Ground Turkey Chili Recipe

Turkey Chili With Beans
Brian Hagiwara/Photolibrary/Getty Images
  • 2 hrs 5 mins
  • Prep: 20 mins,
  • Cook: 105 mins
  • Yield: 6-8 cups (6-8 servings)
Ratings (5)

This easy chili is made with lean ground turkey, but ground beef may be used as well. Simmer this chili on the stovetop or use your slow cooker (see the tips and variations).

If you don't have chili seasoning mix, we've included a simple spice mixture that can be used as a substitution.

What You'll Need

  • vegetable oil or extra virgin olive oil, about 2 tablespoons
  • 2 pounds ground turkey or half lean ground beef and half lean ground turkey breast
  • 1 large green bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1 clove garlic, minced, or about 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 large can (28 ounces) crushed tomatoes
  • 1 1/2 cups tomato sauce
  • 1 or 2 cans (15 ounces each) kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1/4 cup of beer or chicken broth
  • 2 to 4 tablespoons of honey or brown sugar, or to taste
  • 2 envelopes commercial chili seasoning mix (for 2 pounds of meat)*
  • dash of cayenne pepper, to taste, optional
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • Optional toppings: shredded Monterey Jack cheese, mozzarella, or mild cheddar cheese, sour cream, avocado, crackers, chopped onions to taste

How to Make It

  1. Heat the vegetable oil in a large stockpot or Dutch oven over medium heat. Brown the ground turkey, stirring and breaking up until the meat is no longer pink.
  2. Stir in the chopped bell pepper and onion; cook, stirring, for about 2 to 3 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute longer.
  3. Add the tomatoes, tomato sauce, beans, beer or broth, honey or sugar, and chili mix (see the homemade version below). Bring the mixture to a simmer, cover the pan, and then reduce the heat to low; simmer for 1 1/2 hours or longer.
  1. Taste and add salt and freshly ground pepper, as needed.
  2. Top each serving with shredded cheese (mozzarella, cheddar, or Monterey Jack), sour cream, crackers, chopped onions, etc.

Tips and Variations

  • The chili can also be cooked in a slow cooker for about 5 hours on LOW (after the ground turkey has been browned).
  • For the ground turkey, 85% to 90% is a good ratio, or use a combination of half ground turkey breast and half ground turkey thighs.
  • Homemade Chili Seasoning Mix - Combine 4 teaspoons of chili powder with 1/4 teaspoon of onion powder, 1/4 teaspoon of crushed red pepper flakes, 1/4 teaspoon of dried oregano, 1/2 teaspoon of paprika, 1 1/2 teaspoons of ground cumin, 1 teaspoon of salt, and 1 teaspoon of black pepper.
  • Use all or part black beans or pinto beans in the chili.
  • Add one shredded or finely diced carrot to the onion and bell peppers for natural sweetness.

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