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Pumpkin Chili Recipe

October 6, 2019 No Comments
Pumpkin Chili Recipe Modestly Messy

Pumpkin Chili Recipe

October 6, 2019 No Comments

This pumpkin chili recipe is nothing like the chili you are used to eating. It is a delicious blend of tomatoes and pumpkin with a nice balanced smokey spiciness. The flavors jump off the spoon for a delightful remake of the traditional chili.

Pumpkin Chili Bowl

We are now into fall so you see pumpkin flavored recipes EVERYWHERE. I’ve been baking up a storm of pumpkin desserts so I wanted to give cooking with pumpkin a try too! I can’t believe how amazing this turned out. The flavors compliment each other so well. This recipe is a really delightful play on traditional chili. Now don’t get me wrong. I love the traditional chili but if you’d had one, you’ve had them all. This chili has such a bold flavor and I love how the seasonings play so well together. It has become a favorite around here.

Recipe Substitutions

When creating a recipe, I am always conscious of different diets. I try to create recipes that allow for alternative and substitutions. This recipe is gluten and dairy free but if you would also like it to be vegan, you will replace the meat following the directions below.


What I really love about this pumpkin chili recipe, is it can be made with or without me. I used ground turkey but you could replace with more beans and still achieve the same great flavor. A white cannellini bean would be my recommendation. Omit the turkey meat and replace with 8 ounces of beans. To give the chili a thicker consistency, I would puree half a cup of the beans so it is a thick paste. Add that along with the 4 ounces of remaining beans. This will give it a nice thick texture. I can’t stand runny chili! However, if you like thinner consistency skip the puree.


I made this with canned pumpkin puree which would not have been my first choice. This pumpkin chili would be so scrumptious with over roasted pumpkin. I couldn’t get my hands on a cooking pumpkin so I had to settle. If you can fine one, cut the pumpkin in half and scoop out the seeds. Then sprinkle with olive oil, salt and pepper. Bake in the oven at 375 degrees fahrenheit until the pumpkin is very tender and soft. This typically takes 45 minutes but ovens may vary. Once softened scoop out the pumpkin and using a food processor or by hand, make it into a puree.

Heat of Chili

You can control how spicy and smokey this recipe is by how much chipotle, jalapeno, and cayenne peppers you add. My chili was medium heat and smokiness so feel free to add the exact portions I have listed in the recipe if like some heat. Remember- you can add more heat but you can’t take it away once you’ve added. I always start with small rations and adjust to taste. The chipotle peppers are what give it a really great smokiness after each bite!


Like traditional chilis, this pumpkin chili recipe tastes great with sour cream or cheese on top. To keep it dairy free, I use Green Valley Sour Cream. You can’t tell the difference between it and normal sour cream. If you like a little crunch on top, tortillas are a perfect addition. Cilantro provides a great compliment to the flavors, as well!

Pumpkin Chili with Toppings

Pumpkin Chili Recipe

Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Total Time40 mins
Course: Main Course, Side Dish, Soup
Cuisine: American
Keyword: chili, dairy free, gluten free, healthy dinner, healthy recipe, vegan
Servings: 4


  • 3-4 Chipotle peppers in adobe sauce
  • 10 ounces Diced tomatoes with chilies
  • 2 Jalepenos diced
  • 1/2 large Sweet onion
  • 12 ounces Pumpkin puree
  • 2 lbs Lean turkey or replace with 8 ounces white beans
  • 10 ounces Black beans
  • 1 tsp Cumin
  • 1/4-1/2 tsp Cayenne pepper
  • 4-5 cloves Garlic chopped
  • 1/2 tbsp Fennel if using meat
  • 8 ounces Vegetable broth
  • Salt to taste
  • Pepper to taste


  • Using a large pot on medium heat, sauté the onions, garlic, and jalapenos in olive oil.
  • Once the vegetables are softened, add the meat and fennel. Cook until browned.
  • Add the diced tomatoes, pumpkin, and black beans to the pot. Stir together and put on medium low heat.
  • Add the chipotle peppers, cumin, cayenne pepper, salt, and pepper to taste.
  • Add vegetable broth until you reach desired consistency.
  • Cook over low to medium-low until chili is warmed for eating.


Chili can be made it a large pot or using a crockpot.  The longer the chili sits, the more the flavors develop!
Pumpkin Chili Pinterest Image

Now that I have curved your savory pumpkin tooth, here is a recipe for your sweet tooth! These pumpkin coffee cake bars are super EASY to make and so gosh darn good! They are gluten free and dairy free, you’re welcome 🙂


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About Me

My name is Michelle and I am creator of Modestly Messy. I reside in Pittsburgh, PA with my teacup yorkie, Mercedes. I have a passion for fashion, fitness, and food. I struggle with chronic illnesses so I try to share the messiness of real life through a lens of optimism with a side of sarcasm, of course. My biggest goal in life is to change someone's life for the better so I hope this page touches you in some way and motivates you to be happier, healthier, and maybe a bit more fashionable too!


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