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+ servings

Sweater Vibes Chili

A warming spiced chili inspired by a cinnamon apple beer
Prep Time30 mins
Cook Time4 hrs
Total Time4 hrs 30 mins
Servings: 10 servings


  • 3 Sweater Vibes Apple Cinnamon English Ales see note
  • 3 dried chipotle chiles
  • 5 dried arbol chiles
  • 2 pounds ground beef 85% lean “chili grind” if available
  • 1/2 pound lamb shoulder trimmed and cut into 1 inch cubes
  • 1 onion diced
  • 2 poblano chilis diced
  • 6 cloves garlic minced
  • 28 oz can of diced tomato
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon berbere spice see note
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 1/2 teaspoon coriander
  • 1/4 teaspoon clove
  • 1/4 teaspoon allspice
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablesppons brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons worcestershire sauce
  • 14 ounce can small pink beans drained and rinsed
  • Sour cream cilantro, and scallions for garnish


  • Pour the beer into a sauce pan over medium heat. Break up the chipotle and arbol chiles with your hands into smaller pieces, removing most of the seeds and stem. Put a small frying pan over high heat and add the chiles. Cook for a minute or two until fragrant. Pour this mixture into the beer. Bring to a simmer and cook for 2 minutes, then cover and remove from heat. Allow to sit for a half hour.
  • Put a large pot over high heat, or set a slow cooker to “saute” mode. Season the beef and lamb well with salt and pepper. In batches, brown the beef and lamb on all sides. Make sure you do this in smaller batches, not crowding the pan, to make sure to get some good browning. As each batch is done, remove to a large bowl, leaving the fat in the pot.
  • Add the onions and poblanos to the pot with the fat when the meat is done. Season with salt and pepper. Cook for about 7-8 minutes until softened and slightly brown on the edges. Add in the garlic and cook another 2 minutes, stirring often.
  • Add in the tomato, chili powder, berbere, cumin, paprika, oregano, bay leaves, coriander, clove, allspice, vinegar, sugar, and worcestershire. Stir to combine. Season with salt and pepper.
  • Use a blender or hand blender to blend the beer-chile mixture until fairly smooth with no large pieces. Pour this mixture into the pot with everything else.
  • Cover and cook at a light simmer for about 4 hours until the lamb is falling apart. Add in the beans and cook another half hour.
  • Taste, and adjust seasonings to your personal taste. I added a pinch of allspice, oregano, and a little more vinegar and salt at this point.
  • Serve with sour cream, cilantro, and scallions.


Note 1: If you can't get sweater Vibes in your area, you could substitute with another apple ale, and add a teaspoon of cinnamon to the spice blend.
Note 2: Berbere spice is an Ethiopian spice blend available now at many stores or online. I strongly suggest adding some to your spice cabinet!