This post may contain affiliate links. Please read our disclosure policy.

Forget the calendar. For me the true start of fall is when the first batch of Slow Cooker Turkey Chili with Sweet Potatoes hits my crock pot.

A white bowl of easy slow cooker turkey chili with sweet potatoes

Making the first chili of the season always feels a bit ceremonious to me.

I equate chili with, well, chilly.

Until the air rouses me to utter at least a mild “brrrrrr,” I feel it is my duty to summer to postpone the chili-making until I am in need of something hearty to fill my tummy and warm my bones.

My ideal chili recipe is low on maintenance, high on flavor, and reasonably healthy. This chili nails all three.

Other than browning the turkey before adding it to the slow cooker and chopping the sweet potatoes, the prep work is non-existent for this easy turkey chili recipe.

Simply dump the ingredients into your crock pot, and in a few hours, your home will be filled with the aroma of warm spices and robust tomatoes. You don’t even need to precook the quinoa!

Slow Cooker Turkey Chili with Quinoa and Sweet Potatoes in a white bowl next to fresh avocado

I’m also of the mind that chili should be nice and thick, all the better for filling bellies and standing up to a hefty array of toppings.

Between the quinoa, black beans, and big chunks of sweet potato, this chili has plenty of body.

The ingredients play well with each other, and the sweet potato is especially lovely intermixed with the sultry spices. (This Vegetarian Chili is another wonderful option with similar chipotle flavors and black beans.)

I’m of the belief that no two pots of chili are exactly the same, and even though I’ve made this turkey quinoa chili recipe dozens of times, each time I do, I’m freshly surprised by the richness of its flavor.

5 Star Review

“This is the best chili recipe! The sweet potatoes and quinoa really add a new dimension and also help make a thicker chili which I prefer.”

— Karen —

How to Make Slow Cooker Turkey Chili with Sweet Potatoes

This healthy slow cooker turkey chili recipe is as easy as it is delicious.

It uses simple ingredients, but they come together to create something truly special.

Plus, this recipe makes a big batch, so it’s the best turkey chili recipe for meal prep, game day, or a party.


The Ingredients

  • Ground Turkey. Lean, protein-packed ground turkey adds wonderful flavor to the chili and will help keep you full for hours.
  • Sweet Potatoes. I love adding sweet potatoes to chili recipes for their sweetness, texture, and health beneits. Sweet potatoes are a wonderful source of fiber and vitamins.
  • Quinoa. Quinoa’s nuttiness and high protein content helps make the chili extra satisfying and flavorful.
  • Crushed Tomatoes. For liquid and must-have tomato flavor.
  • Black Beans. Creamy and nutritious. Black beans are a great source of fiber and antioxidants. (For those who prefer a slow cooker turkey chili no beans, try my Healthy Turkey Chili instead.)
  • Beer. The secret ingredient that sets this turkey sweet potato chili apart from the rest! It adds exceptional, simmered-all-day flavor. I used an IPA beer, but any dark or amber beer will work here.

Substitution Tip

If you prefer to not use beer in this recipe, you can swap it for extra chicken stock.

  • Spices. The key to fabulous chili flavor! This recipe uses a blend of garlic powder, chili powder, chipotle chili pepper, and cumin. It’s smoky, sweet, earthy, and perfect for complementing the sweet potatoes.

The Directions

  1. Saute the turkey with the spices. then transfer it to the slow cooker.
  2. Add the remaining ingredients to the slow cooker. Cook the slow cooker turkey chili on HIGH for 3 to 4 hours or on LOW for 5 to 6 hours. ENJOY!

Dietary Note

  • This recipe is gluten free and dairy free as written.
  • For a paleo turkey sweet potato chili or Whole30 sweet potato turkey chili, I recommend trying my Whole30 Chili.
crockpot full of Slow Cooker Turkey Sweet Potato Quinoa Chili

Storage Tips

  • To Store. Refrigerate chili in an airtight storage container for up to 5 days.
  • To Reheat. Reheat leftovers in a Dutch oven on the stovetop over medium-low heat or in the microwave.
  • To Freeze. Freeze chili in an airtight freezer-safe storage container for up to 3 months. Let thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.

Meal Prep Tip

Up to 1 day in advance, cook the turkey and onion in spices as directed in Step 1. Refrigerate it in an airtight storage container until you’re ready to finish the recipe.

For those who want to wake up with their chili ready to go, you can slow cook chili overnight. Prepare the recipe as directed in a programmable slow cooker right before you head to bed, and set it to cook on LOW for 5 to 6 hours. Once the cooking time is done, it will switch to the “warm” setting.

white bowl of slow cooker Turkey Quinoa Chili with Sweet Potatoes and Black Beans

What to Serve with Slow Cooker Turkey Chili

Recommended Tools to Make this Recipe

  • Slow Cooker. Chili is better in a slow cooker!
  • Dutch Oven. My choice for browning the turkey.
  • Ladle. The easiest way to serve this turkey chili recipe.

Do you have any favorite chili or other autumn recipes that mark the start of fall for you the way this chili does for me? I’d love to hear all about them!

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I Skip Browning the Turkey?

Although you can put raw ground turkey in the slow cooker (I do for these Crockpot Stuffed Peppers), I don’t recommend it for this recipe, because you need the turkey broken into pieces. Browning also adds important flavor.

Can I Omit the Quinoa?

Yes, you can omit the quinoa if you prefer. I suggest reducing the amount of liquid so that your chili isn’t too thin. If you prefer to use rice, cook it separately, then stir it in at the end.

Can I Double the Recipe?

Yes, you can double this chili recipe. However, if you are doubling the recipe, it WILL NOT FIT in a 6-quart slow cooker. Borrow a second one, place part in a smaller crock pot, or upgrade to a larger size. Trust me, I tried.

Slow Cooker Turkey Chili with Sweet Potatoes

4.87 from 86 votes
A healthy and hearty slow cooker turkey quinoa chili with sweet potatoes, black beans, and warm spices. Easy to make, great leftover, and healthy too!

Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 5 hours 5 minutes
Total: 5 hours 15 minutes

Servings: 6 servings

Ingredients
  


Instructions
 

  • Heat the olive oil in a large skillet or Dutch oven over medium high. Add the turkey, onion, salt, garlic powder, and black pepper. Cook and stir, breaking up the turkey as you go, until the turkey is no longer pink, about 5 minutes. Stir in the chili powder, chipotle chili powder, and cumin, then transfer to the bottom a large slow cooker.
  • To the slow cooker, add the chopped sweet potatoes, quinoa, beer, 2 cups chicken stock, crushed tomatoes, and black beans. Cover and cook on high for 3-4 hours or low for 5-6 hours, until the potatoes are tender. Stir in additional chicken stock if the chili is thicker than you would like (I added about 1/2 cup extra). Serve warm with desired toppings.

Video

Notes

  • TO STORE: Refrigerate chili in an airtight storage container for up to 5 days.
  • TO REHEAT: Reheat leftovers in a Dutch oven on the stovetop over medium-low heat or in the microwave.
  • TO FREEZE: Freeze chili in an airtight freezer-safe storage container for up to 3 months. Let thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.
  • If you are doubling this recipe it WILL NOT FIT in a 6-quart slow cooker. Borrow a second one, place part in a smaller crock pot, or upgrade to a larger size. You’ve been warned.

Nutrition

Serving: 1(of 6)Calories: 436kcalCarbohydrates: 61gProtein: 32gFat: 7gSaturated Fat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 42mgPotassium: 1411mgFiber: 13gSugar: 10gVitamin A: 11600IUVitamin C: 17mgCalcium: 132mgIron: 6mg

Join today and start saving your favorite recipes

Create an account to easily save your favorite recipes and access FREE meal plans.

Sign Me Up

More Delicious Chili Recipes

Did you try this recipe?

I want to see!

Follow @wellplated on Instagram, snap a photo, and tag it #wellplated. I love to know what you are making!

You May Also Like

Free Email Series
Sign Up for FREE Weekly Meal Plans
Each includes a grocery list, budget, and 5 healthy dinners, helping you save time, save money, and live better!
Please enable JavaScript in your browser to complete this form.

Erin Clarke

Hi, I'm Erin Clarke, and I'm fearlessly dedicated to making healthy food that's affordable, easy-to-make, and best of all DELISH. I'm the author and recipe developer here at wellplated.com and of The Well Plated Cookbook. I adore both sweets and veggies, and I am on a mission to save you time and dishes. WELCOME!

Learn more about Erin

Leave a Comment

Did you make this recipe?

Don't forget to leave a review!

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating




244 Comments

Leave a comment

  1. Wow! This is SO good. I subbed Japanese yams for regular since that is what I on hand, and left out the beer because one of us doesn’t like the flavor of beer. I think the chipolte chili powder us the star of the show here. It adds an amazing smokey flavor. I was concerned about how the quinoa would work out, but it adds nice body to the dish and also adds great nutrients. Another Well Plated winner!5 stars

    1. I’m so confused, because I see it on my end, Carolyn. The recipe is in the recipe card, right above the area where you commented. You can also click the “jump to recipe” button at the top of the screen to help get you there faster. Could you please check again!

  2. Made this vegetarian. Swapped turkey for pre cooked matzoh balls that were added about 30 min before serving. It was great.4 stars

    1. Hi Rebecca, we covered this just a little in the blog post. You can omit the quinoa if you prefer. I suggest reducing the amount of liquid so that your chili isn’t too thin. If you prefer to use rice, cook it separately, then stir it in at the end. Hope this helps! Enjoy!

Load More Comments