Hipster Chili

For those of you who don’t know (mom), a hipster is a term used for a subculture of American youth that is as widespread as it is derided. Unlike other subcultures, the boundaries are a bit fuzzy, but they are defined by a distinctive style of dress, and “you know ’em when you see ’em” typecasting.

One aspect of hipsters is that they generally have a fascination with keeping things real and authentic, choosing to eschew current trends for other (generally post-war) things that (in pursuing) the hipster ironically then makes trendy within the hipster community.

So what better dish to “hipsterize” than chili, the classic vintage meal. To tweak it I added: Pabst Blue Ribbon beer (the choice of hipsters everywhere), cocoa/cinnamon (for sophisticated depth), and chickpeas (for irony).

This was actually developed in honor of a recent visit I made to NYC where I visited my good friend Matt Feick, recent transplant to Williamsburg, Brooklyn, the epicenter of hipsterdom. He’s in NYC to pursue his musical career, and all of us from his past like to give him a good-natured ribbing about turning into a hipster, so I thought this chili was appropriate 🙂

All joking aside, this is a delicious and easy meal. The chili has a bit of a kick (a warm burn), and if you don’t like it that spicy, make sure to reduce the amount of chili powder/hot sauce added. The chickpeas were originally a joke but surprisingly tasty and interesting in the mix.

There is a lot of beer in it, which adds depth and a fun flavor that is vaguely beer-y, but the amount can easily be reduced. I looked up the alcohol content remaining after the simmer time and it’s roughly 25%, or 1/2 a can. Given the number of servings it is a minimal amount of remaining alcohol for an adult’s meal, and great for the last few cold weather nights remaining.

Hipster chili
A Don The Apron original 😉

Makes a metric ton of chili (no really, I still have some in my freezer) — and by that I mean 6-8 servings


  • 2 onions, chopped, medium
  • 6 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • 2 lbs ground beef
  • 5 tablespoons chili powder
  • 2 tablespoons cumin
  • 1 teaspoon basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon thyme, oregano
  • 1 Tablespoon cocoa
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 3 cups chicken stock
  • 2 cans pbr
  • 28 oz can crushed tomatoes
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 2 cans of beans (one black, one chickpeas for irony)
  • A few dashes Frank’s Hot Sauce to taste


  • Heat oil in a large dutch oven, and saute onions and garlic until fragrant.
  • Add ground beef, and cook until beef renders fat. Drain off excess fat, or pretend like you live in the 1950s and keep it in there.
  • Season meat mixture with spices (chili powder to cinnamon), and allow to toast in with the meat.
  • Add remaining ingredients except for hot sauce, and simmer over low heat for 60 minutes.
  • Serve, adding additional hot sauce to taste.

1 thought on “Hipster Chili

  1. Pingback: Hipsters love aprons? | Don the Apron!

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