Warm up with venison chili!

  • Recipe Type

    Red Meat

  • Skill Level


  • Grill Time

    1-2 hrs

  • Method


  • Servings

    Serves 4

As spring approaches, enjoy the last few weeks of cold and chilling weather by trying this venison chili. This bowl will comfort you with its tender venison meat, its delicious blend of spices and the perfect heat from the chiles. Make sure to use your leftover strong coffee (yes, we said coffee!) for this recipe as it will make the perfect match with the venison and give you a great earthy flavor.  

Video Recipe


  1. Save 1 cup of coffee from morning brew
  2. Set up the grill for indirect heat at 250 degrees.
  3. In a medium pot, add about 4 cups of water (or enough to cover chilis) and bring to a simmer, then add the dried chilis to rehydrate them. Let these simmer for 10 minutes or until the chilis are soft. Remove the chilis and cut off the stems and remove the seeds. Save the chili water for later use.
  4. In a food processor or blender, add 4 cloves of garlic and all of the rehydrated peppers to make a chili paste. Use the chili water to help everything blend. You want to make sure everything is blended very well so you don’t have any large pieces of pepper. Adding more pepper water or even some of the coffee will help it blend better.
  5. Place your ceramic dutch oven on the grill to preheat. Chop bacon into small 1 inch pieces and dice the onion. Add the bacon to the pot first to cook. Next, add the diced onion.
  6. Once the onion has cooked down a little, spoon the onion and bacon to the edges, leaving a small hole in the middle for the spices.  Add the paprika, cumin, coriander, a pinch of salt, chipotle powder (optional), and the pepper paste. Allow the spices to bloom for a few minutes, then stir them together with the bacon and onion.
  7. Add the ground venison and let it brown. You could brown the venison on the stove and bring it over, but we like doing it in the same pot with the spices. We are not too worried about it completely cooking because it will simmer in the hot chili for 30 minutes.
  8. Once the meat has browned, drain any fat in the bowl before adding the next ingredient. Add the tomato paste, 1-quart beef broth, 1 cup of coffee, and 1 cup tomato puree and stir well.
  9. This is optional, but you can add some venison sausage on a grate over the chili to smoke it. Venison is not very greasy, so it should not drip too much fat into the chili. Add more beef broth if you need more liquid. Simmer at least 30 minutes. Skim off any fat on top of the chili using a spoon and serve hot.

Feel free to top it off with shredded cheddar cheese and sour cream, and serve it with sausages, corn chips or cornbread on the side. Last but not least, enjoy!


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