Leatherthroat Chili Con Carne Recipe

This Leatherthroat Chili Con Carne is an unusual recipe in that it gives you the option of using beer in the chile recipe or just drinking it!

Leatherthroat Chili Con Carne Recipe is from the book The Chili Lover’s Handbook, by Jack Arnold, published by Jack Arnold and Associates, 1977.   The original recipe is now copyrighted by his daughter, Donna Arnold Morella.   I have only slightly adapted the recipe wording to meet present day recipe standards only.

Jack says, “I have been a chili lover ever since boyhood.  I didn’t know then why I loved chili – I just did . . . Now that I know more about chili, I realize how lucky I was to get hooked on it early in life.”

Learn about the history and legends of Chili, Chili Con Carne.

Chili Con Carne in a cast iron pan

Leatherthroat Chili Con Carne Recipe:
Prep Time
30 mins
Cook Time
4 hrs
Total Time
4 hrs 30 mins
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: Southwest
Keyword: Leatherthroat Chili Con Carne Recipe
Servings: 8 to 10 servings
  • 1 pound small dried red kidney beans (optional pinto beans)
  • 5 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 cups onion, finely chopped
  • 3 pounds lean ground beef
  • 2 pounds lean round steak or flank steak, diced into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 4 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 1 (10.5-ounce) can condensed beef broth
  • 2 (15-ounce) cans tomato sauce 15 ounce tomato sauce
  • 1 (12-ounce) can tomato paste
  • 6 to 8 tablespoons chili powder
  • 2 tablespoons oregano
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 heaping teaspoon crushed red peppers
  • 1 teaspoon monosodium glutamate (Accent)
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1 heaping teaspoon black pepper
  • 8 ounces of beer (as thinner or to drink when needed)
  1. Soak washed kidney beans overnight in 1 1/2 quarts water with a pinch of salt.  Cook slowly next day, approximately 2 to 3 hours, until tender.  Add additional water if the beans cook down to much.

  2. Heat vegetable oil in a large pot or cast-iron Dutch oven, add onions and simmer approximately 30 minutes until golden.

  3. Add meat gradually, searing and turning constantly until meat starts to brown.  Add garlic, beef broth, tomato sauce and tomato paste; stir well until blended.  Slowly add chili powder and other seasonings' stir and mix very thoroughly.

  4. Cover and cook at low heat for approximately 3 to 4 hours.  Add cooked beans, stir well and let cool. "Age" for 12 hours - then reheat and serve.  Freezes remarkably.

  5. Variations:  When serving add tablespoonful of finely chopped raw onions or tablespoonful grated Monterey Jack Cheese to each bowl, or both.

  6. Yields about 1 gallon.

  7. Serves 8 to 10.

Comments and Reviews

One Response to “Leatherthroat Chili Con Carne Recipe”

  1. Kim Quinn

    My dad found this recipe in the Springfield, MA Republican newspaper in the 70’s. The only real difference he made was to make a larger batch (he had a 16 quart kettle I have inherited) and he used 5 lbs of good ground beef and a 5 lb boneless chuck Potro a st that he cut in to cubes himself..

    We LOVE this recipe then, back in the day’ and time has proved it true. I am making it soon in the same much loved kettle. Thank you for keeping this recipe available! It holds many happy memories.


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