OTT chili

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Master of the Pit
Original poster
SMF Premier Member
Dec 17, 2019
PembrokePines, FL
Mornin' 'all,
I searched the forum for recipes for this before I tried it and didn't find anything, so her goes. OTT stands for over the top. It can be done in a variety of smokers, but mine was done on my Lifesmart 22" Kamado. The are a few recipes on the interweb but for me recipes are merely suggestions/baselines. The basics of this are: Sauteeing peppers, onions, and spices beforehand in a skillet. I used a variety of peppers including serano, shishito, red, green, a can of chipoltle peppers with adobo sauce (save the sauce but use some in base mix).. and a big-ass vidalia onion. In my years owning a bar/restaurant I learned you have to make chili for pussies, and let people spice it to their liking, thusly no habenaro or the like in my base. After you've sauteed to translucent I add a can of diced and a can of crushed tomatoes partially drained. You also want to put your spice base in the mixture. (more spices later) If you are not chili familiar you can use packaged chili mix, but it's basically chili powder, cumin,garlic.
after you simmer your base,drian off oil and put it in a large Dutch oven pot (beans optional at this point depending on your beliefs)I used a can of red beans.. for my meat base ball used used 2 1/4lbs of 85 /15 ground beef and a pound of pork stew meat cubed small, another 1/2 finely chopped vidalia. Mix all three meats together with fine chopped onion and mash out on a board. sprinkle very liberally with chili powder, cumin, a little garlic powder nd any hot powder spices you think your crew can eat without bitching.. More can be added. Mash that whole mixture into a big tight ball and set aside. As a bonus, I also bought a pound of small cubed stew meat and braised it with remaining adobo sauce from the chipoltle peppers and some more chili powder. I threw that into the vegetable/tomato base in the dutch oven. Set up you kamado with a diffuser stone (or you'll toast the chili with heat. ) add enough lump to burn at 225-275 for 2-3 hours. I added four chunks of hickory and a holy box with apple chips Your dutch oven sits right above the difuser. Light your smoker and get it settled in around 225-250. If you are an egg person you might have an "egg-avator" My lifesmrt has a secondary raised grid that sits up about high enough to be above the dutch oven.
You can also just set a spare grate on top of the dutch oven.
Put the big ball of meta on the grate above the dutch oven and put a probe in it. close lid and smoke until meat ball reaches 165 degrees all he juices will drip in, and flavor your chili.. Keep an eye on your base and stir if it gets too hot or it will stick and make a mess of your pan. you might also (more below)
ott setup.jpg
ott chili.jpg

want to have a carton of beef stock in case your chili is too thick.
Once the meat ball hits 165, crumble the mixture into the base mixture in the dutch oven. I let mine simmer for another hour as I can moderate my kamado to a consistent 225. Stir occasionally.
What you get is a nice smoky meat mixture to make your chili just smoky enough.
This is an abbreviated version. I'm sure your exact method may vary.
It was the best chili I've ever made in over 40 years of conjuring.
Enjoy. Sorry if a repeat. is reader supported and as an Amazon Associate, we may earn commissions from qualifying purchases.