Slow Cooker Cincinnati Chili Recipe Jeanettes Healthy Living

Slow Cooker Cincinnati Chili is packed with flavor, with a touch of cinnamon and spice. Serve topped with chopped onion and finely shredded cheddar cheese in the traditional style. I first made Cincinnati chili about four years ago after hearing several people from Cincinnati rave about it. A friend gave me a can of Cincinnati chili so I could try it, and I used that as a sample to come up with a version that was pretty close to it, but with a lot less salt.

Slow Cooker Cincinnati Chili - this is one of my kids' favorite meals - pure comfort food - perfect for back to school

It took a number of tries before I got the recipe very close to true Cincinnati chili. There are a lot of different spices and ingredients that work together to create the unique flavor profile for Cincinnati chili.

Although I could figure out the basic ingredients, it wasn’t until a Cincinnati chili enthusiast friend who is also an incredible food scientist told me the secret ingredients. He said there was probably a touch of cloves and vanilla in the chili, so I revised my original recipe and came up with this more flavorful Slow Cooker Cincinnati Chili.

This has become one of my family’s favorite recipes and my youngest son has requested it for his birthday dinner several times. Our family tradition has been that the birthday boy gets to choose whatever he wants for dinner. I remember making this Cincinnati chili with all the fixings for his 13th birthday several years ago. This chili freezes well, so don’t be afraid to make the whole recipe.

Slow Cooker Cincinnati Chili Recipe


  • 3 pounds lean ground beef I used grass-fed
  • 8 cups water
  • 1 large onion finely chopped
  • 6 cloves garlic minced
  • 3 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 4 tablespoons chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons ground black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons ground allspice
  • 1/2-3/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 8.8 ounces tomato paste Two 4.4ounce tubes
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 1 ounce unsweetened chocolate
  • 2 teaspoons sea salt
  • 4 cups water

To Serve

  • cooked spaghetti
  • fine shredded Cheddar cheese
  • chopped onions
  • cooked red kidney beans


  1. Place ground beef and water in a large pot, breaking up pieces. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low and simmer 20 minutes. Drain meat and place in food processor; pulse until meat is a fine consistency (do not overprocess). Transfer to a slow cooker; add remaining ingredients. Cook on low for 8 hours.

To serve

  1. Spoon chili on top of cooked spaghetti and top with some shredded cheese, onion and kidney beans.

Recipe Notes

Nutrition facts are for chili only.

Slow Cooker Chicken Vegetable Stew Recipe


Slow Cooker Chipotle Chili Recipe


Slow Cooker Turkey Bolognese Pasta Sauce Recipe


Slow Cooker Red Wine Short Ribs Recipe


Pressure Cooker Lentil Chili Recipe


Healthy Slow Cooker Turkey Bolognese Sauce with Spaghetti Squash Recipe


Slow Cooker Chinese Three Cup Chicken Recipe


Slow Cooker Red Wine Beef Shank Stew Recipe


Slow Cooker Lentil Smoked Ham Soup


Slow Cooker Chinese Soy Sauce Chicken Wings Recipe


Source: Jeanettes Healthy Living