This Creamy White Bean Pumpkin Chili is a hearty and delicious meal packed with veggies, white beans, and ground meat of choice. It’s the perfect healthy and comforting meal for a cold winter night! Plus we love that it can be made in the slow cooker, Instant Pot, or on the stove. 

top view of a bowl pumpkin chili with spoon in it

If you’re looking for a healthy, filling, and flavorful meal for a cold winter night, this White Bean Turkey Chili recipe is perfect! It can be made with ground turkey, chicken, or beef (we love the turkey!) for a protein-rich dinner that tastes amazing. Plus you can make it on the stove, in a crockpot or slow cooker, or in the Instant Pot.

Why You’ll love this recipe

  • Flexible and easy! You can make this chili recipe with turkey, chicken, or beef. You can also make it in the slow cooker or crockpot, on the stove, or in the Instant Pot. It’s so easy to put together any way you do it.
  • Creamy and comforting. This easy turkey chili is perfect for a cold winter day. It’s warm, creamy, and so flavorful.
  • Healthy. Full of protein, fiber, veggies, and other nutrients, this pumpkin chili is so healthy and nutritious.

Ingredients You’ll Need

This is just a list of ingredients you will need to make this easy White Bean Pumpkin Chili. Full measurements are listed further down below.

Avocado oil
Onion
Carrots
Celery
Garlic cloves
Smoked paprika
Red chili paste
Black pepper
Ground chicken, turkey, or beef
Fresh thyme
unsweetened pumpkin purée
cannellini beans
peanut butter
Low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth
Kosher salt
Optional toppings: fresh thyme, chopped avocado, green onions, shredded cheese

top view spoon in pumpkin chili bowl

How to make this homemade white bean chili recipe

Whether you make this recipe on the stove, in the slow cooker or crockpot, or in the Instant Pot, the essential steps are the same. All of the individual instructions are listed below in the recipe card.

HOW TO MAKE THE CHILI ON YOUR STOVETOP

  • Chop veggies. First, finely chop the onion, carrots, celery, and garlic cloves.
  • Sauté veggies. Heat oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add onion and sauté until translucent. Then stir in the garlic and sauté for 2 minutes more until fragrant. Last, add in the carrots and celery, cooking until slightly softened while stirring occasionally.
Onions, garlic, carrots, and celery sautéing in pot
  • Add ground meat and spices. Add in the ground meat (turkey, chicken, or beef), smoked paprika, red chili paste, black pepper and salt. Continue cooking until meat is no longer pink, about 6-8 minutes.
  • Stir in remaining ingredients. Next stir in the fresh thyme, pumpkin puree, peanut butter, beans, and chicken or vegetable broth. Stir well.
White beans, pumpkin puree, and ground turkey added to chili pot
  • Cover and cook. Cover the pot, reduce the heat to low, then simmer for about 30 minutes. Taste and adjust the salt and pepper according to taste after cooking.
  • Serve. Last, transfer the mixture to a serving bowl. Top with your favorite toppings and serve immediately. Enjoy!

How to make the chili in a crockpot or slow cooker

  • Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.
  • Add onion and garlic, sauté until garlic is fragrant.
  • Stir in the chopped veggies, meat, and spices, cook until veggies are soft and meat is browned.
  • Transfer the browned meat mixture into the slow cooker.
  • Add beans and fresh thyme.
  • Pour in the pumpkin purée peanut butter, and broth; stir well.
  • Cover with lid and cook on LOW for 8 hours or on HIGH for 4 hours.
  • Add your favorite topping on top and serve immediately.
top shot of pumpkin chili bowl topped with lime wedges and avocado

How to make the white Bean chili in an instant pot

  • Set the pressure cooker to the sauté mode.
  • Heat oil and sauté onion and garlic until slightly golden brown.
  • Add in the chopped veggies, meat and spices, mix well breaking the meat apart with a wooden spoon until it is in small crumbles. Cook until browned about 7-8 minutes.
  • Add in the remaining ingredients.
  • Cover and pressure cook for 10 minutes.
  • Once finished cooking, allow the cooker to release pressure naturally, about 15 minutes.
  • Unlock the lid and transfer to a large serving bowl.
  • Top with desired favorite topping and serve warm.
Two bowls of white bean turkey pumpkin chili with avocado slices on top

Tips and substitutions

  • Olive oil: You can also use sunflower or peanut oil.
  • Ground meat: You can use ground turkey, chicken, or beef. We like using a lean ground turkey the best.
  • Pumpkin puree: Make sure to use unsweetened puree. You can also substitute with homemade pumpkin puree.
  • Beans: Cannellini beans are also called white kidney beans. You can substitute with Great Northern beans or navy beans.
  • Broth: You can use low-sodium chicken broth or vegetable broth. Canned, boxed, or homemade broth is great.
  • When cooking the meat, make sure to break it up into small pieces with a spatula or meat masher.
  • Don’t shortcut the cooking time because that’s when all the flavors meld.
White Bean Pumpkin Chili with spoon, lime, avocado

FAQ’s

Why should you add pumpkin to chili?

Adding pumpkin to chili adds extra creaminess, extra fiber, and really delicious flavor to traditional chili. The flavor compliments the smoked paprika and thyme flavors. Perfect for a cozy fall and winter meal.

Can I make this White Bean Pumpkin Chili vegetarian?

You can leave out the ground turkey, chicken, or beef for a vegetarian option. The beans still provide a lot of protein, even without the meat.

Can you freeze pumpkin chili?

Yes. Allow the chili to cool fully, then store in a sealed container and freeze for up to three months. Thaw overnight in the fridge or at room temperature for several hours then reheat on the stove or in the microwave.

One center bowl of pumpkin turkey chili with white beans and toppings

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top view of a bowl pumpkin chili with spoon in it

White Bean Pumpkin Chili

This creamy White Bean Pumpkin Chili is a hearty and delicious meal packed with veggies, white beans, and ground meat of choice. It can be made in the slow cooker, Instant Pot, or on the stove. 

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Course: Main Course

Cuisine: American

Diet: Low Fat

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 40 minutes

Servings: 6 -8

Calories: 284kcal

Instructions

  • Finely chop the onion, carrots, celery, and garlic cloves.

Stovetop

  • Heat oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add onion and sauté until translucent. Stir in the garlic and sauté for 2 minutes more until fragrant.

  • Next, add in the carrots and celery, cook stirring occasionally until slightly softened.

  • Add in the ground meat, smoked paprika, red chili paste, black pepper and salt. Continue cooking until meat is no longer pink, about 6-8 minutes.

  • Next stir in the fresh thyme, pumpkin puree, peanut butter, beans, and vegetable broth. Give it a good stir.

  • Cover and reduce the heat to low. Simmer for about 30 minutes. Taste and adjust the salt and pepper according to your taste.

  • Transfer the mixture to a serving bowl. Top with your favorite topping and serve immediately.

Crockpot or Slow Cooker

  • Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic, sauté until garlic is fragrant.

  • Stir in the chopped veggies, meat, and spices, cook until veggies are soft and meat is browned.

  • Transfer the browned meat mixture into the slow cooker. Add beans and fresh thyme. Pour in the pumpkin purée, peanut butter, and broth. Stir well.

  • Cover with lid and cook on LOW for 8 hours or on HIGH for 4 hours.

  • Add your favorite topping on top and serve immediately.

Instant Pot

  • Set the pressure cooker to sauté mode. Heat oil and sauté onion and garlic until slightly golden brown.

  • Add in the chopped veggies, meat, and spices, mix well breaking the meat apart with a wooden spoon until it is in small crumbles. Cook until browned about 7-8 minutes.

  • Add in the remaining ingredients. Cover and pressure cook for 10 minutes.

  • Once finished cooking, allow the cooker to release pressure naturally, about 15 minutes.

  • Unlock the lid and transfer to a large serving bowl. Top with desired favorite topping and serve warm.

Notes

  • Olive oil: You can also use sunflower, grapeseed oil, or peanut oil.
  • Ground meat: You can use ground turkey, chicken, or beef. We like using a lean ground turkey the best.
  • Pumpkin puree: Make sure to use unsweetened puree. You can also substitute with homemade pumpkin puree.
  • Peanut Butter: It gives this recipe a nutty and creamy taste. You may dissolve the peanut butter with a bit of water in a bowl first before adding it in.
  • Beans: Cannellini beans are also called white kidney beans. You can substitute with Great Northern beans or navy beans.
  • Broth: You can use low-sodium chicken broth or vegetable broth. Canned, boxed, or homemade broth is great.
  • When cooking the meat, make sure to break it up into small pieces with a spatula or meat masher.
  • Don’t shortcut the cooking time because that’s when all the flavors meld

Nutrition

Serving: 1-bowl | Calories: 284kcal | Carbohydrates: 9g | Protein: 25g | Fat: 18g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 84mg | Sodium: 143mg | Potassium: 506mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 5507IU | Vitamin C: 11mg | Calcium: 77mg | Iron: 3mg