Spice up your Halloween with this healthy pumpkin turkey chili

Siddhi Shroff

Siddhi Shroff

Written by Siddhi Shroff, a registered dietitian at the UK Markey Cancer Center.

What better way to celebrate Halloween than with a pumpkin-inspired meal? This spicy pumpkin turkey chili is perfect for a chilly fall night and is loaded with healthy ingredients.

The pumpkin and bell pepper are great sources of beta-carotene, vitamin A and potassium. Beta-carotene is an antioxidant that can help prevent cardiovascular disease and cancer. Vitamin A promotes healthy vision, and potassium is an essential mineral that aids in regulating blood pressure. Additionally, the turkey and black beans are great sources of protein, while black beans are also a great source of fiber.

For cancer patients going through treatment and experiencing taste changes, you can kick up the recipe’s flavor by adding a pinch more chili powder or even a pinch of cumin. Serve the chili with whole-grain bread or cornbread to balance out this hearty meal.

Pumpkin Turkey Chili

Adapted from AllRecipes


• 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
• 1 cup chopped onion
• 1/2 cup chopped green bell pepper
• 1/2 cup chopped yellow bell pepper
• 1 clove garlic, minced
• 1 pound ground turkey
• 2 (14.5 ounces) can diced tomatoes
• 1 (14.5 ounces) can black beans (no salt added)
• 2 cups pumpkin puree
• 1 1/2 tablespoons chili powder
• 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
• Salt, to taste
• Pepper, to taste
• Cheddar cheese for garnish (optional)
• Reduced-fat sour cream for garnish (optional)


  1. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat.
  2. Saute the onion, green bell pepper, yellow bell pepper and garlic until tender.
  3. Stir in the turkey, and cook until evenly brown. Drain and mix in tomatoes, black beans and pumpkin.
  4. Season with chili powder, pepper and salt. Reduce heat to low, cover and let simmer for 20 minutes.
  5. Serve topped with cheddar cheese and sour cream.

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