Hearty pumpkin chili is the perfect dish for cool fall evenings. Packed with ground beef, vegetables, beans, and homemade bone broth, this healthy meal will keep bellies and hearts full.
I made a large pot of this pumpkin chili in preparation for Baby #6. If you missed it, you can check out his home birth story here.
While pumpkin in chili may not sound really delicious, trust me: it is really good. The pumpkin makes it so hearty and filling.
Since it’s fall and pumpkins are still in abundance, I’m going to keep on going with these pumpkin recipes. I’m on a roll with these recipes, from Homemade Pumpkin Spice Latte, to Sourdough Pumpkin Cobbler , Pumpkin Sheet Pan Nachos, and so many more.
While using this fall vegetable may seem intimidating, it’s pretty simple once you get the hang of it. I like to use it as any other vegetable in my kitchen.
It pairs well with so many things, and chili is definitely one of them. It adds a subtle sweetness to a typically warm and flavorful dish.
This recipe makes a ton, which is great when you have a large family.
We are also a leftovers family, and I love that we can get at least two – hopefully three – meals out of this one recipe. It just makes life so much easier.
Real food from scratch doesn’t have to be hard or super time consuming. When you make a big batch, you can cook once, eat at least twice.
Why you will love this recipe:
It’s super healthy: packed with nutrient-dense real food like pumpkin, beans, bone broth, tomatoes, and peppers. So many nutrients and fiber blended in a comforting dish.
It makes a ton, which means leftovers for a fast and easy lunch or dinner on a busy day.
It works for a variety of diets. It is naturally gluten free. Make it vegan by switching out the bone broth for veggie broth, and omitting the beef. For a paleo dish, omit the beans and add extra peppers. Don’t top with cheese.
Tips For Making Pumpkin Chili
- I like using dried beans because they are healthier and cheaper, but you could swap canned beans in this recipe.
- Brown your meat in a skillet so that a deeper flavor develops, rather than just boiling your ground meat.
- Make your own homemade bone broth, or you can use store-bought broth. If you are using store-bought broth, you may have to use less salt than what the recipe calls for.
- If you don’t like kidney beans, swap them out for more black beans or another bean you like (i.e Great Northern or even chickpeas).
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What ingredient makes chili taste like chili?
Cumin and chili powder give chili its distinct flavor. You can also add other herbs and spices (a dash of cinnamon would be delicious), but if you are going for that classic chili flavor, cumin and chili powder are a must.
Tools you may need:
Garlic press – this is one of my favorite kitchen tools.
Instant pot and Berkey water filter for making homemade bone broth
Pumpkin Chili Video Tutorial
How To Soak And Cook Dried Beans
- This will need to be done the night before, or up to 24 hours before.
- Place beans in a colander and rinse. Transfer beans to a bowl and remove any bad beans or pieces.
- Add 4 cups of water for every one cup of beans.
- Add about a tablespoon or so of apple cider vinegar per cup of dry beans.
- Cover and allow to soak for 12-24 hours. This helps break down the phytic acid in the beans which is an anti-nutrient that blocks the absorption of certain nutrients available in the beans.
- Drain the beans and rinse well.
- Place beans in a pot and add water. Cook until they are soft, around 45 minutes – 2 hours. Since they will be added to the chili and simmered for 30 minutes, you can partially cook them and finish cooking them in the chili.
How To Make Pumpkin Chili
Slice the top off the pumpkin and cut it in half. Scoop out the seeds. You only need half of a pumpkin for this recipe, so I’m going to purée the other half or roast it up like a butternut squash. I haven’t decided yet!
Peel the half you’re using, dice it up, and add the chunks to a large stainless steel pot. Depending on how chunky you want your chili, you will need to adjust how thick you chop the pumpkin.
Dice up two onions and two bell peppers. Add them to the pot.
Cut up 6 tomatoes, making sure to de-stem them. You could also used canned tomatoes for this.
Add in bone broth, chili powder, ground cumin, garlic powder, and onion powder to the pot and turn the burner to medium-high heat. Bring to a simmer.
While that is coming to a simmer, start browning 2 pounds of ground beef with garlic.
After the veggies have been simmering for about 30 minutes, add in soaked and cooked black and kidney beans and the browned meat. Cover the pot with a lid and allow the chili to simmer for about 30 more minutes so the flavors can really meld together.
Serve and enjoy.
Pumpkin Chili Toppings:
What Goes Well with Pumpkin Chili?
- Sourdough bread or biscuits
- Green Salad with homemade dressing
- Corn bread
- Crispy potatoes
- Pasta – If we eat pasta, we go with einkorn.
- Sourdough crackers
Find more from scratch soup recipes straight from the farmhouse kitchen:
- Roasted Butternut Squash Soup
- Cheeseburger Soup Recipe
- Roasted Red Pepper And Tomato Soup
- White Chicken Chili from Dried Beans
- Hearty And Healthy Potato Soup Recipe
If you try this recipe and love it, I would love if you gave it 5 stars! Thank you!
- 2 lb. ground beef
- 6 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 bell peppers, diced
- 2 onions, diced
- 1/2 pie pumpkin peeled, diced and seeds removed
- 2 Tbsp chili powder
- 2 Tbsp cumin
- 1 tsp onion powder
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 4 cups homemade bone broth
- 3 cups cooked black beans
- 3 cups cooked kidney beans
- 6 tomatoes diced
- 2 tablespoons salt
- The night before, soak beans with a little apple cider vinegar.
- Add peppers, onions, pumpkin, chili powder, cumin, onion powder and garlic powder to a large stock pot with bone broth. Simmer 30 minutes.
- In a cast iron skillet, brown meat with the minced garlic.
- Add cooked beans, browned meat and salt to taste to the pot with the veggies. Simmer for additional 30 minutes.
- Serve with toppings: shredded cheddar cheese, diced avocado, sour cream. Crushed organic tortilla chips are also delicious.
If you do not have dry beans, you can easily substitute for canned beans. The texture of cooked dry beans is so much better. So if you have the time, I highly recommend it.
Make your own homemade bone broth, or you can use store-bought broth. If you are using store-bought broth, you may have to use less salt than what the recipe calls for.
If you don’t like kidney beans, swap them out for more black beans or another bean you like (i.e Great Northern or even chickpeas).
Nutrition Information:Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 760Total Fat: 30gSaturated Fat: 10gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 14gCholesterol: 139mgSodium: 2694mgCarbohydrates: 59gFiber: 17gSugar: 9gProtein: 66g