Mud Run Grub: Slow-Cooked Primal Chili

Time for Chili!

It’s that time of year. Cool, wet weather…blustery winds…mud runs galore and football on Sundays. What better timing for a lip-smacking chili? Warm your primordial bones with this weekend chili recipe adapted from Mark Sisson’s The Primal Blueprint.

What’s in it:

  • 2-3 slices uncooked bacon (get the thick uncured stuff like this one from Nature’s Promise). Pancetta (Italian bacon) is another good option.
  • 1-2 onions chopped (I prefer red onions, but feel free to use whatever color onion you damn-well please)
  • 1 red pepper diced
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 4 cloves garlic (or if you are like me and LOVE garlic breath, double this)
  • 1 pound ground bison
  • 1 pound ground grass-fed beef (Organic or Certified Angus are solid substitutions)
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon fresh minced oregano (dry will work fine)
  • 1 tablespoon paprika (I like the Hungarian stuff)
  • 1 1/2 -2 cups broth and/or 1 dark beer, such as a porter or imperial stout (Tip: Whenever I boil my organic veggies, chicken or beef, I’ll store the broth in the freezer. Use it here.)
  • 1 large can chopped tomatoes with the juice (4 mid-sized fresh organic tomatoes are just as perfect)
  • 1 tablespoon unsweet cocoa powder
  • 2 tablespoons ground coriander
  • 1 tablespoon cumin
  • 2 peeled carrots, peeled and diced
  • 2-4 tablespoons canned chipotle chile, diced
  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar

How to make it:

In a large skillet, brown the bacon and remove. Toss the ground beef in the bacon fat and add some butter and/or olive oil if needed. Drain well. Combine all ingredients in a slow cooker; cover and cook for 7 to 8 hours on LOW, or until done. Serve with sliced avocado and garnish with chopped scallions or cilantro, sour cream or shredded cheese (for primal cheaters like me!)
Piece o’ cake. Enjoy!
Bonus: Did somebody say “Primal Chili Dogs?” Hello!

Mud Run Maniac wants to know what you think of this mud run grub…

Post your comments/questions below. Thanks!

Meet the Author

Mud Run Maniac
Mud Run Maniac

I'm the proud owner of, specializing in mud run training and tips! The mud run community is growing fast and I’ve made it my responsibility to keep you up-to-date on the latest and greatest mud running topics.

6 comments… add one
  • Sandy Nov 14, 2011, 10:24 pm

    This recipe sounds delicious!!! I’m cookin up a batch next weekend!

  • Tyler Stouder Nov 22, 2011, 12:54 pm

    I think I will make this for my Thanksgiving Eve dinner!

  • Chad Feb 1, 2012, 11:57 am

    Paul, approximately how much chili does this recipe make? Our Tough Mudder team is participating in a chili cook-off in about a month and I think we are going to use this recipe. We have to prepare 10 gallons so I need to know the exponential factor to consider when making that much chili versus your recipe.


    • Mud Run Maniac Mud Run Maniac Feb 1, 2012, 2:34 pm

      Hey Chad, this recipe serves approx. 6-8 mudders, depending on appetite. My advice, make extra! It won’t go to waste 🙂

      Thanks for sharing and let me know how it turns out!

      • Chad Feb 1, 2012, 3:40 pm

        Thanks Paul. Have you tried the chili with adding beans to the recipe? If so, what was the result and whay type of beans?

        • Mud Run Maniac Mud Run Maniac Feb 1, 2012, 4:44 pm

          This is more “Texas-style”…no beans (also more primal). I’m not a fan of beans sorry, but I’m sure they would taste just fine in this chili if you enjoy them.

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