Turkey Chili

Turkey Chili 

From Martha Stewart

We debated long and hard over what to do for our awesome next door neighbors who just brought home a new baby.  As new homeowners with roughly zero experience with kids or people producing them, we realized we were woefully unaware of what new parents might need.  Then we thought, well, what does everyone need?  FOOD!  Of course that presented the question of what food.  We don’t know them super well since we’ve only been in the house for 4 months, so we decided to hedge our bets with a mixture of meaty, vegetarian, sweet and spicy.

Today’s chili covers the meaty and spicy end of the spectrum.  We kept half the batch for oursleves, and with every bite I prayed that they aren’t vegetarians because the idea of this chili going to waste brings tears to my eyes.  You’d NEVER know it’s turkey because it’s so outrageously flavorful and hearty.

I should point out that this recipe makes enough chili to feed an army.  That’s fine with us because we love the leftovers, but beware if you don’t own a huge pot.  We DO own a huge pot, yet we are two for two on starting this recipe in our medium one and having to transfer it half way when things get crazy.  Planning isn’t my strong suit…


  • 4 slices bacon, cut into half inch strips
  • 3 lb ground turkey, 7% fat
  • 4 cups white onion, chopped
  • 1/4 cup minced garlic cloves (we used jarred, pre-minced garlic, due to laziness)
  • 2 jalapenos, chopped (we left the seeds in, which makes it slightly hotter – your call – frankly it wasn’t very spicy, so feel free to play it up with hotter chilies)
  • 3 Tbsp chili powder
  • 3 Tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 4 tsp cumin
  • 2 cans (28 oz each) whole tomatoes
  • 2 Tbsp molasses
  • 4 tsp coarse salt
  • 2 cans (15 oz each) pinto beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 can (15 oz) kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • oyster crackers, for serving, optional
  • chopped onion, for serving, optional
  • shredded cheese, for serving, optional
  • sour cream, for serving, optional


  1. Heat a 5-quart Dutch oven or heavy pot over medium heat.
  2. Cook bacon until crisp and brown, about 6-8 minutes.
  3. Raise heat to high, and add turkey.  Cook, stirring and breaking up meat with a wooden spoon, until no longer pink, about 8-10 minutes.
  4. Add onion, garlic, and jalapenos.  Cook until soft, stirring often, about 5 minutes.
  5. Stir in chili powder, cocoa powder, and cumin.  Cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 1 minute.
  6. Add tomatoes with juices.  Break up whole tomatoes with a wooden spoon.
  7. Add molasses, 1 cup of water, and salt.  Bring to a boil.
  8. Reduce heat to low.  Simmer, partially covered, for 30 minutes.
  9. Add beans.  Continue cooking, uncovered, about 30 minutes.
  10. Serve with desired toppings.

Serves 8 (big, filling bowls).

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