Crowd-Pleasing Turkey Chili

Monday, April 11, 2016

The secret ingredient is beer.

There, did that pique your interest?

What began as a way to use up skunky beer ended up being the most delicious turkey chili - the kind my pickiest eater actually wanted a SECOND helping of! 

And since we seem to be experiencing Winter 2.0, what better way to embrace the chilly weather than to cook up a giant pot of this delicious chili? It makes enough for a large-ish family with plenty of leftovers to share! I love taking half of it to new moms or friends who could use a night off from cooking, but it also freezes well and reheats beautifully if you just want to get a little freezer cooking done!


3 lbs ground turkey
1 large onion, diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
3 tbsp butter or olive oil
1/4 cup chili powder
1 tbsp cumin
1 tbsp oregano
1 bottle beer
6 cups chicken stock
2 29 oz cans tomato puree
1 cup red lentils
2 cans kidney beans
2 cans great northern beans

1. Dice onion & cook with butter or olive oil  and salt in large stockpot until soft.
2. Add minced garlic and stir until fragrant.
3. Add chili powder, cumin, and oregano, stir until combined.
4. Brown turkey in same pot - it's a lean enough meat that you don't need to worry about draining the fat!
5. Once turkey is browned, add a bottle or two of beer - anything will work, but I probably wouldn't try a chocolate stout or something like that...
6. Bring to a boil, then add tomato puree and chicken stock.
7. Bring back to a boil, add red lentils (affiliate link! I buy them in bulk here because none of my local grocery stores carry them and I add them to literally every soup I make to thicken things up)
8. Reduce heat to a simmer, cook for at least 2 hours, stirring occasionally. This really mellows the acidity of the tomato and helps the flavors meld beautifully. I usually prep during lunch and cook it for 5-6 hours.
9. A few minutes before serving, drain beans and add to the chili, stirring until heated through.

Add hot sauce, cheese, sour cream, tortilla chips, or whatever other chili toppings you prefer!

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