2 ratings

Turkey Pumpkin Chili

Serve over rice with cheddar cheese and sour cream
Turkey Pumpkin Chili
Courtesy of West of the Loop

Savory pumpkin recipes are delicious and less guilt-inducing. I was intrigued by the idea of pumpkin chili so I formulated my own recipe, drawing a little on the tradition of Mexican mole—that’s the cinnamon and cocoa powder—and omitting beans. The result was delicious and healthy—a nice addition to my fall repertoire.

Recipe courtesy of West of the Loop


  • 3 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1-2 hot peppers, such as jalapeño or habañero, seeded and minced*
  • 1 Pound ground turkey, preferably dark meat
  • 1 15 oz. can pumpkin puree (NOT pumpkin pie mix)
  • 1 28 oz. can chopped tomatoes
  • 1 Cup beer
  • 2 Tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 Teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 Teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 Cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • Salt and pepper to taste


Heat olive oil in a large, deep sauce pan or stock pot. Add onion, hot peppers and garlic and cook over medium heat until softened.

Add ground turkey and cook, stirring, until the meat is no longer pink. Add chili powder, cumin and cinnamon to the meat and vegetables and cook until fragrant. Add salt and pepper to taste. Add tomatoes, pumpkin and beer and bring mixture to a boil.

Turn heat down and simmer, stirring occasionally for 30 minutes. Add cocoa powder and combine well. Cook 10 more minutes. Adjust seasoning and serve.

*As always, use caution when working with hot peppers. Wear gloves or wash your hands immediately.