When I think of pumpkin recipes, my mind goes straight to sweet desserts. However, I have really been wanting to experiment with a savory pumpkin recipe for a long time. I got to work recently creating this Smoky Pumpkin Chicken Chili and the result was outstanding. I am thrilled to share it with you!
This chili is loaded with roasted poblano peppers, Mexican spices, rotisserie chicken, white beans, tomatoes and pureed pumpkin. Smoked paprika is the main star of the spices and adds extra smoky flavor. I love the way that the pumpkin balances out the bold spicy flavors! It is super easy to make and roasting the poblano peppers isn’t difficult at all.
How to Roast Poblano Peppers
Poblano peppers are my absolutely favorite pepper. They are slightly spicy and have a natural smoky flavor. When you roast them, all of those flavors are enhanced even more! Poblanos can be roasted on the grill, over an open flame, or in the oven. This is the oven method…
First, place the poblanos on a foil-lined baking sheet and drizzle with oil. You can also roast them dry but I think the oil helps the skin to come off easier. Place them in the oven directly under the broiler.
Turn the poblanos several times during roasting and make sure that all sides are black and blistered. Once they are, place them in a bowl and quickly cover with plastic wrap. Let them steam for 10 minutes.
Next, use the sharp side of a knife to scrape the skin off of the poblanos. Also, remove the stem and seeds then dice into small pieces. Easy!
Making the Smoky Pumpkin Chicken Chili
After the poblanos are ready, the rest is quick and easy! First, saute onion in a large soup pot or enameled cast iron pot. I love mine from Lodge! Next, add the tomatoes, white beans, pumpkin, and poblanos.
Add broth, spices and chicken then cover and simmer for 20 minutes.
If you’d like your Smoky Pumpkin Chicken Chili to be dairy free, stop right here, add the cilantro and serve. It is still so creamy and delicious! To make the full recipe, add a block of cream cheese to take the flavor and creaminess over the top. It’s great either way.
My family was so so skeptical when I said I was making pumpkin chili but they LOVED it! This would be so cute and festive served inside of a pumpkin too. I hope that my Smoky Pumpkin Chicken Chili makes its way into your kitchens this season. You will love it!
Smoky Pumpkin Chicken Chili
- 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 2 poblano peppers
- 1 large yellow onion, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced or chopped
- 15 oz can diced tomatoes
- 15.5 oz can cannellini or navy beans, rinsed and drained
- 15 oz can 100% pure pumpkin puree
- 14.5 oz chicken broth
- 1 cup water
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes, optional
- 3 cups cooked, shredded chicken
- 8 oz cream cheese, cubed
- 1/2 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
- Place whole poblanos on a foil-lined baking sheet. Drizzle with 1 tablespoon of oil and place in the oven under the broiler. Broil, turning occasionally, until all sides are black and blistered. Immediately place peppers in a bowl and cover with plastic wrap for 10 minutes. Remove from the bowl and with the side of a sharp knife, gently scrape the skin off the peppers. Cut the stems off, slice in half, and remove the seeds. Dice and set aside.
- Heat a large stock pot or enameled cast iron pot to medium-high. Add 2 tablespoons olive oil then add onions. Cook until soft and translucent then add garlic and diced poblanos and cook for 1-2 minutes.
- Next, add tomatoes, beans, pumpkin, broth, water, chili powder, cumin, smoked paprika, salt, pepper, red pepper flakes and chicken. Stir to combine well. Cover and simmer for 20 minutes.
- Add cream cheese and stir until melted. Stir in cilantro and serve.
- For a dairy-free option, omit the cream cheese. It is still creamy and delicious!