One of the things we love about developing new recipes is taking a standard recipe that we have been making for a long time and changing it a little to making it a little healthier. Spicy Turkey Chili packs a ton of flavor but has less calories, fat, and saturated fat than its traditional beef version. By serving it with Mochi Barley instead of rice, we add a lot of great nutrition, taste, and texture to the dish!
- 2 1/2 lbs Ground Turkey
- 2 medium Bell Peppers (I used yellow and orange), chopped small
- 2 medium Onions, chopped fine
- 2 cloves Garlic, minced
- 3 Tbsp Chili Powder
- 3 Tbsp Olive Oil
- 1/2 tsp Cayenne Pepper
- 1 1/2 tsp kosher salt
- 2 cans diced tomatoes
- 2 cans kidney beans (I used regular and dark red), rinsed and drained
- 1 cup chicken, turkey, or vegetable stock (homemade or lowest sodium available store bought)
How I We Make It:
- Heat skillet and pour in 2 Tbsp of the Olive Oil.
- Season Ground Turkey with Salt and put in hot skillet salt-side-down and use some of the remaining salt to season the other side while it sears.
- Brown meat and break into bite sized pieces as it browns; remove with a slotted spoon and set aside.
- Add remaining Olive Oil, Cayenne Pepper, Onions, peppers, and garlic, along with any remaining of the salt and sautéed until vegetables have cooked part way through and developed a little golden brown color in the pan. Deglaze pan with chicken stock, scraping up any browned bits from the pan.
- Pour vegetables with stock, browned turkey, beans, tomatoes, and Chili Powder into a slow cooker, mix to combine, and put on lid.
- Cook in slow cooker on low for 6-8 hours.
- Taste and adjust seasoning, if needed
- Serve over Mochi Barley, toasted in a dry pan for 5 minutes and then cooked according to package instructions.
- The ingredients above make a medium spicy chili, to kick up the heat add one or two of your favorite spicy chili peppers, finely chopped, to the vegetables while sautéing. I love Serrano chilis, but jalapeños or long hots also work well.
- Heating the Cayenne in the Oil, infuses the heat of the Cayenne into the Oil, developing the spiciness. If you prefer a less spicy chili, skip this step and just add the Cayenne in with the Chili Powder at the end, decrease the amount that you use, or omit it altogether.
- Top with fresh herbs, a squeeze of lime or Gremolata to add a fresh note to the rich chili.
- Substitute kidney beans for any others in your pantry. Cannellini Beans, Black Beans, and Chick Peas all work well and take on the flavor of the chili. Try different combinations, depending on what you have in your pantry.
- Serve with Hot Sauce on the side incase anyone likes theirs extra super spicy!
NOTE: If you’re not using quick-cooking pearled barley, which takes 15 minutes to cook in boiling water vs 60 you could save some time in the kitchen by soaking your grains a day before. That makes working with traditional pearled barley SO much easier when considering that NOBODY has time to wait 60 minutes in the kitchen anymore.