I pulled one of my favorite recipes out from the archives from 2011 to share with you today, turkey chili with pintos. It is gluten-free and perfect for  enjoying while you watch football!
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Turkey Chili Recipe with Pinto Beans on healthyseasonalrecipes.com #glutenfree

Last weekend, we were getting ready to watch some football and I ran down to the market for the ingredients for this chili, and I ran into my friend. I was so flattered to hear that she was shopping for ingredients for this spaghetti squash recipe from deep within the archives. She said that her whole family loves it, so she makes it all the time.  I told her that I was making an old favorite from the archives too: Turkey Chili with Pintos.

I told her that this was one of my favorite recipes from the whole website, and it really needed a new photo. When I got home and made it again, I confirmed that indeed it was fantastic, and I fell in love with it all over. Here are the reasons why it garners awesomesauce points IMO and wins a spot on the best of healthy seasonal recipes list:

1. It has lime juice in it. As you know, I have a thing for sour stuff, and I think adding a bit of vinegar or acid to a recipe is the culinary equivalent to Harry Potter Defeating the Dark Lord in the wizarding world.

Turkey Chili with Pinto Beans ~ From the archives

2. It has a boatload of veggies in it, namely peppers, which are in season locally right now, so I am all excited about that. Did you know that peppers are really high in vitamin C? Yup! Eat ‘em up. I used regular old bell peppers from the farm down the road, and a big jalapeño. The jalapeño was not very spicy, but I left the seeds out for the little taste buds at the table.

Turkey Chili with Pinto Beans on healthyseasonalrecipes.com

3. Which brings me to the fact that it is not too spicy for my wee sassypants daughters. This they thank me for. Jase and I add a indecent amount of Cholula to ours since we love all things with spice. But I love that my daughters will eat this chili. That is a win for sure. And if you don’t like the spice, you will love the flavor of it. If you want more, add in the jalapeño seeds or a few shakes of your favorite hot sauce.

4. It has a sprinkling of cornmeal in it to thicken-it-up instead of cooking it for-evs to reduce it. That way you can make the whole shootin’ match in 40 minutes. Done deal.

Turkey Chili Recipe with Pinto Beans on healthyseasonalrecipes.com

5. It has oregano in it, which I love because in New Mexico, you’ll find this in traditional cuisine, and though a bit unexpected to most palates it really does taste awesome in the chili.



What is your criteria for an awesome chili recipe?

What do you like to cook for watching football?


turkey chili with pintos

  • Prep Time: 40 minutes
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 6 servings 1x



  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

  • 1 pound ground turkey or chicken

  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
2 Anaheim Peppers or small green bell peppers, diced

  • 1 large onion, diced
1 bunch scallions, sliced, white and green parts separated

  • 1 jalapeno pepper, minced, seeds to taste

  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
2 teaspoons ground cumin

  • 1 ½ teaspoon salt

  • 2 tablespoons cornmeal
1 28-ounce can peeled tomatoes
, crushed by hand or cut into chunks
  • 2 cans pinto beans, drained and rinsed

  • 1 cup chicken broth

  • 1 lime, juiced

  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon chopped fresh oregano

  • Garnishes: diced avocado, toasted pine nuts or pepitas, minced red onion, chopped fresh cilantro


  1. Heat oil in a large heavy-bottom soup pot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat.  Crumble in turkey or chicken and cook, breaking up large pieces until no longer pink, 5 to 7 minutes. Stir in garlic, peppers, onion, scallion whites and jalapeño and cook, stirring often until the vegetables are cooked down and mostly softened, about 10 minutes. 
  2. Stir in chili powder, cumin and salt and cook until the spices are fragrant 30 seconds to 2 minutes.  Sprinkle the cornmeal over the vegetable mixture and stir to coat.  Stir in tomatoes, beans and broth and bring to a simmer, stirring often.
  3. Reduce heat to maintain simmer and cook, stirring occasionally until the chili is thick and the onions and peppers are tender, 10 to 15 minutes.  Stir in lime juice, oregano and the remaining scallion greens.  Serve with garnishes if desired.


59 mg Cholesterol, 888 mg Potassium, 0 g Added Sugars


  • Serving Size: 1 1/2 cups each
  • Calories: 330
  • Sugar: 5.5 g
  • Sodium: 850 mg
  • Fat: 12.5 g
  • Saturated Fat: 2.5 g
  • Carbohydrates: 34 g
  • Fiber: 10 g
  • Protein: 23 g