Pumpkin Chili

Healthy and delicious Pumpkin Chili is filled with meat and veggies. It’s a perfect fall soup recipe that the whole family will love!

There are certain soups that taste especially delicious in the fall like Butternut Squash Soup, White Chicken Chili, and this delicious Pumpkin Chili!

A bowl of pumpkin chili topped with sour cream and cheese.

Fall Chili with a Twist

Soup is perfect on a chilly fall day. And what goes better with autumn than pumpkin?!

This Pumpkin Chili is a match made in heaven. It’s nice and thick, thanks to all the veggies and two kinds of meat.

The pumpkin puree gives it a rich and hearty flavor and balances out the acidity in the tomatoes. And of course, it’s loaded with vitamins and high in antioxidants, so the chili is extra nutritious.

Adding pumpkin to chili creates a subtle layer of flavors, similar to when people add chocolate to chili. It helps with the smooth texture. The sweetness of the pumpkin pairs well with the spiciness of the chili.

Be sure that you use pumpkin puree and not pumpkin pie filling.

If all you’ve ever tried is sweet pumpkin recipes, I hope you’ll give this Pumpkin Chili a try. It may just become a fall staple at your house!

Ground beef and peppers browning in a soup pot for pumpkin chili.

An Easy One Pot Soup

Making this Pumpkin Chili recipe is very simple, and the prep work can even be done earlier in the day, or the night before.

GROUND BEEF. Brown ground beef and sausage over medium-high heat in a large soup pot. Drain off any grease.

VEGGIES. Add chopped onions and green peppers. Saute for 2-3 minutes.

COOK. Add remaining ingredients and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer for about 30-40 minutes, or till vegetables are tender.

ENJOY! Serve hot with garnishes such as sour cream, shredded cheese, green onions, and Tortilla Chips.

Alternative Cooking methods

Dutch oven campfire chili.

  • Heat up 20-25 charcoal briquettes. Place the empty dutch oven over 10-12 of the briquettes.
  • Once the dutch oven is hot, brown the ground beef and sausage. Saute the onions and bell peppers, then add the remaining chili ingredients.
  • Place the lid on top of the dutch oven and cover with 10-12 more hot briquettes. Cook for 20-30 minutes or until the chili is bubbly and hot. 

Crock pot Pumpkin Chili. Reduce the amount of beef broth to 1 cup. Complete steps 1-3 except instead of putting the ingredients into a cooking pot, pour them into a crock pot. Cook on LOW heat for 6-8 hours, or HIGH heat for 3-4 hours.

Easy pumpkin chili cooking in pot.

Recipe tips

Simmering soup. Once the chili has reached a boil, reduce the heat so that the temperature lowers to around 185-205°F. This is right below a boil.

  • Simmering allows time for all of the flavors to meld together and break down the meat so it is nice and tender. 
  • Simmer for 30-60 minutes. Just pay attention to how much moisture is evaporating and give it a stir every so often so the food on the bottom doesn’t burn. 

Toppings. Serve the chili with your favorite toppings like sour cream, shredded cheddar cheese, sliced green onions, and Tortilla Chips would also be tasty.

Flavor Variations

  • Spice it up with chili powder, cayenne pepper, hot sauce, or red chili flakes.
  • Tone down the spice by adding extra pumpkin puree, honey or brown sugar, tomato paste, or a squeeze of lemon or lime juice.
  • Meat and beans. Use ground turkey or ground chicken. Navy beans and pinto beans can be used.
Spoonful of pumpkin chili close up image.

Make a Pumpkin serving bowl

Purchase beautiful ceramic pumpkin serving bowls, or serve this Pumpkin Chili out of a hollowed-out pumpkin. It takes a bit of extra time, but it’s worth the effort. 

  1. Find a medium size pumpkin to fill with all of the soup or smaller pumpkins for individual bowls.
  2. Cut open the top and be sure to make it large enough that you can ladle out the chili.
  3. Scoop out all the seeds and strings until the inside is clean and smooth. 
  4. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
  5. Line a round pizza pan with parchment paper or aluminum foil to catch any liquid that may leak out of the pumpkin. The bottom of the pumpkin may become too soft to move and it’s easy to simply transport and serve it off the pan. 
  6. Place the lid on the chili-filled pumpkin and bake for 30-60 minutes, depending on the size. The pumpkin is done when you can easily insert a fork into the outside flesh.
  7. As you serve/eat the chili, scrape some of the cooked pumpkin flesh out and eat it with the chili.

Serving Suggestions

Serve this Pumpkin Chili recipe with some of our favorites:

Storing info

STORE. Leftover chili with pumpkin can be stored in the refrigerator for up to five days.

FREEZE. For longer storage, freeze for 4-6 months. I like to freeze the soup in freezer Ziploc bags. Just make sure it’s completely cool before spooning it into the bags.

Recipe for hearty pumpkin chili with garnishes served in a white bowl.

Try these other tasty soups:

Pumpkin Chili Recipe

5 from 14 votes
Healthy and delicious Pumpkin Chili is filled with meat and veggies. It's a perfect fall soup recipe that the whole family will love!
Course Soup
Cuisine American
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 8
Calories 181 kcal
Author Lil’ Luna

Ingredients

  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • 1/2 pound ground pork sausage
  • 1 onion chopped
  • 1 green pepper chopped
  • 2 stalks celery sliced
  • 3 cloves minced garlic minced
  • 1 15 oz can diced tomatoes
  • 1 8 oz can tomato sauce
  • 1 1/2 cups beef broth
  • 1 Tbsp taco seasoning
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 15 oz can pumpkin puree
  • 1 15 oz can black beans
  • 1 15 oz can kidney beans

Instructions
 

  • Brown ground beef and sausage over medium high heat in a large soup pot. Drain off any grease.
  • Add chopped onions and green peppers and saute for 2-3 minutes.
  • Add remaining ingredients and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer for about 30-40 minutes, or till vegetables are tender.
  • Serve hot with garnishes such as sour cream, shredded cheese, green onions, and tortilla chips.

Notes

If chili gets too thick, you can add additional beef broth or water.

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About Kristyn

My name is Kristyn and I’m the mom of SIX stinkin’ cute kids and the wife to my smokin’ hot hubby, Lo. My mom’s maiden name is Luna, and I’m one of the many crafty “Lil’ Lunas” in the fam. On this site I like to share all things creative - from recipes to home decor to gifts and home decor ideas. Welcome!

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Comments:

  1. 5 stars
    I am making chili this weekend & trying this recipe! What a great idea to add pumpkin! I would have never thought about adding it, but I bet it adds yummy flavor!

  2. 5 stars
    We have soups going non stop when the weather gets cooLer. I’m always looking for a new one to put in our rotation and this did not Disappoint! So good!

  3. 5 stars
    I have to admit at first I was a little apprehensive because of the pumpkin but OMG am I so glad I made this. The flavor of this chili is incredible and the pumpkin is so good in it!

  4. 5 stars
    I make all types of chili in the fall and winter…so definitely adding this one to my list! Love the addition of the pumpkin!

  5. 5 stars
    I normally associate puMpkin with sweet baked good like cookies and pie, but adding it to this savory chili was Quite good.

  6. 5 stars
    Pumpkin is such a popular flavor in the winter months. Why not add the richness to your soups? Such a yummy taste.

  7. 5 stars
    Pumpkin is such a popular flavor in the fall. SweeT or savory. This recipe will not disAppoint. Great in chili!

  8. 5 stars
    This is our new go-to chili recipe! Soooo good! Have it cooking on stove right now, feeding the farmers tonight! Smells so amazing! Thank you!!!

  9. 5 stars
    I remember the first time I heard of this. I wasn’t sure if I’d like something like it but I DO!! It’s so easy to make and the flavor is delicious!

  10. 5 stars
    I have tried this recipe today and wow it was a huge hit with everyone! We all loved this chili recipe, this is going to be our new favorite I’m sure!