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Meat For Chili

I would like to make some chili for a tailgate party this weekend, but I don't have the time, nor the space to throw on a brisket to cook today or tomorrow (good excuse for another BGE?).

So I was thinking of using some different meat instead.  When I make chili for the wife and kids, I just use some ground beef, but I want the chunks of meat for this Saturday.  Thought of using chuck roast, but that's pretty fatty and I wasn't sure if it'd work out all that well.

I did a search for chili on the forum and it seems that everything that turns up for chili is brisket chili - which I completely agree with - but I just don't have the time to do one right now.

Any suggestions?
Large BGE

Neenah, WI


  • SoCalTimSoCalTim Posts: 2,158
    edited November 2015
    Bush's Baked beans ... pulled pork, add veggies onions etc ...   Try this!
    I've slow smoked and eaten so much pork, I'm legally recognized as being part swine - Chatsworth Ca.
  • GRE1GRE1 Posts: 68
    Many of the past World Championship Chili recipes incorporated Tri-tip
    XL times 2
  • RRPRRP Posts: 22,700
    I'm in the ground meat camp, not the cubed camp. I prefer grinding my own using chuck because of the fat it adds to the chili. For 2# of ground chuck I also add a half cup of bacon grease! Fat is your friend in chili!!!
    L, M, S &  Mini
    Re-gasketing America one yard at a time

    Dunlap, IL
  • ryanttryantt Posts: 1,663
    We like using stew meat in our chili, it's a nice meaty bite.  The other option in our house is pulled pork like SoCalTim said.  
    XL BGE, KJ classic, Joe Jr, UDS x2
    Massillon Ohio 
    Check out Chef Norah Grace on Instagram @the_buckeye_bbq
  • nolaeggheadnolaegghead Posts: 29,743
    braise a chuck roast in a dutch oven until it's tender then chop it up with a knife.
    This is my signature line just so you're not confused.  Love me or hate me, I am forum Marmite.
    Large and Medium BGE, Kamado Joe Jr, Akorn Jr, smoker with a 5k btu AC, gas grill, fire pit, pack of angry cats, two turntables and a microphone, my friend.  Registered republican.
    New Orleans, LA - we know how to eat 

  • Carolina QCarolina Q Posts: 13,686
    I often use 3/8" cubed eye round. Not fatty at all, which is good. I don't want fat.

    I hate it when I go to the kitchen for food and all I find are ingredients!


    Central Connecticut 

  • TFolsTFols Posts: 241
    I like to use coarse ground chuck.
    Bloomfield, NJ
  • NPHuskerFLNPHuskerFL Posts: 17,378
    edited November 2015
    Leftover brisket :wink: 
    Chuck works well. 
    LBGE 2013 & MM 2014
    Flying Low & Slow in "Da Burg" FL
  • jabamjabam Posts: 1,829
    I tend to go overboard with the amount of steaks I cook at one time. So always have leftovers.   I have used everything from sirloin, rib-eye, New York to tenderloin steaks. Have also used chicken, turkey, and pork butt and I always throw in a link or two of linguica...seems to add a little extra flavor. 
    Central Valley CA     One large egg One chocolate lab "Halle" two chiuahuas "Skittles and PeeWee"
  • TheophanTheophan Posts: 2,340
    For me it depends on what kind of chili I'm making.  One of my old standby recipes reminds me of the chili I had as a kid in the '50s and '60s -- hardly recognizable as chili, these days, being very tomatoey, a few kidney beans, not really very much chili powder, but it's nostalgic and I love it and make it fairly often, and for that, it's ground chuck. 

    But for some other styles I get chuck roast and cut it up into small chunks with a knife.  I trim off most of the fat, figuring it wouldn't be so appetizing when it's in larger chunks.  I really like it that way.
  • MoscaMosca Posts: 452
    I use cubed chuck roast. Flour the cubes and sear in oil in a cast iron Dutch oven.

  • northGAcocknorthGAcock Posts: 12,200
    A buddy of mine makes a chili out of pork but, garlic water, peppers, tomatillo  & tomato sauce. I am surprised at the tenderness of the cubes with a relatively short cook time. Try the pork....its the other white meat 
    Columbia, South Carolina with a Medium, MiniMax & a 17" Blackstone

    “Constantly choosing the lesser of two evils is still choosing evil.”
  • fishlessmanfishlessman Posts: 24,371
    if you have a grinder, chuck and a 3/8 or 1/2 inch grind plate works nice, supermarket grind is too fine. i go half ground and cut stew meat into smaller chunks
  • SoCalWJSSoCalWJS Posts: 400
    GRE1 said:
    Many of the past World Championship Chili recipes incorporated Tri-tip
    My wife and I went to a Chili competition in Vegas one time. We found the one we liked the best and spent a bit of time talking with the Cook. He said Tri tip was the way to go. Just buy the ones they cut into "Tri tip steaks", trim off the outer fat, cut it up to your preferred size, and incorporate it into your favorite recipe. 
    Haven't tried it myself, but may this Winter.
    South SLO County
  • StoogieStoogie Posts: 152
    GRE1 said:
    Many of the past World Championship Chili recipes incorporated Tri-tip
    You have excellent timing.  I made this post and then had to go to the grocery store to pick up some tri-tip roasts for dinner tonight.  I checked my phone to see if there were any replies, saw yours, so I bought some extra.
    Large BGE

    Neenah, WI
  • StoogieStoogie Posts: 152
    Thanks for all the comments and ideas!  I guess that I get in to that "brisket chili" mode and can't really think outside the box of that deliciousness.

    @nolaegghead - perfect example ... doing that to a chuck roast will be the next thing I do for chili meat

    Large BGE

    Neenah, WI
  • I like the comments about using Tri-tip. Might try that myself. My wife loves prime rib so I will cook a few throughout the year using oak. I had always done this with my Weber. Being new to the egg, I'm looking forward to egging my first prime rib in the upcoming weeks. Anyway, we only eat our prime rib medium rare and I'm usually looking for things to do with the end pieces and meat from in between the ribs. Started using it in chili a few years ago. I highly recommend it. Of course, I'm not going to cook prime rib just to make chili. The chili is just a way to use all the roast without waste. That's why I like the tri-tip suggestion.

    XL BGE, 2 22" Weber Kettles, Weber Performer, Weber Genesis

    Bradenton, FL
  • buzd504buzd504 Posts: 2,782
    Save the end pieces for me.
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