🥘 Cincinnati Chili

Cincy Camp Night Shoot
There are just some things that are sacred and not to be messed with . . . a Chicago hotdog, NYC pizza, Nebraska's Runza (it's a thing), and Cincinnati Chili. So, when I found out we were heading to The Queen City and having a special guest from The B-Line join us with bourbon, I had to pay homage to the Cincy Region with a nice, big pot of Cincinnati Chili. I scoured the internet for the best and most authentic recipe I could find and this is what I found:


2 onions, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons chili powder
2 tablespoons sweet paprika
1 ½ teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground allspice
½ teaspoon ground coriander
1 ½ teaspoons ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
¼ teaspoon ground cloves
1 bay leaf
Salt & Pepper
2 tablespoons unsweetened chocolate, chopped
1 tablespoons cider or red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1 6oz can of tomato sauce
1 cup diced tomatoes
1 ½ pound ground beef (I use bison)

Heat oil in heavy pot.
Add half chopped onions and garlic, cook until soft.
Add all spices, cook until fragrant.
Add beef and season with salt.
Add tomato sauce and dices tomatoes, bay leaf and 1 ½ cups of water. Simmer uncovered.
Add chocolate, vinegar, and Worcestershire. Cook until thickened (but still soupy).
Cook pot of spaghetti. 

Here's the official guide to the “ways” to serve Cincinnati chili:
2-Way: Spaghetti, Chili.
3-Way: Spaghetti, Chili, Cheddar Cheese.
4-Way: Spaghetti, Chili, Cheddar Cheese, Onions OR Beans.
5-Way aka “the works”: Spaghetti, Chili, Cheddar Cheese, Onions AND Beans.

We paired the meal with a Caramel Apple Cocktail, courtesy of Amy Tobin with The B-Line. The B-line is Northern Kentucky's self-guided bourbon tour comprised of 7 craft distilleries, 9 bourbon bars, all of which must have at least 100 bourbons in stock, and 9 bourbon-centric restaurants.

Carmel Apple Cocktail
It's a lot of different ingredients than I've ever put in my chili, but after making it, I can see why it's so special to the people of Cincinnati. You'll have to watch "The Cincy Region" episode to find out how I did!