One-Pot Wonders

Five-Way Cincinnati Chili

January  7, 2014
3 Ratings
  • Serves 6-8
Author Notes

Take a look at any recipe for Cincinnati chili and you’ll quickly notice a few oddball ingredients that sound like they just should not be there: cinnamon, chocolate, allspice, and cloves. That’s because this dish is heavily influenced by the native cuisine of the Greek immigrants who created it to serve in their own restaurants. Over the years I’ve adapted my own interpretation. Instead of spaghetti, I like to serve it with fusilli because it “holds” the chili better. Reducing it down more than traditional recipes call for concentrates the flavors. A bottle of stout gives it a special zing. This dish is definitely for the adventurous palate and a great way to warm up during the harsh winter months. —MiscMarsha

What You'll Need
  • Ingredients
  • 2 medium onions, diced
  • 2 pounds ground beef
  • 3 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne powder
  • 1 (12-ounce) bottle of stout
  • 1 (15-ounce) can tomato sauce
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 (15-ounce) cans kidney beans
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 4 cups water
  • Salt, to taste
  • For serving
  • fusilli pasta, cooked
  • sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
  • raw onion, diced
  1. In a dutch oven, saute onions over medium-high heat 2-3 minutes – just until they start to sweat.
  2. Add beef and cook until browned, about five minutes.
  3. Add cocoa powder, chili powder, cumin, cinnamon, cloves, allspice, and cayenne powder. Coat the onions and beef thoroughly and cook 1 minute.
  4. Deglaze the pan with stout. Allow it to simmer for 2-3 minutes to cook out some of the alcohol.
  5. Stir in tomato sauce, vinegar, Worcestershire sauce.
  6. Add beans, bay leaf, and garlic.
  7. Cover with water. Bring to a boil and reduce to simmer. Cook for 1 – 2 hours, until it has reduced to desired consistency. I let mine cook down until its a tad runnier than refried beans. Salt, taste, and adjust as it cooks.
  8. Serve over cooked fusilli pasta. Top with shredded sharp cheddar cheese and raw diced onions.
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1 Review

Rick T. September 15, 2018
Made this twice now. Outstanding and even more so on the second day. I followed the recipe as instructed on both occasions. The only thing I added on the second batch was born out of need for a little heat in my chili. I doubled up on the cayenne from the original recipe and added a dash of ground chipotle chili. I may never make Tex-Mex chili again.