Turkey Chili

In preparation for Thanksgiving, and in anticipation of turkey leftovers, we’ve been experimenting with various turkey dishes that use cooked turkey. This recipe is an easy one for turkey chili using turkey leftovers. (My mom makes great chili beans if you want a chili that starts with ground turkey). Note that this turkey chili recipe makes a lot of chili. We had so much leftover after making this batch that we used a bunch of it as the sauce and filling for enchiladas (which, by the way, is a terrific way to use up extra chili).

Turkey Chili Recipe

  • Yield: Makes about 12 cups. Serves 8.


  • 2 cups chopped onion
  • 4 garlic cloves, chopped fine
  • 1 cup chopped green pepper
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • Two 35 oz cans stewed tomatoes, crushed
  • Two 15 oz cans kidney beans, drained
  • 2 Tbsp tomato paste
  • 3/4 cup chicken or turkey stock
  • 2 Tbsp chili powder (or up to 4 Tbsp if you like it really hot)
  • 1 Tbsp ground cumin
  • 1 Tbsp dried hot red pepper flakes
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 Tbsp salt, plus more if desired to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 3 to 4 cups of shredded, cooked turkey meat
  • Sugar
  • Shredded cheddar cheese, chopped red onion, sour cream for optional garnish.


1 In a large, 8-quart, thick-bottom pot, cook the onion and green pepper over medium high heat, stirring, until golden, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic, chili powder, cumin, and red pepper flakes and cook, stirring, for a minute or two more. Add a bit more olive oil if needed.

2 Add tomatoes, tomato paste, stock. beans, oregano, salt, pepper, and cooked turkey meat. Bring mixture to a simmer and reduce heat to low. Simmer, uncovered, for an hour.

3 Salt to taste. Add 1 to 3 teaspoons of sugar to take the edge of the acidity of the tomatoes if desired.

The chili may be made in advance and chilled for 2 days, or frozen for 2 months.

Serve with shredded cheddar cheese, chopped red onion, and or sour cream. Serve alone, over rice, or with corn bread.

Hello! All photos and content are copyright protected. Please do not use our photos without prior written permission. If you wish to republish this recipe, please rewrite the recipe in your own unique words and link back to the source recipe here on Simply Recipes. Thank you!

Showing 4 of 38 Comments

  • JoAnn Brereton

    I could make this in a crockpot, right? I’m thinking that once step #1 is done, just add the rest to the crockpot, cover, and let slow cook on low for 6-8 hours.

    What do you think?


  • Lou Grubaugh

    Your chili recipe sounds wonderful and particularly the enchiladas. We have a favorite Green Chili Enchiladas (we like the Green Chili Enchilada Sauce from Las Palmas, easily available in most grocery stores). We make ours with cooked chicken or turkey combined with olives, green onions, cilantro and some of the Green Chili Enchilada sauce, then rolled in softened corn tortillas along with some shredded Jack cheee, topped with more sauce, additional shredded jack cheese and a spinkle of cheedar. Bake in casserole. Serve with pico de gallo. Muy Bueno,

  • Kevin

    I think I will cook that second turkey to make sure I have enough leftovers!!!

    This Chili recipe looks great!

  • SandyK

    Thanks again for this wonderful recipe!

View More Comments / Leave a Comment