Eric’s Cincinnati Style Chili with Spaghetti Noodles

Being in the Detroit area, I love a coney dog.  A beanless chili sauce poured over a hot dog, topped with diced yellow onions and mustard.  Kermit Ruffins sings, “what is New Orleans? It’s red beans and rice on a Monday, that is New Orleans.”  For me, what is Detroit?  Sitting in a Coney Island on a Saturday with two coneys and a cheese fry.  That is Detroit.  Now I’m not saying it’s a traditional Saturday meal that red beans and rice are on Mondays in New Orleans but it’s close. A good chili sauce makes or breaks a coney island here.  I’ve stopped going to restaurants for subpar sauce, I love a good chili sauce.  But what about a chili that could go on a hot dog and spaghetti noodles, and in a bowl?  There is one…

This would be considered a three-way – noodles, meat chili, and the beans. Adding cheese makes it a four-way. Onions on top… a five-way.

Gold Star Chili and Skyline Chili are about as common to Cincinnati as a McDonald’s or Burger King.  You can get a two-way to a five-way.  A two-way is noodles and chili to the five, which is noodles, chili, cheese, onions, and beans.  What makes this chili stand out is either one of the following ingredients: cinnamon, chocolate, cloves or allspice.  It’s served in a bowl with oyster crackers, on a hot dog or over spaghetti noodles.  In Michigan, there may be one Skyline, but most grocery stores may sell a frozen container of the Skyline Chili and that’s about it.  Road trips through Ohio have a stop somewhere along the way to stock up on cans of Gold Star – the restaurants sell cases of them!

The part I love most about the chili is the cinnamon.  It adds a great touch to the meal for me and a great after taste.

This is a combination of maybe three different chili recipes.  I adjust the taste as it’s simmering in the pot.  You can adjust the ingredients to your liking.  I might have gone a tad over the 1 teaspoon of the cinnamon but 1 teaspoon seemed about right.  Remember, leftover can be put over a hot dog or as a side in a bowl for the next day.   This is made almost as much as a classic spaghetti dinner at my house.  So, enjoy!


1 lbs ground beef
1 tbsp minced onion
3 cloves garlic
1 tbsp chili powder
2 cans diced tomatoes (I used one regular and 1 Rotel with green chilies), with juices
1 8oz can Rotel tomato sauce
1 15oz can red kidney beans, drained
1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
salt and pepper to taste

Brown ground beef along with onion, garlic and chili powder.  Add all the other ingredients.  Bring to a boil then simmer on low for about 10 minutes.

While you are browning the meat, cook the spaghetti noodles according to the directions.

To serve, put the noodles in bowl, top with chili, then top with shredded cheddar cheese.  You could even add chopped onions.  Enjoy!

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