Tag Archives: chili

Pumpkin Chili

This dish combines some of my favorite fall foods: pumpkin and chili.

I write a weekly column for The Joplin Globe, Claremore Daily Progress, and Ottumwa Courier and this week’s theme was pumpkins.

I love everything pumpkin. From pumpkin patches to carving them to eating the orange globes.

That is why I came up with these pumpkin chili, which is filling and delicious.

pumpkin chili crock

My pumpkin chili is a hearty stew that gets a boost of fiber and Vitamin A from the pumpkin. Pumpkin is very healthy and ½ cup contains 50 calories, 3 gram of fiber and 280 percent of your daily Vitamin A needs. You can’t really taste the pumpkin in my recipe, but it bulks it up and gives it a velvety texture. I add a little cinnamon to compliment the pumpkin this dish.

I love using bison instead of beef in this recipe, but it’s more expensive and not as readily available. Bison is healthier than beef and we are big bison fans.

punpkin c

Fall is my favorite time of year and I feast on pumpkin. I actually bought six cans last week. In my recipes, I usually use canned instead of real pumpkin because most people don’t have time to roast and puree a whole pumpkin.

I hope you enjoy it.

Pumpkin Chili

Serves 6-8

2 cups chopped red onion

1 pound ground sirloin or some lean ground beef

2 heaping tablespoons chili powder

1 tablespoon cumin powder

1 teaspoon cumin seed

½ teaspoon garlic salt

½ teaspoon ground cinnamon (or more to taste)

1 (6-ounce) can of tomato paste

1 ½ cups water or chicken broth

1 (14.5-ounce) can of diced tomatoes

1 ¼ cups salsa

2 cloves chopped garlic or 1 tablespoon dehydrated garlic

1 (15-ounce) can pumpkin puree

¼ cup chopped cilantro

1 (15-ounce) can chili beans

*1 (4-ounce) can green chilies (optional)

Shredded cheese, chopped onion, cilantro to garnish

*The green chilies make this dish spicy, so I skip those when serving my family.

Heat a large heavy-bottomed pot over medium-high heat and when hot, add onions and beef.  Cook for 3 minutes. Then add chili powder, cumin, garlic salt and cinnamon and cook until ground beef is cooked. If necessary, drain beef before going on (if you use lean beef you won’t have to drain it).

Next, add tomato paste and water and cook for 2 minutes until the paste dissolves into the water. Then add salsa, garlic, pumpkin, cilantro and reduce heat to a simmer for 30 minutes (the longer you simmer, the better the flavor). Add beans and cook 10 minutes before serving.

This chili is even better the next day, but some of the cinnamon flavor will fade because of the strong flavors of garlic, cumin and tomatoes. To combat this, I sprinkle plain cinnamon on a bowl just before serving for more emphasis on the cinnamon (you could also just double it in the recipe, but try the ½ teaspoon first because you don’t want to overwhelm the dish with cinnamon).

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White Chili

White chili seems to be one of those divisive soups: people love it or hate it.  Some feel like any chili that doesn’t contain beef isn’t really chili.

I enjoy white chili because I love the pronounced flavors of cumin and sour cream. There are so many versions of white chili, but I add corn to mine.

I like to top it with cheese or avocados. Tortilla chips are a good topping, too.  This makes a good size batch, enough for six people.

White Chili

1 tablespoon canola oil

1 cup chopped yellow onion

2 teaspoons cumin seed

1 teaspoons ground cumin powder

1 ½ teaspoons chili powder

1 yellow bell pepper

32 ounces of chicken broth, plus 2 cups

1 cup water

1 teaspoon chopped garlic or dried garlic

1 cup half and half

3/4 cup sour cream

4 ounces chopped green chilies (canned)

¼ cup chopped cilantro (optional)

2 can cannellini beans

1 can corn, drained

4 cups chopped rotisserie chicken

This has a lot of ingredients, but it’s still an easy dish.

Chop onion, yellow bell pepper and chicken and set aside.

In a large pot, heat oil over medium heat. When hot, add onion, cumin seed, cumin and chili powder. Cook 5 minutes and then add yellow bell pepper and saute another 3 minutes. Then add the next nine ingredients (everything but the chicken) and cook over medium to medium-low heat for 10 minutes.

Once you add the sour cream, you don’t want to let the soup boil because it could curdle, so keep the heat at medium.

Add chicken and cook 5 more minutes. Serve.