spicy turkey chili

April 20, 2010

I have a built-in hatred of rain. I’m pretty sure it’s because I’m British and because we have to put up with it more days of the year than not. And because no-one likes soggy socks. Minneapolis gets so little rain in comparison it is ridiculous. I am not complaining.

April, however, we’ve definitely had to bust out the brollies a few times. And thank goodness really, because we need it. I want green and I want flowers. And I want a farmer’s market full of gorgeousness.

Anyway, thunderstorms and lightning all night make for a tough battle with the snooze button and grey skies and pouring rain make for comfort food cravings. Enter spicy turkey chili – the ultimate one-dish comfort food!

Spicy Turkey Chili
adapted from Food Network


  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 5 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1/2 – 1 teaspoon salt, depending on taste
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 chipotle chile in adobo sauce, coarsely chopped, with 1 tablespoon sauce
  • 1 pound ground turkey
  • 1 (12-ounce) Mexican lager-style beer
  • 1 (14 1/2-ounce) can whole peeled tomatoes, with their juice
  • 1 (15 1/2-ounce) can kidney beans, rinsed and drained


  1. Heat the olive oil in a large, heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onion, garlic, salt, chili powder, and oregano and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 3 minutes.
  2. Stir in the tomato paste and the chipotle chile and sauce, cooking for 1 minute more. Add the turkey, breaking it up with a wooden spoon, and cook until the meat begins to brown, about 3 minutes.
  3. Add the beer and simmer until reduced by about half, about 8 minutes.
  4. Add the tomatoes, crushing them through your fingers into the skillet (the fun bit), along with their juices and the beans; bring to a boil. Cook, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until thick, about 10 minutes.

Enjoy in a big bowl with perhaps a sprinkle of fresh cilantro, a dollop of sour cream and if you’re like me, most definitely a lovely glass of red wine or another one of those mexican beers.

This is the third time I’ve made this chili in the last few months and it’s baller. There, I said it. The first time, I foolishly followed the original recipe, despite my gut telling me “NO!” and used a whole tablespoon of salt. It must be a typo because I could barely choke it down.

The second time was more of a success but this time, we really hit the nail on the head. Spicy, filling, healthy, and delicious.

What’s your ultimate one-dish comfort food?

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{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

insideiamdancing April 20, 2010 at 3:21 pm

Oh, that looks really good. Question: I know you lived in Texas so must have had some amazing chilli… I can't get my head around the idea of eating it as a stew with cornbread. It's always served with rice or potatos (baked or wedges) here! Do you eat it plain?

Favourite one dish meal: a morrocan chickpea tagine with sweet potatoes, parsnips and dried fruit in it…so delicious.


Holly April 21, 2010 at 8:00 am

yes, please. i hate rain, more than snow. getting wet is not something i enjoy, and even if you have an umbrella, you still inevitably get wet.

one pot comfort? i'm with ellie on a delicious tagine. easy, fragrant and delish! mayj catch-up soon love – perhaps this weekend?

happy wednesday :)


Erica April 21, 2010 at 10:31 am

I love love making chili because its so easy to switch up the ingredients. And it is perfect when its cold or rainy and even nice sometimes in summer (when you throw in some fresh farmers market veggies including corn!). Favorite comfort dish…hmmm any kind of soup


Thinspired April 21, 2010 at 11:58 am

I am ALWAYS looking for a new chili recipe to try! especially love playing with turkey chili recipes. Yours looks great–definitely a unique touch with the lager! Matt will love that addition ;)


Jens February 20, 2013 at 9:43 pm

This looks absolutely awesome gurl! I am taking the wifey to fredericksburg for the weekend and staying a quaint cottage at the hofman haus. I’ll cook this up while she takes a leisurely bath… it’s our anniversary..


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