Turkey and Black Bean Chili

Turkey and Black Bean Chili

Please note that this post may contain affiliate links. (That means I make a commission if you use my affiliate link to buy the product.)

Please note that this post may contain affiliate links. (That means I make a commission if you use my affiliate link to buy the product.) 

instapot chili on www.virginiawillis.com

When it’s chilly outside, one of my first thoughts is, “It’s time to make chili! A robust chili like this Turkey and Black Bean Chili is both lean and filling. The best eating plans include a lot of high protein, low-fat foods. Protein gives your body energy and helps to build muscle instead of fat. Sure, you have to be judicious with some of the more indulgent toppings, but a steaming hot bowl of tasty chili can be both good and good for you. 

chili on www.virginiawillis.com

Chile Powder 

First, chili is about the chile powder.Chile powder with an e — is pure ground dried chile peppers and comes in mild or hot and is a result of what chile was dried and ground. Chili powder with an i, is a blend of chile peppers and other spices, including cumin, coriander, dried oregano, salt, and pepper. I prefer to use pure dried ground chile in my chili and add my own spices.  I’m hefty handed with the chile powder to give it some serious umpff! My favorite chile powder is pure New Mexican chile powder made from Hatch peppers, like this one from Chile Revival. 

black beans on www.virginiawillis.com

 

Black Beans

Black beans are one of my favorite dried beans. Rancho Gordo has some of the finest dried beans available and have led the heirloom bean revival. You can also use regular grocery store beans in this recipe, but I do encourage you to seek out some of those sexy beans when you have the time and inclination.

Black beans date back at least 7,000 years when they were a staple food in the diets of Central and South Americans. Dried black beans are just under a 1/2-inch long with the slightly less pronounced curve common to beans such as kidney. They are satiny black with a white center. Black beans are enjoyed by many cultures around the world, and are packed with flavor and nutritional value. Black beans are also known as turtle beans, caviar criollo, and frijoles negros. These beans should be one of your pantry staples.

chili on www.virginiawillis.com
Cornmeal

A great bowl of chili should have a thick and chunky texture. I like to add a little cornmeal to when I make chili to help thicken and flavor the broth with the earthy taste of corn. It’s also gluten-free and not problematic for those following that dietary restriction. Cornmeal is ground corn into flour-like grind. It comes in varying degrees of texture. In an artisan grits mill, very often when the grits are ground, the larger pieces are sifted and labeled as grits and the smallest, finest grind that falls to the screen below is reserved as cornmeal. When adding cornmeal to chili, use a fine to medium grind so that it dissolves into the stew.

chili on www.virginiawillis.com

How to Cook Dried Beans

Let’s talk about cooking the chili. You can go old school with an actual pot on the stove, use an instapot, or a slow cooker.

First of all, how ever you cook them know this so you can mix and match with other recipes: 

  • One pound of dry edible beans yields about 6 cups of cooked beans.
  • One can of beans is about 1 1/2 cups of drained cooked dried beans.

Insta-Fear

As a Southerner, I have a vicious fear of pressure cookers that was instilled in my terrified heart at a very early age. My grandmother used a pressure cooker for canning and from the time I was a mere toddler my mother and grandmother admonished me not to go near the pressure cooker. Legendary tales of woe abounded detailing violent explosions, flying aluminum lids of death, and green bean shrapnel sprayed in horror across the ceiling. I shudder when I remember the fierce dragon’s hiss of steam. 

The extreme popularity of the Instapot, essentially a shiny, fancy, and most importantly, not-dangerous-sounding pressure cooker has exploded in the past few years a completely different way — with hundreds of cook books, thousands of Instapot recipes on the internet, and a myriad of fans forming Facebook Instapot groups. The perky, quirky name implies immediate satisfaction. 

When preparing this chili in an instapot, combine the ingredients in the insert. Lock the lid in place and set your Instant Pot to cook on the Beans for 30 minutes. When 30 minutes is up let the pressure come down naturally, which takes about 20 minutes. When the pressure is down, remove the lid, tilting it away from you.

Old School

Dried beans can last on a shelf for years. And, the older they are, the longer they may take to cook. Also, I suggest you presoak the beans overnight before cooking the chili. Yep, and if I am cooking beans in a pot on the stove, I usually forget to soak them overnight. So, I resort to the quick hour method of bringing the water and dried beans to a boil, then setting them aside for an hour or so before starting the process of actually making the dish. Depending on the age of the beans this can still take several hours to cook. 

Want to do this old school? Follow the same process in a large heavy duty pot up to the point when you add the water. After adding the water, bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to simmer. Cook uncovered, stirring occasionally, until the chili thickens, the flavors develop, and the beans are tender, 1 to 2 hours, depending on age of the beans.

Slow Cooker

Feel the need to use the tried and true slow cooker? Heat the oil in a large skillet until shimmering. Add the peppers and onions and season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring, until the onions are soft and translucent, 3 to 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 45 seconds. Add the cornmeal and turkey.  Stir to combine. (The mixture will be quite thick.) Transfer the mixture to the insert of a slow cooker. Add the beans, spices, tomato, and water. (There’s no need to pre-soak the beans.) Cover and cook until turkey is tender, 4 to 5 hours on low.

Making a batch of chili and enjoying it on the weekend with friends and family is an easy and delicious way to entertain whatever cooking method you use! I put out bowls of sour cream or yogurt, grated cheese, scallions, and a bottle of hot sauce. That, and a crispy bag of tortilla chips and you are good to go.  

Bon Appétit, Y’all! 

Virginia Willis

PS For more winter weather dishes check out my posts on Braising Basics and Cream of Anything Soup – you can even omit the cream! Or, do you need more gravy in your life? Scoot on over to Food Network for my Smothered and Covered Chicken and Gravy. 😉

chili on www.virginiawillis.com

Instapot Turkey and Black Bean Chili

Serves 8 to 10
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time30 mins
steam release20 mins
Course: Main Course, Soup
Cuisine: American, southwestern
Keyword: chili, dried beans, instapot
Servings: 10

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 4 poblano peppers, seeded and chopped
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 6 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons fine cornmeal
  • 2 pounds lean ground turkey
  • 1 pound dried black beans
  • ¼ cup ground dried chile powder
  • 1 tablespoon ground coriander
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 2 28 ounce cans crushed tomatoes
  • 8 cups water
  • Grated cheese, for serving
  • Sliced green onions, for serving
  • Sour cream or yogurt, for serving
  • Hot sauce, for serving
  • Coarse kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Instructions

  • With the Instapot on sauté, heat the oil until shimmering. Add the peppers and onions and season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring, until the onions are soft and translucent, 3 to 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 45 seconds. Add the cornmeal, turkey, and beans. Stir to combine. (The mixture will be quite thick.) Add the spices, tomatoes, and water. Do not go beyond the fill level indicated on the inside of the metal insert.
  • Lock the lid in place and set your Instant Pot to cook on the Beans for 30 minutes. When 30 minutes is up let the pressure come down naturally, which takes about 20 minutes. When the pressure is down, remove the lid, tilting it away from you. Taste and adjust for seasoning with salt and pepper. Serve immediately. Serve topped with green onions, grated cheese, sour cream, and plenty of hot pepper sauce on the side.

Please note that this post may contain affiliate links. (That means I make a commission if you use my affiliate link to buy the product.) 

If you are interested in hosting me for a speaking engagement, event, cooking class, or a book signing, let me know! Send an email to jona@virginiawillis.com and we’ll be back in touch as soon as possible.

Please be nice. Unauthorized use and/or duplication is prohibited. All photos and content are copyright protected. If you wish to republish this recipe, please link back to this recipe on virginiawillis.com. Thanks so much!

Let’s connect on Facebook , TwitterInstagram, and Pinterest!

cookbooks on www.virginiawillis.com

Copyright © 2021 Virginia Willis Culinary Enterprises, Inc.

 

Please note that this post may contain affiliate links. (That means I make a commission if you use my affiliate link to buy the product.)

Virginia Willis

Georgia-born French-trained Chef Virginia Willis has made chocolate chip cookies with Dwanye “The Rock” Johnson, foraged for berries in the Alaskan wilderness, harvested capers in the shadow of a smoldering volcano in Sicily, and beguiled celebrities such as Jane Fonda, Bill Clinton, and Julie Chrisley with her cooking -- but it all started in her grandmother’s country kitchen. Virginia is a chef instructor for the digital streaming platform Food Network Kitchen and author of Secrets of the Southern Table: A Food Lover’s Tour of the Global South, Lighten Up, Y’all, Bon Appétit, Y’all, Basic to Brilliant, Y’all, Okra, and Grits. Lighten Up, Y’all: Classic Southern Recipes Made Healthy and Wholesome received a 2016 James Beard Foundation Award of Excellence. She is the former TV kitchen director for Martha Stewart Living, Bobby Flay, and Nathalie Dupree; has worked in Michelin-starred restaurants; and traveled the world producing food stories – from making cheese in California to escargot farming in France. She has appeared on Food Network's Chopped, CBS This Morning, Fox Family and Friends, Martha Stewart Living, and as a judge on Throwdown with Bobby Flay. She’s been featured in the New York Times, the Washington Post, Eater, and Food52 and has contributed to Eating Well, Garden & Gun, and Bon Appétit, and more. The Chicago Tribune praised her as one of "Seven Food Writers You Need to Know." Her legion of fans loves her down-to-earth attitude and approachable spirit. Learn more about Virginia and follow her traveling exploits at www.virginiawillis.com.

Leave a Reply