Spaghetti Squash Cincinnati Chili

This is a twist on Cincinnati "five-way" chili: spaghetti and chili plus cheddar cheese, onion and kidney beans.

Total Time:
50 min
Prep:
20 min
Cook:
30 min

Yield:
4 servings
Level:
Easy

Ingredients
  • 1 medium spaghetti squash (about 3 pounds)
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 pound ground beef chuck
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 28 -ounce can diced tomatoes
  • 1 15 -ounce can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • Oyster crackers and shredded cheddar cheese, for topping
Directions
  • Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Halve and seed the spaghetti squash; roast, then scrape into strands (see Cook's Note).

  • Meanwhile, put half of the onion in a small bowl and cover with cold water; set aside. Heat the vegetable oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the remaining onion and the garlic. Cook, stirring occasionally, until slightly softened, about 3 minutes. Add the beef, tomato paste, chili powder, cumin, paprika, cinnamon, oregano, cayenne, 1 teaspoon salt and a few grinds of black pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the beef is browned, about 7 minutes.

  • Add the tomatoes and 1 1/2 cups water to the beef mixture. Increase the heat to medium high and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium low and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the chili is slightly thickened, about 20 minutes; season with salt and black pepper.

  • Drain the reserved onion; pat dry. Top each serving of chili with the spaghetti squash, kidney beans, onion, oyster crackers and cheese.

  • Photograph by Johnny Miller

How to Roast Spaghetti Squash

Trim both ends with a chef's knife, then position the squash upright and halve lengthwise.

Scoop out the seeds with a spoon and discard.

Place the squash halves cut-side down on a baking sheet.

Roast at 400 degrees F until tender, 25 minutes; let cool slightly, Scrape the squash into strands with a fork. Discard the skin.


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