Chili ala Sasquatch

"In the dense forests where Sasquatch roams, a legend is whispered among the trees—a tale of Sasquatch's secret chili recipe, passed down through generations of elusive forest dwellers. With his keen sense of smell and taste for hearty meals, Sasquatch discovered the perfect ingredients and flavors that became his signature chili. He blended a unique, smoky spice mix and added a pour of Black Box Merlot, transforming his chili into a culinary masterpiece. Now, Sasquatch shares his secret recipe with the forest—a chili that captures the essence of the wilderness, the joy of discovery, and the art of cooking."

Prep Time

15 min

Cook Time

1 hour 30 min

Paired With

Main Protein



Ground beef 1 to 1 1/2 lbs, 1 cup, 4 each, 2 cans (540ml/19oz), 3 tablespoons, 1 can (28oz), 1-2 tablespoons (depending on spice preference), 1 tablespoon, 1 teaspoon, 1/2 teaspoon, 1/2 teaspoon, 1/2 cup, 1 tablespoon, 1 tablespoon, 1 tablespoon, to taste, to taste, 1 cup, 2 tablespoons, 1 tablespoon, 1 teaspoon
Medium onion, diced
Garlic cloves, minced
Canned red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
Tomato paste
Canned crushed fire roasted tomatoes
Chili powder
Cumin seed, ground
Dried oregano
Chipotle chili powder
Smoked paprika powder
Black Box Merlot
Molasses (or can substitute with brown sugar)
Olive oil
Apple cider vinegar
kosher salt and black pepper
additional brown sugar and apple cider vinegar
Beef broth
Fish sauce
Regular soy sauce
Unsweetened cocoa powder


  1. Brown Ground Beef: Heat up a large pot. Season ground beef generously with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper. Add 1 tbsp of olive oil into a large pot. Ensure to coat the oil over the whole bottom of the pot.
    Add ground beef to the pot. The ground beef will start to release moisture. At the 5-7 minute mark, remove the ground beef juice and reserve it in a small mixing bowl. Continue to brown the ground beef until they are slightly crisped and browned (additional 5-7 minutes). Taste and adjust the seasoning with more kosher salt and ground black pepper.

  2. Mix Beef Stock Mixture: While the ground beef is browning, mix 1 cup of beef broth, 2 tbsp fish sauce, 1 tbsp regular soy sauce, and 1 tsp unsweetened cocoa powder in a bowl or measuring cup.

  3. Sauté Onion, Garlic and Spices: Add diced onions, minced garlic, 1 tbsp ground cumin seed, 1-2 tbsp chili powder (depending on your spice preference), 1 tsp dried oregano, 1/2 tsp of chipotle chili powder, and 1/2 tsp of smoked paprika. Sauté for about 5 minutes until the spices start to release their fragrance. Stir frequently.

  4. Deglaze: Pour in half of the Beef Stock Mixture to fully deglaze the bottom of the pot by scrubbing all the flavorful brown bits with a wooden spoon. Mix the brown bits with the stock mixture.

  5. Cook Chili: Add in the reserved beef juice (from Step 1). Pour in the remaining Beef Stock Mixture. Add 2 cans of drained red kidney beans. Mix well. Add 3 tbsp tomato paste, 1 can of crushed fire roasted tomatoes with all the juice on top, and 1/2 cup of Black Box Merlot. Mix well and bring to a boil.

  6. Reduce: Reduce heat to mid-low and continue to simmer for 10-15 additional minutes, uncovered. If you prefer a thicker chili, stir and continue to cook for another few minutes. If the chili becomes too thick, add a little water or beef broth to reach your preferred consistency.

  7. Season: Season with 1 tbsp of apple cider vinegar and 1 tbsp of molasses (or brown sugar). Taste and season with additional kosher salt, black pepper, apple cider vinegar, or brown sugar.

  8. Serve: Garnish chili with optional garnishes (such as lime, sour cream, sliced jalapeno peppers, green onions, cheddar cheese, cilantro) and serve with your favorite side dishes.

Wine Pairing: Black Box Merlot, with its hints of plum and black cherry, complements this smoky chili by balancing its bold and spicy flavors. The wine’s harmony of spice elements resonates with the smoky spices and savory components of the chili, while its soft tannins and supple acidity cleanse the palate between bites. The Merlot’s medium-bodied nature enhances the texture of the chili, making each bite more enjoyable! For this smoky chili, try serving the Merlot slightly chilled to enhance its refreshing qualities and offer a cool contrast to the warm and spicy flavors. Enjoy!