January – Turkey Chili

Okay, I know there are about a million recipes out there for chili. I have a whole Pinterest folder full of them. Why do you need one more? Well…what about easy, almost fat free, delicious, full of healthy vegetables, suitable for both phase 1 and phase 3 of the Fast Metabolism Diet, and lastly an insurance policy in the freezer. Chili is the answer for the question “what shall we have for dinner?” frequently posed at 6 pm when everyone is tired, hungry, and grumpy. That’s the kind of insurance I’m talking about. It’s good with rice, with cornbread, poured over a baked potato, garnished with cheese or avocado or chips or cilantro or chopped onion or sour cream, use it in a burrito bowl or rolled in a taco. Whew! And it is delicious just as is, perfect for lunch or dinner on a chilly day. You have lots of options.

This recipe makes a big batch, four quarts of chili. Enough for to put a quart or two in the freezer.

2 cups of chili are a phase 1 meal, garnish with half a sliced avocado for phase 3. Because of the large amounts of legumes, it counts as a starch as well as a protein.

Turkey Chili

4 quarts of Turkey Chili

Turkey Chili

Makes 4 quarts – 8 servings


  • 1 1/2 pounds of ground turkey
  • 1 large red onion, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons fresh cilantro or parsley
  • 1 heaping tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon of cumin
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1/4 – 1/2 teaspoon red chili flakes (depending on how spicy you like your chili)
  • 2 cans of black beans
  • 1 can of pinto beans, drained
  • 4 cups of chopped zucchini
  • 2 red peppers, chopped
  • 1 32 ounce can of chopped tomatoes with juice
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt plus more to taste


  1. Brown the turkey over medium heat in a large heavy bottomed pot, add a tablespoon or two of water if it sticks.
  2. Add the onion, herbs, chili powder, cumin, garlic and red chili flakes to the pot. Cook on until the onion softens, about 10 minutes.
  3. Add the 2 cans of black beans with their liquid, the drained pinto beans, and the tomatoes. Bring to a simmer and turn down the heat. Simmer 40 minutes.
  4. Add the zucchini, red pepper and salt, simmer for another 40 minutes to an hour.
  5. Taste for salt.
  6. Garnish with chopped cilantro, thinly sliced cabbage, avocado, sour cream, cheese, etc.

    Turkey Chili

    Turkey Chili

This recipe is adapted from one in the Fast Metabolism Diet.


11 thoughts on “January – Turkey Chili

  1. Well 🙂 ! Living on my own in Australia where we eat rather little of ‘chili’ which we promptly spell as ‘chilli’, methinks half of that ‘lot’ will be tried and methinks, looking at the ingredients, quite enjoyed – thank you for a different version which I am certain to keep on file !!!

    • The original recipe called for 4 cans of assorted beans but I am very fond of pinto and black beans.

  2. Turkey, or Kalkon as we call it here in Sweden is an expensive protein. Don’t understand why, but minced Kalkon is about 3-4 times the cost of minced kyckling (chicken). So, I’ll be giving this a go, using minced kyckling.

    • Interesting, I wonder why? I think it would also be good with ground chicken or even lean ground beef.

      • Ask my butcher yesterday and he says, it because they all grown free range organic and mostly come from small farms. Turkey production in all of Sweden represents less than 1% of poultry produced. Today’s sale price (frozen) was US$7.50/pound.

    • Hi Julie, I hope everyone is on the mend in your house. It has been a bad year for colds and flu. And, I agree, I love having frozen chili available fo nights that I don’t want to cook.

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