Camp Washington Chili 3-way
Camp Washington Chili 3-way

In Cincinnati USA, chili is done differently. In place of chunks of meat and sizeable beans, you’ll get savory soupiness and creative accoutrements like spaghetti, hot dogs and mustard. In place of an overtly tomato-y base, you’ll taste hints of cinnamon, cloves, allspice and maybe even chocolate. Looking for the best Cincinnati chili in town? Pick your place: the classic and ubiquitous Skyline Chili, its rival chain Gold Star Chili, or maybe a mom-and-pop version like Price Hill Chili, Blue Ash Chili, Camp Washington Chili or Dixie Chili. Grab your fork; it’s chili time. 

Skyline Chili
Skyline Chili

How to Eat It

  • Heaped with cheese.
  • With a fork, not a spoon. (And cut the pasta like a casserole. Don’t twirl it around your fork!)
  • With hot sauce.
  • Poured over spaghetti, hot dog, fries, potato or burrito— never alone in a bowl.
  • With a side of oyster crackers.

Skyline Chili cheese coney
Skyline Chili cheese coney

Chili Terms 101

2-Way
Chili + spaghetti (also called chili spaghetti)

3-Way
Chili + spaghetti + cheese

4-Way
Chili + spaghetti + cheese + onions or beans

5-Way
Chili + spaghetti + cheese + onions + beans

Vegetarian 3-Way
Spaghetti + black beans + rice + cheese

Cheese Coney
Small steamed bun topped with a hot dog, mustard, chili, onions and cheese

Coney
Cheese coney minus the cheese

Chili Cheese Fries
French fries with chili and cheese

Chili Sandwich
Small steamed bun with chili, mustard and onions

Oyster Bombs
Adding a dab of hot sauce to an oyster cracker


Written by Elizabeth Miller Wood