Pumpkin Turkey Chili

I love chili. It’s healthy and hearty and it’s a filling meal. I used to have an amazing chili recipe for the crockpot but lost the recipe. All attempts to locate that recipe have failed and I’ve never been able to recreate it. That being said, it hasn’t stopped me from trying other recipes. I got this one in the mail with my Fred Meyer coupons (Kroger for the rest of the country I think). I had all the ingredients on hand so I tried it this past weekend.

Pumpkin Turkey Chili

Serves: 4-6 Β  Β | Β  Calories: about 257 depending on serving size


1 TB vegetable oil

1 cup chopped onion

1/2 cup chopped green bell pepper

1/2 cup chopped yellow bell pepper

1 clove minced garlic

1 lb ground turkey

1 can diced tomatoes

2 cups pumpkin puree

1.5 TB chili powder

1/2 tsp ground black pepper

1 dash salt

1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese

sour cream


1. Heat oil in a skillet over medium heat. Saute the onion, peppers and garlic until tender.

2. Stir in turkey and cook until evenly browned.

3. Pour meat mixture and veggies into crockpot.

4. Mix in tomatoes and pumpkin and add seasoning.

5. Cover and set on low. Cook 4-5 hours.

6. Serve with shredded cheese and sour cream.

I did make a few alterations to the recipe. First, I added a can of pinto beans. The recipe did not call for that but I think chili needs beans. And I am so glad I added them! They were a great addition.

I used a Walla Walla sweet onion and one small white onion from my garden. As for the garlic, it called for 1 clove minced. Well, I tend to think that most recipes are too light on garlic so I added three cloves (and that honestly wasn’t enough).

I used lean ground turkey from Costco. We usually have some on hand in the freezer (great for making tacos, enchiladas and turkey burgers). Another change to the recipe: I added more spices than what was called for.

There’s no better aroma than cooking veggies. Yum. While that was cooking in the skillet I dumped the beans, tomatoes and pumpkin into the crockpot.

When the veggies were done I added them to the crockpot and then cooked the turkey separately. My skillet wasn’t big enough to do it all at the same time. I added the ground turkey meat to the crockpot, mixed everything and added the spices. The extra spices I added: a dash of basil, rosemary, “savory” and onion powder.

I also added a splash of cabernet. Just a splash because I didn’t want to overpower the original flavors with the wine. I cooked it for about 5 hours in the crockpot.

When dinner was ready, I toasted Michael and I some bagel thins with cream cheese to go with dinner. It just felt like a comfort food kind of night.

I love bagel thins. They satisfy my bagel cravings without busting the bank on my calories. I also had one glass of wine with my dinner (seen above). We’d spent the afternoon catching up on American Horror Story, The Walking Dead and during dinner we watched Dexter!

The chili was served! I added some shredded Colby Jack cheese and a dollop of sour cream on mine. The chili was really thick, not too liquidy at all despite the above photo. But it wasn’t too thick either. Just right.

I think one of the reasons I like chili so much is because it’s yet another thing I can add sour cream to (addicted!). πŸ™‚ The even better news: Michael HATES chili. With a passion. He won’t eat it, he hates the flavor and textures. It’s on his list of “never eats” (along with oatmeal) yet he had a bite and really liked it! So he had some for dinner. I was so happy that he liked it and was able to eat it.

You would think that the chili would be really sweet because of the pumpkin but it wasn’t sweet at all. It was delicious! Definitely a winner.

The above calculations do NOT include the cheese or sour cream. It’s calculated from the recipe but also not including the beans I added. So if you add beans to the recipe I’d add about 50 calories to each serving. My brother the cook suggested I add whiskey to the recipe. Next time.

I’m excited that I have yummy leftovers for lunches this week!

QUESTION: Do yo have a favorite chili recipe? What about your “will not eat” list? What’s on that?






Be Explosive Cardio

There were so many great comments yesterday from readers. Brie asked about advice on getting into a swim suit when overweight. Since swimming was something I’d always loved, it was easy to get over the fear and anxiety of the swimsuit. I also wore a plus-sized swimsuit that had a little skirt attached to it. It covered some of my thighs and butt and made me feel a little less self-conscious. It was something similar to this.

My pre-workout snack last night were some Wheat Thins and slices of smoked Gouda. I had about 6 or 7 and then settled in to workout from home. I canceled the recordings of Heavy. I’ve given up on the show. It’s a shame they ruined a great show in such a stupid way–and mid-season too.

I started with the Cardio Burst (15 minutes). Anyone have some tips for the Burpee? It’s a good workout move because it gets my heart rate up but I feel awkward doing it–like I’m not doing it right.

Then moved onto part of The Be Explosive. Straight Leg Kicks are awesome and will tire you out. I only did 15 minutes of this 30 minute workout because honestly–I was losing steam. I was feeling less and less motivated to keep going at break-neck speed and was ready to hop on the bike. Calories burned during Nike Training App Workout:

I watched Law & Order SVU and an episode of NCIS while I pedaled on the bike trainer and tried to participate in the #fitblog chat on Twitter. It was a good one, too, because it was all about injuries and how we deal with them physically and emotionally. I think I can say I relate. πŸ™‚


Time: 1:11

Calories Burned: 613

After I was done, I made us salads while Michael cooked the steak.

Salad was a mixture of green leaf lettuce and baby spinach, chopped celery, chopped red pepper, cauliflower and chickpeas.

I had one glass of Cabernet Sauvignon with the steak dinner. Michael and I split the large sweet potato.

I was under my calories for the day, even after having some dessert. According to My Fitness Pal:

Hmm. I doubt that. But it’s nice to see the encouragement. My body is never quite as fast as what My Fitness Pal says it should be and I doubt that I will see that kind of weight loss.

On another note, I recently tweeted that the Whole Foods sour cream I bought was awful.

It was so gross. I am not super picky about my light sour cream but I couldn’t eat it. It was just off. The texture, the flavor…ick. I checked to see if I had somehow bought some sort of weird non-dairy version or something but nope, it was just gross. I will stick with my Tillamook sour cream in the future!

QUESTION: Did you workout yesterday? And did you participate in the Twitter chat?