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Cincinnati Dog


Cincinnati Dog: Cincinnati Chili, Cheddar Cheese and Onions

Cincinnati-style chili—mildly spiced and very meaty—makes an ideal hot dog topper. Keep some in the freezer and pull it out any time you need a fix.

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Cincinnati Dog

Makes 8 | Total Time: More Than 60 Mins


Hot Dogs

Cincinnati Chili

  • 2 pounds lean ground beef
  • 4 cups cold water
  • 2 yellow onions, finely chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 cups crushed tomato
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/4 cup chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves


Hot Dogs

  1. Grill hot dogs to desired doneness.
  2. Arrange hot dogs in toasted buns and top each with chili, grated cheese, and onions.

Cincinnati Chili

Traditionally served over spaghetti, Cincinnati-style chili gets its deep flavor from cocoa powder, cinnamon, cloves, and a long, gentle simmer. Like most stewed foods, this chili tastes better the day after you make it, so plan ahead (it also makes it easier to remove and discard any fat that rises to the top).

Makes about 8 cups

  1. Combine the ground beef and water in a heavy 4-quart pot.
  2. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, stirring until the ground beef has broken up into very small, even pieces.
  3. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 30 minutes.
  4. Add the remaining ingredients and continue to simmer, uncovered, over low heat, until chili is thickened and deeply flavored, about 3 hours.
  5. Stir the chili from time to time, to keep it from sticking to the bottom of the pot. Add a drop of water if chili becomes too thick.
  6. Remove from heat, discard bay leaf, and let chili cool completely.
  7. Refrigerate the chili, covered, overnight.
  8. Before reheating and serving, remove the layer of fat from the top and discard.
  9. Reheat the chili over medium-low heat until hot.