Kalyn's Kitchen

Turkey and Pinto Bean White Chili

Turkey and Pinto Bean White Chili will be delicious with ground turkey, but use leftover turkey if you have some! This delicious chili is gluten-free; double the amount of turkey and use less beans for a lower-carb version. 

PIN Turkey and Pinto Bean White Chili with Lime to make some later!

Ground Turkey (or Leftover Turkey) and Pinto Bean White Chili with Lime found on KalynsKitchen.com

I’m excited to share the updated photos for this Turkey and Pinto Bean White Chili! I’ve made this tasty chili with ground turkey (like you see in the photos), but I’ve also made it with leftover turkey and leftover chicken, and all the versions were delicious.  No matter which kind of poultry you use, this is a great chili recipe to add to your collection, but please, please, please don’t skip the lime juice. That’s the secret ingredient that makes this chili over-the-top good.

Of course this Turkey and Pinto Bean Chili is great to make with leftover turkey if you’re lucky enough to get some! Check out 25+ Healthy Recipes using Leftover Turkey or Chicken if you need more ideas!


Ground Turkey (or Leftover Turkey) and Pinto Bean White Chili with Lime found on KalynsKitchen.com

How to Make Turkey and Pinto Bean White Chili:

(Scroll down for complete recipe with nutritional information.)

  1. If you’re making this with ground turkey, cook that separately until the turkey is nicely browned.
  2. Both versions start the recipe by sauteing a chopped onion, minced garlic, and a can of diced green chiles.
  3. Then add dried cilantro (if using), ground cumin, Mexican Oregano, and Epazote (affiliate link) and cook a few minutes more. Don’t stress if you don’t have all those herbs, use the ones you have.
  4. Then add pinto beans and the liquid from the beans, homemade turkey stock or homemade chicken stock (or use canned broth) and one cup water.
  5. Let this mixture simmer about 30 minutes at very low heat, until the mixture is slightly reduced and the flavors are well blended.
  6. If you’re using ground turkey, add it after the soup has simmered 30 minutes and cook the chili 15-30 minutes more                 .
  7. If you’re making this with diced leftover turkey, simmer the onions, garlic, herbs, beans, and stock about 45 minutes, then add the chopped turkey (or chicken)  and simmer  only about 5-10 minutes more.
  8. Then add the fresh lime juice and salt and pepper to taste right before you serve the chili.
  9. Serve with grated cheese and sour cream to add at the table if desired.

Turkey and Pinto Bean White Chili finished chili with toppings

More Tasty Ideas with Leftover Turkey (or Chicken):

Low-Carb Turkey Casserole with Mushrooms, Mozzarella, and Cauliflower Rice 
Leftover Turkey Shepherd’s Pie with Garlic-Parmesan Cauliflower Topping 
Slow Cooker Turkey (or chicken) Soup with Spinach and Lemon

Weekend Food Prep:

This recipe has been added to a new category called Weekend Food Prep  to help you find recipes you can prep or cook on the weekend and eat during the week!

Ground Turkey (or Leftover Turkey) and Pinto Bean White Chili with Lime found on KalynsKitchen.com

Turkey and Pinto Bean White Chili

Yield 6 servings
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes

Turkey and Pinto Bean White Chili will be delicious with ground turkey or leftover turkey, but please don't skip the touch of lime!

Ingredients

  • 1 cup diced onion
  • 1 T olive oil, divided
  • 2 tsp. minced garlic
  • one 4 oz. can diced green Anaheim chiles with liquid (see notes)
  • 1 T dried cilantro (optional but recommended)
  • 2 tsp. ground cumin (or less)
  • 1 tsp. Mexican oregano
  • 1/2 tsp. ground Epazote (optional but recommended)
  • 2 cans pinto beans with liquid
  • 4 cups homemade turkey stock (see notes)
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 lb. ground turkey (see notes)
  • 3 T fresh squeezed lime juice
  • salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste
  • grated Monterey Jack cheese or Four Cheese Mexican Blend for serving, optional
  • fresh chopped cilantro or sliced green onions for serving, optional

Instructions

  1. Chop onion into small dice. Heat olive oil in a heavy pan big enough to hold all the chili, add onion and saute on low heat 3-4 minutes, or until onion is starting to soften.
  2. Add minced garlic and canned green Anaheim chiles and saute about 2 minutes more. Then add dried cilantro (if using), ground cumin, Mexican oregano, and Epazote (affiliate link) and saute about 2 minutes more.
  3. If using ground turkey, heat 2 tsp. olive oil in a separate frying pan and brown turkey well while you are sauteeing the onion, garlic, chiles, and herbs.
  4. Add 2 cans pinto beans with liquid. (The dried epazote helps make beans less gas-producing. Normally I rinse canned beans, which also helps with this, so if you don’t have epazote I would probably rinse the beans.)
  5. Add turkey stock or chicken stock and water and let chili simmer on low for about 30 minutes, stirring a few times.
  6. If you're using ground turkey, add it after the soup has simmered 30 minutes and cook the chili 15-30 minutes more, then stir in the fresh lime juice and salt and pepper right before you serve the chili.
  7. If you're making this diced leftover turkey, simmer the onions, garlic, herbs, beans, and stock about 45 minutes, then add the chopped turkey (or chicken)  and simmer  only about 5-10 minutes.
  8. Add fresh lime juice and season to taste with salt and fresh ground black pepper right before you serve the chili.
  9. Serve hot, with grated cheese melted on top and sprinkled with fresh chopped cilantro or green onions if desired.

Notes

You can use a 7 oz. can of diced green chiles (affiliate link) if you like it spicy. If you don't have turkey stock you can use chicken stock or canned chicken broth. If you're making this with leftover turkey use 2-3 cups diced leftover turkey.

This recipe was created by Kalyn and was originally posted for Weekend Herb Blogging, hosted by Lynne from Cafe Lynnylu.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

6

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 480Total Fat: 26gSaturated Fat: 9gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 14gCholesterol: 108mgSodium: 548mgCarbohydrates: 29gFiber: 6gSugar: 6gProtein: 35g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated by the Recipe Plug-In I am using. I am not a nutritionist and cannot guarantee 100% accuracy, since many variables affect those calculations.

If you make this recipe I'd love to hear how it turns out. Leave a star rating or share on social media with the hashtag #KALYNSKITCHEN, thanks!

Low-Carb Diet / Low-Glycemic Diet / South Beach Diet Suggestions:
Beans are a wonderful low-glycemic food, and everything about this Turkey and Pinto Bean White Chili  is great for any phase of the original South Beach Diet. If you’d like a lower-carb version of this recipe I would double the amount of turkey and use only one can of beans, but dried beans are probably too high in carbs for a low-carb diet.

Find More Recipes Like This One:
Check out Chili Recipes for more tummy-warming chili ideas! Use the Recipes by Diet Type photo index pages to find more recipes suitable for a specific eating plan. You might also like to Follow Kalyn’s Kitchen on Pinterest to see all the good recipes I’m sharing there.

Historical Notes for this Recipe:
Turkey and Pinto Bean White Chili with Lime was first posted in 2009. The recipe was updated with better photos November 2014 and updated again September 2020.

Pinterest image of Turkey and Pinto Bean White Chili

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    37 Comments on “Turkey and Pinto Bean White Chili”

  1. Love this! I've been seeing so many turkey recipes that I am starting to actually miss turkey! Yeah, it is very rare and expensive to buy turkey here. Most are imported from the states. This is a perfect way to finish off Thanksgiving :o)

  2. This looks very flavorful. I think the only thing I would change is to use fresh cilantro (my favorite too). It looks amazing. I like the marjoram suggestion.

  3. CJ, you're welcome. Happy Thanksgiving to you too, enjoy your leftover turkey!

  4. It's on my list for tonight's supper. I am craving soup.

    I love the total flavor transformation the turkey makes when you use it in chili or enchiladas. You don't think you're eating "leftovers".

    Thanks for the great recipe Kalyn!
    And happy belated Thanksgiving.

  5. Glad people are liking this, and yes any type of dried beans would be great here!

  6. I made this recipe with the turkey leftovers, it was amazing.

  7. instead of canned pinto beans how about cooking up some Rancho Gordo pinto beans for this recipe. A great idea instead of the usual turkey tetrazini.

  8. Looks delicious and a perfect way to use leftover turkey!

  9. Thanks for sharing this. Now I know what to do with the leftover turkey. 🙂 Sounds like a yummy soup.

  10. Thank you everyone for the nice feedback on this recipe. It was really good. Actually I froze about half the chili, but I've already pulled it out of the freezer and eaten most of it! (Just enough left for lunch today.)

    Now I'm just hoping my sister will give me the turkey carcass tomorrow so I can make more!

  11. Your soup looks wonderful. Full of so many good things. Love your bowls too.

  12. I just stumbled across your recipe for crockpot mashed potatoes and love it. I'm going to make it for Thanksgiving. Then I started looking around and your site is awesome. It's exactly the way I like to cook and eat — healthy and delicious, without too much hassle. Thank you!

    Kent

  13. I'm not roasting a turkey this year, but I always have ground turkey in my freezer. And I always have dried epazote and Mexican oregano in my pantry, too. This will be a great chili for a cold December day!

  14. terrific set of recipes you are posting, very timely and they sound and look terrific.

    Hope I have some leftovers, may need to cook a second bird!

  15. This soup recipe looks so very good. I'll be saving that one. I'm such a fan of cilantro. Thanks for the post.

  16. A perfect way to enjoy some turkey leftovers. I always like using leftovers to create a completely new dish!

  17. You are getting me more and more excited about the leftovers. I am going to have to raid the dinner table once the meal is over just to make all these delicious things! This looks so hearty and flavorful.

  18. I want to try south beach diet!! do you have any experience!?!

  19. I'll be all ready this weekend with some good soup recipes to use with my left over turkey. Thanks!

  20. kalyn, this looks sooo good!