Cincinnati Chili

Cincinnati Chili

8 Reviews
From: EatingWell Magazine, March/April 2012

Cincinnati has a unique spin on chili—they serve it over spaghetti. Typically the chili is just made with meat, no beans, but we couldn't resist adding beans to add fiber and nutrients. Serve with sliced cucumber and red onion with lemon juice and olive oil.

Ingredients 4 servings

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  • 8 ounces whole-wheat spaghetti
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 pound lean (90% or leaner) ground beef
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 15-ounce can crushed tomatoes, preferably fire-roasted
  • 1 14-ounce can reduced-sodium beef broth
  • 1 15-ounce can kidney beans, rinsed
  • ½ cup chopped fresh cilantro, divided


  • Active

  • Ready In

  1. Cook pasta in a large pot of boiling water until just tender, 8 to 10 minutes or according to package directions. Drain and set aside.
  2. Meanwhile, heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add beef, onion, chili powder and cinnamon. Cook, stirring and breaking up lumps with a spoon, until the onion is beginning to soften, about 5 minutes. Stir in tomatoes and broth; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a lively simmer and cook, stirring frequently, until the sauce is thickened, about 15 minutes.
  3. Stir beans and all but 2 tablespoons cilantro into the sauce. Cook, stirring, until heated through, about 1 minute more. Serve the chili over the pasta. Garnish with the remaining cilantro.

Nutrition information

  • Serving size: about 1¼ cups pasta & 1¼ cups chili
  • Per serving: 376 calories; 6 g fat(1 g sat); 17 g fiber; 71 g carbohydrates; 17 g protein; 103 mcg folate; 3 mg cholesterol; 9 g sugars; 0 g added sugars; 1,566 IU vitamin A; 13 mg vitamin C; 106 mg calcium; 5 mg iron; 754 mg sodium; 876 mg potassium
  • Nutrition Bonus: Vitamin A (31% daily value), Iron (28% dv), Folate (26% dv), Vitamin C (22% dv)
  • Carbohydrate Servings:
  • Exchanges: 4 starch, 2 vegetable, 4 lean meat, 1 fat

Reviews 8

October 17, 2013
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By: HealthyGEO
Deliceious I followed this recipe using a hot chili powder, 2 cloves of garlic minced, and 2 green jalapeno peppers sliced because I happened to have them. It didn't matter to me whether this was authentic Cincinnati Chili or not. It was absolutely delicious as it was. I'm not sure how healthy ground beef is but I managed to find a good quality 95% lean ground beef. I'm sure ground turkey would also work well. I also sprinkled on some reduced fat sharp cheddar cheese. Yum!!! Will make again for sure! Pros: Easy and flavourful Cons: Ground beef
March 18, 2013
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By: EatingWell User
Different but Good Here in Texas, chili is a different thing than this. This was more of a cross between chili and spaghetti sauce. Now, having said that, it was still good and we ate every bit of it! My son who doesn't like spicy liked it very much. Pros: Quick, Easy, Cheap Cons: NULL
October 26, 2012
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By: Jjama Llama
Who cares if it's authentic? It's probably not the exact same thing you get at whatever your favorite local diner is, but if that's what you want, that's what you should get instead of complaining about a recipe you don't even intend to make!. As for me, I've never had this style of chili before, and I thought it was great. I did add some garlic and cumin to the other seasonings for more flavor and topped it with a bit of sharp cheddar. Mine was nice and thick, and yours will be too if you let it cook for long enough. This will become a weeknight staple in my house! Pros: Easy, quick, tasty Cons: Not enough seasoning as written
April 17, 2012
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By: EatingWell User
So so Lacks the zing of real chili. Was runny. Great over spagetti noodles though! Pros: Easy to make Cons: Kind of bland
March 08, 2012
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By: EatingWell User
I'm from the Cincinnati area and I can understand the comments that this dish is different from typical Cincinnati chili... But, in some regards I think its better. It's certainly a lot lighter and less greasy than what one gets in one of the typical Cincinnati Chili joints. I thought it was just great!
March 08, 2012
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By: EatingWell User
Fantastic Take on Cincinnati Style Chili Being from Ohio and now a resident of New Mexico I, of course, had to make a few tweaks to this recipe. 1 Since we don't eat beef I used ground turkey breast instead. I happened to have some homemade turkey broth in the freezer so I used that in place of the beef broth. To up the umami I added a touch of soy sauce to the mixture after the tomatoes and broth went in. 2. I used dry kidney beans rather than canned. Soaked overnight and slow cooked in the Crockpot for 18 hours. Easy peasy since the Crockpot does all the work and WAY more flavor than canned. 3. I ground up 4 New Mexico chilies in the blender and used that in place of the chili powder. 4. Finally, having spent a fair amount of time in Cincinnati... I just couldn't see this without a little cheese. So I added a little grated extra-sharp cheddar. And ya know what? The girl from Ohio and the guy from New Mexico (who swears chili doesn't have beans in it) both loved this dish! Pros: Fresh, easy to prepare
March 08, 2012
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By: EatingWell User
not the real thing Cincinnati style chili is NOT just any kind of chili over spaghetti. the chili itself has its own blend of unique spices - and cilantro definitely isn't it. Cincinnati style chili includes cocoa, cloves, cinnamon, and vinegar, amongst other things. It has a unique flavor to it unlike what everyone expects chili to taste like. All this recipe is is some kind of regular chili. Pros: i am sure it's delicious. Cons: not authentic cincy chili
March 03, 2012
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By: EatingWell User
Not truely Cincinnati Chili Well, really I ahve anot tried it yet but there are two major differences in your recipie. You include clinatro and do not ahve any chocolate (cocoa) in the recipe. As a native of the area there are seveal ways to have chili: chili over spagetti, chili, spagetti and cheese chili, spagetti cheese and (beans or onion) chili, spagetti,cheese, beans and onion When I make this don't think I'll add the cliantro.
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