Texas Recipes

Chef Eddie Jackson’s Smoky Texas Chili
with Cheddar Jalapeño Dumplings

This chili is absolutely divine. It's rather labor-intensive, but the result is well worth the effort.

Chef Eddie Jackson's Smoky Texas Chili

Yield: 16 servings


Smoked Chuck Roast

  • 4 pounds beef chuck roast, smoked, cut into 1 inch cubes
  • Salt and pepper


  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 large yellow onion, diced
  • 1 red bell pepper, coarsely chopped
  • 1/4 cup dark chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 tablespoon cumin
  • 1 tablespoon fine black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 2 roasted poblanos, coarsely chopped
  • 1 quart (4 cups) beef stock
  • 1 (28 ounce) can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 teaspoon Mexican oregano
  • 1 teaspoon beef base
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • Kosher salt to taste (optional)

Cheddar Jalapeño Dumplings

  • 1 cup cornmeal
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup honey or 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
  • 1 small jalapeño, finely diced


Smoked Chuck Roast

  1. Add wood chunks, chips, pellets or charcoal to smoker according to manufacturer’s instructions. Preheat to 250 degrees F.
  2. Season trimmed chuck roast generously with salt and pepper.
  3. Place chuck roast on rack in smoker according to manufacturer’s instructions. Set timer for 8 hours.
  4. After 4 hours, or when the roast reaches an internal temperature of 180 degrees F, wrap with unwaxed butcher paper and place back on smoker.
  5. After 4 more hours, or when the roast reaches 208 to 210 degrees F internal temperature, remove roast from smoker.
  6. Let rest in the butcher paper for at least 1 hour.
  7. Slice the roast into cubes right before adding to the chili.


  1. In a Dutch oven, heat vegetable oil over medium-high heat. Add diced onion and sprinkle with salt, if desired. Saute until onions are translucent, about 5 minutes.
  2. Add the red peppers and saute for 2 minutes.
  3. Add chili powder, paprika, cumin, black pepper, and garlic powder stirring frequently for about a minute allowing the spices to bloom, but not burn.
  4. Add the cubed smoked chuck roast and poblano peppers. Once all ingredients are coated with spices, stir in beef stock and tomatoes to the pot, deglazing the bottom.
  5. Add oregano, beef base, and Worcestershire sauce to the pot. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  6. Bring chili to a boil then turn stove to low heat and simmer covered for 40 minutes, stirring occasionally.Meanwhile, make Cheddar Jalapeño Dumplings.

Cheddar Jalapeño Dumplings

  1. Mix together cornmeal, flour, baking powder, salt, and sugar for Cheddar Jalapeño Dumplings.
  2. Add eggs folding gently to combine. Then stir buttermilk into the mixture until combined.
  3. Fold in cheese and jalapeños, being sure not to over mix the batter.
  4. Place 1 to 2 ounce dollops of dumpling batter into the chili. Continue to simmer chili, covered, for 20 minutes or until dumplings are firm, but fluffy.
  5. Serve chili in bowls garnished with shredded cheese, sliced scallions, cilantro leaves and a dollop of sour cream, as desired.


Recipe and photo used with permission from: Texas Beef Team
Recipe courtesy of: Chef Eddie Jackson, www.fitchefeddie.com

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