Dixon's Famous Chili
9105 E US Highway 40
Independence, MO 64055
To place an order for pick-up, call 816 861-7308.
Monday - Saturday 10AM - 10PM
We offer daily specials. (dine-in only)
Dixon’s history started in the early nineteen hundreds when Vergne Dixon, began selling his unique chili out of a street cart in downtown Kansas City. In 1919, Vergne opened the first Dixon’s Chili Parlor at 15th and Olive. The restaurant was staffed exclusively by men, many who had been down or out on their luck, and were given an opportunity to better themselves. Vergne focused on high quality food and fast service which lead to business continuing to grow. Vergne was so proud of his chili that he would not even allow ketchup in his restaurant, even though some customers would try to sneak it in.
Harry S. Truman frequented Dixon’s before, during and after his Presidency. In 1952, President Truman visited Dixon’s along with several Secret Service agents. Dixon received much publicity from this event and Life Magazine published the occasion. As a result, the name was changed to Dixon's “Famous” Chili. Harry Truman continued his patronage for the rest of his life.
The Current Generation...by Terri Totta Smith
Dixon’s tradition continued into the next generation. In 1961, my father, Leonard Totta (Vergne’s nephew), took over operation of the restaurant. With pride and dedication he expanded the business, including our 40 Highway location which opened its doors in the 1960s. In 1963, realizing some people liked ketchup with their chili, he changed the “no ketchup” policy. However, he did not want to completely break away from the tradition so he decided there should be a 10 cent fine. We continue this tradition today.
I am very proud to say that I was fortunate enough to become the owner of Dixon’s Famous Chili in 1985. I now operate the business with the help of my son Stephen. We trust that our attention to detail, outstanding service, and very unique style of chili will warrant your continued patronage. I am truly honored to carry on this longtime family tradition.