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Cincinnati Chili

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Cincinnati Chili

Cincinnati Chili

Jessica Braider
The spices give this simple Cincinnati chili healthy dinner recipe such a rich flavor that it has become a staple in our home. You can freeze half if you have a small family and don’t want to be eating chili all week.
4 from 1 vote
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course Main Dish
Cuisine American
Servings 8 servings


  • 2 lbs. lean ground beef, chicken, turkey, or meatless crumbles
  • 1/2 yellow onion diced
  • 3 Tbsp. chili powder
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 3/4 tsp. ground cloves
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 tsp. sugar
  • 28 oz. whole tomatoes with their liquid
  • 28 – 30 oz. canned red kidney beans with their liquid, preferably without added sugar
  • 1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese for serving (optional)


  • In a large stockpot over medium heat, sauté the meat and onions until the meat is nearly browned (if you are using meatless crumble, add it with the liquid ingredients and let it simmer-no need to brown it).
  • When the meat is cooked about halfway through, add the chili powder, cinnamon, garlic powder and cloves (reduce or increase all the spices if you like a milder or bolder chili), and let it continue to cook for 2 – 3 more minutes until the meat is no longer pink.
  • Add the remaining ingredients except the cheese. Simmer the chili gently for at least 15 minutes and up to 1 hour, stirring occasionally.
  • Serve it immediately topped with the cheese (optional) (the chili’s also great over noodles or rice), or refrigerate it for up to 3 days or freeze it for up to 3 months.

Slow Cooker Directions:

  • You will need at least a 5 liter slow cooker to prepare this recipe. Combine all ingredients except the cheese in the slow cooker and cook on low for 8-10 hours or on high for 4-5 hours. Serve as directed.


Scramble Flavor Booster:  For a bolder flavor, add 1 1/2 – 2 times the amount of chili powder, cinnamon, cloves and garlic powder.  For even more spice, add chopped fresh or canned jalapeno peppers or canned chipotle peppers in adobo sauce (pickled jalapenos with a wonderful smoky flavor found in supermarkets’ international aisle or in Latino markets) when you add the other spices.
Tip: If you have a free moment (a rarity, I know), you can cook up 1 pound of dried beans and store them in the freezer in 1 1/2 – 2-cup increments, which will give you the same amount as a can of beans. It’s an economical way to have the beans ready to go for recipes like this one.
Video: Watch Jessica make it on Facebook Live!
Nutritional Information Per Serving (% based upon daily values): Calories 400, Total Fat: 10g, 15%; Saturated Fat: 4g, 17%; Cholesterol: 75mg, 25%; Sodium: 250mg, 11%; Total Carbohydrate: 52g, 17%; Dietary Fiber: 8g, 33%; Sugar: 6g; Protein: 27g
Want to make beans from scratch? Check out our post on how to make beans in the slow cooker or Instant Pot pressure cooker.
Like this recipe? Check out The Scramble's family-friendly meal plans to see just how simple getting dinner on the table can be!
Keyword 30 Minutes (or less) Meals, Dairy-Free, Dinner, Fall, Freezer-Friendly, Gluten-Free, Kid-Friendly, Kosher, Main Dish, Make-Ahead, Nut-Free, Slow Cooker, Soups & Stews, Vegan, Vegetarian, Winter
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
4 from 1 vote (1 rating without comment)

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