Chilli Beef

Anybody who likes spice and beef will live this recipe. Consisting of succulent beef flavoured with plenty of spices, chilli and slowly cooked in beer is a recipe made in heaven. For those who don't like too much heat, you can vary the type of chillies used to your own taste, making it hotter or milder (with a little experimenting you make this recipe your own ‘signature’ dish.

As with all spicy dishes, this dish is best prepared a day or two in advance to allow the flavours to develop, as the difference in taste is quite remarkable.

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Beef, coated with the Spice Rub
Cooking the Chilli Beef
Chilli Beef, ready to eat.

Portions: 4 Portions

Preparation: 10 minutes plus at least 1 hour marinating

Cooking: 3 to 4 hours



  • 800g stewing beef, cut into 2-3cm cubes

Spice Rub

  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp ground garlic
  • 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ground ginger

To Cook

  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 3 medium red chillies, stems removed
  • 5 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 1 large dried ancho chilli lightly toasted in frying pan, soaked in 100ml boiling water for 15 minutes and pureed with water
  • 100g of tinned chipotle in adobo sauce
  • 500ml beer, pale ale or lager

To Serve

  • Corn tortillas or wholemeal burritos
  • Guacamole
  • Tomato and cucumber salsa
  • Shredded iceberg lettuce
  • Refried beans
  • Sour cream or creme fraiche
  • Chilli sauce


Spice Rub

  1. Place all the spice rub ingredients in a bowl and mix together well. Place the meat in the bowl and rub the spice into the meat well so it is all coated. Leave at least 1 hour for the spices to penetrate the meat.

To Cook

  1. Preheat an oven to 150C. Heat the oil in a large ovenproof saucepan or casserole pan over a moderate heat. Place the whole red chillies and garlic into the pan and fry for 2-3 minutes (careful not to burn).
  2. Increase the heat to a moderate high heat and add the meat to the pan fry for 5 minutes, stirring with a wooden spoon until all the sides are browned.
  3. Stir in the ancho chilli puree, chipotle with sauce and beer. Bring to the boil, cover and transfer to preheated oven. Leave to cook for 2-3 hours until meat is tender and falls apart.
  4. Remove from the oven and place over moderate high-heat and reduce the cooking liquid right down so that you are left with moist shredded meat (you will need to stir regularly so the meat doesn’t burn.) Serve with your choice of accompaniments or place covered in refrigerator and leave for 1-2 days for flavours to develop. Reheat to serve.