Amazing Colorado Style Green Chile (Chili) Recipe – Spicy!

Amazing Colorado Style Green Chile (Chili) Recipe – Spicy!

Colorado style green chile incorporates tomato’s and slow cooking to give this chile a rich hearty flavor that distinguishes it from other versions of green chile. To me, green chile is an art that should not be rushed. It is best slow cooked all day to allow the flavors to blend, or as my mother would say, marry. But if you don’t have time for a long slow cook, that’s ok, it’s still good even when made quickly.

Colorado style green chile can be made vegan, vegetarian or with meat (pork or chicken). I will show you how to make it vegetarian and write the modifications if you prefer it vegan or with meat (pork or chicken). All variations of Colorado style green chile taste great (or so I am told).

We love this green chile so much every fall we buy the chile’s in bulk, freeze them and use this recipe to make the chile in large batches. We then can the green chile and eat it all year (and give lots of it away). We use this green chile on just about everything — eggs, burrito’s, enchilada’s, nacho’s, burgers and as a stew. My personal favorite way to eat Colorado Style Green Chile as a stew. Because it’s can be very spicy depending on the chile, I load it up with cheese and sour cream to cool it off. I then, shamelessly, eat it with Frito Scoops. It’s not exactly low fat, but it’s soooo worth it!

Buying Chile’s

To start you have to choose your green chile’s. There are lots of options to choose from:

  1. Buying green chile’s road side and having them fire roasted on the spot (Seasonal)
    • This is my preferred method, but not an option for everyone
    • If you choose this method click here for link on how to safely clean the chile’s
  2. Frozen roasted green chile’s
    • This is a great option because it saves you time and energy from cleaning the chile’s
    • You can sometimes find these at specialized grocery stores or you can order green chile’s on line. When ordering on line you might have to purchase in a large quantity which can be expensive.
    • Depending on how much you like green chile this might or might not be the best option.
  3. Buying green chile’s at your grocery store and roasting them yourself (Seasonal)
    • This is the same preparation method you would follow for poblano peppers
    • You must blister the pepper and remove this skin or you won’t get a result
    • Here is a link on how to do this
  4. Buying green chile’s canned (Year around)
    • If you choose this method try to find a fire roasted canned chile.
    • The fire roasting adds a flavor that cannot be beat!
Green Chile’s being roasted.
Photo credit Tony’s Market.
Green chile shopping at Lulu’s road side stand.

Preparing to Make Colorado Style Green Chile

Green chile’s chopped and ready for sauté

Preparing to make the chile is pretty easy. In fact making the chile is very easy. All you need to do is prep a few ingredients, make some roux and give the chile flavors lots of time in large pot, dutch oven or crock-pot to marry.

I cook this either on the stove or in a crock-pot. The stove top is more work, but I enjoy the process of checking the chile, giving it a stir, tasting it and adding more garlic, salt, etc if need. The crock pot is nice because I never have to worry about stirring it.

Crock-pot Method — If you choose to cook it in the crock-pot, sauté your onions until translucent and then add garlic, chile, jalapeno’s, tomato’s and spices until soft. Then move them to a crock-pot. Add the fire roasted tomato’s, broth and roux. Let simmer. Adjust garlic and salt as needed (I like a lot of both) and then add a pinch or two or sugar and your done!

Stove Top Method — Sauté your onions until translucent and then add garlic, chile, jalapeno’s, tomato’s and spices until soft in a large pot or an enameled cast iron dutch oven. Add the fire roasted tomato’s and broth. Bring to boil. While boiling, make the roux in a small sauté pan. Add the roux to the chile and mix well. Reduce the heat to low and stir periodically so it does not burn.

Colorado Style Green Chile Variations

Vegan variation

To make a vegan variation simply switch out the butter in the roux with a vegan butter.

Meat variation

For all you meat lovers out there, simply replace the vegetable broth with chicken or pork broth. Either works fine and it’s ok if the broth is different then the meat you plan to add.

Meat variation with pork

Trim the fat off of the Pork and brown the meat. Save the meat off to the side and begin the sauté process from the juices left over from the pork.

Meat variation with chicken

Use the crock-pot method for this variation. Cook 4 bone in chicken breasts with the green chile in the crock-pot for 5-6 hours. After 5-6 hours, remove the chicken and then shred it. Remove the bones at this time.

Serve Colorado Style Green Chile in a bread bowl using my Easy Bread recipe! When making the bread, cut the dough into four sections and make each section into a ball!

Colorado Style Green Chile

Colorado Style Green Chile Recipe

Colorado style green chile incorporates tomato's and slow cooking to give this chile a rich hearty flavor that distinguishes it from other versions of green chile.
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Prep Time 30 mins
Servings 8


  • Large pot or crock-pot
  • Stick blender


  • 1 Medium white onion, diced
  • 3 – 8 Garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 cup Green chile diced
  • 1 Jalapeno, diced
  • 3 Roma tomato's, diced
  • 2 – 14.5 oz Canned fire roasted tomato's
  • 2 cups Broth (vegetable, chicken, or pork)
  • 2 tsp Cumin
  • 2 tsp Salt
  • 1 tsp Oregano
  • 6 tbsp Butter (or vegan butter)
  • 6 tbsp Flour
  • 1 – 2 pinch Sugar

Garnish Suggestions (Optional)

  • Sliced avocado
  • Grated cheese
  • Sour cream
  • Cilantro
  • Flour tortillas
  • Frito Scoops (best thing ever)


  • Heat the oil in the bottom of the pot or pan, sauté the onions for 2 – 3 minutes
  • Add the garlic and sauté for another minute
  • Add the chile, jalapeno, tomato, and spices and sauté together until soft
  • Add the broth, fire roasted tomato's, sugar and bring to a boil
  • Melt the butter in a separate pan, once melted add in the flour and whisk in flour until smooth. Allow the roux to bubble and cook for a couple of minutes until a golden or medium brown. Add roux to green chile and incorporate into chile.
  • Reduce heat and allow to simmer on low heat stirring as needed
  • Pulse the stick blender a few time until you reach desired thickness. Be sure not to over blend and to leave lots of chucks . This is best as a thick stew like chile.
Keyword Coloado Green Chili, Coloroado Green Chile, Green Chile, Green Chili, Vegan, vegetarian
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