Butternut Squash Turkey Chili {Instant Pot and Slow Cooker}

4.5 from 2 reviews

Butternut Squash Turkey Chili with bell peppers, black beans, kidney beans and loads of flavor! A hint of lime goes a long way in this recipe. Recipe instructions for slow cooker, Instant Pot pressure cooker and stovetop.


  • 1 TBPS oil
  • ½ cup diced onion
  • 1 TBSP minced garlic
  • 1 lb ground turkey, 97% lean
  • 2 medium bell peppers (I used red and yellow)
  • 14oz canned low sodium black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 14oz canned low sodium kidney beans, rinsed and drained
  • 10oz canned diced tomatoes & green chiles (including liquid)
  • 3oz canned tomato paste
  • 1 small butternut squash, cubed (about 3 cups)
  • ¼ cup chili powder
  • 1 TBSP cumin
  • 1 tsp coriander
  • 2 cups chicken stock or vegetable stock*
  • juice of 1 lime


  • sour cream
  • shredded cheese
  • chopped cilantro
  • avocado slices



In large skillet over medium heat, add oil, diced onion and garlic stirring frequently for 2 minutes. Add ground turkey and brown slightly, stirring to crumble, about 3-4 minutes. Transfer to slow cooker and add bell peppers, beans, tomato paste, canned tomatoes, butternut squash, spices, stock and juice of lime. Stir until well combined, lock lid and cook on low for 3-4 hours until squash is tender.


Set pressure cooker (Instant Pot) to “sauté” mode. Add oil, onion, garlic and ground turkey to pot. I like to sprinkle on a little bit of extra cumin and chili powder here while the meat is browning. Crumble with large wooden spoon until browned. Add bell peppers, beans, tomato paste, spices, 1 cup stock*, lime (leave out butternut squash right now). Stir ingredients in pot until well combined, then add butternut squash on top and do not stir. Close lid, make sure valve stem is set to sealed. Set pot to “manual” mode on “high pressure” for 15 minutes. Quick release the pressure (cover stem with towel); remove lid and stir butternut squash into the chili.


Place large pot or dutch oven on stove over medium heat. Once pot is warm add oil, diced onion and minced garlic, stirring frequently until fragrant. Add ground turkey breaking up with wooden spoon and brown for about 5 minutes. Add in spices, tomato paste, bell peppers, butternut squash and cook down for about 5 minutes. Add beans, stock and juice of 1 lime and stir until combined. Bring pot to simmer and cook uncovered for about 30-40 minutes or until squash is tender. Serve warm in bowls using your favorite toppings.


Time shown in recipe card is for Instant Pot Pressure Cooker. The slow cooker will take 4 hours. Cooking on the stovetop will take about 45 minutes.

To prepare the butternut squash: First peel butternut squash with vegetable peeler going around twice. Scoop out seeds and cut into about 1″ cubes. If you don’t have super sharp knives, you can soften the squash in a preheating oven set at 300ºF (about 8-10 minutes). Let cool before cutting lengthwise and scooping out seeds. *I found using the Pressure Cooker method, you can use less liquid – only 1 cup of stock is needed. If you use the full 2 cups, the chili will be quite liquid-y.


Keywords: instant pot chili, butternut squash chili, ways to make turkey bean chili