This Turkey Pumpkin Chili recipe is hearty, filling and satisfying. It's a skinnier chili recipe too for guilt-free cold weather comfort food dining.
There is nothing like a big pot of chili on cold nights! Why not change it up from traditional chili too?
Easy pumpkin chili is an easy weeknight meal perfect for the fall season. It's a simple recipe made with regular ingredients found in mainstream grocery stores.
Changing it up with lean turkey, black beans, white beans, chili spices and the addition of pumpkin makes it a great recipe for cooler temperatures.
Easy Pumpkin Turkey Chili recipe
This is a great recipe for a busy day. There is very little preparation required and it cooks in 20 minutes.
Like most chili recipes it has even more flavor the following day. Leftovers become perfect to make any day. It freezes well too!
What makes this skinny?
- Using extra lean ground turkey versus ground beef
- Very little oil used
- Lots of vegetables for flavor and substance
Recipe Ingredients + Notes
Olive oil. Only one tablespoon is needed for sautéing the vegetables.
Green Bell Pepper. Use a medium bell pepper, chopped. Other color bell peppers can also be substituted like yellow bell pepper, red peppers or orange peppers.
Yellow Onion. One medium onion, chopped.
Garlic cloves. Use four cloves peeled and minced.
Ground turkey. Use extra lean or 99% fat free turkey. Any ground turkey can be used but the nutritional and points info is based on extra lean.
Canned diced tomatoes. One 28-ounce can is used (or two 14.5 ounce tomatoes). We love petite diced tomatoes but any diced tomatoes work.
Canned black beans. One 14.5 ounce can, drained and rinsed.
Canned cannellini beans. One 14.5 ounce can, drained and rinsed.
Pumpkin puree. One 14.5-ounce can or 1 ½ cup homemade pumpkin puree can be used.
Fat free Chicken broth. We used fat free chicken broth for the calorie savings but any chicken broth or chicken stock will work.
Chili powder. Gives the classic chili flavor.
Cumin. Ground cumin is another classic earthy flavor in chili recipes.
Salt. We love kosher salt due to the less salty flavor.
Black pepper. Use freshly ground black pepper is possible.
Cinnamon. This adds a flavor booster. The cinnamon flavor rounds out the chili powder and adds a subtle sweetness that gives the chili great flavor.
- Sliced green onion
- sliced jalapeno peppers
- Non-fat plain Greek yogurt or reduced fat sour cream instead of a dollop of sour cream
- chopped fresh cilantro
- Grated cheese (reduced fat cheddar cheese works great)
- Sliced avocado
Ground chicken. Ground chicken can be substituted. Ground turkey cooks more easily in our opinion but chicken can also be substituted.
Use different beans. If desired change up the beans. Traditional red kidney beans can be used, or any canned beans you love.
Like it spicy? Add some red pepper flakes (either in the recipe or sprinkle on a bowl when serving) or cayenne pepper.
Use leftover turkey. Instead of cooking ground turkey use leftover turkey chopped. Great after Thanksgiving recipe.
How to make Turkey Pumpkin Chili
STEP 1. Sauté
Heat the oil in a large pot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Sauté the onion and green pepper for 5 minutes or until the onion is translucent (photos 1-2).
Add the garlic and sauté 30-60 seconds more (photo 2).
Add the turkey and cook until no pink color remains (photo 3).
STEP 2. Add remaining ingredients
Add the remaining ingredients: diced tomatoes, beans, pumpkin puree, chicken broth, and spices.
STEP 3. Simmer
Bring the chili to a low boil, reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 20 minutes (photo 4).
STEP 4. Serve
Serve warm as is or with favorite things on top!
How to make Instant Pot Turkey Chili
- Use a 6-quart Instant Pot.
- Use the SAUTE function to sauté the vegetables and the turkey (follow the direction but in the Instant Pot).
- Add the remaining ingredients. Stir together.
- Seal and cook on High Pressure for 15 minutes. Follow by a natural release.
Allow the chili to cool and store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. Reheat in the microwave.
How to freeze it
Allow the turkey pumpkin white bean chili to cool fully. Store in a freezer safe airtight container for up to 4-6 months.
Thaw in the refrigerator and reheat on the stove top or microwave.
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Turkey Pumpkin Chili
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 medium green bell pepper chopped
- 1 medium yellow onion chopped
- 4 medium garlic cloves minced
- 1 pound (16 ounces) extra lean ground turkey
- 1 28-ounce can diced tomatoes
- 1 14.5-ounce can black beans drained and rinsed
- 1 14-ounce can cannellini beans drained and rinsed
- 1 14-ounce can pumpkin puree
- 1 cup fat free chicken broth
- 2 tablespoons chili powder
- 1 ½ teaspoons cumin
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- ¼-1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
Optional Topping ideas
- fresh chopped cilantro
- sliced avocado
- sliced green onion
- non-fat plain Greek yogurt or reduced fat sour cream
- grated cheese
Stove Top method
- In a large pot, heat the oil on medium-high heat. Add the onions and green pepper and cook for 5 minutes or until onions are translucent.
- Add the ground turkey and cook until it is done and no longer pink.
- Add the garlic and cook for 30-60 seconds.
- Add in the remaining ingredients: diced tomatoes, black beans, cannellini beans, pumpkin puree, chicken broth, chili powder, cumin, salt, pepper and cinnamon. Stir until well mixed. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 20 minutes.
- Bring to a low boil then reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 20 minutes.
- Serve warm with your choice of toppings.
Instant Pot method
- Turn the Instant Pot on SAUTE. Add the oil.
- Add the onions and green pepper and cook until onions are translucent. Add the garlic and cook for 30-60 seconds.
- Turn off the SAUTE function.
- Add in the remaining ingredients: diced tomatoes, black beans, cannellini beans, pumpkin puree, chicken broth, chili powder, cumin, salt, pepper and cinnamon. Stir to combine.
- Seal the Instant Pot lid and vent. Cook on HIGH PRESSURE for 15 minutes.
- When cooking completes, allow a NATURAL RELEASE.When pressure is released, serve!
- Green: 5
- Blue: 1
- Purple: 1
I added extra beans, this is a great recipe. Adding pepitas on top was a great tip for some crunch.
This looks so hearty and satisfying.
Emily Flint says
We loved this spin on chili! My son could eat chili every night of the week and loved your version so I guess I'll be making this one all the time. Thanks for the great recipe!
Dana Sandonato says
Nothing beats a good hearty ground turkey chili! I love the addition of pumpkin. So seasonal and filling!
Claudia Lamascolo says
I love this addition of flavors wow what a healthy alternative! Everything looks fantastic!
This was delicious. So hearty and comforting! I freezed a batch too.
Geetanjali Tung says
A hearty and delicious chili. I love the ingredients added.
Amanda Dixon says
I love a good turkey chili, and this was perfect for fall. It doesn't get more comforting than this!
Beth Reilly says
We love adding pumpkin to our chili! This recipe is amazing!
YUMMY! All the best fall flavors and packed with protein and healthy veggies! Thanks for this easy and seasonally perfect chili. LOVED it.
Matt Taylor says
I agree, nothing like a bowl of hot chili on cold nights. This turkey chili recipe is awesome and so flavorful. I like that it is a bit healthier too!
I love the Fall flavors in this chilli! Makes it so hearty and comforting! Plus we have leftovers for the next day!!
Just in time for comfort food season. Chili is always a hit. My family devoured this recipe.