Cincinnati chili was created in 1922 by a Greek restaurateur who embellished a standard American all-meat chili by adding sweet spices, such as cinnamon and allspice. He offered his customers the chili served a variety of ways, including the now well-known "five-way" chili—served on a mound of spaghetti and topped with such things as beans, chopped onions, and shredded cheese. In this baked version of Cincinnati chili, most of the components of five-way chili are combined and cooked together in a casserole.


10 ounces spaghetti

2 teaspoons olive oil

1 cup chopped onions

1 cup chopped green bell pepper

2 teaspoons minced garlic

1/2 pound extra-lean ground beef

1/2 pound ground turkey breast

2 tablespoons chili powder

1 teaspoon cinnamon

2 cups no-salt-added tomato sauce

1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

3/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 cup shredded reduced-fat Cheddar cheese


1. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Spray a 9 x 13-inch baking dish with nonstick cooking spray. In a large pot of boiling water, cook the spaghetti according to package directions. Drain.

2. Meanwhile, in a large nonstick skillet, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the onions, bell pepper, and garlic, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is tender, about 10 minutes.

3. Stir in the beef, turkey, chili powder, and cinnamon, and cook, stirring, for 1 minute to coat the meat. Transfer the meat mixture to a large bowl and add the tomato sauce, Worcestershire sauce, and salt. Add the drained spaghetti, tossing to combine.

4. Transfer the mixture to the baking dish. Cover with foil and bake for 20 minutes, or until the chili is piping hot. Remove the foil, sprinkle with the Cheddar, and bake 5 minutes, or until the cheese is melted. Makes 6 servings

Nutrition Facts

per serving
calories 379
total fat 10g
saturated fat 3.2g
cholesterol 46mg
dietary fiber 4g
carbohydrate 48g
protein 24g
sodium 438mg

Good source of: niacin, potassium, selenium, vitamin B12, vitamin B6, vitamin C, zinc

Kitchen Tip

Most supermarkets carry both "ground turkey" and "ground turkey breast." When it doesn't specify breast, it is a combination of light and dark meat and usually includes some turkey skin. Ground turkey breast is light meat and is much lower in fat. For example, 3 ounces of ground turkey breast has 0.6 grams of fat, versus 7 grams for ground turkey. If your market doesn't carry ground breast, you can grind turkey breast yourself in a food processor. Just start with chunks of turkey breast (cutlet works well) and pulse the processor on and off until the meat is fine-textured but not mushy.

Many of the recipes in this book contain off-the-shelf foods to help keep recipe prep effort to a minimum – a benefit for your arthritic hands. However, some foods – like canned beans – can hike up sodium levels. If you are carefully watching your sodium, be sure to read this before preparing this recipe: Sodium Intake and Salt in Recipes

From The Johns Hopkins Cookbook Library: Recipes for Arthritis Health, edited by John A. Flynn, M.D., F.A.C.P., F.A.C.R. and Lora Brown Wilder, Sc.D., M.S., R.D.

Publication Review By: the Editorial Staff at

Published: 01 Nov 2011

Last Modified: 07 Apr 2015