White Bean Turkey Chili

By Rena |

Healthy, hearty, and full of flavor, this White Bean Turkey Chili is just what you need on a cold winter day. Freezer friendly, meal prep friendly, and most importantly, kid-friendly!

Bowl of turkey chili with spoon in it.

You really can’t go wrong with a big bowl of chili on a cold day. Each bowl is healthy, flavorful, and super satisfying, making you want to reach for seconds. While it does have a long cook time, most of it is spent simmering on the stovetop. So it’s a pretty hands off chili recipe for when you want to cook on autopilot. Don’t have turkey, use chicken instead!

This white bean turkey chili is what I like to call a complete meal as it’s one of those recipes where you can skip making a side dish if you choose to. You’ve got your proteins and veggies all in one bowl. 

Why You’ll Love this Chili

  • Great for leftover ingredients. We usually like to make this after Thanksgiving or Christmas since it’s a great recipe to use up leftover turkey. If you don’t have leftover turkey, you can always swap it with cooked chicken breast.
  • It’s easy. It’s a straightforward recipe that is super easy to make. Again, a majority of the cooking time is spent simmering and stirring. Alternatively, you can make this healthy turkey chili in the slow cooker!
  • It is a great family-friendly meal. This white bean chili recipe is a meal that everyone in my family loves. It’s a great comfort meal that’s hard to pass up!
close up turkey bean chili in a bowl

Ingredients You’ll Need To Make This easy turkey Chili

  • Olive oil
  • Onion — chopped
  • Garlic cloves — chopped
  • Yellow bell pepper — diced
  • Shredded turkey
  • Green chilies — diced 
  • Tomato paste
  • Cannellini or navy beans — rinsed and drained
  • Seasoning: Kosher salt, cumin, oregano, mild chili powder
  • Bay leaf
  • Chicken broth
  • Reduced-fat sour cream or Greek yogurt
Overhead image of ingredients required to make turkey chili.

How to Make This White Bean Turkey Chili on the Stove Top

  • Saute your aromatics: heat the oil in a soup pot over medium heat. Saute the onions, bell pepper, and garlic, until soft, about 3-4 minutes.
  • Add in the leftover meat, green chilies, tomato paste, beans, seasonings, and stock. Mix to combine and bring to a boil. 
Bell peppers and onions diced.
Ingredients for white bean turkey chili added into a pot.
  • Next, simmer the chili: Once boiling, reduce the heat to a low and partially cover the pot. Cook over low heat for 25-30 minutes.
  • Once the time is up, turn the heat off and stir in the sour cream or yogurt. Serve hot with your favorite toppings!

How to Make This Turkey Chili recipe in the Slow Cooker

  • Saute your aromatics: heat the oil in a soup pot over medium heat. Saute the onions, bell pepper, and garlic, until soft, about 3-4 minutes.
  • Slow cook: transfer the sauteed veggies to your slow cooker. Stir in the remaining ingredients, except for the sour cream/yogurt. Cook on LOW for about 6-7 hours or on HIGH for 3-4 hours.
  • Once the time is up, turn the heat off and stir in the sour cream or yogurt. Serve hot with your favorite toppings!
Bowl of turkey chili.

Recipe Notes and Tips

  • The sour cream/Greek yogurt added provides a little bit of extra creaminess as well as some tang to the white bean turkey chili. If you’re dairy-free, you can skip it or use dairy-free yogurt. 
  • The white beans act as a thickener to this chili, if you want it to be thicker, you can smash up some of the beans with the back of a wooden spoon against the pot while it simmers.
  • If you have extra veggies leftover in the fridge, this is the perfect chili for it to go into. Add some in.
  • If you do not have turkey, you can always use chicken or ground turkey.
  • Cook the chili a day in advance for even more blending of flavors. Chili tastes even better the day after it’s made.
  • Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days. Freeze for up to 3 months.
top view turkey chicken in a bowl

FAQs

Which beans is best for chili?

The most common beans used in chili are kidney beans because they tend to retain their firmness. Other beans that can also be used are cannellini beans, pinto beans, and black beans.

How to Store Leftover chili?

Store all leftover white bean turkey chili in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days. This is the same if you were to have meal prepped this recipe. Be sure to let the chili cool before transferring it into the fridge.

Can you Freeze Chili?

Once your turkey chili has cooled transfer it into an airtight freezer bag into portion sizes of your choice. Squeeze out the air and flatten the bag so you can freeze it flat. This makes storing it easier. You can also use airtight freezer pint containers. Chili can last up to 3 months in the freezer.

What toppings to serve with chili?

Here are some ideas of what to top your turkey chili with: diced avocado, cilantro, sliced jalapeno, chopped green onions, a dollop of sour cream/Greek yogurt, shredded cheese, tortilla strips, and more. 

How long does chili last in the fridge?

Depending on the type of chili, most homemade chilis are ok to be stored in the fridge for 3-4 days. Place in an airtight container.

Close up image of chili made with turkey and white beans.

More Chili Recipes You May Like

close up turkey chili recipe in a bowl with spoon in the bowl

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Bowl of turkey chili with spoon in it.

White Bean Turkey Chili

Healthy, hearty, and full of flavor, this White Bean Turkey Chili is just what you need on a cold winter day. Freezer friendly, meal prep friendly, and most importantly, kid-friendly!
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate
Course: Main Course, Soup
Cuisine: American, Mexican
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Servings: 4 servings
Calories: 352kcal
Author: Rena

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 medium medium onion chopped
  • 3-4 garlic cloves chopped
  • 1 yellow bell pepper diced
  • 3 cups turkey leftovers shredded, or shredded chicken breast
  • 1 4.5 oz can green chilies diced
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 2 14 oz cans cannellini or navy beans rinsed and drained
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/2 tbsp cumin
  • 1/2 tbsp oregano
  • 1 1/2 tsp mild chili powder or to your taste
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2-3 cups chicken broth
  • 1 cup reduced-fat sour cream or Greek yogurt

Optional Toppings:

  • diced avocado
  • cilantro
  • sliced jalapeno
  • chopped green onions

Instructions

Stovetop:

  • Heat the oil in a soup pot over medium heat. Sautee the onions, bell pepper, and garlic, until soft, about 3-4 minutes.
  • Add in the leftover meat, green chilies, tomato paste, beans, seasonings, and stock.
  • Mix to combine and bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce the heat to a low and partially cover the pot.
  • Cook over low heat for 25-30 minutes.
  • Once the time is up, turn the heat off and stir in the sour cream or yogurt.
  • Serve hot with your favorite toppings!

Slow Cooker:

  • Heat the oil in a soup pot over medium heat. Sautee the onions, bell pepper, and garlic, until soft, about 3-4 minutes.
  • Transfer the sauteed veggies to your slow cooker. Stir in the remaining ingredients, except for the sour cream/yogurt.
  • Cook on LOW for about 6-7 hours or on HIGH for 3-4 hours.
  • Once the time is up, turn the heat off and stir in the sour cream or yogurt.
  • Serve hot with your favorite toppings!

Notes

  • The sour cream/Greek yogurt added provides a little bit of extra creaminess as well as some tang to the white bean turkey chili. If you’re dairy-free, you can skip it. 
  • The white beans act as a thickener to this chili, if you want it to be thicker, you can smash up a couple of beans with the back of a wooden spoon against the pot while it simmers.
  • If you have extra veggies leftover in the fridge, this is the perfect chili for it to go into.
  • If you do not have turkey, you can always use shredded chicken breast or ground turkey.
  • Cook the chili a day in advance for even more blending of flavors. Chili tastes even better the day after it’s made.

Nutrition

Serving: 4servings | Calories: 352kcal | Carbohydrates: 13g | Protein: 34g | Fat: 18g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Cholesterol: 135mg | Sodium: 951mg | Potassium: 688mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 671IU | Vitamin C: 72mg | Calcium: 136mg | Iron: 3mg
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