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cincinnati chili recipe

Cincinnati Chili

  • Author: Melissa Belanger
  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Cook Time: 45 mins
  • Total Time: 55 mins
  • Yield: 8 1x


Have you ever tried Cincinnati Chili? It’s seasoned with a unique blend of spices and chocolate, then served over spaghetti! Make it a “five-way” and top with beans, onions and cheese. This is great for serving a crowd or enjoying chili like a local Ohioan.



  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 2 tablespoons paprika
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground all-spice
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 1/2 pounds lean ground beef
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 8-ounce can tomato sauce
  • 1 can diced tomatoes, with juice
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 ounce unsweetened chocolate
  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 pound package spaghetti
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 3 cups shredded cheddar cheese (or vegan cheese shreds)


  1. Combine the chili powder, paprika, cumin, all spice, coriander, cinnamon, cloves and cayenne pepper in a small bowl.
  2. Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium-high heat.
  3. Sauté the onions and garlic for about 5 minutes.
  4. Add the spice mixture and coat the onions, cooking until fragrant.
  5. Add the ground beef, cooking until no longer pink and breaking the meat into small pieces.
  6. Add salt, tomato sauce, tomatoes, bay leaf, chocolate, vinegar and Worcestershire sauce.
  7. Simmer for about 30 minutes or until thick. (Cook pasta while waiting for the chili to simmer)
  8. Add beans 5-10 minutes before serving.
  9. Strain pasta, top with chili and serve with cheese and extra onions.