Slow Cooker Cincinnati Chili

When I moved to the mid-west from the east coast I heard about this thing called ‘Cincinnati chili’. My reaction to the idea of spaghetti and chili was one of shock. Cinnamon? What? Is that an accident? That was all before I tried it. I’ve learned to be less judgmental about new foods since then, and Cincinnati chili is one reason why. I love it. It’s perfect, and not just on cold mid-west winter days either.
Slow Cooker Cincinnati ChiliMaking Cincinnati chili in a slow cooker is easy and tasty and I’d make it again and again. Now, if I happen to be in Cincinnati, I’m heading to The Chili Hut, my hands-down favorite food truck.

I’ve been lucky enough to have the chili from the Chili Hut several times, from the parking lot at Jungle Jim’s in Fairfield Ohio to the huge food truck rally in West Chester Ohio. You can have your chili as many ways as you want from the Chili Hut. The chili is perfectly seasoned and has the best texture. It’s beyond yummy!

Also try my grilled Cincinnati hot dog. For a hearty slow-cooker dish, make a batch of Chet’s Trucker Stew.

Slow Cooker Cincinnati Chili

Making Cincinnati chili in a slow cooker is easy and tasty and I’d make it again and again. 
Course Mainer
Cuisine American
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 8 hours
Total Time 8 hours 15 minutes
Servings 8 servings
Calories 241kcal
Author Mike


For the chili

  • 1 1/2 pounds ground beef lean
  • 2 medium onions chopped
  • 1/2 cup celery chopped
  • 1 tablespoon garlic minced
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried basil
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 14 1/2 ounce diced tomatoes
  • 1 8 ounce tomato sauce
  • 1/2 cup water

For serving

  • Classic: Serve chili hot.
  • 2-way: Serve chili over hot cooked spaghetti.
  • 3-way: Serve chili 2-ways topped with shredded cheddar cheese
  • 4-way: Serve chili 3-ways topped with chopped white onion.
  • 5-way: Serve chili 4-ways topped with warmed kidney beans.


For the chili

  • Crumble the beef into a large skillet over medium-high heat.
  • Add the onion and celery and cook until the meat is done.
  • Drain off any excess fat and pour the meat mixture into your slow cooker.
  • In a large bowl, combine the remaining chili ingredients then pour over the meat.
  • Stir, cover and cook on low for 8 hours.
  • Serve as desired.


Calories: 241kcal | Carbohydrates: 5g | Protein: 16g | Fat: 18g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 60mg | Sodium: 246mg | Potassium: 359mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 769IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 55mg | Iron: 3mg

Nutritional values are approximate.

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