Posted by: dinainsuburbia | March 11, 2009

down home comfort: turkey chili & cornbread

There was a sale on ground turkey at our local supermarket last week.  I find ground turkey to be one of those versatile, and healthy foods.  I can turn out quite a few recipes using ground turkey:  meatloaf, meatballs, myriad style of burgers, and my husband’s favorite: chili.

I have a go-to recipe that I’ve adapted to our tastes.  We prefer spicy chili- but you can make this as mild as you want.  I kick the heat factor up by doubling up on chipotle peppers: using 2 or 3 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce AND 1/3 teaspoon of chipotle powder.  Of course, you don’t have to go the chipotle route:  a small can of chopped jalapenos would be awesome as well… or no peppers at all!

By the way, I think a serving of the chili is about 6 weight watchers points and a small 3″ square of the cornbread should be around 3 points.


  • 1 1/4 pound ground turkey (I use 97/3)
  • 1 tbsp of olive or canola oil
  • 1 onion chopped
  • 3 cloves of garlic, chopped
  • 1 (16 ounce) can of beans, undrained (use what you have on hand- I used pinto beans last night- but kidney or black beans work too)
  • 1 (16 ounce) can of chopped, fire-roasted tomatoes (I prefer Muir Glen fire roasted tomatoes, but you can use the plain kind too- or Rotel with the jalapenos in it)
  • 1 (6 ounce) can of tomato paste
  • 2-3 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, chopped (I also added a tbsp of the adobo sauce as well)
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon of cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon of smoked Spanish paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon of black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt
  • 1/3 teaspoon of chipotle chili powder (optional)
  • 1 1/2- 2 cups of water


Heat olive oil in a large dutch oven over medium heat.  Saute ground turkey, garlic, and onion until lightly browned and the onion and garlic are soft, about 10 minutes.  Add the spices to the turkey, and stir until the spices are distributed and the heat releases the oils, about 1 minute.  Add the remaining ingredients plus the water (up to you have much water you want to add- I used 1 1/2 and achieved a not-to-thick, not-to-thin consistency).  Cook over low heat for 30-45 minutes (just enough to get the cornbread in the oven and cooked).

For the cornbread:


  • 1 cup cornmeal
  • 1 cup sifted flour
  • 3 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/4 c sugar (or more, depending upon how sweet you want the cornbread)
  • 1 cup milk (skim is fine)
  • 1/4 cup oil
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1/2 cup corn (either canned or defrosted frozen- I use Trader Joe’s Fire Roasted Frozen Corn)


Preheat oven to 425 degrees.  Grease a cast iron pan with butter (or fill 12 muffin tins with muffin cups) and set aside.

Combine dry ingredients in large bowl and the wet ingredients in a smaller bowl.  Once the wet ingredients are combined, fold into the dry ingredients with a few strokes- don’t over mix.  Once incorporated, add in the corn.

Bake in the oven for 25-30 minutes.

Serve with butter, honey, and of course- the chili!


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