Pumpkin Chipotle Turkey Chili

I’d like to start out this recipe post by telling you a little story about a bout of food poisoning that I had about 3 1/2 years ago.

Wait – don’t leave!  I promise I won’t get into the gory details (it was pretty bad, though, trust me).

It was a cold early winter day, and I was gearing up for a lazy Sunday of sweatpants and football.  I headed to my cousin’s and settled in with a bowl of chili.  Cut to 30 minutes later as I suddenly found myself a very devoted occupant of the porcelain throne.

Now, I don’t blame the chili (nor my cousin’s wife’s cooking – hi, Lindsey, I love your cooking!), because we all know that food poisoning doesn’t manifest itself that quickly.  It was the meal I had eaten just prior to the chili, but it was too late.  The trauma of that afternoon (and subsequent days) had made an indelible mark on my brain: Chili = puking, and so forth (You’re welcome for not elaborating on the “and so forth”).

Not surprisingly, I haven’t really been the biggest fan of chili for the last few years. However, it’s a dish that I always want to like.  It’s comforting. It’s cozy (same thing, yes I know). It’s an easy meal to throw together for a crowd, almost always results in fantastic leftovers.

This is the year, you guys.  I’m bringing chili back.

Good. Now that I’ve totally grossed you out, let’s have a recipe, shall we?


Pumpkin Chipotle Turkey Chili
serves 6

1 1/2 pounds lean ground turkey breast (read the label, not all ground turkey is lean!)
1 medium onion, diced
1 bell pepper, diced
1 t canola or olive oil
2 chipotle peppers in adobo, minced +1 T sauce
1 15-oz can tomato sauce
1 15-oz can pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling)
1 1/2 cups low sodium chicken broth
1 1/2 t each garlic powder, chili powder, dehydrated (or powdered) onion, and cumin
1 15-oz can cannelini beans, drained and rinsed
salt+pepper, to taste

1.  In a heavy bottomed pot, heat oil over medium-high heat.  Add onion and bell pepper and cook until onion is translucent, about 3-4 minutes.
2. Add turkey and break up the meat with a wooden spoon.  Cook until no longer pink.
3. Add chipotle peppers, adobo sauce, tomato sauce, pumpkin and broth, stirring to combine.  Bring to a gentle boil, then reduce heat to low.
4. Add all spices, stir, and cover the pot.  Allow to slowly cook for an hour (or longer if you have the time!)
5. With 15-20 minutes left of cooking, add the beans and season with salt and pepper, if desired.
6. Serve hot with your favorite toppings. (I used greek yogurt and slices of avocado)


Here’s the thing about chili: cans. You open a bunch of cans.

Ok, so you have to maybe chop the onion and the pepper, but other than that, it’s cans.


I don’t know what it is about the texture, but I like my ground meat really broken up into small pieces.  When I find a big hunk of turkey it makes me all antsy and stuff.

Is that weird? Anyone else?



Pumpkin is BACK at Trader Joe’s.  In a really big, big way.

If you have a problem controlling yourself around seasonal food items, you might want to stay away from that place.


Feel free to alter the amount of spice in this recipe, though I would caution you from under-seasoning.  It’s chili.  You need the flavah.


Gettin’ there….



Oh, and I went ahead and ran some nutrition stats again:

Pumpkin Chipotle Turkey Chili nut stats

Not too shabby for a girl whose digestive system is just starting to come around to the idea of chili, huh?

4 thoughts on “Pumpkin Chipotle Turkey Chili

  1. Hi ! I tried this tonight and it was awesome !! Both my boyfriend and I devoured it. I also put chorizo in it, and it added a nice spicy touch. We still have plenty left, so I can’t wait to have it again !

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