Beef Chile Colorado

Prep Time 40 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours
Total Time 2 hours 40 minutes

Beef Chile Colorado is the most delicious no-bean, Mexican chili recipe. Tender chuck roast slow cooked in a red chili sauce with dried New Mexico chiles.

A cross between spicy Texas Chili and hearty Beef Stew, this Mexican comfort food makes a delicious fall Dinner Recipe. Easy Mexican beef stew with slow cooker instructions included!

Chile Beef Colorado in bowl with yellow rice


Beef Chile Colorado is a popular Mexican recipe with “colorado” meaning “colored red”.  One look at this rich beef chili recipe and you can see why! The thick and hearty chili sauce has a deep red color from New Mexico dried chiles that you rehydrate and puree for a medium spicy smoky heat.

This Beef Chile Colorado has a rich red chile sauce made with traditional Mexican seasonings like ground cumin, oregano, and coriander. For maximum flavor and color, this Colorado recipe uses a dried chile puree instead of dried chili powder. In a pinch, you could substitute ¼ cup dried ancho chile powder.

If you’ve never had Chile Colorado before, you may be wondering “how spicy is Chile Colorado”? This Chile Colorado recipe is fairly mild and family friendly, but others can be very spicy. It really comes down the dried chiles you use. Check out the variations below on how to select different spicy levels on dried chiles.

You can serve Beef Chile Colorado as a full meal with a side fo flour tortillas or Dinner Rolls. Or copy your favorite Mexican restaurant and serve with side of Mexican Rice and Refried Beans. Use leftover stew meat and chili sauce in these Beef Burritos or as tamales and tacos filling.

If you are looking for more comforting Mexican classics, check out our catalog of Mexican Recipes!


Chile Beef Colorado in pot


  • Meat: Instead of beef chuck roast, you can use cubed pork shoulder or beef stew meat. For a vegetarian Chile Colorado, substitute cubed Yukon potatoes for stew meat and vegetarian stock for the beef stock.
  • Chiles: Use other dried chiles in Chile Colorado to adjust the heat and flavor. Guajillo chiles are a milder dried chile, Ancho dried chiles range from mild to medium, and Chiles de Arbol are a very spicy dried chile.
  • Chili Add-Ins: While traditional Chile Colorado is a no bean, no tomato chili recipe, you can add tomato paste, canned diced tomatoes, or a can of beans. Rinse and drain the beans in a strainer before adding.
  • Enchilada Sauce: In a hurry? Instead rehydrating dried chiles, you can substitute this easy Enchilada Sauce that’s made in about 15 minutes. Add more chili powder for deeper Chili Colorado flavor and color.

Slow Cooker Beef Chile Colorado

  • Rehydrate the dried chiles on the stovetop as usual. Puree chilies with 1 cup water and strain any remaining skin.
  • Meanwhile, sear beef chuck roast (tossed in flour and seasoned) in a large skillet. Add to crock pot.
  • Sauté onions in skillet until translucent, add garlic and cook one minute longer.
  • Top beef with chiles puree, onions mixture, and remaining ingredients. Stir to combine.
  • Cover slow cooker with lid and cook on low 6-8 hours, or high 3-4 hours.

Instant Pot Beef Chile Colorado

    • Follow the instructions to rehydrate dried chiles. Puree and strain, set aside.
    • Turn Instant Pot on Sauté Function and add coat bottom with vegetable oil. Brown seasoned and floured beef on all sides, remove and set aside.
    • Add onions to Instant Pot and sauté until translucent. Add garlic and stir until fragrant. Stir in remaining seasonings. Turn off Instant Pot.
    • Return beef to the Instant Pot, top with red chile sauce and 1 cup beef stock. Stir and then cover with lid.
    • Seal valve and cook on High Pressure for 30 minutes. Use natural release for 10 minutes, then use quick release.
    • Remove lid when pressure is fully released, stir and serve.



  • Serve: You can keep Beef Chile Colorado at room temperature for up 2 hours. Cool completely before storing.
  • Store: Transfer cooled Chili Colorado to an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 4 days.
  • Freeze: Place Chile Colorado in a freezer safe sealed container and freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight and reheat Beef Chile Colorado on the stovetop to serve.

Chile Beef Colorado in bowl with yellow rice

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Beef Chile Colorado

Beef Chile Colorado is the most delicious no-bean, Mexican chili recipe. Tender chuck roast slow cooked in a red chili sauce with dried New Mexico chiles.
Yield 10
Prep Time 40 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours
Total Time 2 hours 40 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine Mexican
Author Sabrina Snyder


  • 9 New Mexico dry chiles , stems and seeds removed
  • 3 cups water , divided
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 4 pounds boneless beef chuck roast , cut into 2 inch cubes
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 2 teaspoons Kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse ground black pepper
  • 1 yellow onion , chopped
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon coriander
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne
  • 4 cloves garlic , minced
  • 1 cup beef stock


  • Add chiles and water to a large dutch oven on high heat and bring to a boil.
  • Turn off the heat and leave covered for 30 minutes.
  • Blend the chiles with 1 cup of the water until smooth.
  • Strain the mixture to make sure none of the skin is left in the mixture.
  • Add the sauce back to the pot with the rest of the water.
  • In a large skillet add the oil on high heat.
  • Toss the beef with the flour, salt and pepper.
  • Cook on all sides until well browned.
  • Add the beef to the pot with the chiles.
  • In the skillet add the onions and cook until translucent, about 4-5 minutes then add in the garlic and stir, cooking for another 1 minute.
  • Add in the oregano, cumin, coriander, cinnamon and cayenne and stir well to coat.
  • Cook the spices for 30 seconds then move the whole mixture into the pot along with the beef broth.
  • Bring to a boil on high heat.
  • Reduce to a simmer and cook, uncovered, for 2 hours or until the meat is completely fall apart tender and the sauce has cooked down and thickened.


Calories: 387kcal | Carbohydrates: 5g | Protein: 36g | Fat: 25g | Saturated Fat: 13g | Cholesterol: 125mg | Sodium: 665mg | Potassium: 680mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 184IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 45mg | Iron: 4mg

Beef Chile Colorado collage

About the Author: Sabrina Snyder

Sabrina is a professionally trained Private Chef of over 10 years with ServSafe Manager certification in food safety. She creates all the recipes here on Dinner, then Dessert, fueled in no small part by her love for bacon.

Sabrina Snyder is a professionally trained personal and private chef of over 10 years who is the creator and developer of all the recipes on Dinner, then Dessert.

She is also the author of the cookbook Dinner, then Dessert – Satisfying Meals Using Only 3, 5 or 7 Ingredients, published by Harper Collins.

She started Dinner, then Dessert as a business in her office as a lunch service for her coworkers who admired her lunches before going to culinary school and becoming a full time personal chef and private chef.

As a personal chef Sabrina would cook for families one day a week and cook their entire week of dinners. All grocery shopping, cooking and cleaning was done along with instructions on reheating. As a private chef she cooked for private parties and cooked in family homes in the evenings for families on a nightly basis after working as a personal chef during the day.

Sabrina has been certified as a ServSafe Manager since 2007 and was a longstanding member of the USPCA Personal Chef Association including being on the board of the Washington DC Chapter of Chefs in the US Personal Chef Association when they won Chapter of the year.

As a member of the community of food website creators Sabrina Snyder has spoken at many conferences regarding her experiences as a food writer including the Indulge Food Conference, Everything Food Conference, Haven Food Conference and IACP Annual Food Professionals Conference.

Sabrina lives with her family in sunny California.

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