Healthy and Hearty Turkey Chili


As soon as the temperature gets below 70 degrees, I break out my stock pot and make a batch of chili. I love chili. I could eat it year round, but I can really only enjoy it when it starts to get a little cold and you can tell that Fall is right around the corner.

This particular chili recipe is one that I have been tinkering with for years. I made my first batch of chili using the recipe on the back of the seasoning mix you pick up at the store. Over the years, I have made a quite few changes. Mainly, trying to make it more healthy and more flavorful. Not that there is anything wrong with that classic chili. 


But just because I have made this chili a bit healthier, doesn't make it any less filling and satisfying. Every spoonful is packed with lean ground turkey, kidney beans, tomatoes, and other delicious veggies. I personally like to sneak in any extra veggies I can find into my chili. I almost always make mine with onion, bell pepper, tomato, and jalapeno. Sometimes I will sneak in some carrot, spinach, or kale. And if I have an extra sweet potato lying around, I will dice that up and throw it into the pot as well. 


But it wouldn't be chili without the spices. I use 5 different chilies and peppers to spice my chili: chili powder, chipotle chili powder, cayenne pepper, paprika, and a jalapeno. To compliment the chilies, I like to add a generous amount of garlic, a touch of cumin, and a splash of Worcestershire.

I let all of those flavor meld together over the stove for at least 30 minutes, then when it's ready I spoon an very healthy serving into a bowl and top with some of my favorite chili toppings: cheese, sour cream, and avocado. I will also sometimes toss on some cilantro, chives, maybe even some oyster crackers! And of course, I always have a piece of corn bread on hand to sop up all that extra chili goodness. 


Prep Time: 15 minutes  Cook Time: 45 minutes   Total Time: 60 minutes

Yield: 6 servings


  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 green bell pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 1 jalapeno, seeded and chopped
  • 1 lb ground lean turkey
  • 2 tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tbsp paprika
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp chipotle chili powder
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 15 oz can kidney beans, rinsed
  • 1 15 oz can diced tomatoes
  • 1 large can whole peeled tomatoes
  • 2 dashes of Worcestershire sauce


  1. In a large stock pot, over medium high heat sautee the onion, garlic, bell peppers, and jalapeno in 1 tbsp olive oil until soft, about 5 minutes. Add turkey and break apart with the back of a spoon. Stir every few minutes to ensure even cooking. Cook until turkey is no longer pink.
  2. Sprinkle the spices over top of the turkey and vegetables and stir so that the spices don't burn. Allow to toast for about a minutes. Add in beans, tomatoes, and Worcestershire sauce. Bring to a simmer, then reduce heat to medium-low and cover. Cook for an additional 30 to 45 minutes.
  3. Ladle into bowls and top with your choice of toppings: cheese, sour cream, and avocado are my favorites.