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Tex-Mex Chili with a Cincinnati Twist

My husband grew up in Cincinnati, where chili is served over spaghetti, and I grew up in the South. This family-pleaser is a mingling of both worlds…and a great way to make a meal go further. —Stephanie Rabbitt-Schappacher, West Chester, Ohio
  • Total Time
    Prep: 35 min. Cook: 6 hours
  • Makes
    7 servings


  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 cup chopped sweet onion
  • 1/4 cup chili powder
  • 2 tablespoons ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons baking cocoa
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 3/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 can (16 ounces) chili beans, undrained
  • 1 can (16 ounces) kidney beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 can (14-1/2 ounces) diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1 can (8 ounces) tomato sauce
  • 1 medium tomato, chopped
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and chopped
  • Hot cooked spaghetti
  • Optional toppings: oyster crackers, hot pepper sauce, chopped sweet onion and shredded cheddar cheese


  • In a large skillet, cook beef and onion over medium heat until meat is no longer pink; drain. Stir in the chili powder, cumin, cocoa, cinnamon, cayenne and salt.
  • Transfer to a 4- or 5-qt. slow cooker. Stir in the chili beans, kidney beans, diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, tomato and jalapeno.
  • Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours or until heated through. Serve over spaghetti. Garnish with toppings of your choice.
Nutrition Facts
1 cup: 288 calories, 9g fat (3g saturated fat), 40mg cholesterol, 767mg sodium, 34g carbohydrate (6g sugars, 11g fiber), 22g protein.

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Average Rating:
  • LPHJKitchen
    Aug 5, 2019

    Very unique recipe as I've never made chili with cinnamon or cocoa but definitely a winner! I didn't have spaghetti so I just tossed the chill with some penne pasta and topped with cheese. Loved it all together!

  • Cheryl304
    Sep 16, 2013

    This sounds wonderful and I love your new web layout, so much easier to use and up to date!!!

  • Ab0628
    Mar 25, 2011

    I liked this and think it would be fun to serve for a game-day party. I would use about half of the chili powder, cumin, cocoa, and cinnamon next time; it was a little too spicy for us. I used about 1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes instead of the cayenne. I put a few chopped green peppers in. I did not put the tomato or the jalapeno in but had chopped tomatoes, jarred jalapenos, shredded cheese, onions, and oyster crackers as toppings. My husband also topped his with sour cream.

  • gilliaml
    Feb 21, 2011

    This one was a hit with my husband... even though he was skeptical when I told him there was cinnamon and cocoa in the ingredients. When I arrived home from work and opened the lid on the crock pot, the aroma was nothing short of spectacular! The taste, however, is the best part... bold & spicy... great served over whole wheat spaghetti!