I had zero intention of making this pumpkin turkey chili over the weekend; especially on a Sunday. My Sunday’s are pretty low key, spent all day watching football and cooking food for “fun.” I normally make a lot of food on Sunday just to pick at, nothing is really a meal, but just a bunch of snacks to graze on all day long during the games. It is like a free for all type of day, anything goes and I make things that might require a bit more time than something I would make over during the work week.
I find that sometimes when I make recipes for the blog, I often stress out over the ingredients, put pressure on myself for the photos, and even though I LOVE it, it sometimes takes the joy out of simply just cooking to cook.
Since I wasn’t planning on cooking the chili today, I didn’t have all of the ingredients that I wanted to use, but I decided that I could make due with what I had in the fridge/ cabinets and hope that it turned out tasting really good….and it did!
This pumpkin turkey chili is SO EASY and it can be ready in less than 20 minutes. I do love letting it simmer all day so all the flavors can marinate together, but that isn’t necessary. Adding the canned pumpkin puree into the pot along with the ground turkey, beans, and a few other ingredients; gave the chili a creamy texture. Plus; not only is it good for you (vitamins, fiber) it adds in that comforting factor that we start to crave come Fall. I love the chili with tortilla chips, a scoop of dairy-free cream cheese or sour cream, or crusty sourdough bread. It will last all week in the fridge or you can freeze it and have something handy during the winter colder months.
For this recipe, you can sub ground turkey for beef if you prefer OR make it completely vegan-friendly by adding more black beans/kidney beans, quinoa, or lentils. I have ZERO experience cooking with tofu or any other meat substitutes so I can’t offer any suggestions. For the veggie part, I added in corn and butternut squash, but red bell peppers, carrots or any other vegetable are perfect too.
Once the ground turkey started to brown in a separate pan, I added all of the ingredients including the cooked turkey into a large pot and let it simmer all day. If, you are in a pinch, all you really need to do is add everything in and heat it up until it is warm (10 minutes or so). So simple, filling and really hits the spot- especially on a Sunday night, weeknight meal prep, or lunch for work the next day.
Feel free to adjust the seasonings to your preference and taste test along the way!