Posted by: lornasass | December 2, 2009


Here is a low-fat, nutrition-packed, hearty chili that’s quick to assemble and a feast for the eyes. Because it uses already cooked beans, it’s ready in a flash, but the addition of beer gives it a deep, long-cooked flavor.

Serve the chili in bowls, over rice or polenta, or offer cornbread on the side.



1 tablespoon olive oil

2 cups coarsely chopped onions

1 teaspoon whole cumin seeds

2 to 4 tablespoons chili powder

¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon

½ cup beer or water

1 to 1½ pounds turkey sausage (sweet or hot; casings removed)

1 pound boneless turkey thigh or breast, skinned and cut into 1-inch chunks

1 medium green bell pepper, seeded and finely chopped

1 1/2 cups pressure-cooked kidney beans or 1 can (15 to 20 ounces), rinsed and drained

1 1/2 cups pressure-cooked black beans, or 1 can (15 to 20 ounces), rinsed and drained

1 1/2 cups pressure-cooked chickpeas, or 1 can (15 to 20 ounces), rinsed and drained

1 can (15 ounces) diced tomatoes with green chilies (including liquid)

¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro, plus more for garnish

Salt and freshly ground pepper

½ cup toasted pumpkin seeds, for garnish

Heat the oil in a 6-quart or larger pressure cooker. Stir in the onions, cumin seeds, 2 tablespoons of the chili powder, and the cinnamon and cook over medium-high heat, stirring frequently, for 1 minute. Stir in the beer. Taste the mixture, and if the chili flavor is not pronounced, add more chili powder to taste.

Stir in the turkey sausage, turkey, bell pepper, beans, and chickpeas. Break up any large pieces of sausage. Pour the tomatoes and their liquid on top. Do not stir after adding the tomatoes.

Lock the lid in place. Over high heat bring to high pressure. Reduce the heat just enough to maintain high pressure and cook for 4 minutes. Turn off the heat. Quick-release the pressure. Remove the lid, tilting it away from you to allow steam to escape.

Add the cilantro plus salt and pepper to taste. Serve in bowls with a generous sprinkling of the pumpkin seeds and cilantro on top.


Stir in 1 cup frozen corn after pressure release. Simmer until corn is defrosted, about 1 minute.

After cooking, add 1 large roasted red pepper that’s been seeded and chopped.

Transformations (Follow basic recipe except as noted)

Cajun Three-Bean Turkey Stew: Instead of turkey sausage, use andouille sausage. Instead of chili powder and cinnamon, use 2 tablespoons sweet paprika. After pressure release, stir in 1 teaspoon dried oregano and simmer until you can taste it, about 1 minute. Instead of cilantro, use 3 tablespoons parsley. Omit pumpkin seeds.

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