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Dr. Pepper Chili

Dr. Pepper Chili has just the right balance of sweet and spicy and is sure to be a hit on game day. Serve up a warm bowl with sour cream, onion, and fresh cilantro or use it as a topping for hot dogs or a dip for fritos. Any way you eat Dr. Pepper Chili, it’s a hearty and satisfying meal.

Dr Pepper Chili topped with sour cream and red onion in a bowl.

I feel a little odd talking about a cold weather food since we spent the day on the beach with about 80 degree weather. The kids didn’t have school today so we are spending a long weekend in Beaufort, SC. You can take a peak at my Instagram for a glimpse of what we have been doing. (Note: Originally posted October 24, 2014.)

Chili in two bowls.

What Flavor Does Dr Pepper Give Chili?

Dr. Pepper is hands down my favorite soft drink and it works well in a variety of recipes like Dr. Pepper BBQ Sauce. Dr. Pepper really adds some great flavor to this chili and the sweetness of it helps balance the spice and smokiness of chipotle chilis. It really is such a great chili recipe.

Made with lean ground beef, Dr. Pepper Chili is a comforting, filling meal that is also healthy and nutritious. It pairs wonderfully with Honey Cornbread and a beer.

Dr Pepper Chili in 2 bowls and a glass full of beer.

Toppings For Chili

The more toppings the better in my opinion. Some great toppings for this chili are diced avocado, sour cream, sliced black olives, chopped fresh cilantro, shredded cheddar cheese, diced red onion, and pickled jalapeno slices.

Variations and Substitutions

  • Sub ground turkey for ground beef.
  • Use Coca Cola in place of Dr Pepper.
  • Leave out the beans.
  • Use green bell pepper in place of red bell pepper.

Be sure to try this Dr Pepper Pulled Pork as well.

Close-up of chili in a bowl.

Watch the short video below to see how easy this chili is to make:


Dr. Pepper Chili

This chili has just the right blend of sweet, spicy, and smokiness. It's a chili recipe you will want to make again and again.
PREP: 15 minutes
COOK: 30 minutes
TOTAL: 45 minutes


  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • 1 cup diced onion
  • 1/2 cup diced red bell pepper
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1 (12-ounce) can Dr. Pepper
  • 1 (14-ounce) can fire-roasted tomatoes
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 4 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • sour cream, red onion, cilantro for garnish


  • Heat a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat and add ground beef. Cook, breaking apart with a wooden spoon, until about halfway cooked. Add onion and red bell pepper and continue to cook until vegetables are softened. If there is excess grease, you can remove it with a spoon before proceeding.
  • Add chili powder, cumin, salt, oregano, and garlic powder and cook for 30 seconds while stirring.
  • Add chicken broth, Dr. Pepper, diced tomatoes, tomato paste, chipotle chilis, and Worcestershire sauce. Stir to mix well. Simmer for 20 to 30 minutes or until chili has thickened to your liking. Add kidney beans.
  • Serve with sour cream, red onion, and cilantro.


Ground turkey can be sued in place of ground beef.
Nutritional info is provided as an estimate only and will vary based on brands of products used. Not to be used for specific dietary needs.


Calories: 394kcal | Carbohydrates: 48g | Protein: 35g | Fat: 7g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 0.4g | Cholesterol: 71mg | Sodium: 1019mg | Potassium: 1056mg | Fiber: 12g | Sugar: 17g | Vitamin A: 1716IU | Vitamin C: 32mg | Calcium: 105mg | Iron: 8mg
Author: Christin Mahrlig
Course: Chili
Cuisine: American
Keyword: ground beef

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Originally posted October 24, 2014.

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29 thoughts on “Dr. Pepper Chili”

  1. I’ll be making this very soon since we love chili & Dr Pepper. But, I do have a question. Who do we contact about suing ground turkey? 😂🤣

  2. Kathy Shussler

    Wondering why you wouldn’t use beef broth instead of chicken broth for this recipe. I know I can sub if I want but curious why use chicken at all?

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