Nopalito Chili

Discussion in 'Side Items' started by the smoke break, Sep 13, 2013.

  1. Decided I would share a recipe that I've made for years at home, and it's always requested. It is an authentic Mexican dish, but I've tampered with is some to suit my family's tastes. Also, it's originally made to be eaten in a bowl...just like chili... but my family has changed that as well, and we love it this way. 


      This is what I make to feed around four to eight people, usually with some eating seconds.

    2 lbs. hamburger meat

    2       cans of stewed tomatoes

    1       can diced tomatoes

    2 tbs  fresh diced garlic (FRESH)

    1/2     onion

             chili powder

    1       can of Rotel Tomatoes (med. to spicy --per tastes)

    1       Jar Nopalito's (this is cactus and comes in a jar in the cultural food section)

    2       bags of tortillo/nacho chips

    1       bag shredded cheese

            butter or margarine

    In a skillet, brown the hamburger meat, while adding chili powder to taste. In a smaller pan, saute the onion and garlic with butter until the onion is soft. Once the hamburger meat is done and seasoned, drain the grease and place it in a large pot on Med. to High heat. Drain and add the stewed tomatoes, then add the Rotel and diced tomatoes. (I don't drain these...the juice will help flavor, and most will evaporate). Let this simmer for about five minutes, while you prepare the Nopalito's. 

    For the Nopalito's.... They come in a jar with a clear, water based juice. Drain this juice from the jar, leaving the nopalito inside. Due to the natural juices within the cactus, they are usually a little slimy. Add water to the jar and shake to wash off any remaining slime. Once they are washed and drained, place the cactus on a cutting board. You can keep them the same length if you desire, but I prefer to cut each at least twice, making smaller pieces that mix easier into the chili. 

    Back to your pot, add the saute'd onion and garlic and the prepared nopalito. Now, let this pot simmer until it blends well, and some of the juice has evaporated....NOT ALL OF IT!! Sample your chili as you wait, for now is the time to add any garlic or chili powder if you need to. 

    Once it is finished simmering... you can keep it as originally intended and eat it like chili.... OR my family likes to lay down a big handful of chips and pour the chili over them. Add some shredded cheese to melt in with it and you have an awesome bowl of nacho's. 

    Hope you all enjoy it....and I hope I explained it well enough. Message me or ask on here if anything is confusing. We love it and hope you do as well. 
  2. kathrynn

    kathrynn Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    This does sound really yummy. Do you have a picture some where of it?

    Would love to "see"

  3. Don't believe so, as I typed this while reading other recipes. Plan on making some REAL soon and will definitely add some pics.
  4. chef willie

    chef willie Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Thx for sharing. Will file and make as the Fall weather creeps in. I'm a fan of the Nopalito from my days in Santa Barbara. Used to chop them up into scrambled eggs with some green chilis and top with some salsa...yummy stuff indeed.....Willie
  5. Hello.  Thanx for sharing.  Being originally from South Texas I have eaten and seen Napolitos many ways but never in chili.  Sound pretty good.  Gonna have to try this one if I can find napolitos in England, if not will try on my next trip home.  Keep Smokin!

  6. dirtsailor2003

    dirtsailor2003 Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I always look at the jar and wonder what would I use that for?? Now I know! I'll pick up a jar and give this a try, thanks for the recipe.
  7. driedstick

    driedstick Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Thanks for the recipe, looks really good, will have to try this fall.
  8. you can use it for lots of things DS..goes good with a steak, dice em up and sautee them with onions and chiles and serve over or alongside a steak. my grandmother used to make me and my grandfather lunch all the time with carne asada with green onions and nopales(cactus)...lunch fit for a king. with a cold coronita and lime. lol.
  9. dutch

    dutch Smoking Guru Staff Member Administrator Group Lead OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Now this is my kind chili. Meat, tomatos, garlic, onion and seasoning AND NO BEANS. I keep telling Ma Dutch that beans are a condiment like onions and cheese that you sprinkle over the chili, but noooo-whenever she makes chili in go a couple of cans of beans (then complains about how windy I am around the house). When we still had kids at home they would as "what's for dinner?" when Ma replied with "Chili" they'd ask, yours or dads? If she said hers, they would ask her to cut back on the beans.

    But anyhoo, during the deer hunting season when the family was busy processing deer, my cousin would come help and his wife would make a chili very much like TSB's recipe except she would use bite sized cubes of beef and pork. MMMMmmm tasty!
  10. That sounds awesome as well...will definitely give that addition a try. Thanks!
  11. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member

    Interesting recipe. I am surprised there is so much Tomato product...JJ

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