Cincinnati Chili Recipe

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The Skyline Cafe is first among equals in the popular Cincinnati chili scene. Cincinnati chili recipes are characterized by the addition of cocoa or chocolate and other unique spices as well as being served on top of al dente spaghetti noodles. This recipe is supposed to be a close approximation of their secret chili recipe.

When you make your Cincinnati Chili recipe for guests, let them create their own version - making this Cincinnati chili recipe sure to please:

Two-Way Cincinnati Chili: Chili served on spaghetti
Three-Way Cincinnati Chili: Plus shredded Cheddar cheese
Four-Way Cincinnati Chili: Plus chopped onions
Five-Way Cincinnati Chili: Plus kidney beans

Cincinnati Chili


1 quart water
2 lb. ground chuck, crumbled
2 medium onions, finely chopped
5 to 6 cloves garlic, crushed
1 can (15 oz.) tomato sauce
2 Tablespoons cider vinegar
1 Tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
10 peppercorns, ground
8 whole allspice, ground
8 whole cloves, ground
1 large bay leaf
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1-1/2 teaspoons cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon. ground cumin
1/2 oz. unsweetened chocolate, grated


1. Bring water to boil in a 4-6 quart pot. Add the ground chuck (do not brown first).

2. Stir until separated and reduce heat to simmer.

3. Add onions, garlic, tomato sauce, cider vinegar, and Worcestershire sauce. Stir to mix well.

4. Add peppercorns, allspice, cloves, bay leaf, salt, cinnamon, cayenne pepper and grated unsweetened chocolate.

5. Bring back to a boil, then reduce to simmer for 2½ hours cooking time in all.

6. Cool uncovered and refrigerate overnight.

7. Serve over al-dente spaghetti topped with oyster crackers, shredded cheese, onions, and kidney beans as desired.




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