Cincinnati Style Chili

Cincinnati Style Chili
A chili soup to warm your soul!

Cincinnati is a city nestled along the Ohio River with beautiful cityscapes, rolling hills, history, culture and amazing food! That’s right… Cincinnati is a foodie town! With dozens of landmark restaurants over 60 years old and loads of newer non-chain restaurants, this city truly challenges the food status quo. While I could carry on about my favorite choices… it’s a specific “chili soup” served at one of the oldest establishments that has captured my family’s heart.

This famous chili is incredibly unique because it uses chocolate, cinnamon and nutmeg. Crazy right!

But with our allergies and food choices, I’ve had to create our own version so we can continue to enjoy this odd merriment of flavors. This recipe took a number of years to evolve, but I think we’ve got this figured out. The ingredients list is extensive, but I assure you it all comes together beautifully. Mmm… the smell is amazing and taste is so unique you’ll be going back for seconds!

Be sure to read the cooking instructions. There is one key part you don’t want to miss!!

8 cups water
1.5lbs ground turkey
2 medium onions, finely chopped
2 cloves of minced garlic (omit if needed, we do!)
1 15oz can tomato sauce
2 TBL ketchup
2 TBL red wine vinegar
1 ½ tsp chipotle powder
2 tsp oregano
1 TBL paprika (smoked if you prefer)
1 tsp ground black pepper
2 TBL cocoa powder
1 ½ tsp ground cumin (more for a hotter chili flavor)
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp marjoram
¾ tsp allspice
½ tsp nutmeg
¾ tsp cinnamon
½ tsp ground cloves
½ tsp ground coriander
2 bay leaves
1 ½ teaspoon of salt (more if the chili needs “perking up”)

12 oz spaghetti cooked and buttered
1 15oz can dark kidney beans
1 chopped onion
1 lb grated cheddar cheese substitute (or the real deal if you don’t have an allergy/sensitivity)

In a large stockpot, turn heat to medium; add 8 cups of water, meat, onions and garlic. With a fork, separate the meet in the water so there are no clumps. This step is important and creates the soupy texture. Cook meat, onion, garlic mixture for 30 minutes. While the meat is cooking; measure out all dry spices into a small bowl.
img_7701Add tomato sauce (rinse can with a little water and add), ketchup and red wine vinegar. As mixture begins to boil, add remaining spices. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook for 3 hours stirring and testing occasionally.

Note: Just like most chili, this chili taste even better if allowed to sit overnight in the refrigerator.

To construct the famous chili soup, chose from the following

  • 3 Way: Spaghetti, toped with chili and a mound of cheese
  • 4 Way: Spaghetti, toped with chili, beans or onion and a mound of cheese
  • 5 Way: Spaghetti, toped with chili, beans and onion and a mound of cheese


Chili Dip: Another option – and great for parties!
Layer refried beans, chili then cheese in a 2 or 3-quart casserole dish. Place in 350degree oven till cheese is melted (15 minutes or so). Serve with corn chips.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s