over here.” There was a shorter line in the coffee department and while I still had to wait it in for 30 minutes, it wasn’t so bad. And I had my cilantro.

Well, I shouldn’t have worried as the green beef chili turned out excellent. How could you not enjoy tender beef swimming in a tangy sauce bright with green chiles and tomatillos? A dollop of sour cream, some tortillas chips, and warm flour tortillas make this a satisfying meal. I was very pleased with my first foray into slow-cooker cooking, and look forward to doing it again soon.

Chile verde con carne | Homesick Texan

Like all new things, there is a learning process for me and I’m still getting used to cooking with it. But no matter, now that I’m no longer one of the only people in America that doesn’t own a slow cooker, I look forward to more experiments. And if they all turn out as good as this beef green chili, then I look forward to sharing them with you!

Chile verde con carne (beef green chili) | Homesick Texan
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Chile verde con carne (beef green chili)

Servings 8
Author Lisa Fain

Ingredients

  • 1 pound about 7 Anaheim or Hatch chiles
  • 1/2 pound about 3 poblano chiles
  • 2 jalapeño chiles
  • 3 pounds chuck roast, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon bacon grease or vegetable oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 cups chicken broth (3 cups if using a slow cooker)
  • 1/2 pound fresh tomatillos, husks removed and cut in half
  • 1 cup chopped cilantro
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 2 tablespoons masa harina
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice
  • Sour cream, for serving
  • Cilantro, for serving
  • Warm tortillas, for serving
  • Tortilla chips, for serving

Instructions

  1. Roast the Anaheim, poblano, and jalapeños chiles under the broiler until blackened, about 5 minutes per side. Place the chiles in a paper sack or plastic food-storage bag, close it tight and let the chiles steam for 20 minutes. When done, take the chiles out of the bag and gently rub off the skin of each chile. Remove the stems and seeds, and then dice.


  2. Meanwhile, sprinkle the beef with the salt and pepper. Heat the bacon grease or oil on medium-low in a large heavy pot, such as a Dutch oven, and then working in batches brown the beef on all sides. This should take about 5-7 minutes per batch. If using a slow cooker, after the beef has browned, remove it from the pot and place in the slow cooker. If using the Dutch oven, place the browned beef into a large mixing bowl.


  3. Once the beef has been browned, leaving the heat on medium-low, add the onions to the pot and cook until translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for another 30 seconds.


  4. If using the large pot to cook the beef green chili, pour into the pot the chicken broth, and then scrap the bottom of the pot to incorporate all the cooked bits into the broth. Add the chopped chiles, the cooked beef, the tomatillos, half of the chopped cilantro, cumin, oregano, and allspice to the pot.


  5. Bring to a boil and then turn the heat down to low and simmer uncovered for 3 hours or until the beef is fork tender. At this time, add the remaining cilantro and then taste and adjust seasonings. Mix the masa harina with 1/4 cup of water and then stir into the pot until well combined. Continue to cook for 30 more minutes and then add the lime juice. Serve warm with sour cream, cilantro, warm tortillas and/or tortilla chips.


  6. If using a slow cooker, transfer the onions and garlic from the pot into the slow cooker. Leaving on the heat, pour into the Dutch oven the chicken broth, and then scrape the bottom of the pot to incorporate all the cooked bits into the broth. Pour the broth into the slow cooker and add the chopped chiles, the tomatillos, half of the chopped cilantro, cumin, oregano, and allspice. Cover the slow cooker and cook on high for 4 hours or low for 6.


  7. After it’s cooked on high for 4 hours or low for 6, remove the lid from the slow cooker and stir in the remaining cilantro. Taste and adjust seasonings. Mix the masa harina with 2 tablespoons of water and then stir into the pot until well combined. Continue to cook 30 more minutes uncovered and then stir in the lime juice. Serve warm with sour cream, cilantro, warm tortillas and/or tortilla chips.


  1. Anonymous

    cloves of garspanc?

  2. Anon–Garlic! Fixed and thanks for noticing.

  3. Lisa, I look forward to cooking this on Saturday. One question – is spanme code for lime? LOL

  4. Sandy–Ha! Yes. I'm still trying to get the hang of making my posts printer friendly and apparently my find-and-replace method is causing some errors. Thank you for letting me know!

  5. Anonymous

    At what point do you add the roasted chilies to the chile?
    Are you cutting back on the liquids when you cook in the slow cooker (because all moisture is retained, none evaporates when cooking, when you use he slow-cooker)?

  6. Anon–Thank you for your questions! The chiles get added with the rest of the ingredients. And yes, I did cut back on the chicken broth to make up for the slow cooker being covered and not reducing as much.

  7. Anonymous

    Will this recipe freeze well?
    PS. I love my slow cooker that is also a rice cooker and steamer. It helps to save space under the counter and has a lovely locking handle that makes transportation easy.

  8. Anon–Yes, this recipe will freeze very well.

  9. Looks like another winner Lisa. I'm going to try it with pork since the price of beef is so outrageous. And i would stand in line a 1/2 hour anytime for cilantro, i love the stuff 🙂

  10. BBQChick–It would be great with pork, too!

  11. Looks delicious! I'm so glad you found room for a slow cooker. They make life easier on busy days for sure. I use it for pulled pork, and I have a friend who makes awesome black beans with it. I can't wait to see what else you make!

  12. Celeste–Pork and black beans are definitely on my list. While I was sleeping one night, I made a batch of pinto beans and they turned out almost perfect.

  13. Anonymous

    It sounds as strange as strange can be, but I am quite happy with chili and roasted meats made in the slow cooker without browning the beef pieces prior. Just dump everything in and walk away! Have even found that the spice and herbs don't seem to deteriorate as much in the slow cooker as they do on a stove top, often no need to adjust at the end of cooking.

    Enjoy playing with your new toy, Lisa! Other than needing a bit less liquid, and discovering the simplicity, with consistently good results, of not needing to brown meats, we do basically the same thing in the slow cooker that we do in any Dutch oven, plus a few additional goodies.

    Oh, and we generally start everything on "High" until it's boiling, then reduce the heat. And, on the new ones "Low" is not what it used to be. After a long cook, we often reduce to "Warm," which seems to be the new "Low," for the last hour or so. It all depends upon the amount of bubbling. Sometimes that "Low" is too close to a boil for us, so we reduce it.

    Pete

  14. Pete–Thank you for the tips! I'll try not browning next time I make a meat dish and see what happens. Also, I'd read a lot about new slow cookers cooking too hot so I think I'll have use warm instead of low and see how that works.

  15. Hi Lisa-
    Which slow cooker did you buy? I'm in the market for a new one. Also, I recently got a pressure cooker & I love it. Do you use them?
    Lisa

  16. Lisa–I ended up getting this Crock Pot slow cooker, as America's Test Kitchen had used quite a few of them to test their recipes for their slow cooker book and had been pleased with it. I've never cooked with a slow cooker–that's next, I reckon!

  17. When I tried to pin this, I get no picture. Wonder why?

  18. I've been reading their reviews as well. A couple of years ago they suggested the All Clad one that has a stainless insert. Which means you can use it on the stove & then put it in the slow cooker. I love it but am thinking I don't need 2. So I'm going to get something less fancy. The pressure cooker is great for beans, a whole chicken, etc. Gives a great flavor…However I find that I need to season differently. When will you be in Texas again?
    Lisa

  19. Unknown–That's odd! Did you click the green "Share This" button? When I did, I see pictures. No matter, here's a direct link if you prefer: chlie verde con carne Pinterest pin.

  20. Lisa–I considered getting one with a browning insert, but I had concerns about the nonstick surface flaking. Also, I'm fine with browning in my skillets and then transferring everything. Some folks have been telling me that browning isn't even necessary! I'll be in Texas in two weeks! I'm speaking on a panel at Baylor.

  21. What's the name of the book about tidying up and only keeping things that bring you joy?

  22. Anonymous

    do think this recipe would work with chicken instead of beef?

  23. Hope this doesn't sound too crazy, but could you make this without the meat? Would any beans work or just make without the meat.

  24. Becky–If you did it with beans, I'd make it with cooked beans. You wouldn't want to cook uncooked beans in the chile verde because the acids would probably prevent them from softening.

  25. Anon–I haven't tried it with chicken so I'm not sure how it would turn out, but it might work. You may not want to cook it as long since chicken is more lean.

  26. Indeed, if you use Pork (sub Chicken is okay) and New Mexican Green Chile (Hatch, or other brand) you end up with a New Mexican classic dish. Using poblano is classic in Texas, Anaheims lean towards Southern California. Great recipe, even using all three pepper fruit, & choice of meat. Woohoo!

    • Poblano might be “classic” in Texas, but it’s a FAR inferior roasted chile compared with the green chiles grown in southern New Mexico Mesilla Valley. NM green chile is BY FAR the best green chile in the WORLD.

  27. Anonymous

    I used to make a similar recipe for years when I was a caterer in Dallas, only VATS of it !!!!!

  28. Making this today! Super Bowl Sunday Fare

  29. I had one years ago and gave it away when I moved thinking it probably wouldn't be as useful now that my kids are grown up. I have plenty of space and I think that it's time to get one again. I have a lot of great recipes from when my kids were younger and I used it all the time and now I have a great recipe for Green Chili!!

  30. Charlotte

    This is brilliant timing- I too just bought a wee slow cooker (who knew they made small ones?!). I shall be trying everything you post.

  31. We're eating this right now. It's unbelievably delicious. Unbelievably.

  32. Making this for a second time! Gosh, it's soooo good! I like to make it the day before and let it cool. Then I scrape the top layer of hardened fat off before reheating and serving. Delicious!!

  33. Anonymous

    Just finished making this for a cool Sunday evening meal. Absolutely fabulous !

  34. Tex-Mex is my all time favorite and fortunately being a native Texan in Texas I know good Tex-Mex. I made a few changes. First I used cubed sirloin, I used a pound each of pablano, jalapeño, Anaheim and tomatillos. I used beef stock instead of chicken, a whole bulb of pressed garlic and finally a white onion. I only use white onions in my Tex-Mex. This was the bomb. I like my chilli thick and this would be great as a burrito with Mexican sour cream and Monterrey pepper jack cheese

  35. Is there a way to make the chile verde sauce ahead of time and then just throw it over the browned beef when you put it in the crock pot?

  36. Duchess–Sure! You can make it ahead and keep it refrigerated for a couple of days.

  37. Does it make sense to run the verde sauce through a food processor after roasting and stewing?

  38. Duchess–You could but it's not necessary since it all comes together as it cooks.

  39. I was just curious, is this meant to be a pretty spicy dish? I made this, it turned out absolutely amazing but very spicy. And I really like spicy stuff. But it was definitely too spicy for the fam. If I made this again with no jalapeños would it still be hot?

  40. Matt–It would definitely be less hot without the jalapeños.

  41. This is just a perfect recipe. It is requested frequently. When our 3 daughters come to visit from out of State we have to cool it down for them. I do not roast the jalapeno but clean out the membrane and seeds and soak in 7-UP (not diet) from 45 min to a max of 2 hours. The longer you soak the milder they get. Don’t drink the 7-UP afterwards! Ha Ha

    Tallahassee, Fl

    • Lisa Fain

      Thank you for the kind words! And I have never heard of soaking chiles in 7-Up to tame the heat. I’m definitely going to try that but I’d be curious to see how the 7-Up tastes afterwords!

      • Trust me it is fine to drink if you are used to picking your own poison! ha ha But you can dip your pinkie in the 7-UP for a taste and you can see where the heat went.

  42. My mom makes something very similar. We eat it with a squeeze of lemon juice and tortillas. Refried beans and Mexican rice on the side. 🙂

  43. Duncan Campbell

    Hi Lisa,
    I make mine in a pressure cooker, 2 1/2# pork in 1″ cubes, 1 28oz can of whole Ortega green chiles 1″ dice and the same with 2 onions, some garlic and cumin with the remaining liquid from the canned chiles and 2 cups chicken broth.
    Cook under hi pressure for 45 minutes with a natural pressure release.

    Duncan

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