We were invited to check out the new Cincinnati style vegetarian chili at Gold Star Chili. I knew there was only one way to approach it with my kids….deception. I know that sounds really bad, right?
I wanted them to try the 1st Cincinnati style vegetarian chili on the Cincinnati Chili Trail with an open mind.
If I would have told them that they were tasting vegetarian chili they would have probably wanted to stay home. All of my family members are BIG meat eaters and anytime that I’ve attempted to make a meal healthier, the first thing to go is typically the taste. They tend to mimic a gag reflex at the sound of anything healthy.
I knew that they couldn’t have any preconceived ideas before they tried it. I’ll be honest and admit I don’t typically gravitate toward vegetarian options either, which is why I’m so glad that Gold Star Chili wanted to put our taste buds to the test.
We started with a little side by side comparison of the regular and the vegetarian. My first observation was that both had a similar texture which was an achievement in itself. My second observation was that the vegetarian style was actually enjoyable, in fact, the person sitting next to me guessed the wrong bowl in a taste comparison, twice!
Next, we ordered a few other items on the menu, some regular and some vegetarian. Don’t worry, the little flag will help you tell the difference. (If you don’t want your family to notice, just remove the flag quickly) My husband said that they nailed the texture and that it didn’t have the weird aftertaste or the cardboard feel typical with vegetarian menu items.
This is a great alternative for someone craving Cincinnati style chili during the Lenten season because you don’t give up the texture or the bold flavor. Chef Ryan Miller went to great lengths to get it right. He created 23 batches before achieving this one. The vegetarian Cincinnati style chili recipe is soy, gluten, and meat-free using a pea-based protein.
We had the opportunity to go behind the counter to make our orders. My son actually said that when he didn’t know that it was the vegetarian chili, he liked it because he couldn’t tell the difference. So don’t tell your kids…..or even your husband, if need be.
I made a chili sandwich (basically a coney without the hot dog) and learned that Gold Star Chili also puts cheese on the bottom of the bun too. MIND BLOWN!
At the location near Xavier, the menu includes burgers as a tribute to the founders original restaurant called “Hamburger Heaven” where Gold Star’s chili recipe was originally created. If you want the best of both worlds try the Chili Burger.
I also recommend trying the Parmesan fries but I’ll warn you that they can be addicting.
Are you hungry for some chili yet?
The best way to find out if Gold Star Chili’s Cincinnati style vegetarian style chili is for you, is to try it for yourself.
You can find out more about Gold Star Chili from their website along with the nearest location near you.
Share your Gold Star Chili experience using the hashtag #ChiliDifferently
Thanks again to Gold Star Chili for hosting our visit and providing the Gift Card. All opinions are my own.