Dr Pepper Chili

Dr Pepper Chili, perfectly sweet and spicy!

I’ve seen quite a few recipes that use root beer or Dr Pepper and BBQ sauce to flavor beef and pork dishes. I thought it might be good in chili too, and I was right! The Dr Pepper gives it the right balance of sweet and spicy. Serve it with cornbread, on a hot dog, or on a big scoop of Fritos and you have the perfect meal for game day.

Dr Pepper Chili, perfectly sweet and spicy!

Dr Pepper Chili

serves 4-6

  • 2 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons of chili powder
  • 2 chipotle chile en adobo chopped, plus 1 tablespoon of sauce from the can
  • 1 pound of lean ground beef
  • 1 can of Dr Pepper
  • 1 large can (28 ounces) whole peeled tomatoes
  • 1 medium can (14.5 ounces) of diced fire-roasted tomatoes
  • 1 small can (8 ounces) tomato sauce
  • 1 (15 1/2-ounce) can of dark red kidney beans, drained


  • Saute onion and garlic in olive oil, just until they start to soften. Add salt, chili powder, chipotles and chipotle sauce and stir until combined over heat. Just a minute or two.
  • Add ground beef and break up as it browns. Once browned, add Dr Pepper and scrape all the yummies from the bottom of the pan. Let reduce over medium heat to half the amount of liquid.
  • Use kitchen shears (or your hands if you prefer) to cut (or crush) up the whole peeled tomatoes. You don’t need to go crazy. Just a few snip, snips to break up the tomatoes. Add tomatoes, and their juices to the pan as well as the tomato sauce and fire roasted tomatoes. Let your chili simmer on the stove for at least 30 minutes until nice and thick. Add the beans during the last five minutes so they can heat through.
  • This chili is very flavorful and spicy, reduce the spiciness by using only one chipotle in the recipe.




Dr Pepper Chili, perfectly sweet and spicy!

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  1. Yummmm!!!!! This sounds deeee-lish!!! I think we shall have this next week!

  2. Oh my gosh, Melissa–this chili looks fantastic! I’ve never added soda to meat before but I hear it makes it SUPER tender and yummy. I must try this!

  3. You’re speaking my language, girl! I am an EXTREME DP addict!! Can’t wait to try it!

  4. Yum, that chili looks Awesome! I can imaging that DP would go well with chili flavors – great idea 🙂

  5. Amazing! I can’t wait to dunk some freshly baked cornbread in this!

  6. Love Dr. Pepper – was a great chili. I saw it on 36th Ave. Would love for you to share on Thursdays Treasures http://fooddonelight.com/thursdays-treasures-week-67/

  7. This looks delicious and I love Dr. Pepper! Found you on a linky party and am a new facebook follower! I hope you will stop by my site if you get a chance!


  8. Sounds good! Do you think Diet would work?

  9. this sound delicious Melissa and looks AMAZING I want a spoon so I can dig right in!

  10. This looks so good! I really enjoy Dr Pepper pork and beef, so this makes perfect sense to me! So happy I stumbled across your blog today!

  11. On today’s menu, dr pepper ribs. On next week’s menu? This Chili! Yum, thanks for sharing!

  12. I am really impressed with the photography, it is really incredible. As a Texan, I wholeheartedly approve of putting Dr. Pepper Chili, I will be trying this out for sure!

  13. Made this for 15 for Christmas Eve dinner. It was a huge hit with kids and adults. I already had a goto chili recipe – now I have another! Thanks so much!

  14. I made this chili and wrote about it here. I just loved the spicy sweet combo! Thank you so much for sharing the recipe.

  15. Hey It’s Deonna from the Child at Heart blog! I featured this recipe in my tribute to Dr. Pepper recipes. I am happy to share it and pinned it from your site to my Pinterest board all about Dr. Pepper. Thanks! Come check it out the post at

  16. blondie99212 says:

    This. Is. Amazing. Really. I have been on a quest of sorts for years for the perfect chili recipe. This is it. A huge hit with my family as well. Thank you!

  17. It’s very tasty and this is amazing. 🙂

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