Recipe: Hearty Autumn Turkey Chili with Kale and Butternut Squash

‘Tis the season for soups, stews, chili, and cozy comfort foods! This autumnal twist on chili is the perfect way to make a standard recipe new and exciting. Also, it’s a pretty good way to sneak kale into something the hubs will eat…

Domestocrat’s Hearty Autumn Turkey Chili with Kale and Butternut Squash (makes 5 servings)
2 lbs. ground turkey
1 yellow onion
1 bunch of kale, roughly 4 cups washed and trimmed
1/2 butternut squash, peeled and cubed
1 28 oz. can of tomato puree
1 15 oz. can of black beans
1 cup of your favorite marinara sauce
3 tsp. chili powder
2 tsp. paprika
1 tsp. red pepper flake
1 tsp. garlic salt
Salt & pepper to taste
Your choice of toppings: greek yogurt/sour cream, shredded cheese, scallions, tortilla chips, etc.

Begin by roasting the butternut squash (I buy the pre-peeled kind and then cube it myself). Toss with 1 tbsp. of EVOO, salt, and pepper, and roast at 400 degrees for 25 minutes.

While the squash is roasting, get started on the rest of the chili. Begin by mincing the onion and caramelizing over medium heat in a big pot. When the onion has caramelized, add the ground turkey and spices (amounts in the recipe are what I used but go nuts with your own level of spice/heat). When the meat has browned, add in the beans (drained and rinsed), kale (washed and trimmed into bite size pieces), and tomato puree. Stir to combine and drop the heat to low. The butternut squash should be done at this point; add it to the pot and stir.


Put the lid on the pot and simmer the chili on low for 10 minutes. Taste for seasonings and thickness. This is where I added a cup of my favorite marinara sauce to enhance the flavor and loosen the texture. Put the lid back on and simmer for another 10-15 minutes.

The chili can be served right away with your favorite toppings or portioned into tupperwares and stored for up to 1 week.


This chili is my new favorite Fall recipe! It’s hearty, filling, delicious, and healthy. It’s also fairly easy to put together and doesn’t need all day in a crockpot.


Author: Domestocrat

I'm a lady who enjoys photography, football, cooking, long drives with the windows down, This American Life, kettlecorn, hot yoga, pop punk, my nephews, my cat Reggie, and my home: Boston.

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