Turkey Leftovers Chili
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Got Turkey Leftovers? Delicious Healthy Turkey & Bean Chili and Benefits of Kidney Beans

If you’re like most Americans across the county, you’ve got a few turkey leftovers in the fridge. Sure, you could make a sandwich or just heat them up (and risk drying them out), or you could make a delicious chili. In fact, while not Keto as written (it contains beans), it is loaded with great nutrition from beans, meat, and spices.

And, if you want to make it Keto Zone, see the end of the recipe for tips.

This weekend, enjoy your turkey leftovers more than ever. Make a warm batch of this chili and enjoy family, friends, and games for days.

Delicious Healthy Slow Cooker Turkey & Bean Chili


  • 1 pound of cooked or raw turkey, cut into strips or 1-inch cubes (chicken can also be used)
  • 1 can  (15 ounces)  black beans
  • 1 can  (15 ounces)  white beans
  • 2 cans  (14 1/2 ounces each)  dark red kidney beans or equivalent cooked beans
  • 1 can  (14 1/2 ounces)  diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1 jar  (7 ounces)  roasted red peppers, drained and coarsely chopped
  • 2 cans  (6 ounces each)  tomato paste
  • 1 medium yellow or green bell pepper, coarsely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 1/4 cup chopped onions
  • 2 teaspoons Caribbean Jerk Seasoning, divided
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 2 avocados (optional)
  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro, or to taste (optional)


1. Cut turkey and drain beans; rinse and drain again.

2. Combine turkey, beans and remaining ingredients, except 1 tablespoon olive oil and 1 teaspoon Caribbean Jerk Seasoning in 3 1/2 or 4-quart crockery slow cooker; stir well.

3. Cover and cook on LOW setting for 8 hours or HIGH for 4 hours; stir well. Stir in remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil and 1 teaspoon Caribbean Jerk Seasoning.

4. Place 4 slices avocado in the bottom of the bowl. Spoon chili over avocados. Top with cilantro.

Keto Zone Style: Omit all beans. Replace with 2 cans drained black olives and be sure to include avocado.  

Nutrition info (traditional): 466 calories, 15 grams fat, 48 grams carbohydrates, 17 grams of fiber (31 gm net carbs), 30 grams protein

Nutrition info (Keto-Style): 290 calories, 19 grams fat, 14 grams carbohydrates, 5 grams fiber (9 grams net carbs), 18 grams protein

Health Benefits of Dark Kidney Beans in Turkey Chili

Dark kidney beans take this recipe to the next level with nutrition. They are heart-healthy, full of protein, loaded with antioxidants, and high in fiber. Dark Kidney beans contain:

Free-Radical Fighting Antioxidants

Dark red kidney beans have an ORAC (Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity) score of 13259… above almost all cultivated berries including blueberries, blackberries, and cranberries. It’s first among beans and high on the overall list.  In fact, the more kidney beans are eaten, the less free radicals bouncing around your cells causing damage and disease.

 Cholesterol-Lowering Fiber & Heart Health

Every ½-cup of kidney beans provides ~6 grams of fiber, both insoluble and insoluble forms.  The soluble fiber can promote optimal digestion, give your healthy gut bacteria a food source, and reduce cholesterol.  The insoluble fiber will keep your digestive tract in top form.

Perfect Protein

While not a complete protein, the amino acids from kidney beans are easily absorbed and metabolized.  When combined with other amino acids, such as those from whole grains, they form a complete protein that will promote healthy immune function and cell recovery.

Blood Sugar Balance

Kidney beans provide very-slow-acting carbohydrates and fiber that promote balanced blood sugars and steady energy.  Instead of opting for a refined-grain plate of pasta the night before a big ride, choose a higher fiber carbohydrate source such as beans for steady energy (research has shown that low-glycemic carbs, such as beans or lentils, provide better energy than refined grains when eaten the night before training).

Minerals for Detoxification

Familiar with molybdenum?  It just happens to be a component of an enzyme that detoxifies sulfites in the body.  Nasty sulfites make their way into our bodies via preservatives in our foods (of course, the more you eat whole foods, the fewer preservatives, and sulfites you’ll ingest).  Many people are sensitive to sulfites and suffer rapid heartbeat, headaches, and even disorientation.  Molybdenum is here to help.

Vitamins for Energy & Heart Health

If you like energy and heart health, you love kidney beans’ folate and thiamin.  First, folate can lower homocysteine – elevated homocysteine is associated with heart attacks, strokes, and peripheral vascular disease.  Then, as B-vitamins, folate, and thiamin play key roles in our cells’ energy production.  Specifically, folate is involved with DNA synthesis, amino acid metabolism, and red blood cell synthesis.

Bottom Line

Turkey leftovers don’t have to mean sandwiches and reheated meals. You can use an abundance of meat for this entirely new delicious dish. Turkey leftovers have never been quite this good, and good to your body.


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