Cincinnati Chili

Deliciously hearty this Cincinnati Chili is a unique chili recipe served over spaghetti and topped with cheese, onions or beans or a combination of the 5!
Cincinnati Chili

So lot’s of people have their preference on chili. I for one love my Sweet Heat Chili. I love the mixture of the heat and the sweetness and how it pays together and so does my husband. This is our number one go to chili whenever the weather gets brisk and we need our comfort food.

Cincinnati Chili Recipe

BUT I also love Cincinnati Chili. But…the difference is, this is more of a topping chili, at least it is for us anyways. I’ve never eaten it on it’s own. I’ve always either had it over spaghetti or served it over hot dogs (my kids fave way). Do people actually eat it as chili? I’m sure there are many many ways that people can enjoy this delectable dinner.

So you can have this Cincinnati Chili 5 different ways. You can have it chili…, chili with spaghetti, chili with spaghetti and cheddar, chili with spaghetti, cheddar and beans and chili with spaghetti, cheddar, beans and onions. WOW…did I lose you there? I actually like it all ways, I’m a big chili with beans fan so usually I add the beans to mine regardless.

Authentic Cincinnati Chili Recipe

 Now onion is a hit of miss with me. Usually I’m not a raw onion person and prefer it sautéed but it really works in here. The flavors play nicely together and it gives it a good crunch to set off all the textures and flavors. And a little crunch is something that I can handle, especially in this chili.

Cincinnati Style Chili

 Did I mention that this is a SUPER easy recipe? It may seem like it’s hard because it has a boat load of ingredients but seriously, easy. All you do is put everything in the pan and let it simmer for a few hours and your set. I mean who can’t handle that? Besides the smell alone is worth all those ingredients.

This recipe goes a long way too! It saves well in the refrigerator or freezer as well so if you don’t think that you can consume it all in one sitting, then you have the option of saving it for a later day. We love to do this because I’m a big lover of chili cheese dogs and chili burgers and like I said this is fantastic for it!

Cincinnati Style Chili Recipe

 So wait no longer, if you haven’t tried it before try it now. This Cincinnati Chili recipe has one of a kind flavor and has multiple options, quick, easy and lasts forever!

Cincinnati Chili
Ground beef and spices are simmered together to make this unique chili that is great on spaghetti or hot dogs.
Write a review
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
2 hr 30 min
Total Time
2 hr 45 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
2 hr 30 min
Total Time
2 hr 45 min
  1. 2lbs ground beef
  2. 4 cups water
  3. 1 large onion, diced small
  4. 1 (15 oz) can tomato sauce
  5. 1 1/2 tsp minced garlic
  6. 1 tsp all-spice
  7. 1 tsp cumin
  8. 3 Tbs chili powder
  9. 1 tsp cinnamon
  10. 1 Tbs cocoa powder
  11. 2 bay leaves
  12. 2 tbs apple cider vinegar
  13. 1 tsp cayenne pepper
  1. In large pot add your ground beef and water, bring to boil and stir your beef until it separates into little pieces, reduce heat a simmer for about 30 minutes.
  2. Once beef is cooked, add remaining ingredients and stir to combine
  3. Bring to boil and reduce heat and simmer uncovered for about 2 1/2 hours or until thickened.
  4. Serve over spaghetti or hot dogs.
  1. The last hour or so you can add a lid to let chili thicken more if desired.
Adapted from Old Chuch Cookbook
Adapted from Old Chuch Cookbook
Tornadough Alli

Cincinnati Chili

35 thoughts on “Cincinnati Chili

  1. I was wondering if this chili can be cooked in the crockpot? Thank you for your time, happy Thanksgiving to you and your family, and I hope to hear from you soon.

  2. It is very simple to make in a crock pot. Just add everything, turn it on and go to work. When you come home – make the spaghetti, grate the cheddar and you’re ready.

  3. I live in Cincinnati and eat Skyline Chili (one of the locals) frequently. I’ve tried a few different recipes and they never quite have “it”, whatever “it” might be. I’m eager to try yours! I’ve never seen one with cider vinegar before. Where did you get your recipe from? Oh, and locals eat it in burritos with beans, cheese, lettuce, and tomato too…yum!

    1. Hi Anna! I hope this one you like. I’m a collector of old cookbooks and this one came from one of my old church cookbooks I’ve had for many years. They call it hot dog chili in there, I’ve adapted it over the years to a flavor I like and this is kinda what I stuck with, of my faves. Probably not the original since there is so much controversy over this recipe..whats right, what should or shouldnt be included. All I know is this has become my fave 🙂

  4. Taste is very similar and spot on …. followed the recipe to make it to a “T” and ate two plates with thick spaghetti and cheese… Awesome😉

  5. Pingback:
  6. I live in Alabama but my grandparents were raised in Cincinnati so this was a favorite growing up! I cannot find skyline chilli packets anywhere down here so I decided to try this recipe, it is on the stove now and I AM SO EXCITED!

  7. I won a chili cook off with this recipe! Thanks so much! My husband and I wanted to show our New England friends what Cincinnati chili was like and this was the perfect recipe. They loved it enough to give us first prize! So simple and so delicious.

  8. Hi! I made your recipe for a party I’m having this weekend and just tasted and its delicious! I had to triple the recipe though and now its still pretty thin and watery… any suggestions on what to do to thicken it? I’ve had it simmering for a while now… thanks!

  9. I’m from the Cincinnati area and this is about as authentic as you can get. I’m making it right now because we have some colder weather coming through and I want my family to have a great dinner tonight. Bon A petite!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *