Nom Nom Pumpkin Chili Recipe

pumpkin chili

This time of year, I’m all about soups and stews and that’s why I flipped over this pumpkin chili recipe.

The hubster and I are full-on into our “SuperClean 2014” decluttering and paring down project, and it’s going really well. In the first quarter, we decided we wanted to clear out our pantry, so we’ve made a game out of it. The big rule is that the hubster and I have agreed not to buy anything that might go in the pantry or freezer- no new pasta or rice, nothing in a can or jar or any kind of package, and no new meat. We can buy dairy and produce. That’s it. So everything we make has to come from the produce and dairy I get to buy, plus whatever’s already in the freezer and pantry.

I was a little apprehensive about this pumpkin chili recipe, because really, pumpkin in chili? Sacrilege! But I had like six cans of organic canned pumpkin in my pantry, plus I froze a bunch of pureed pumpkin in October when all the pumpkins were at their peak and super-yummy. So I really needed a pumpkin recipe.

What’s fascinating (to me) is that you can hardly even taste the pumpkin. Rather, it adds a wonderful little creaminess to the chili that adds to the heartiness of the dish.

I made a few sacaduros from Rose Levy Beranbaum’s The Bread Bible to accompany the chili. These little dinner rolls are easy and fast to make and super yummy. Top this chili with a little bit of cheddar, and you’ve got quite a comfort food meal.

Nom Nom Pumpkin Chili

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour

Total Time: 1 hour, 15 minutes

Yield: 8

Serving Size: 1.5 cups

Nom Nom Pumpkin Chili


  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 2 14 oz cans pumpkin puree
  • 2 14 oz cans diced tomatoes
  • 1 15 ounce can red kidney beans
  • 1 15 ounce can black beans
  • 4 cups water plus 2 beef or vegetable bouillon cubes (I used Oxo, but I also like Knorr)
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 1 large red pepper, diced
  • 2 large cloves garlic, diced
  • 3 teaspoons cumin
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1 bay leaf


  1. Add ground beef, salt, and pepper to a large pot. Brown meat and soak up grease with a paper towel or drain beef. Add onion, green pepper, and garlic, and cook until translucent.
  2. Add pumpkin puree, tomatoes, beans, water/broth/bouillon cubes, cumin, chili powder, oregano, bay leaf. Stir well and bring soup to a boil. Then, reduce to a simmer for at least an hour, stirring every 10-15 minutes.
  3. Serve with a bit of shredded cheddar cheese and chopped scallions.

Susan Baroncini-Moe

Susan Baroncini-Moe is a Guinness World Records® titleholder, author of Business In Blue Jeans: How To Have A Successful Business On Your Own Terms, In Your Own Style , and a business & marketing coach and consultant. When she's not counseling her clients on how to market their businesses, she's making jams, jellies, crafty things, and booze or hanging out with her husband and their delightfully wicked guinea pig, Ginger.

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