Cincinnati Chilli Five Ways

Cincinnati chilli five ways

  • serves 4
  • Easy

This recipe from Felicity Cloake is chilli con carne, but not as we know it. Thought to owe its unusual Mediterranean spicing to a homesick Greek restaurateur, the finely ground meat is simmered low and slow until it melts in the mouth and served over spaghetti. Order it ‘five ways’ and you’ll get beans, cheese and onions on top, too.


Try this Cincinnati chilli or check out our easy chilli con carnevegetarian chilli, vegan chilli and more chilli recipes.



  • beef mince 500g
  • olive oil
  • garlic 3 cloves, finely chopped
  • bay leaf 1
  • chilli powder 1/2 – 1 tsp
  • ground cinnamon 2 tsp
  • dried oregano 1 tsp
  • ground allspice 1 tsp
  • ground cumin 1/2 tsp
  • tomato purée 5 tbsp
  • light beef stock 750ml
  • cocoa powder 2 tbsp
  • Worcestershire sauce 1 tbsp
  • red wine vinegar 1 tbsp


  • spaghetti 300g
  • kidney beans 400g tin, rinsed and drained
  • cheddar 100g, grated
  • spring onion 4, chopped


  • Step 1

    Put the beef in a food processor and pulse until finely ground (you can also use a stick blender or a sharp knife if you prefer).

  • Step 2

    Heat 2 tbsp oil in a casserole over a medium heat, then gently fry the garlic, herbs and spices for a couple of minutes, stirring regularly, until fragrant. Meanwhile, mix the tomato purée with a little stock to make a loose paste, then add to the pan along with the remaining stock, 250ml water and the beef.

  • Step 3

    Bring to a simmer, breaking up any lumps, then simmer for 20 minutes. Meanwhile, whisk the cocoa into the Worcestershire sauce and vinegar to make a paste.

  • Step 4

    Stir the cocoa paste into the pan and simmer gently for about 3 hours until thick, adding more water if it seems to be getting too dry. Season.

  • Step 5

    When you’re ready to serve, cook the spaghetti in a large pan of salted water. Heat the beans in a small pan with a splash of water and season. Divide the spaghetti between 4 bowls and top with chilli, warmed beans, cheddar and onions.

Nutritional Information

  • Kcals 829
  • Fat 38g
  • Saturates 16.2g
  • Carbs 65.2g
  • Sugars 5.6g
  • Fibre 12.5g
  • Protein 50.2g
  • Salt 1.4g