|An easy chili, made leaner with ground turkey, more hearty with vegetables and beans, and gets a flavor boost from basic pantry seasonings.|
Turkey Chili with BeansYou may have noticed that boneless, skinless chicken breasts are not my favorite piece of chicken to cook... but of course, they're on sale often enough that I still buy them. With a little help, they can make for a quick and inexpensive meal.
While I very much love a brined and roasted turkey, I don't use a lot of ground turkey either. Though it is less fatty and therefore more attractive to those dieting and trying to cut back on fat, the lack of fat also means lack of flavor. In my dig through the New Year Freezer Cleanse however, I found a pound of mixed (85/15) ground turkey I had picked up at some point to make something that I've now long forgotten. With winter in the Deep South waning, and the Big Game coming up, I thought I would give some turkey chili a spin.
I patterned this somewhere between my taco soup and my chicken and white bean chili recipe, both of which are long held favorites on the blog. Since turkey can be bland, I bumped up the flavor with some basic pantry seasonings - sage, thyme, marjoram and oregano - something akin to what would be used to flavor a turkey sausage. Had I not already used the last of the herbes de provence in my pantry, I would have used that to sneak in even a few more herbs.
I hope you enjoy giving it a spin. Here's how to make it.
Heat cooking oil in a soup pot over medium high heat and saute onion and bell pepper until tender. If using raw jalapenos, add them here also. I like to use a milder pickled jalapeno, so I add that later. Add garlic and cook another minute, then add the turkey and cook, breaking up into chunks, until lightly browned; do not drain. There's that chopper again - another helpful kitchen tool. Love that thing!
Add herbs and seasonings and cook another minute. Add tomatoes, beans, corn, green chilies and pickled jalapeno. I used one can of Bush's White Chili Beans, which are Great Northern beans in a chili sauce (don't rinse these), a can of rinsed and drained black beans, and, what I thought was a can of Trappey's Jalapinto Beans, but when I opened them they happened to be black-eyed peas oddly, and not pintos. I used them anyway.
Add broth. I'm using the tail end of some Kitchen Basics turkey stock that I had on hand and needed to use up. Good ol chicken broth works just fine too - use what you have.
Bring mixture to a boil, reduce heat to a low simmer and let cook uncovered for 20 minutes, or until it reaches desired consistency, stirring occasionally. Taste and adjust seasonings. To serve, sprinkle with sliced green onion and top with optional garnishes, as desired.
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Recipe: Turkey Chili with Beans©From the Kitchen of Deep South Dish
Prep time: 10 min |Cook time: 20 min | Yield: About 4 to 6 servings
For the Seasonings:
For the Chili:
- 1/2 teaspoon ground sage
- 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1/2 teaspoon dried marjoram
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
- 2 to 5 tablespoons chili powder, to taste
- 2 teaspoons cumin
- 1 tablespoon cooking oil
- 1-1/2 cups chopped onion
- 1 cup chopped sweet bell pepper
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 1-1/2 pounds ground turkey (mixed 85/15 recommended)
- 1 (14.5 ounce) can stewed tomatoes
- 1 (10 ounce) can diced tomatoes with green chilies (like Rotel, original or mild), optional
- 2 (15 ounce) cans beans (see cook's notes), rinsed and well drained
- 1 can white chili beans, undrained
- 1 cup whole kernel corn, optional
- 1 (4 ounce) can green chilies
- 1/4 cup chopped pickled jalapeno
- 1 cup chicken broth or stock
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt, or to taste
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes, optional
- Sliced green onion, to garnish, optional
- Optional garnishes, suggestions below
Mix together chili seasonings; set aside. Heat oil in a soup pot over medium high heat and saute onion and bell pepper until tender. Add garlic and cook another minute. Add turkey and cook, breaking up into chunks, until lightly browned; do not drain. Add garlic and seasonings and cook another minute.
Add tomatoes, beans, corn, green chilies, jalapeno and chicken broth. Bring mixture to a boil, reduce heat to a low simmer and let cook uncovered for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until it reaches desired consistency. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed. To serve, sprinkle with sliced green onion and top with optional garnishes, as desired.
Garnishes: Shredded cheese, raw onion, chopped fresh tomatoes, crushed tortilla chips and/or sour cream.
Cook's Notes: If using raw jalapeno instead of pickled, cook with the onions and peppers. I suggest using a mixed ground turkey rather than a lean, white meat only variety. Use two cans of your favorite beans - Great Northern, cannellini, navy, pinto, kidney, black, or any combination.
Slow Cooker: Prepare as above or add everything raw to slow cooker, cover and cook for about 6 hours on low, or about 3 hours on high. If thickening is needed, in the last half hour of cooking, remove 2 tablespoons of liquid from the crockpot and let cool slightly, thoroughly mix that with 1 tablespoon of cornstarch. Pour mixture into the chili, stir well to combine, cover, turn on high and allow crock pot to come to a boil. Continue cooking until it reaches desired thickness.
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©Deep South Dish
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