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Turkey Chili

I've taken my mother's turkey chili recipe and made it thicker and more robust. It's a favorite, especially in fall and winter. —Celesta Zanger, Bloomfield Hills, Michigan
  • Total Time
    Prep: 20 min. Cook: 6-1/2 hours
  • Makes
    12 servings (3 quarts)


  • 1 pound lean ground turkey
  • 3/4 cup chopped celery
  • 3/4 cup chopped onion
  • 3/4 cup chopped green pepper
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/8 to 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 2 cans (14-1/2 ounces each) no-salt-added diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1 jar (24 ounces) meatless pasta sauce
  • 1 can (16 ounces) hot chili beans, undrained
  • 1-1/2 cups water
  • 1/2 cup frozen corn
  • 1 can (16 ounces) kidney beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 can (15 ounces) pinto beans, rinsed and drained
  • Optional toppings: Sour cream, cubed avocado, diced jalapeno peppers


  • In a large skillet, cook and crumble turkey with celery, onion and pepper over medium-high heat until turkey is no longer pink, 6-8 minutes. Transfer to a 5-qt. slow cooker. Stir in seasonings, tomatoes, pasta sauce, chili beans, water and corn.
  • Cook, covered, on high 1 hour. Reduce setting to low; cook, covered, until flavors are blended, 5-6 hours.
  • Stir in kidney and pinto beans; cook, covered, on low 30 minutes longer. If desired, serve with sour cream, avocado and jalapeno.

Test Kitchen Tips
  • It’s important to drain and rinse canned beans because the thick, cloudy liquid inside often contains excess sodium and starch. Doing this can improve the taste, texture and nutritional content of a dish.
  • Lean ground turkey contains 53% less fat and 38% less saturated fat than regular ground turkey. It works great in casseroles, tacos and other dishes that use crumbled meat.
  • Get our ultimate chili recipes here.
  • Nutrition Facts
    1 cup: 200 calories, 4g fat (1g saturated fat), 26mg cholesterol, 535mg sodium, 29g carbohydrate (8g sugars, 8g fiber), 15g protein. Diabetic Exchanges: 2 lean meat, 2 vegetable, 1 starch.

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    Average Rating:
    • katecrid47
      Nov 20, 2019

      This was amazing! I only omitted the green peppers as we don't like them. The family loved it! Great flavor. Also a good base recipe to add to. I am definitely making this again! Thanks for sharing!

    • sugarpie68
      Jan 22, 2016

      I made this tonight. It was so delicious! The only thing I did different was use mild chili beans instead of hot because I don't like things really spicy. It was still very flavorful. I'll be making this again.

    • mkaskela
      Jan 13, 2015

      I used ground venison instead of turkey and it turned out fantastic!

    • bzdz1128
      Jan 3, 2014

      I made this today. I didn't add this or leave out that, just followed and it was absolutely delicious. My wife is from Texas and usually makes the chili, but is sick, so I made this and she loved it, me too!! Great recipe!

    • huntinglady
      Feb 15, 2013

      This was the best chili I have ever had. I'm always looking for a good chili recipe and had yet to find one that is until now. The only thing different I did was omitted the green peppers (husband does't like), corn (I don't like) used medium chili beans as that is what I had on hand and didn't use the sour cream. I think it was the spaghetti sauce that made this recipe really good. It will be my go to chili recipe from now on. Thank you Celesta for sharing.

    • BBagins
      Dec 4, 2011

      This was delicious! I used jalapeno peppers from a jar instead of the hot chili beans because I didn't have any. I used about 2 Tbsp chopped. At first it seemed like it was going to be too hot, but when we put it together with rice and sour cream on top, it was perfect!

    • nikkibonnay
      Jan 28, 2010

      This was my first pot of chili and I served it to friends and everyone really liked it.

    • sizzlinpeach
      Nov 2, 2009

      No comment left

    • tiffanyrn77
      Jan 27, 2009

      This was my first attemp to make chili. My family was so impressed. It is so deliciouse. I questioned adding corn but I am glad I did.