Mr. Mason's Chili Recipe -
Mr. Mason's Chili Recipe

Mr. Mason's Chili

Recipe by  

"My grandmother used to care for the Masons. Mr. Mason was a pioneer in the roadside food industry. He owned cafes in Kansas, Oklahoma, Missouri, and Arkansas that served chili and apple pie. He kept his chili recipe secret for decades. He lived to be 107 years old, and my grandma finally got his recipe."

+ Recipe Box + Shopping List + Menu Print

Ingredients Edit and Save

Original recipe makes 4 servings Change Servings
  • PREP

    10 mins
  • COOK

    1 hr 55 mins

    2 hrs 5 mins


  1. Place the ground beef and half the chili powder into a large saucepan over high heat, and cook until meat is browned, breaking the meat apart into crumbles as it cooks, about 10 minutes. Mix in the onion, and cook and stir until onion is softened, about 10 more minutes. Stir in garlic, and cook until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Stir in remaining chili powder, cumin, oregano, tomato paste, and cocoa powder, and cover pan.
  2. Reduce heat to a simmer, and cook until meat is tender and flavors have blended, mixing enough water to make a thick chili, about 1 1/2 hours. Stir occasionally.
Kitchen-Friendly View


  • Cook's Note
  • Mr. Mason served his chili spooned over pinto beans that were cooked with ham hocks. He insisted that you had to use Gebhardt Chili Powder. He died in about 1965. I have used the same recipe, substituting game, pork, chicken, and turkey for the beef, with excellent results.

Reviews More Reviews

Aug 06, 2011

i love vintage recipes because when im eating it it makes me feel like im brought back to that time. :-) looks good im going to try it soon. can beans be added to the chili? i dont eat ham hocks

Aug 20, 2011

I love that this chili is so simple to make and that it can be made with stuff I keep on hand. It is a little different than the chili that I am used to . It has the consistency of taco meat and barely any liquid. I wasn't sure I liked that at first but I put it on a bag of Fritos and it was great. They didn't get soggy! The chili wasn't quite spicy enough for me. I had to add a little cayenne pepper. Overall, it is a good recipe and I would make it again.


6 Ratings

Aug 06, 2011

Thank you Jeff I remember eating this as a child in OK. Can't wait to try it. But I'll have to search for the chili powder!

Jan 14, 2012

This is similar to the chili I used to make before I had kids.Fortunately, my chili hating son has decided its not so bad!I was happy tp come across this recipe and make it for my family! Thanks for sharing an old recipe favorite!

Dec 25, 2012

I made this for a Monday Night Football gathering to top baked potatoes. It doesn't make a lot, about 1 quart and I had more than half left over. It is basically seasoned ground beef. I thought the Gebhardt's chili powder might be something special but it wasn't any different than many other less expensive chili powders. Sorry, but I was not impressed with this recipe.


Rate This Recipe

Glad you liked it! Your friends will, too:


  • Calories
  • 399 kcal
  • 20%
  • Carbohydrates
  • 9.8 g
  • 3%
  • Cholesterol
  • 96 mg
  • 32%
  • Fat
  • 31.2 g
  • 48%
  • Fiber
  • 2.9 g
  • 12%
  • Protein
  • 20.7 g
  • 41%
  • Sodium
  • 137 mg
  • 5%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

See More

About the Cook

Subscribe Today!

In Season

Chicken On the Grill
Chicken On the Grill

Something about the grill's heat brings out the best flavor in the simplest chicken recipe.

Summer Desserts
Summer Desserts

We have over 700 dessert recipes just for summer fun.

Subscribe Today! Only $7.99
Subscribe Today! Only $7.99

Delicious recipes, party ideas, and cooking tips! Get a year of Allrecipes magazine for $7.99!

Related Videos

Flatlander Chili

See how to make a simple, satisfying ground beef chili with red beans.

HERDEZ® Roasted Pasilla Pepper Chili

See how to make a hearty, flavorful chili in your slow cooker.

Easy Homemade Chili

This homemade chili is hearty and meaty, and is very quick to make.

Recently Viewed Recipes

Argentina  |  Australia & New Zealand  |  Brazil  |  Canada  |  China  |  France  |  Germany  |  India  |  Italy  |  Japan  |  Korea  |  Mexico

Netherlands  |  Poland  |  Quebec  |  Russia  |  SE Asia  |  United Kingdom & Ireland  |  United States