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Chili in bowl with toppings

Smoked Turkey Chili with Serrano Peppers

Smoked ground turkey, serrano pepper, and beer make for a rich and delicious take on turkey chili.
Course bbq, Comfort Food, Entree
Cuisine barbecue
Keyword smoked turkey chili
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings 6 people
Calories 156kcal
Cost $25.00


  • 1 pound ground turkey
  • 1 tablespoon chicken rub
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 ½ cups diced red onion (one small onion)
  • 1 cup diced red pepper (one red pepper)
  • 2 serrano peppers, diced rib and seeds removed
  • 2 garlic cloves, diced
  • 1 tablespoon ancho chili powder
  • 1 cup beer
  • 1 15 ounce can tomato sauce
  • 1 15 ounce can petite diced tomato
  • 1 15 ounce can white kidney or cannellini beans
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt


Smoking Ground Turkey

  • Preheat smoker to 225 degrees Fahrenheit using a fruit wood like apple or cherry.
  • Place ground turkey in crumbles on a sheet pan and toss with seasoning. Place ground turkey on smoker for up to an hour or until the internal temperature of the larger chunks are 160 degrees F.
  • Remove from smoker and discard any fat or liquid in the tray before storing or adding to the chili.

For the Sauce

  • In medium size pot over medium heat add olive oil. Once you see a slight smoke, add onions, bell, and serrano peppers. Stir for 10 minutes or until soft (not browned). Reduce heat if you see browning.
  • Add garlic and stir for additional 1 minute. Add ancho chili and stir for 1 minute.
  • Add beer, stir, and increase heat to bring to a simmer. Add ground turkey, tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, Worcestershire, and salt and stir. Bring back to a simmer for 30 minutes uncovered. Stir occasionally.
  • Serve with your favorite toppings.


Pro Tip: Smoke the ground turkey a day in advance to save some time while cooking the sauce.


Calories: 156kcal | Carbohydrates: 9g | Protein: 19g | Fat: 4g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 42mg | Sodium: 482mg | Potassium: 409mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 1232IU | Vitamin C: 36mg | Calcium: 31mg | Iron: 1mg