As good as this recipe could (and should) be, most recipes turn out tough, bland, dried-out pork and soggy overcooked beans. We wanted a spicy, sweet ranch-style chili, brimming with tender pork and creamy beans.
Why This Recipe Works
Ranch chili recipes, which should ideally result in chunks of rich pork and stewed beans with Southwestern spices, often come out to a disappointing bowl of tough meat and mushy beans. And the spicing is either as bland as can be or four-alarm fiery. We wanted tender meat and firm beans enlivened with a judicious blend of spices. So we skipped the tenderloin most Ranch Chili recipes recommend and went with well-marbled, inexpensive Boston Butt. We browned the meat for rich flavor and stewed it long enough to make it fork tender—two hours at least. Bacon added smoky, porky flavor. To conclude our Ranch Chili recipe, we kept the spices simple and classic: chili powder, cumin, oregano, and lots of garlic.