A flavorful and comforting chipotle-seasoned pork chili made with black beans, dark red kidney beans, sweet potatoes, and fall-apart tender pieces of pork shoulder. Perfect for the fall and winter season, this recipe will hold its ground in any chili cook off!
This recipe is sponsored by The National Pork Board. All opinions expressed here are my own.
Chili season is officially in full swing and I’ve been thoroughly enjoying cozying up to a bowl of this Chipotle Sweet Potato Pork Chili the last couple of days!
This is honestly the best chili I’ve ever made to date, and I’m super proud of it. I’ve never entered it into a chili cook off, but I bet if I did, it would easily win or at the very least be in the top three. That’s how good it is!
What makes it so good? The cut of meat used – pork shoulder – and the layers of flavor that are incorporated into each step of the cooking process.
Pork shoulder adds a ton of juicy and savory flavor to the chili that you simply can’t get from any other cut of meat. Each bite-sized piece of pork is fall-apart tender and adds that comforting and filling quality that is essential in a good chili.
When braised on the stove with chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, beans, fire-roasted tomatoes, sweet potatoes, and a combination of seasonings that include ancho chili powder, smoked paprika, red wine vinegar, ground cloves, cinnamon, and more, everything comes together to create a rich, thick, and comforting chili perfect for any occasion.
How to make The Best pork chili
First, cut the pork shoulder into small bite-sized chunks. Not only does this make the chili easy to eat, but it also helps everything cook faster!
Then season the meat really well with kosher salt, black pepper, and grainy coarse-ground mustard. Set it aside to tenderize and soak in those flavors while you get the other ingredients going.
Pork shoulder is often sold in large cuts, so if you have some leftover and aren’t sure what to do with it, I can help! Pork is super versatile and is used in many dishes all over the world including many Mexican and Mexican-inspired recipes. Here are a few recipes that would be perfect for any extra pork shoulder you may have:
And don’t forget to visit pork.org for more pork recipes and inspiration!
Next, cook the diced onions in a Dutch oven for about 10 minutes to build as much flavor as possible. This will get them caramelized and bring out that savory irresistible onion flavor everyone loves.
Add in some minced garlic and cook it for about 30 seconds until it’s super fragrant.
Next, you’ll add in the seasoned pork and cook it for another 10 minutes until it’s browned and no longer pink on the outside.
Next comes all the chili goodies! Add in a can of black beans, dark red kidney beans, fire-roasted diced tomatoes, 3 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, red wine vinegar, some fish sauce, and a combo of Mexican-inspired spices like ancho chili powder and ground cumin.
You’ll mix that all together, cover it, and cook it for an hour and a half over low heat until the pork is tender and cooked through.
The final step is adding in some diced sweet potatoes and a poblano pepper. That will cook for 30 more minutes until the sweet potatoes are tender and that’s it!
The result is a rich and luxurious pork chili that’s thickened by the cooked beans and sweet potatoes. It’s the perfect amount of spice that can easily be tamed if you mix in a bit of sour cream.
This chili is the best family meal. It’s super filling, takes less than 3 hours to make (which is amazing for a good chili), and makes great leftovers to eat throughout the week!
I love eating it with some tortilla chips on the side, but you can also do cornbread or corn chips!
STORING AND REHEATING
One of my favorite things about chili is that it stores, freezes, and reheats beautifully!
To store, transfer the chili to an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 1 week.
To freeze, transfer cooled chili to a freezer-safe storage bag and secure. Lay the chili flat in the freezer to save some space and freeze for up to 6 months!
To reheat, place the chili in a pot on the stovetop over medium-high heat and reheat until fully warmed through. Alternatively, you can reheat it in the microwave until hot. The chili may get a little thicker as it sits in the fridge, so feel free to add in a little broth to thin it out.
For the chili
- 3 1/2 pounds boneless pork shoulder, diced into bite-sized chunks
- 2 tablespoons kosher salt, divided
- 1 tablespoon black pepper
- 2 teaspoons coarse-ground mustard
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 medium yellow onion
- 6 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 (14.5-ounce) can fire-roasted diced tomatoes
- 1 (15-ounce) can black beans (undrained)
- 1 (15-ounce) can dark red kidney beans (undrained)
- 3 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, diced
- 2 teaspoons red wine vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon fish sauce
- 1 tablespoon ancho chili powder
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/8 teaspoons ground cloves
- 1/8 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1 pinch ground allspice
- 2 medium sweet potatoes, diced
- 1 large poblano pepper, diced
- sour cream
- avocado slices
- tortilla chips
- In a large bowl, add the pork, 1 1/2 tablespoons of kosher salt, black pepper, and coarse-ground mustard. Stir together until the meat is fully coated. Set aside.
- Heat the olive oil in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add the onions and cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds until fragrant.
- Add the seasoned pork and cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally until the meat has browned.
- Add the fire-roasted diced tomatoes, canned black beans, canned dark red kidney beans, chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, fish sauce, the remaining 1/2 tablespoon of kosher salt, ancho chili powder, smoked paprika, ground cumin, ground cloves, ground cinnamon, and ground allspice. Stir together to combine.
- Raise the heat to high and bring to a simmer. Reduce the heat to low, cover, and cook for 1 1/2 hours.
- Stir and scrape up any bits that are stuck to the bottom of the Dutch oven.
- Add the sweet potatoes, poblanos, and stir to combine. Cover and cook for 30 more minutes.
- Serve in bowls topped with cilantro, sour cream, and avocado slices.