Green Chili


What defines a “family” recipe? Must it be hand-written? Do clippings and articles count? Are modifications from cookbooks legitimate? What if the original author is someone nobody in the family has ever met? What if a family member has collected the recipe, but no family member has ever actually served it?

I use a simple rule: if it’s in the box of family recipes, it’s a family recipe.

Today’s chili recipe was originally contributed to the “Melba’s Swap Shop” column of the Daily Oklahoman by Naveda Ely, of Medford, OK. We are not related, but I am deeply appreciative of the author’s choice to send this recipe in to the newspaper; it makes a wonderful addition to the family collection. :) It is simple to make, and requires no exotic ingredients. The flavor balance is excellent: green chiles add a smoky flavor, which compliments the jalapeños’ heat.  As with all chilis and stews, the longer one cooks this recipe, the more delicious it will become. I simmered my batch for 2 or 3 hours, adding liquid as necessary.

I recommend following Naveda’s original serving suggestion; serve the chili over pinto beans with grated cheese and chopped onions. It will warm you right down to your toes.


  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 beef bouillon cubes, dissolved in 1 cup of boiling water
  • 1 (4-ounce) can chopped green chiles
  • 2 jalapeño peppers, finely chopped (remove the seeds if a milder flavor is desired)



In a large skillet, brown the ground beef over medium heat.

Add the salt, garlic powder, black pepper, and Worcestershire sauce, and stir well.


Sprinkle the flour over the meat mixture, and blend well.


Add the dissolved bouillon, and stir.


Add the green chiles, jalapeños, and 1 1/2 cups of water.

Reduce the heat, and simmer for at least 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Serve over pinto beans with grated cheese and chopped onion.


Serves 4.

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