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Dennison’s Chili Shortage: Detailed Guide

Are you a fan of Dennison’s chili but finding it hard to locate your favorite canned chili at the grocery store? You’re not alone. Many consumers have been wondering if there is a Dennison’s chili shortage and what alternative options are available. 

Dennison’s Chili is a beloved staple in many households. Known for its signature blend of spices and hearty chunks of beef, Dennison’s has amassed a loyal following over its long history. However, in recent months, customers have reported difficulty finding this iconic chili on store shelves. In this post, we’ll explore the reasons behind the apparent Dennison’s chili shortage.

Dennison’s Chili: Overview and History

Dennison’s Chili first started in 1952 when a man named Walter Dennison perfected a signature spice blend in Dallas, Texas. Frustrated with the dull chili recipes of the time, Walter experimented until he created a complex, hearty flavor profile. This rich chili taste made Dennison’s stand out.

Over 70 years, Dennison’s Chili has become one of America’s most recognized chili brands. Dennison’s uses quality ingredients and traditional cooking methods. For many fans, the taste and texture are as close as you can get to homemade chili.

Is There a Dennison’s Chili Shortage?

There is not any nationwide Dennison’s Chili Shortage reported but there are indeed some shortage reports in certain areas. In recent months, customers across America have been reporting empty shelves in the chili aisle where Dennison’s cans usually sit. 

On social media, consumers have complained about not being able to find Dennison’s at any local grocery stores. A search online shows most major retailers listing Dennison’s as “out of stock”.  

Recent reports have indicated that there may indeed be a shortage of Dennison’s chili in certain regions. The high demand for this popular product may have led to temporary supply chain issues, causing the scarcity of this beloved chili brand.

So what explains this apparent shortage of a once-plentiful product? There are a few key factors behind the lack of Dennison’s Chili on shelves. 

Explaining the Past Dennison’s Chili Shortages

Dennison's Chili Shortage
Dennison’s Chili Shortage

Supply Chain Disruptions

Like many food companies, Dennison’s has faced supply chain issues over the past couple of years. The pandemic caused slowdowns and bottlenecks across manufacturing and distribution networks. Key supplies like cans and beef became more difficult and expensive to source. This led to periods where Dennison’s Chili production slowed.

Manufacturing Changes  

In late 2021, Dennison’s opened a new chili plant to replace their outdated facility. While the new plant enabled higher output potential long-term, the transition period led to temporary dips in production. The company simply couldn’t make enough chili to meet demand during the switchover. 

Increased Demand

Dennison’s has seen double-digit sales growth since 2020. With more people cooking at home, comfort foods like chili have become more popular. Dennison’s existing production capacity struggled to keep up with the rising demand. Even as they expanded operations, it took time to increase output.

COVID-19 Aftereffects  

Like all food manufacturers, Dennison’s continues to wrestle with pandemic-related labor shortages and supply uncertainty. Key inputs like meat, cans, and spices have become more difficult and costly to source reliably. These external factors limit how quickly Dennison’s can ramp up production.

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Why Dennison’s Fans Are So Loyal?

Dennison’s has maintained the same beloved flavor profile for 70 years. Their signature blend of spices and chunks of beef delivers a rich, hearty chili taste. Dennison’s uses quality ingredients, slow-cooking their chili for hours to develop robust flavor. These traditional preparation methods result in a homestyle taste and texture. 

Dennison’s Chili has also earned a reputation for consistency and reliability. Their chili delivers the same satisfying experience whether you buy it in Texas or Maine. For many Americans, Dennison’s Chili is chili. This brand loyalty explains why shortages provoke such dismay from longtime fans.

Alternative Chili Options

If you’re unable to find Dennison’s chili, don’t worry. There are plenty of alternative chili options available in the market. You can explore other canned chili brands or even try making your homemade chili with fresh ingredients for a unique and tailored flavor. 

  • Wick Fowler’s Original 2-Alarm Chili Kit: This pre-mixed spice packet is a great way to get started on making your own chili. Just add meat and cook according to the package directions. Wick Fowler was a famous Texas chili icon, and his chili is known for being hot and flavorful.
  • Hormel Chili: Hormel’s beef and bean chili is a more widely available brand name choice than Dennison’s. It is also less expensive. Hormel’s chili is not as robust as Dennison’s, but it is still a good option for a quick and easy chili.
  • Amy’s Organic Chili: Amy’s Organic Chili is a meatless chili that is made with beans, vegetables, and a flavorful spice blend. It is a good option for vegetarians or vegans.
  • Regional Brands: Many regional brands of chili are worth trying. These brands often use local ingredients and have a unique flavor profile. Some popular regional brands include:
    • Texas Chili Company
    • New Mexico Chili Company
    • Cincinnati Chili Company
  • Make Your Own: The best way to get the chili you want is to make your own. There are many recipes available online, and you can customize the flavors to your taste. Homemade chili is also a great way to use up leftover ingredients.

While these alternatives fill the gap, true chili fans hope the Dennison’s shortage is short-lived. The company says they are taking steps to increase production and availability in the coming months. With any luck, America’s chili pot will soon be simmering again.

Is Dennison’s Chili Going Out of Business?

No, Dennison’s Chili is not going out of business. The company has been in business for over 70 years and has a strong customer base. In recent years, the company has been expanding its operations and opening new locations.

 Dennison’s Chili is a popular choice for people who enjoy hearty, homestyle chili. The company uses fresh, high-quality ingredients and offers a variety of chili options to choose from. Dennison’s Chili is also known for its friendly and welcoming atmosphere.

Is Dennison’s Chili Recalled in 2023?

As of 2023, there have been no official recalls for Dennison’s chili. However, consumers should always stay informed about any product recalls and safety alerts to ensure the products they purchase meet the highest quality and safety standards. 

It’s always a good practice to regularly check for any recalls or safety alerts on the official website of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) or the manufacturer’s website to stay updated on the latest information. Additionally, signing up for email notifications for product recalls can also help consumers stay informed about any potential risks associated with the products they use. 


Dennison’s Chili has seen a shortage in recent months, to the dismay of loyal fans. A mix of supply chain disruptions, manufacturing changes, surging demand, and pandemic aftereffects converged to limit availability. 

While other chili brands can temporarily fill the void, Dennison’s one-of-a-kind flavor has made it an American favorite for 70 years. With the company ramping up production capacity, chili lovers hope to see fully stocked shelves of Dennison’s signature recipe again soon.


What Happened to Dennison’s Chili?

While the exact cause of Dennison’s chili shortage may not be confirmed, it is likely due to an increase in demand or temporary supply chain disruption.

Do They Still Make Dennison’s Chili?

Yes, Dennison’s chili is still being produced, but its availability may be limited in certain areas due to the ongoing supply chain challenges.

Is Dennison’s Chili Discontinued?

No, Dennison’s chili has not been officially discontinued. It remains a popular choice for chili enthusiasts and can be found in various stores as supply stabilizes.

Where Can I Buy Dennison’s Chili?

Dennison’s chili can usually be found in the canned goods section of grocery stores, but availability may vary by location. Checking with different retailers or online platforms is recommended.

How Many Calories Are in a Can of Dennison’s Chili?

Depending on the serving size, a typical can of Dennison’s chili contains around 300-400 calories. Always refer to the nutrition label for accurate information.

Richard Ambrosino
Richard Ambrosino
I'm Richard Ambrosino, and I earned my Master's in Business Administration from Stanford Graduate School of Business in 2001. With over a decade of hands-on experience in various aspects of business, I'm here to share my insights. From strategy development to financial management and leadership, I've been there and learned valuable lessons. At, I'm dedicated to providing you with the latest updates and practical advice to help you succeed in the world of business. Thank you for choosing us as your trusted resource, and I look forward to being part of your journey to success.

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