Good food is such a crucial part of living a satisfying life – and
the healthier the food the better, of course. This winter, try a unique
chili recipe to warm you up, fuel your body, and satisfy your adventurous palate.
The best nutritional advice is often disarmingly simple. As food writer
Michael Pollan has said, “Eat food, not too much, mostly plants,”
and this chili dish truly delivers on Pollan’s advice. Most of the
ingredients are high-density, nutrient-packed vegetables and beans.
Omitting red meat means less fat and calories, and this chili is all about
keeping the calories low and the satisfaction high. The 2 cups of butternut
squash, for instance, should contain only about 164 calories. This winter
squash is also low in saturated fat, cholesterol and sodium while providing
excellent amounts of vitamin E, vitamin B6, folate, calcium and magnesium,
as well as vitamins A and C. The 2 cups of beans not only provide a protein
boost to your system, but their fiber will also help keep the carbs from
traveling straight to your fat cells. The pumpkin in this chili recipe
is rich in vital antioxidants and vitamins and, of course, has few calories.
Moreover, the phytochemicals in all onions improve the working of vitamin
C in the body, providing you with improved immunity. Frankly, there is
nothing but healthy ingredients included in this non-traditional take
on a hearty favorite.
Pumpkin, Black Rice, Turkey Crockpot Chopped Chili
(courtesy of KC Kahn, “The Kitchen Chopper”)
While this may not be a traditional chili recipe, it does have a similar
flavor profile that includes cumin, chili powder, green chilies, black
beans and more. You might even be able to get away with calling it a stew
because it also contains vegetables, black rice and broth.
At any rate, the chunks of butternut squash and pureed pumpkin make this
a winter winner. If you have a half butternut squash already cooked or
left over then you will not need to prepare it … just chop it.
If not, then here’s an
easy way to get your butternut squash ready to chop and seed, or you could always
purchase it pre-chopped.
If you want to keep it vegetarian, then you can simply substitute a 15
oz. can of drained kidney beans for the ground turkey.
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 15 minutes, plus 6-8 hours in the crockpot
Bowl / Pan / Crockpot Ingredient Preparation:
In a large bowl, combine all of the following ingredients, then heat a
deep sauté pan to medium and pour ingredients into 2 Tbsp of olive
or coconut oil. Then pour all of the ingredients that you have in your
large bowl into the heated pan. Continue to break up the turkey as it
cooks. Stir the mixture often, so that it will cook evenly. When the veggies
and turkey are cooked through then you may add them to your crockpot.
- 2 cups of chopped butternut squash
- 1 red or white chopped onion
- 1 large or 2 small chopped zucchinis
- 1 cup of chopped celery
- 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 4 chopped brown mushrooms
- 1 lb. lean ground turkey
- 1 tablespoon dried thyme
- 1 tablespoon ground cumin
- 2 teaspoons of smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 tablespoon dried sage
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
Now add the following ingredients to the crockpot and stir to combine.
Cook on low temp for 6 – 8 hours.
- 1 15 oz. can black beans (not drained)
- 1 15 oz. can white beans (not drained)
- 1 cup of either chicken or vegetable broth
- ½ cup of black rice (may be substituted with either brown rice or
- 1 15 oz. can of pumpkin puree (not the pie filling)
The Final Touch:
Add 1 – 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar and taste. You could
add more spices or vinegar at this time. Again, stir to combine. Now you
are ready to serve this sublimely savory chili in bowls and add your favorite toppings.
Plain Greek yogurt or sour cream