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How to Make Turkey Chili

Updated on May 17, 2008


3 lbs ground turkey, or ground turkey breast

2 cans unsalted tomato sauce

2 cans unsalted diced tomatoes

1 bunch of scallions

1 green pepper

chili powder to taste

Morton's lite salt


garlic powder (optional)

2 tbsps barbecue sauce (smoky flavor, (optional)


In a large skillet, brown the ground turkey until 3/4 cooked, stirring occasionally.

While that is browning, chop the green pepper and scallions.

Add the remaining ingredients and let simmer for another 15/20 minutes.

Serve with your favorite crusty bread. Makes a great lunch, or have it for dinner along with a salad.

This recipe is simple, inexpensive, takes very little time, and is very healthy.


My preference is using the ground turkey, as it is not as dry as the ground turkey breast. I also prefer mine without the garlic powder and bbq sauce. Those two items however, do lend a nice twist to the flavor, and it is nice once in a while.

You can also experiment with this recipe. Either take out or add something to your liking, and I'm sure it will be just as tasty. This particular version is my favorite, and I get rave reviews every time I serve it.

So, fellow hubbers, I hope you try it out. Enjoy!

Note: I believe this makes 4-6 servings, but it's been a while since I've made it myself. This recipe can be halved for the first time out, on the off-chance it's not to your liking, then you wouldn't be wasting too much food :)


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    • trish1048 profile image

      trish1048 6 years ago

      Hi Winsome.

      Yes, it is tasty. I really enjoy it, and I especially love the simplicity and short amount of time it takes to put it together.

      I was introduced to capers this year, and I think I might try adding some to this the next time I make it.

      So have fun experimenting. Glad you found this appealing :)

    • Winsome profile image

      Winsome 6 years ago from Southern California by way of Texas

      Sounds delicious. I make one that uses these ingredients plus celery and onions. I never thought of BBQ sauce though. I'll have to give it a try. Thanks for the recipe. =:)

    • trish1048 profile image

      trish1048 7 years ago

      Aww, thanks toknowinfo!

      Ever since I started using ground turkey, which started with this recipe, I find it very tasty and do in fact prefer it over ground beef. This is not to say I don't use ground beef, I do, but for weight issues I find the ground turkey to be much healthier.

      Thanks for stopping by, glad you liked it.

    • toknowinfo profile image

      toknowinfo 7 years ago

      I prefer chopped turkey to chopped beef. Thanks for this great recipe. I'll be thinking of you when I make this.

    • trish1048 profile image

      trish1048 8 years ago

      Hi laringo,

      You're quite welcome.

      Nice to see you!  This is a good one, if I do say so myeslf.  It's quite versatile, as you can, as you say, mix it up :)

      I've bookmarked several of your recipes as well.  Thanks so much for stopping by and commenting.

    • laringo profile image

      laringo 8 years ago from From Berkeley, California.

      I have a recipe for turkey chili, but this one is different. I will bookmark this because I love to mix it up a bit. Thanks for sharing this recipe.

    • trish1048 profile image

      trish1048 8 years ago

      Hi RKHenry,

      I love it too. When I was dieting, this meal was a lifesaver. How do you make yours? Hope you try this version.

      Welcome to HubPages, and thanks for stopping by and commenting.

    • RKHenry profile image

      RKHenry 8 years ago from Neighborhood museum in Somewhere, USA

      Turkey Chilli is my all time fav!! Thanks for the recipe.

    • trish1048 profile image

      trish1048 9 years ago

      Hi Veronica, you're very welcome,

      Whew! so glad you like it! Funny, I never considered beans, which I do love lol,,,now you've given me an idea that I'll have to try :)

      Thanks so much!


    • Veronica profile image

      Veronica 9 years ago from NY

      Turkey Chilli was a big hit! I felt it needed a bean, so I added kidney beans. Next time I'm going to try white beans instead.

      This is a great recipe, the tomato base makes it tasty. I'm with you - for my taste it really doesn't need the little kick the BBQ sauce adds.

      Thanks for the recipe!

    • trish1048 profile image

      trish1048 9 years ago

      Great!! Can't wait to hear what you think of it (but NOT if it was awful LOL)

      Enjoy, and thanks for letting me know :)


    • Veronica profile image

      Veronica 9 years ago from NY

      I bought the ingredients today, making it tomorrow. Can't wait!

    • trish1048 profile image

      trish1048 9 years ago

      Hi Veronica,

      I hope you give it a try. The bbq sauce is optional, and the difference in taste is subtle, but you can tell a difference. I only use the bbq sauce once in a great while, but my daughter prefers it with it, so it's just a matter of what suits your palate.

      Thanks for stopping by!


    • Veronica profile image

      Veronica 9 years ago from NY

      Awesome! I don't eat beef or pork. I'm always looking for turkey recipes like this to use instead. I love that looks more tomato-based than bbq sauce based. I can't wait to try this!

    • trish1048 profile image

      trish1048 9 years ago

      Hi Marisue,

      LOL I don't think it gets much healthier than this. But it certainly is tasty! Hope you enjoy!

      Thanks for stopping by!


    • marisuewrites profile image

      marisuewrites 9 years ago from USA

      mm I was looking for a way to make chili a bit healthier...since my gall bladder has decide to wake me up....

      thanks!! I'll try this soon.

    • trish1048 profile image

      trish1048 9 years ago

      Hi Shelly,

      It really is, and as I mention, you can always alter it if this particular combination doesn't suit you.

      Hi Rob,

      I agree. The seasonings would of course be to one's taste. When I first made it, I just added a little at a time till I got the taste that suited me.

      I hope you both enjoy!

      Thanks for commenting,


    • Rob Jundt profile image

      Rob Jundt 9 years ago from Midwest USA

      Chili in all shapes and colors is a good thing. Thanks for sharing.

    • Shelly McRae profile image

      Shelly McRae 9 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona

      This sounds very good! I'm always on the lookout for new chile recipes.

    • trish1048 profile image

      trish1048 9 years ago

      Hi ladies,

      Thank you all for your comments. Donna and Sweetie, hope you try it :)

      Sally, I KNOW you love it :)


    • SweetiePie profile image

      SweetiePie 9 years ago from Southern California, USA

      This is very good recipe and thanks for sharing it.

    • Sally's Trove profile image

      Sherri 9 years ago from Southeastern Pennsylvania

      Patty, I'm so glad you wrote out this recipe, because you know I'm crazy about it. 

      Donna, I love to experiment, too!  My favorite addition to this recipe is a diced jalapeno pepper.  Then I serve the chili over rice. 

    • donnaleemason profile image

      donnaleemason 9 years ago from North Dakota, USA

      Sounds yummy and I like the way that you mentioned for those that just follow recipes that it is ok to improvise that is how new dishes get created. I have a friend who insists that if it says so in a recipe book then that is how it should be done. Drives me crazy! I am more of a throw in a little bit of this and a little bit of that person and see what you get. Lol.