Cincinnati Chili Recipe


The Cincinnati Chili Recipe has made Cincinnati, Ohio famous as being the “Chili Capitol of the World”. It has more chili parlors (restaurants) per capita than any other city in the world!

This “unique”, fine textured chili sauce is actually a Greek Spaghetti sauce. The Cincinnati Chili Recipe was refined and marketed in Cincinnati by members of the large Greek population who settled in Cincinnati.

Founded in 1949 by Greek immigrant Nicholas Lambrinides, the first Skyline Chili parlor is named for the view of Cincinnati's skyline that Lambrinides could see from his first restaurant (which has since been demolished), opened in the section of town now known as Price Hill.

Perfect to make a couple of days ahead of time. Store in the fridge in a crock pot ready to put on low to warm up the day of your shower!


  • 1 quart water
  • 2 medium onions, grate fine
  • 2 8-ounce cans tomato sauce
  • 5 whole allspice
  • ½ teaspoon red pepper
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin seed
  • 4 Tablespoons chili powder
  • ½ ounce bitter chocolate
  • 2 pounds ground beef
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 Tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 large bay leaf, whole
  • 5 whole cloves
  • 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 ½ teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
Add ground beef to water in 4 quart pot; with no heat on yet, stir until beef separates to a fine texture. Then boil slowly for half an hour stirring frequently to keep fine texture.

Add all other ingredients. Stir to blend, bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer uncovered for about 3 hours. Last hour, pot may be covered after desired consistency is reached.

Chili should be refrigerated overnight so that the fat can be lifted from top before reheating (not necessary with leaner ground beef).

Serve it in one of the following traditional styles:

  • Chili Plain
  • Chili and Spaghetti
  • 3 way - chili, spaghetti and finely shredded cheddar cheese
  • 4 way - chili, spaghetti, cheddar and chopped onions
  • 5 way - chili, spaghetti, cheddar, onions and pinto beans
  • Coney Island (Cheese Coney)- a frankfurter in a bun with a dab of yellow mustard, topped with chili, cheese and onions.

Tip: Serve chili in a crock pot on warm or low setting.

Return from Cincinnati Chili Recipe For Your Baby Shower to Baby Shower Food Ideas

Return from Cincinnati Chili Recipe For Your Baby Shower to Unique Baby Shower Gifts and Planning Ideas

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