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Cincinnati Style Chili Recipe

We are in between meals being provided for our family, which is fine because I have felt pretty well the last few days.  Last night I decided to make a big pot of chili for dinner.  The weather has been a bit cooler, and I knew it would reheat well for the next couple days.
I looked at All Recipes for an authentic Cincinnati Style Chili Recipe and found one that sounded great! It had all kinds of great spices in it, and a square of baking chocolate!   I made it and really, really liked it.  It has a great depth of flavor and is a recipe I will for sure make again.  We served it over whole grain noodles and sprinkles some cheese on top.
For the original, authentic recipe, click here and it will take you to the All Recipe website.  I changed 3 things…I added beans, only used 1/8 cup chili powder, and browned the beef instead of boiling it.

Cincinnati Style Chili Recipe

2 pounds lean ground beef
1 quart water, **more or less depending on consistency you would like
2 tablespoons olive oil
1-2 cans chili beans (or kidney beans)
2 onions, finely chopped
1 (15 ounce) can tomato sauce
2 tablespoons vinegar
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
4 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 (1 ounce) square unsweetened chocolate
1/4 cup chili powder
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
5 whole cloves
5 whole allspice berries
1 bay leaf



  1. Heat olive oil in a large pan, add onions.  Cook until translucent.  Add the garlic and ground beef.  Cook until browned.  Drain if needed. 
  2. Stir in water, tomato sauce, vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, chocolate, chili powder, salt, cumin, cinnamon, cayenne pepper, cloves, allspice berries, and bay leaf. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to a simmer, and cook, stirring occasionally, for 3 hours. Add water if necessary to prevent the chili from burning.


My local health food store sells spices in bulk, so I was able to go buy 5 allspice berries for a quarter, and 5 cloves for pennies.  I highly recommend finding a store that allows you to buy spices in bulk.  It is amazing the difference in taste when spices are fresh!  Enjoy.

Sorry I don’t have an “after” picture.  I was pooped after dinner and spaced it!

Do you have a favorite chili recipe you want to share??