Pumpkin “Turkey” Chili

Well, now that we’ve got cornbread, how about some chili to go with it?

Back in ’09 I made an amazing Butternut Two Bean Chili and in February of this year I made a quickie version that I called Black & White Chili, but one can never have too many chili recipes, right? (As a side note, it feels really weird to reference posts made two, three, four years ago…) So when Serious Eats posted a round-up of pumpkin recipes with their Pumpkin Turkey Chili included, I knew that I needed to make it (and veganize it) quick.

While I used Serious Eats’ recipe as a base, I added and changed a few things, first and foremost being the turkey. For the ground turkey I subbed hydrated TVP and the TVP’s all-too-meaty quality in the final dish is a little creepy, but for taste and texture and awesomeness’ sake, I’m down with it. G said it could have tricked him if he didn’t know going into trying the first bite that it was vegan. Hooray! I also added a can of black beans, used homemade pumpkin puree, and added a bottle of pumpkin beer to give it more liquid and that extra pumpkin-beer oomph.

The chili is flavorful (I used a high quality, fresh chili powder from the Dekalb Farmers Market in Atlanta mixed with chipotle powder) without being overwhelmingly spicy, and the pumpkin flavor definitely comes through with an extra creamy, smooth, and pumpkiny taste. And, like any chili, the recipe is as customizable as you want it to be–gluten free? Just switch out the pumpkin beer for a gluten-free beer! Don’t like kidney beans? Use other beans! And the amount of chili powder is all up to you–start with less and add more as you go to taste. And don’t forget to serve it with some cornbread for extra deliciousness!

Pumpkin “Turkey” Chili

Adapted from Serious Eats

2 tbsp olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
1 green bell pepper, chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1 (4 oz) can chopped green chiles
2 large cloves garlic, minced
1-3 tbsp chili powder
1 tbsp cumin
1 tsp-1 tbsp chipotle powder
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 c TVP
1 c boiling water
1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes
1 (14.5 oz) can red kidney beans
1 (14.5 oz) can black beans
2 cups (1 14.5 ounce can) pumpkin puree
1/4 c semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 bottle pumpkin beer of choice (or gluten-free beer)

Heat oil in a dutch oven or stock pot over medium heat.

In a small mixing bowl, combine the TVP with the boiling water. Stir and set aside to rehydrate.

Add onions, saute 5 minutes, until translucent. Add peppers & green chilies, saute 3 minutes, until soft. Add garlic, saute 1 minute, or until fragrant.

Add spices (starting with 1 tbsp chili powder, 1 tbsp cumin, 1 tsp chipotle power, 1 tsp salt, and 1/2 tsp black pepper) and stir to coat vegetables.

Immediately add the tomatoes, pumpkin, beans, tvp, chocolate chips, and beer. Stir. Bring to a boil, then lower to a simmer for 20 minutes up to an hour or so. The cook time is up to you, depending on how thick or soupy you like your chili. Also, add more chili powder, chipotle, cumin, salt, and pepper as desired–I ended up with 3 tbsp chili powder, 1.5 tbsp chipotle, and a touch more salt. It all depends on your taste buds.

Serve with cornbread & more of that pumpkin (or gluten-free!) beer!

Posts of MoFos Past:
2008: Remember the Seitans
2009: Rice Macaroni Noodles

5 Responses to “Pumpkin “Turkey” Chili”
  1. Cara says:

    Oh man, I wish I could consume some pumpkin beer–that sounds so delicious! And then adding into chili??? You are making me so jealous right now… What a fun recipe!

  2. Chuck says:

    You know, I’ve thought about making a pumpkin chili for sooo long but never actually done it. Maybe I’ll use this recipe and give it a try!

  3. bad1788 says:

    Pumpkin in chili?! That sounds fantastic.

  4. allularpunk says:

    dude, this sounds delicious.

  5. Mandee says:

    Wow, that looks like a bowl of pure deliciousness! I’m not a huge fan of pumpkin but I bet I will still love this. It’s meant to be spring here but it’s cold and grey and rainy and I really want to stop everything and make this NOW!

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