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Chilli Pumpkin Recipe

Chipotle Pumpkin Chilli

This year our pumpkin harvest was fantastic. I have given away half a dozen and we have enough left to make many more meals based on pumpkin over the coming months. Last year I came up with so many new pumpkin recipes I have been struggling to think up anything else. That was the case until I searched “pumpkin recipe” images on Pinterest. I found a few that were titled Pumpkin Chilli, all from American based sites where the recipe looked like spaghetti bolognese and contained tinned pumpkin. Did you know there was such a thing? I have never seen it here and have to admit it sounds horrible. Due to the fact that I have never tried tinned pumpkin it I will avoid making a call on it. We  do use tinned tomatoes, beans, beetroot once in a while so maybe pumpkin in a tin is great?? Anyway, I have a selection of gorgeous home grown pumpkin to use so this weekend I used those Pinterest images as inspiration to come up with this Chipotle Pumpkin Chilli recipe.

When I am seeking ingredients to round out a recipe idea after I have shopped the backyard for vegetables I often head to my local fruit store to be inspired. They sell a wide array of organic and local products and ingredients. I was pondering what the base of this recipe could be made of so that I could cook the meal in one pot. I began thinking I’d use farro as the base until I spotted Organic Black Turtle Beans. The packet description described the beans as used for Mexican and South American dishes, perfect! If you can’t find them you could add red kidney beans, or lentils instead.

When I start cooking a new recipe I get out my notepad and pen (yes I use paper) and I line up ingredients on the kitchen bench, I look at them, smell some things, shuffle them around and bring things in and out of the pantry to add to the growing collection on the bench. If I am sure about some ingredients I will start to write then down before I start cooking in the order and quantity I want to use. Then I am ready to start. That is how this recipe evolved. I had dried chipotle chilli in the pantry and some tinned beans, some fresh ingredients and it was bubbling away on the stove not long afterwards.

Chipotle has a smoky flavour, it is not a very hot chilli. My 7 year old is ok with this recipe but the smoky flavour and minor heat level is not something my 4 year old would eat. To make a child friendly version simply add a scoop or three pile of all of the ingredients into a small pan without the inclusion of the chilli.  Overall the texture is similar to my Home Made Baked Beans.

You could add baby spinach leaves when serving if you would like to add an extra ingredient. We have enjoyed this dish served as a meal but you could also serve it as a side dish and it is fabulous served on squashed baked potatoes with the avocado mashed on top and dressed with the coriander, or on top of corn chips as per a nacho style dish. Your imagination is the limit.

Chilli Pumpkin Recipe
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Chipotle Chilli Pumpkin Recipe. A warming vegetarian Mexican style chilli that can be served as a main meal or a side dish. It is easy to adapt to make a family friendly version.
Recipe type: Main
Cuisine: Mexican
Serves: 6-8
  • 1 tablespoon oil of choice for cooking
  • 1 clove garlic - chopped
  • 1 cm ginger - grated
  • 1 onion - chopped
  • ½ teaspoon dried chilli flakes
  • 2 dried chipotle chilli - soaked in boiling water until softened and then chopped **Do not discard the soaking water
  • ¾ cup Organic Black Turtle Beans
  • 1 425 grams tinned cannellini beans
  • 1 400 gram tinned chopped tomatoes + small amount of water to rinse to the tin
  • 1 red capsicum cut into 4-6 pieces
  • 2 cups of water - including the water reserved from soaking the chillis and that used to rinse the tomato tin
  • 2 cups of cooked and mashed pumpkin
  • 2 generous pinches of salt
  • To serve:
  • 1 avocado, mashed or sliced
  • 1 handful of fresh coriander leaves
  • 1 lime - squeezed
  1. Add the oil, ginger, garlic, chilli flakes and chipotle, and onion to a pan that can be covered on the stove top.
  2. Gently cook until the onion softens
  3. Add the turtle beans and stir until coated
  4. Add the tinned beans, tomatoes, capsicum, water and pumpkin and stir
  5. Cover with a lid and simmer on low heat for 45 minutes
  6. Uncover and stir, and remove lid
  7. Cook for a further 15 minutes and then turn off heat, cover and allow to sit for 10 minutes
  8. The liquid should be absorbed now
  9. Season with two pinches of salt and stir
  10. Serve with the fresh coriander leaves, avocado and squeezed lime juice
  11. You can serve as it is or with baked potatoes, or corn chips, or tortilla wraps
If you can't find Black Turtle Beans substitute with red kidney beans or lentils.
Chipotle Pumpkin Chilli RecipeI am dying to know if you have tried tinned pumpkin?

Otherwise, I hope you are staying warm and that you get to enjoy this new vegetarian recipe.



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{ 4 comments… add one }
  • e / dig in hobart July 1, 2015, 11:32 am

    I have just printed this recipe out – sounds amazing and very warming for the icy Hobart weather about to hit us! my dad has been growing amazing pumpkins so this will be great.
    my impression (gathered over the years) is that tinned pumpkin is using for pumpkin pie in America, and maybe sweetened and/or spiced.

  • Kelly October 21, 2015, 3:09 am

    Hello! I smiled to myself when I read that you had never heard of tinned pumpkin, as it seems so “normal” to me (Canadian). Yes, you can buy tinned, mashed pumpkin practically anywhere here. Buy the already sweetened/spiced pumpkin “filling” to use in pies or you can buy it just plain — just mashed pumpkin. I use this often in pumpkin muffins and other clean recipes. It’s even very good for your dog. I give a spoonful (plain) to mine every once in a while. Helps their digestion. The chili recipe looks very good. I will have to give it a go!

    • Kyrstie Barcak October 22, 2015, 11:57 am

      Thanks Kelly. Your dog is lucky being treated to a spoon of pumpkin 🙂 I hope that you enjoy the recipe. Thanks for dropping by.

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