Organic Turkey Chili with Beans

Need a healthy, hearty meal for those short-on-time days? Here’s a Kitchen Spirit “Reality Recipe” that’s big on protein, fiber, and taste!

Jill Reid | Kitchen Spirit

Every couple of weeks, I make a batch of Organic Turkey Chili with Beans. Why? My husband loves it, and the chili stores and freezes easily, making it ideal for those days when you’re low on time and need a quick, healthy meal (sound familiar?)

This recipe has evolved through the years, and occasionally, I’ll change it up with different spices and ingredients. After all, we’re working in reality, which means using what’s on hand! Remember to use organic ingredients whenever possible.

Here’s my (current) Kitchen Spirit Reality Recipe for Organic Turkey Chili with Beans– enjoy!

1 – lb organic ground turkey
½ onion – chopped
1 – tbsp crushed garlic
½ cup chopped mushrooms
Avocado oil
1 – tsp paprika
2 – tbsp. chili powder
1 – tbsp. cumin
2 –tbsp dried cilantro

Coarse black pepper
Dried red chili pepper flakes
Pink Himalayan salt
1 – Small can tomato sauce
2 – cups (total) cooked beans – pinto, black, red, white (you can also substitute low sodium canned varieties)
Homemade stock or filtered water
Chia seeds

If you make your own beans, cook them ahead of time and store in the refrigerator until ready to use. Here’s an easy method:

Presoak 1-cup beans overnight in filtered water

Rinse beans and put in medium size pot. Add filtered water to about an inch below the rim. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer uncovered for 45-60 minutes, adding water as needed. Test a few beans by pressing against the inside of the pot with a fork or spoon. They’re ready when they soften easily. Drain and store cooked beans in a glass jar in the refrigerator.

For the chili, use a large pan and set the burner to medium high. Heat a small amount of avocado oil, then add garlic, onions, and mushrooms. Sprinkle with pepper and cook until vegetables are soft. Add ground turkey, breaking it up into small pieces and chunks. Season with chili powder, paprika, pepper, cilantro, and red chili pepper flakes. Stir occasionally, until meat is cooked through.

Add tomato sauce and ½ cup stock or water. Heat until bubbling, and add the beans. Sprinkle with salt (just a little to bring out the flavor in the beans) and stir. Cover and reduce heat to low, stirring occasionally. Note—the beans will soak up some of the liquid, so add more stock/water depending on how you like your chili (thick and meaty or with a little more “juice.”)

If the chili becomes too watery, add a sprinkle of chia seeds and continue to cook on low. Chia seeds absorb liquid – be sure to add small amounts at a time until you have it just right.

Cook covered on low to medium-low for 30-40 minutes. Serve immediately with gluten-free chips,  a side of salsa and/or Avocado and White Bean Dip, or topped with shredded cheese.

You can also store chili in portioned batches in the refrigerator or freezer for a quick, hearty meal on short notice.

I love using homemade stock with this recipe and usually have some on hand in glass jars in the refrigerator from soup recipes. Stock will keep for several weeks, and it’s so easy to add that extra “bump” of flavor and vitamins.

You can also use filtered water in place of stock. We have a Clean Water Machine in our kitchen and use it for everything from drinking water, to cooking, to recipe preparation.

Here are my “must-haves” in preparing this recipe. You can use fresh cilantro if available, and organic whenever possible. We like our food on the spicy side in our house, and chili powder and dried red chili pepper flakes are perfect to heat things up.  You can find these items on Amazon – just click on the photos below for more info.


Cilantro is becoming one of my favorites, and the perfect flavor addition for this recipe

Available from Amazon

Organic Chili Powder gives a rich red color to the meat and sauce, not to mention a little heat!

Available from Amazon

Use Red Chili Pepper Flakes to suit your taste – we likes things spicy in our home!

Available from Amazon