Iconic Cincinnati Chili Recipe: This Easy Ground Beef Chili Recipe Has Bragging Rights by 30Seconds Food

Beef Pasta Dinner
a year ago

Iconic Cincinnati Chili Recipe: This Easy Ground Beef Chili Recipe Has Bragging Rights

Named one of the 20 most iconic foods in America by the Smithsonian in 2013, Cincinnati chili is as American as apple pie. Cincinnati chili is red ground beef chili that's seasoned with spices and a little chocolate. The result is a flavor-packed chili with just a little sweetness. If you haven't tried this iconic chili recipe, we think you need to ASAP!

This rich beef chili has more toppings than your standard chili, and it's served over noodles. This easy Cincinnati chili recipe can be served over spaghetti with cheese, chopped onions and oyster crackers. It's also great spooned over hot dogs. And yes, it was invented in Cincinnati, Ohio!

Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 1 to 3 hours
Total Time: 1 hour and 10 minutes to 3 hours and 10 minutes
Servings: 8


  • 2 pounds lean ground beef 
  • 1 can (6 ounces) tomato paste
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 can (8 ounces) tomato sauce
  • 1 onion, minced 
  • 5 - 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon allspice
  • dash of ground cloves
  • ground cayenne, to taste
  • 2 teaspoons sea salt
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 ounce unsweetened chocolate (optional)


  • spaghetti noodles, cooked
  • shredded cheddar cheese
  • chopped onion
  • oyster crackers
  • 1 can (15 ounces) kidney beans, drained, rinsed and warmed (optional)

Here's how to make it: 

  1. Put the tomato paste into a large soup pot and cook, stirring, about 2 minutes. 
  2. Add all the remaining ingredients except the chocolate (if using) and mix well. Bring to a gentle simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, about 1 to 3 hours, depending on how thick you want the chili and how much time you have. 
  3. Add the chocolate and stir until combined. Serve with desired garnishes.

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Recipe cooking times and servings are approximate. Need to convert cooking and baking measurements? Here are some kitchen conversion charts. Here's how to submit your recipes to 30Seconds.

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Soup Pots $10 & Up
Tomato Paste $1 & Up
Tomato Sauce $1 & Up
Chili Powder $3 & Up
Ground Cumin $2 & Up
Ground Cinnamon $2 & Up
Allspice $4 & Up
Cloves $4 & Up
Cayenne $2 & Up
Oyster Crackers $2 & Up
Kidney Beans $2 & Up

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Donna John
I used to eat Cincinnati chili years and years ago in St. Louis. I've never made it at home! That is about to change. :-) Sounds delicious!!
What an amazing recipe 😋
Love Cincinnati chili. I grew up in the area and had it at many family get-togethers. The only real criticism is that absolutely none of the recipes on 30Seconds have a printable recipe. You either print the entire article or let it go. I learned a looking time ago that saving a bookmark is pointless. Might as well being dog-earing a page in a magazine and then putting it on a shelf with 200 other magazines. It's like throwing it away.

It's a shame because I would live to make this but I'm obviously not doing it tonight so whatever. I just need to stop looking at recipes. This is pointless.
Elisa Schmitz
Hi Jth40515 ! Thanks for your comment. Have you tried the "print" icon at the top of the recipe? It should provide a printer-friendly version of the recipe, that you can then print to your computer. Another idea is to add it to a "collection" that you create on 30Seconds (click "collection" at the top of the recipe). That way, you're saving your favorite recipes in collections you create (such as dinner ideas, desserts, etc.). Hope one of these solutions works for you. Thank you for being part of our community! Donna John

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