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November 2, 2017

The Perfect Turkey Chili

It is finally starting to feel like fall here and I’m so excited. Atlanta is gorgeous during the fall. The weather is mild (not freezing), I can start to wear boots and fall outfits and most importantly, I can justify eating soups + comfort foods. One of my absolute favorite things to make for dinner is turkey chili.

Even though I just learned how to make it last year, it has become a family favorite.

I made some last week and Maizah literally just wanted to drink the broth from her bowl and eat the turkey with her hands. I have to say, I don’t blame her. It’s so hearty and flavorful, you almost just want to eat it layer by layer.

And the best part is that it’s so easy to make.

The long part is that it needs to simmer in the pot for 30-45 minutes, but once you chop up your veggies and cook your meat – it’s smooth sailing. Even if cooking isn’t your thing, you can handle this recipe and knock it out of the park. You know, as long as you follow the directions.

Here’s what I want to emphasize: to take the chili to a new level, really think about your toppings. It makes all the difference.

Because I love cheese, I always buy a small block of colby jack cheese and shred some in a small bowl. (Cheese from the deli melts better than pre packaged shredded cheese. The pre packaged stuff is coated with a wax so it lasts long, but doesn’t melt as well.) Then I get fresh cilantro and avocado because my family enjoys it. But you can certainly get into green onions and other toppings if cheese and/cilantro aren’t your thing. Oh, crackers or yellow corn chips are fantastic add ons as well.

This chili is so flavorful. The holy trinity of flavor for this chili is red pepper, onion & garlic.

INGREDIENTS:

PRODUCE
1 medium red bell pepper
1 yellow onion
3 garlic cloves

POULTRY
1 lb of ground turkey (or ground chicken)

WET INGREDIENTS
2 teaspoons of olive oil
1 1/4 cup of chicken broth

DRY INGREDIENTS
1/2 teaspoon of sea salt (add more to taste after simmer)
1/4 teaspoon of cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon of dried oregano
2 teaspoons of ground cumin
1 tablespoon of chili powder (use more if you want it more spicy)

CANNED GOODS
2 15oz cans of dark red kidney beans (drained + rinsed)
1 28oz can of diced tomatoes
1 15oz can sweet corn (drained + rinsed)

TOPPINGS (optional)
avocado
green onions
Colby Jack cheese (shredded)
yellow corn tortilla chips
crackers
sour cream

INSTRUCTIONS:

Chop onion, red pepper & garlic cloves. (If you want to speed up the process, you can do a large chop and throw the produce in a food processor like I did.)

Preheat olive oil in a large pot over medium high heat. Once oil is hot, saute produce for 5-7 minutes stirring often to avoid burning.

After saute, add turkey (with produce still in pot), break up and cook until no longer pink. After meat is cooked, add dry ingredients and stir for about 20-30 seconds.

Next add all wet ingredients – chicken broth, diced tomatoes, red beans and sweet corn. Cover pot and bring to a boil. Once boiling, bring heat to low and let simmer for 35 to 45 minutes. Chili should thicken; taste and add seasoning accordingly (I typically add more salt and a bit of onion powder after 30 minutes, then let simmer for 5 to 10 more minutes.)

Prep toppings and garnish as you plate/bowl. Makes 6 to 8 servings depending on size of bowls. (Makes for great leftovers!)

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