The Best Turkey Chili Recipe

A couple years ago I wanted to re-create a bowl of chili that I had in college. There was a small, secondary bookstore near campus called Brian’s Books that also had a café that severed this amazing, white chili with tortilla chips.


One fall afternoon I was craving this stuff. Mind you, I haven’t had it in more than a decade so I don’t know exactly where my craving came from. The bookstore is something else entirely now and I haven’t even been to my college campus in at least five years.

Still, I wanted a chili that was made with chicken or turkey and that could be eaten with chips. The turkey chili I ended up creating has become a fall and winter staple in our house. I made it for Halloween this year and everyone was asking for the recipe.

Topped with a tangy tomatillo salsa, this chili hits the spot and still leaves you wanting more. Luckily, this recipe makes enough for leftovers.

Check out the recipe for the chili and salsa below.

IMG_3558 small

Chili Ingredients:

  • 2 lbs ground turkey
  • 1 large, white onion, chopped
  • 2 Tbsp. of garlic, minced
  • 2 cans of Great Northern Beans, lightly drained.
  • 3 4 oz. cans of mild, green chilies, chopped
  • 2 cups of chicken broth
  • 1 cup of water
  • 1 Tbsp. of ground cumin
  • 2 Tbsp. of olive oil
  • 2-3 chicken bouillon cubes
  • 2 Tbsp. of flour
  • 1 Tbs. of lime juice, fresh squeezed.
  • Salt and pepper to taste


Tomatillo Salsa Ingredients:

  • 7-12 tomatillos, chopped. These are small so depending on how big the crowd is, get more. Also, they come inside a leaf-like shell so you won’t know if they are all good until you get home. Also, you usually have to search the grocery store for them and sometimes even ask. They are in season in October and November. It can be challenging to find them in the wintertime, but I’ve done it.
  • 10 cherry tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 medium, white onion, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp. of salt
  • Juice of 1 lime, fresh squeezed
  • Pepper to taste
  • Optional: Cilantro


Optional Additions:

    • Cheddar or Monterrey Jack cheese
    • Sour Cream
    • Cilantro or parsley
    • Tortilla chips

Chili Steps:

    1. Add your olive oil to a large pot or Dutch oven and heat. Once heated add in the garlic and onions. Stir occasionally for about 5 minutes.
    2. Add in your ground turkey and cook until it is browned.
    3. Add in your chicken broth and water, then add your beans and green chilies. Heat through to a boil.
    4. Reduce heat and add the ground cumin and chicken bouillon cubes. Taste test to decide if you need more or less here.
    5. Add in salt and pepper to taste and then add in your lime juice.
    6. Add your flour to thicken. Stir on a regular basis once you have added the flour to prevent from burning on the bottom.
    7. Let that simmer uncovered at least a half hour on medium to low heat. Don’t forget to keep stirring.

Tomatillo Salsa Steps:

  • Chop all your ingredients and add them to the bowl.
  • Add in your lime juice and salt.
  • Mix to combine everything and then put in the refrigerator for at least a half hour. If you can make this the day before or even a few hours before the salt and lime juice will have more time to pull the juices out of the fruit and make the salsa better.

Once everything is done, top your chili with the salsa and any additional toppings you like. We always add the chips – it’s my husband’s favorite way to eat it. But, it’s perfect to eat just by itself with a spoon. I hope you enjoy it!

Happy eating, friends!

IMG_3525 copy small


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here