Sunday, October 18, 2009

Turkey Bean Pumpkin Chili

The problem with Facebook is, you let everybody know your business. And most of the time, I am fully aware of this, so I don’t post anything I don’t want my 392 “friends” to know. But, today, it put a little pressure on me. Here was the status update that got me “homemade bread, pumpkin muffins, chili (with PUMPKIN secret ingredient), and cornbread… it’s been a pretty productive day!” That got one of my friends interested, and she INSISTED I publish the chili recipe TODAY! TODAY!?! Doesn’t she know I’m like a week or two behind on all my posts?!? So… I had to work in WARP speed to get the photo taken, edited, and then get this written. It’s all for you Kristen!

Now, to tell you about this chili. It was SUPER delicious! While I usually use beer as a secret ingredient in my chili, I understand not everyone wants to do that. This is an awesome, very healthy twist on chili. And don’t worry, the pumpkin flavor is very subtle. In fact, The Boy (who is wary of all pumpkin goods) did not even notice it was there! He thought the chili was very good, good enough to eat two helpings of it. I could taste the pumpkin, but then again I knew it was there, and I have a more sensitive palate to the most wonderful ingredient in the universe. Pumpkin is not just good in baked goods people! If you’re looking for a way to add extra nutritional kick to your chili, or just ready to try something new, this is a route I highly recommend!

If you’re still not convinced, go here and read some of the health benefits of pumpkin!


Turkey Bean Pumpkin Chili


1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 cup chopped onion
1/2 green bell pepper, chopped
1/2 yellow bell pepper, chopped
1 jalapeno, chopped
2 large cloves garlic, minced
1 pound ground turkey
2 14.5oz can diced tomatoes (one of mine was fire-roasted)
1 14.5oz can red kidney beans, rinsed and drained
1 14.5oz can black beans, rinsed and drained
2 cups (1 14.5 ounce can) pumpkin puree
1 8oz can tomato juice
1 12oz dark beer (such as Star Hill Pumpkin Porter, Yazoo Dos Perros, or Negra Modello, and if you don't want to add beer, just add more tomato juice)
1 1/2 tablespoons chili powder
1/2 tablespoon cumin
cayenne pepper to taste
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
fresh cilantro
shredded Cheddar cheese (optional)
sour cream (optional)


Heat oil in a large skillet or Dutch oven over medium-high heat.

Saute the onion, green bell pepper, yellow bell pepper, jalapeno, and garlic until tender, about 10 minutes. Make room in the center of the skillet, add turkey, and brown, about 10 minutes. Stir in tomatoes, beans, pumpkin, beer, and juice. Season with chili powder, cumin, pepper, salt, and cayenne.

Reduce heat and simmer at least 20 minutes. Stir in fresh cilantro (again, not in my house!). If preferred, serve topped with Cheddar cheese and sour cream, and a hearty slice of Beer Bread.

adapted from Serious Eats.

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18 Responses to “Turkey Bean Pumpkin Chili”

  1. 1
    Kristen — October 18, 2009 @ 4:54 pm

    hehehehe….i'm a very happy girl now. πŸ™‚ Thanks! I can't wait to try this out! It looks amazing! I'm definitely going to try this out this week. I need to get some of the ingredients at the store first though…you know how I don't keep a lot of these items on hand. πŸ˜‰ mmmmmmm, I can't wait to let you know how I do!

  2. 2
    themilkmanswife — October 18, 2009 @ 9:21 pm

    YUM! I've been wanting to try a pumpkin chili recipe. This looks so good and so healthy! Thanks for sharing. πŸ™‚

  3. 3
    Katie — October 19, 2009 @ 8:14 am

    This looks and sounds amazing. Was it as good as it looks?? It sounds like such a great idea, I would have never thought to put those ingredients together.

  4. 4
    Molly Jean — October 19, 2009 @ 8:45 am

    What a sneaky way to get something healthy in! I love recipes like this πŸ™‚

  5. 5
    Liesl — October 19, 2009 @ 9:39 am

    Haha…I read that on facebook!! That's what happens when you post things like that, people want to know ASAP! The chili sounds yummy! It's funny because everyone is talking about how hard it is to find pumpkin lately and I haven't had any issues. Although I have stocked up just in case!

  6. 6
    Colleen — October 19, 2009 @ 3:49 pm

    I love any variation on chili – I am always willing to try something new. This looks like one I need to try!

  7. 7
    Conor @ HoldtheBeef — October 21, 2009 @ 8:39 am

    This looks really good, I'm glad I decided to have a quick look on foodgawker instead of going to bed like I should have long ago!

  8. 8
    Erin — October 21, 2009 @ 4:20 pm

    I have been thinking about making chili this weekend, and really should try a new variety. I've heard of making it with pumpkin before and it sounds amazing! There is some turkey in my freezer, too… I think you've convinced me to make it!

  9. 9
    lucysmom — October 25, 2009 @ 7:37 am

    So could you please tell me do you add the beer in addition or would you use it instead of the tomato juice?

  10. 10
    Melissa — October 25, 2009 @ 12:53 pm

    I made this a couple of days ago, it's awesome! The hubby didn't even realize pumpkin was in it. It's one of my new favorite chilis πŸ™‚

  11. 11
    Erin — October 25, 2009 @ 10:57 pm

    Lucysmom – What I would probably do next time I make this, is I would probably add in about 1/2 the can of tomato juice, and about 2/3 of the beer. Then I would just go by taste, and if I wanted to add the rest of either liquids I would if it felt right. As originally posted here, it's not a super liquidy chili, it's a thicker one, so the extra liquid would be fine. Plus, I would be afraid if I didn't add the tomato juice, it would be too strong of a beer flavor. Again, I haven't made it this way yet, so I can't say for sure until I do it. But I can promise it will be made this way at least once more this fall! It was super yummy, and we loved it!

  12. 12
    citizen of the planet — October 26, 2009 @ 7:29 am

    I made this yesterday. I altered it slightly for a bit more heat. I used 2 habeneros, 2 chipotles, and 4 piri piri peppers. It was described as "Bangin" so thank you! i will definitely be making this again!

  13. 13
    lcfitzgerald — November 16, 2009 @ 8:52 am

    Delicious! Day 3 of turkey pumpkin chili and I couldn't be happier!

  14. 14
    Polka Dots and Lace — December 11, 2009 @ 9:07 pm

    I made this chili and your beer bread and it was delicious! My "boy," who also doesn't like pumpkin (what is wrong with them?), loved it too. He ate two heaping cups, plus bear bread, plus chips and asked that I put this into our permanent fall rotation. I loved the beer bread, too. I decreased the butter to a mere 2 Tbsp and it was still so good (and made me feel a little less guilty having 2 slices). I also took your recommendation and substituted the tomato juice for beer in the chili. Thanks for such a great recipe!

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  16. 15
    Michelle — February 27, 2011 @ 9:30 pm

    i bookmarked this recipe over a year ago and just made it tonight. oh my goodness, this is one of the BEST recipes i’ve ever made. i’m SO pleased! thank you for sharing!

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