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Jan 27, 2002 05:42 PM

cincinnati 5 way chili recipe?

  • j

Looking for an authentic recipe for the 5 way chili served at Skyline & other places in Cincinnati - found a ton of recipes on the web, but looking for one that someone has actually made & found to taste like the real thang. thanks

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  1. I've had it and, while I haven't made Skyline type, I do know the "secret" ingredient to Cinci chili is cinnamon--creates a sweeter, yet spicy dish. Totally unique taste compared to our very finely diced, really chili coneys here in Detroit. Secret is, I've been told, is addition of finely minced beef heart in the chili..

    1. I just e-mailed an old friend from Cincy who makes excellent chili, but I don't know if he'll cough up the recipe. I'll let you know.

      1. Oh God, baby Pablum emesis, and, sadly, Cincinnati's only culinary claim-to-fame. And forget Maisonette (AAA 19-star, 522-year, overpriced and forgettable menu, BUT remarkable service) and Graeter's (who cares?)....Bleh.

        1. While I can't stand by it's authenticity (furthest east I've been in the US is Iowa) I've enjoyed the following recipe. I listed two cooking methods, myself I prefer to brown and drain the meat, onion, garlic first (less greasy)...but my understanding is that the proper method would be the second as the beef is not supposed to clump together but be very fine.
          I fine tune as necessary or as whimsy strikes...I sometimes crank up the cinnamon, add cloves or a pinch of cardamom, a little more chocolate - it's fairly forgiving.
          After cooking it's best to cool and refrigerate overnight. Skim the fat, re-heat and serve in your preferred manner.
          For those that don't know, the top-notch way ('5-Way')to enjoy this is included at the bottom as well. Hope you find some use for this.
          Again, don't know about the 'authenticity' of this, but I sure enjoy eating it -- seeya

          1½ lbs. ground beef
          2 onions, chopped
          2 cloves garlic (minced-method 1, whole-method 2)
          ½ tsp. ground cumin
          4 Tbsp. (or more) chili powder
          2 bay leaves
          1 tsp. cinnamon
          1 tsp. allspice
          ½ tsp. oregano
          2 Tbsp. cocoa (or ½ oz unsweetened chocolate)
          1½ tsp. Worcestershire
          1 Tbsp. vinegar
          1 8-oz. can tomato sauce
          1½ cups water
          salt and pepper to taste
          cayenne to taste (optional)

          Lightly brown meat with the onions and garlic. Drain if desired. When almost done add cumin and chili powder and cook a minute more. Add rest of ingredients and simmer for at least an hour. Toss the bay leaves.

          No browning or pre-cooking of any ingredients - -
          Just combine everything in a large pan or crock pot, and cook slowly for 4 - 5 hours, covered. Toss bay leaves and garlic.

          To serve:
          You need your chili (heated), a can of kidney beans, box of spaghetti, chopped onion and a kingly pile of oval plate or pasta bowl works well to serve this.
          Rinse and drain beans - heat and keep warm.
          Cook spaghetti until al dente - it should still have a liiitle bite to it, no mush - - lay out a serving on a plate (2-3 ounces or so).
          Cover the pasta well with chili.
          Spoon a sparse layer of kidney beans on the chili. Sprinkle onions, to taste, over the beans.
          Spread a nice mound of grated cheese to cover everything. Don't skimp w/ the cheese - when I'm done building this plate it mostly looks like I'm eating a big plate of cheese. I like to give a slight touch (30-40 seconds, or so) in the microwave to get it nice and melted.
          Serve w/ oyster crackers if you like.

          1. b
            Brandon Nelson


            Isn't "5 way" ordering your chili with the works? I thought it went like this.

            2 way- chili + spaghetti
            3 way- 2 way + cheddar cheese
            4 way- 3 way + chopped onion
            5 way - 4 way + beans