Chili is one of my favorite dishes to make because it is so versatile. You can make it a thousand ways, and it’s always a crowd pleaser. While I love the flavor of chili powder, my husband is not a fan. Weird, right? We’ve been married for eighteen years, and he just recently told me that he doesn’t like it. I’ve made a lot of chili since I first started learning how to really cook about nine years ago, and I just now find this out. Ha! Anyway, I’ve been trying to create chili recipes without it lately. Recipes that will satisfy my chili cravings, while making sure that my husband enjoys the dish as well.
While we were at Trader Joe’s the other day, I bought a jar of their Salsa Verde. I had never bought it before, but I had an idea in mind for it. My plan was to create a chicken chili recipe using it, plus a can of organic pumpkin puree that I already had at home. I love using pumpkin puree in chili!
* Be sure to get a can of pure pumpkin puree and NOT the pumpkin pie mix kind.
Fun Fact: Pumpkin is a nutritional powerhouse! It is packed with vitamin A, fiber and is low in calories. One cup of cooked pumpkin contains more potassium than a banana, which can help restore the body’s balance of electrolytes after a tough workout.
This chili is super easy to make, so you can have dinner on the table in no time. Perfect for those busy nights!
Pumpkin Chicken Chili
- 1 tbsp coconut oil , ghee or fat of choice
- 1 lb . ground chicken
- 1 large onion , diced
- 1 large green bell pepper , diced
- 2 garlic cloves , minced
- 2 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 (12 oz) jar of salsa verde ( Trader Joe's or your favorite)
- 1 (14.5 oz) can of pumpkin puree (NOT the pumpkin pie mix)
- 1 cup chicken stock or water
- 1 (14.5 oz) can of black beans, rinsed and drained
- 1 medium zucchini , diced
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
- salt to taste
- Optional add-ins:
- diced fresh avocado
- chopped green onion
- fresh cilantro
- Heat 1 tbsp. of oil in a soup pot over medium-high heat. Add the ground chicken and cook, crumbling it with a spoon, until browned. Add the onions and bell pepper and cook until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 30 more seconds. Add the seasonings and toss to coat. Pour in the salsa verde, chicken stock, add the pumpkin puree and stir until well mixed. Add the zucchini and black beans, bring to a simmer and let cook until all the veggies are tender, about 15 -20 minutes. Check the seasonings and add salt to taste. Serve in bowls topped with fresh avocado, green onion and cilantro.