Chipotle Apple Turkey Chili

chipotle apple turkey chili topped with cheese, avocado and jalapeño in a grey bowl.

This healthy turkey chili with apples and chipotle is a must-have easy fall meal! It's warm and comforting with spicy chipotle and a hint of sweetness, perfect for sharing with a crowd. (gluten-free, dairy-free)


  • 1 lb ground turkey
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 large yellow onion, diced
  • 1 medium bell pepper, diced
  • 1 large apple, cored and diced
  • 2 cups beef broth
  • 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 3 tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp chipotle powder
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp Mexican oregano
  • 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 can (15 oz) black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 can (15 oz)  kidney beans, drained and rinsed


  1. Heat a large heavy-bottomed pot over medium high heat. Add the turkey and cook, stirring to break up the meat, until the turkey is browned.
  2. Add the garlic, onion, bell pepper and apple. Cook, stirring, until vegetables are softened.
  3. Add remaining ingredients and stir to combine.
  4. Cover the pot, turn heat to low, and simmer for 1.5 to 2 hours, stirring occasionally, until chili is thickened and vegetables are cooked down.


  • Use a higher fat turkey for chili so that you have enough fat to sauté the veggies and develop a little flavor. If all you have is 99% lean, you may need to add a touch of oil to the pot before browning the meat and before adding the veggies.
  • Dice the veggies (and apple) very small. You want about a quarter-inch dice so that they cook down nicely and melt into a uniform chili.
  • Salt levels will very greatly based on the broth and beans you use. I typically use low- or no- sodium for both, so I add a little more salt, about one to one and a half teaspoons. If you are using fully salted versions, start with just a half teaspoon then taste at the end and adjust as needed.
  • Make sure you give the chili time to cook down and let the flavors meld. It's not a quick-fix food. The flavor is better the longer it cooks, and it seems to meld even more if you have leftovers that hang out in the fridge for a day or two.
  • I think this chili is on the spicy side. My husband thinks it need more spice. It's somewhere between probably a little too spicy for young kids and a little too mild for people who like to eat jalapeños for fun. If you like things pretty spicy, add half to one additional teaspoon of chipotle powder, or add some diced fresh jalapeño or canned diced green chiles.

Instant Pot Instructions

  • Reduce the amount of broth to 1 and 1/2 cups.
  • Brown the meat on the Sautee mode on High in the Instant Pot.
  • Add the onion, garlic, pepper and apple and cook, stirring, for about 5 minutes.
  • Add the remaining ingredients and stir to combine. Close and lock the lid, seal the valve, and to Pressure Cook mode on High for 20 minutes.
  • Allow the pressure to release naturally before opening the lid. If it still needs thickening when you open it, simmer it on Sautee mode on low without the lid for a few minutes until it's thickened.

Slow Cooker Instructions

  • Follow the instructions as writing in the stovetop recipe, but pour everything into the slow cooker after the meat and veggies are cooked. Cover and cook on high for 4-5 hours or low for 6-8 hours, stirring occasionally.

Keywords: healthy turkey chili, chipotle apple turkey chili, turkey chili with apples