Turkey Chili w/ Tri-color Beans

October 25, 2010 at 9:01 pm 4 comments

There’s nothing that quite warms the cockles of your heart like a gorgeous bowl of chili.  I’ve been excited about making and eating hearty soups since our temps here in Vegas dropped into what’s probably considered balmy for most folks but chilly by our standards.  After all, it’s over 100 degrees for about four months of the year.
This recipe originated from Epicurious.com but I made a few changes.  Their version was all white cannelini beans – I mixed it up a bit.  Their version called for beef broth – I used a combination of white wine and chicken broth.  I also had about four ounces of smoked chicken sausage left over from the Carmelized Onion Pizza so I tossed it in to add a little bit of smoky flavor. You could do the same with cooked, crumbled up bacon if you’d like. Or not.
I used to have a recipe for “Polish Prince Chili” that used ground beef and a pound of Kielbasa.  That was back in my Michigan days before I moved West in 1992.  Since the Detroit area has a big contingent of German-Polish folks it’s a perfect blending of their love of smoky sausages and the heat of Tex-Mex. Or at least the idea of it.  Of course no self-respecting Texan would put beans (or turkey) in their chili.  The combination of ingredients listed here made what I feel is a doggone good pot of chili without a lot of fuss or muss.

Turkey Chili w/ Tri-color Beans:

  • 1 T. olive oil
  • 2 medium onions, chopped
  • 1 tsp. dried oregano
  • 1 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1 1/2 pounds lean ground turkey
  • 4 T. chili powder
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 T unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1, large can diced tomatoes
  • 2 C. chicken stock
  • 1 C. white wine (I used a Chardonnay)
  • 1 8-oz can tomato sauce
  • 1, 15-ounce cans small white beans, rinsed, drained
  • 1, 15-ounce cans small black beans, rinsed, drained
  • 1, 15-ounce cans small kidney beans, rinsed, drained
  • 4-8 ounces smoked chicken or turkey sausage, sliced thin (optional)


  • Chopped red onion
  • Chopped fresh cilantro
  • Greek yogurt or light sour cream

Heat oil in heavy large pot over medium heat. Add onions; sauté until light brown and tender, about 10 minutes. Add oregano and cumin; stir 1 minute. Increase heat to medium-high. Add turkey; stir until no longer pink, breaking up with back of spoon. Add chicken or turkey sausage if using. Stir in chili powder, bay leaves, cocoa powder, salt and cinnamon. Add tomatoes. Mix in stock and tomato sauce. Bring to boil. Reduce heat; simmer 45 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Add beans to chili and simmer until flavors blend, about 10 minutes longer. Discard bay leaves. Cover and refrigerate. Rewarm over medium-low heat before serving.

Ladle chili into bowls. Pass garnishes separately.


Entry filed under: Adventurous Foodie, One Pot Meal. Tags: , , .

Carmelized Onion Pizza When Food is Ugly

4 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Ernie Martin  |  October 25, 2010 at 10:00 pm

    The Chili was delicious! Great soup for dinner!

    • 2. dmmfoodie  |  October 25, 2010 at 10:11 pm

      Thanks, hon. (Ernie is my husband, y’all.)

  • 3. Rosa  |  October 27, 2010 at 5:52 am

    A comforting chili! Perfect with this weather.



  • 4. Esi  |  October 27, 2010 at 10:54 pm

    Yum, love turkey chili. Have been enjoying a batch of it all week.


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