Pumpkin Chili
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$9.73 RECIPE / $1.62 SERVING

I’m not apologetic for my love of all things pumpkin also I enjoy almost every type of chili.

So Pumpkin chili has now become my favorite thing about autumn. Adding pumpkin to your chili is a quick and easy method to boost the nutritional value without altering the flavor.

The flavor and texture merge flawlessly into a pot of traditional chili, making it feel even lighter, so I’m all in!


If the idea of putting pumpkin in your chili makes you squirm, just give me a chance to explain. The distinction in flavor is minor. It adds a bit of sauciness and richness to the chili without making it too heavy.

I generally add a little brown sugar to my chili, but I was able to skip that with the pumpkin. Because I prefer to use a lot of spices in my chili, the pumpkin flavor isn’t overpowering.

Pumpkin Chili
Food: Pumpkin Chili
Source: A Spicy Perspective

Also, I believe now is a good moment to point out that you should not sample your chili until it has been cooking for a bit on the burner.

You might be tempted to sample it shortly after you’ve put everything in the pot together, but it won’t taste nice at that point. It takes time for the chili to mature.

Spices must bloom before cooking down and combining tastes. Allow it to sit for a while before taking a bite. Wait a while!


Making homemade pumpkin chili vegetarian or vegan is quite simple. Simply use an extra can of beans, cooked lentils, crumbled tempeh, or your preferred ground beef replacement in place of the ground beef.

The chili seasoning, tomatoes, and other veggies provide the most of the flavor in this chili, so you may safely leave out the beef.


You can also use another type of ground meat in place of the ground beef.

Ground turkey is commonly used in pumpkin chili since it has a milder flavor that complements the pumpkin, but I believe some Mexican chorizo would be delicious as well. The smokey spices would complement the pumpkin well.


The chili powder you use in the recipe determines how hot it is. Although most chili powders sold in grocery stores are moderate, certain types can be fairly hot.

Use a mild chili powder if you’re sensitive to heat. Chili powder from McCormick is mild in my opinion.

If you want your pumpkin chili to be spicier, dice up a jalapeno and sauté it with the onion and garlic at the start.

Chipotle powder or a chipotle pepper diced in adobo sauce can also be used for chili seasoning. There are a plethora of possibilities!

By the way, to go with your pumpkin chili, you should definitely bake some cornbread.


Pumpkin chili is filling but light, with lots of fiber and other nutrients. It’s a warm and inviting dish of fall flavors.
Prep Time: 10 mins
Cook Time: 40 mins
Total Time: 50 mins
Servings: 6; 1.25 cups each



  • 2 cloves of garlic ($0.16)
  • 1 yellow onion ($0.28)
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil ($0.32)
  • 1 lb. ground beef ($5.35)
  • 1 15oz. can kidney beans, drained ($0.59), can black beans, drained ($0.55), can petite diced tomatoes ($0.69), and can pumpkin purée ($1.05)
  • 1/2 6oz. can tomato paste (5 Tbsp.) ($0.25)
  • 2 cups of water ($0.00)


  • 1 Tbsp. chili powder ($0.30)
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika ($0.05)
  • 1 tsp ground cumin ($0.05)
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder ($0.02)
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder ($0.03)
  • 1/4 tsp freshly cracked black pepper ($0.02)
  • 1 tsp salt ($0.02)


  1. Garlic should be minced and onion should be diced. In a big pot, combine the garlic, onion, and olive oil. Over medium heat, sauté the onion and garlic until the onions are soft (about 5 minutes).
  2. Cook until the ground meat is browned and cooked thoroughly.
  3. Toss in the kidney beans, black beans, chopped tomatoes (with liquids), puréed pumpkin, tomato paste, water, chili powder, smoked paprika, cumin, garlic powder, onion powder, pepper, and salt in a large pot. To blend, whisk everything together.
  4. Cover the pot and bring the chili to a low simmer, stirring occasionally. Simmer the chili for 30 minutes.
  5. After 30 minutes of cooking, taste the chili and season with salt as needed. Serve with your preferred toppings while it’s still hot (sour cream, cheese, green onion, corn chips, etc.)


*You can use store-bought chili seasoning or a custom blend of chili herbs and spices.


  • Serving: 1.25 cup
  • Calories: 431 kcal
  • Carbohydrates: 39 g
  • Protein: 24 g
  • Fat: 21 g
  • Sodium: 1131 mg
  • Fiber: 14 g


Pumpkin Chili
Food: Pumpkin Chili
Source: A Spicy Perspective
  1. One yellow onion should be diced, and two garlic cloves should be minced. In a large pot, sauté the onion and garlic with 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium heat until the onions are tender (about 5 minutes).
  2. Continue to sauté until one pound of ground meat is cooked thoroughly.
  3. Fill the pot with the remaining ingredients: 1 15 oz. can black beans (drained), 1 15 oz. can petite diced tomatoes (with liquids), 1 15 oz. can pumpkin purée, 12 oz. can tomato paste, 2 cups water, 12 tsp smoked paprika, 1 Tbsp chili powder, 1 tsp ground cumin, 14 tsp garlic powder, 1/2 tsp onion powder, 1 tsp salt, and 1/4 tsp pepper Stir everything together until it’s completely blended.
  4. Cover the pot and bring the chili to a gentle simmer. Allow for 30 minutes of simmering time, stirring occasionally. Taste the chili after 30 minutes of cooking and season with salt if necessary (I did not add any extra).
  5. Serve immediately with your preferred toppings! Whether it’s cheese, avocado, or sour cream, I like something creamy in my bowl.