Turkey Chili - Texas Style (Made with Leftover Turkey)

The day after Thanksgiving means that people are out shopping, putting up Christmas decorations, working on Christmas cards, looking for leftover turkey recipes, or all of the above.  I typically make soup with my leftovers, but I was in the mood for something different this year.  Don't get me wrong I still have two extra large jars of turkey stock which will go into the freezer for another day.

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Turkey Chili - Texas Style (Made with Leftover Turkey)
3 lbs of leftover turkey, diced medium
4 dried pasilla peppers
7 dried chili de arbol peppers
2 Tablespoons bacon fat
1 onion, diced small
8 cloves of garlic
3 cups of low sodium chicken broth (plus an extra cup on reserve)
1 cup of beer (I used New Castle Brown Ale)
1 Tablespoon of cumin
1 Tablespoon of chili powder
1/2 teaspoon cayenne
1 teaspoon dried cilantro
1 teaspoon ground chipotle pepper
2 15 oz cans of pinto beans (optional)
2 heaping tablespoons of instant corn masa flour

1. Toast dried peppers in over medium heat in a dry frying pan for about two minutes per side.

2. Turn off the heat and add hot water, and let the peppers steep for 5 to 10 minutes until the peppers are soft and pliable.

3. Throw away the water because it will be bitter, and slice the peppers to get rid of the seeds.

4. Blend the softened peppers with 1/4 cup of water.

5. Melt the bacon fat in a large pot.

6. Cook diced onions until translucent.

7. Add pressed garlic, cooked turkey, chicken broth and beer to the pot.  The remaining beer in the bottle is part of the cook's pay.

8. When the liquid is hot add the chili paste and all the dried spices and simmer at a medium low temperature for at least 30 minutes.  Add the extra chicken broth if needed.

9. I realize that if beans are added to chili it ceases to be true Texas chili. You know what?  I like beans in my chili so I'm breaking the "rules" and living on the edge.  Add the optional beans and heat for another 10 minutes.

10.  Taste the chili, add salt and adjust seasonings to taste.  Add two heaping tablespoons of masa flour to thicken the sauce.

11. Serve with any combination of sour cream, cheese, cilantro, avocado, and tortilla chips.


  1. Wow, that looks spicy!! I love how you made this very Tex! Please share your recipe at Foodtastic Friday!


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