Cincinnati Chili: The Ultimate Comfort Food|Know Why You Should Try It

Last Updated on February 2, 2023 by Dr Bucho

Cincinnati chili
Image Credit: Tess Cooks 4u[youtube]

The American city of Cincinnati, Ohio is where Cincinnati chili, a particular variety of chili, was first created. Cincinnati residents like their chili served as a topping for chili cheese coneys, over freshly prepared noodles, spaghetti, or hot dogs. Cincinnati chilli is frequently served as part of a “five-way” meal that also includes spaghetti, cheese, onions, and beans. It has become almost cult-like in its appeal.

The dish has gained regional renown in the Midwest and is frequently linked to the sizable Greek-American population of the city. It differs because of how the meat is prepared. Cincinnati chili is made with an uncommon combination of spices, including cinnamon, chocolate or cocoa, allspice, and Worcestershire, and has a thinner consistency.

Cincinnati Chili Overview

Cincinnati chilli is a tasty and filling food that, depending on the ingredients used, can be a source of protein, fibre, and different vitamins and minerals. When cooked with ground beef or other high-fat meats, It can be calories and fat dense.


Cincinnati chilli was developed in 1922 by Macedonian immigrant Tom Kiradjieff. Kiradjieff founded a tiny Greek eatery named the Empress with his brother John. However, the establishment struggled until Kiradjieff began serving a chilli created with Middle Eastern ingredients that could be prepared in a number of ways. It was his “spaghetti chilli,” as he put it. The “five way” dish offered by Kiradjieff consisted of a pile of spaghetti covered with chilli, chopped onion, kidney beans, and shredded yellow cheese. It was also accompanied by oyster crackers and a side of hot dogs topped with additional shredded cheese. [Source]


Ground beef, onions, tomato sauce, water, and a blend of spices including chili powder, cumin, cinnamon, cocoa powder, and allspice are the components of Cincinnati chili. Some recipes may include other vegetables, such as bell peppers, and beans, like kidney or black beans.

Nutrition Facts Per Serving [Serving size 1 1/3 cups]

  • 376 calories
  • 6g of fat
  • 328.8 mg of sodium
  • 5.5g of carbs
  •  23.1 g of protein
  •  9.4g of fiber

Source: Eatingwell

How To make Cincinnati Chili? Complete Recipe

Ingredients Required For Recipe

  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 can of tomato sauce (8 oz)
  • 2 cups of water
  • 2 tablespoons of chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon of ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon of cocoa powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon of allspice
  • Salt and pepper, to taste


  1. Over medium heat, sear the ground beef in a big saucepan. Get rid of any extra fat.
  2. To the pot, add the minced garlic and onion, and sauté until soft.
  3. Add salt and pepper to taste along with the tomato sauce, water, cumin, cinnamon, cocoa powder, and allspice.
  4. The mixture should be brought to a boil, then simmered for at least 30 minutes, or until the flavours have combined.
  5. Serve the chilli as a topping for chilli cheese coneys, hot dogs, or pasta. Add grated cheese, sliced onions, or dried beans as a garnish, if desired.

You can adjust the spices according to your taste preference and Here is the complete video recipe , Thanks to Tess Cooking 4 U for sharing such a good recipe with us

Possible Potential Benefits of Cincinnati Chili

Depending on the ingredients used, Cincinnati chili is a hearty and tasty food that may offer a number of health advantages. Cincinnati chili may provide a number of health advantages, including:

  • Protein: Ground beef, which is a good source of protein, is generally used to make Cincinnati chili. Protein is crucial for maintaining and repairing muscular tissue, as well as for making you feel content and full.
  • Beans, such as kidney beans or black beans, which are an excellent source of fibre, may be used in some Cincinnati chili recipes. Constipation can be avoided and proper digestion can be maintained with fibre.
  • Vitamins and minerals: Vegetables like onions and bell peppers, which are sources of vitamins and minerals including vitamin C, vitamin K, and potassium, may be used in some Cincinnati chili recipes.
  • Heart Health: Cinnamon A key component of Cincinnati chili, cinnamon is a rich source of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory substances that may help reduce the risk of heart disease.

Note: It’s crucial to keep in mind that Cincinnati chili can also be high in sodium, fat, and calories if made with ground beef or other high-fat meats. If you are limiting your calorie consumption or have a health issue, it’s also crucial to pay attention to portion sizes and consume it in moderation.

side effects of Cincinnati chili

Like any cuisine, eating Cincinnati chili frequently or in big quantities may have unfavorable effects. The following are some of Cincinnati chili’s possible negative effects:

  • High blood pressure: If taken in significant quantities, Cincinnati chili’s customary high sodium content can exacerbate high blood pressure. Leading causes of heart disease and stroke risk include high blood pressure.
  • Digestive problems: Cincinnati chilli contains spices like chili powder and cumin, which some people may have heartburn or acid reflux from. You might wish to eat mild food if you have a sensitivity to spicy food.
  • Weight gain: Cincinnati chili cooked with ground beef or other high-fat meats can be very calorie and fat-dense. If you don’t control your calorie intake, eating too much of this dish can make you gain weight.
  • Allergies: Some people may have allergies to the tomatoes, meat, or beans that are used in Cincinnati chili. Avoid Cincinnati chilli if you are allergic to any of these components.

Note: Everyone’s tolerance and sensitivity to spices and other components vary, so it’s recommended to eat it in moderation and seek medical advice if you have any worries or exhibit any unusual symptoms.

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Cincinnati Chili Criticism

Critics have called it the worst regional dish in America, but for those who grew up with it, nothing tastes quite as good.

Cincinnati chili is a well-known regional meal that has been enjoyed by many people for many years, although it may not be to everyone’s taste because it includes a special blend of spices. Cincinnati chili, according to some detractors, has a distinct cinnamon and cocoa flavor that might not appeal to fans of conventional chili.

Cincinnati chili also is criticized for having excessive levels of sodium, fat, and calories, which may be unhealthy for those who have high blood pressure, heart disease, or other medical concerns. Critics might also point out that Cincinnati chili is more of a sauce or topping than a true chilli because it lacks the same ingredients and characteristics as traditional chili.


It’s vital to keep in mind that everyone has different tastes, therefore Cincinnati chilli may not be everyone’s favourite food. It is still a popular dish in the Midwest and is still relished by many.

Frequently Asked Questions(FAQ)

What is special about Cincinnati chili?

Residents of Cincinnati prefer their chilli served as a topping for hot dogs, freshly made noodles, or spaghetti. Although not exclusively, traditional red chilli frequently contains cumin, paprika, garlic powder, and onion powder. Contrarily, Cincinnati chilli has a sweeter edge thanks to the addition of spices including cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, and allspice. Cocoa powder is also used in several recipes.

Why is it called Cincinnati chili?

Chili con carne was already widely available in Cincinnati when our Greek-Macedonian chefs started cooking their distinctive dish. They decided to call the new meal chilli because “the beef sauce we created back home” wouldn’t fly.

Is Cincinnati chili real chili?

No as Cincinnati chilli is not chilli by any fair definition.

Does Cincinnati chili meat?

The main ingredients in real Cincinnati chilli are ground beef, tomato paste, and aromatic herbs and spices like cumin and cinnamon. It has a sweeter flavour profile than Texas chilli and is typically served with spaghetti or hot dogs.

How long does Cincinnati chili last in the fridge?

Storage: You may keep leftovers in the fridge for up to 4 days if they are covered. Cool, portion into freezer-safe containers, label, and date food for freezing. Overnight in the refrigerator, defrost

Disclaimer: This blog solely contains information that is designed for education and awareness, including but not limited to text, pictures, photographs, and other content. Nothing on this site should be used as a replacement for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or care. Before relying on the information, it is always advisable to speak with a doctor. For any potential risk to any visitor or reader, neither the author nor This Blog accepts any liability.

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