Winter Squash Chili

8:45:00 PM

I love chili.

It is a super easy soup that is pretty cheap and filling. I also love that there are so many different variations on the theme. I decided to try this variation because of the following reasons:
  1. I have two acorn squash & there's only so much acorn squash hash a girl can eat. 
  2. It's usually easier to get the preschoolers in my life (in other words, my daughter and one of my nephews) to eat vegetables if they are somewhat hidden.
  3. I wanted to try to reduce the sugar in my chili (I usually put some brown sugar in to give it some sweetness).
This recipe turned out great! I ended up using NO sugar in this recipe...the squash gave enough sweetness that in my mind, it was perfect. The guys added some hot sauce, but none of the kids fussed about it being too spicy, so I think it was the right level of spice for us since the kids outnumbered the adults. My 3 year old nephew--who is not a fan of soup or vegetables--said that he would eat this again if his mom & dad made it like his aunt Rachel--high praise from a kid who is so leery of veggies that he picks basil out of his spaghetti sauce!!

Winter Squash Chili

1 lb acorn squash (I used a 2 lb squash and then froze the remainder)
1 lb ground beef
2 bell peppers
1 medium onion
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon cumin
2 tablespoons chili powder
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon salt
(3) 14 oz. cans of beans (I used 1 kidney and 2 black bean, but use what you prefer)
(3) 14 oz cans diced tomatoes

Take your acorn squash and scrub down the outside. Use a sharp knife and prick it all over. Set it in a microwave safe dish and microwave on high for six minutes per pound. Allow to cool so you can handle it.

While the squash is cooking, take a large pot and heat over medium high. Brown meat in this pot. While the meat is cooking, chop the pepper and onion to the consistency desired. I used my mini food processor because I wanted to hide the veggies, but you can decide for yourself how much you want the vegetables to "show." Toss the peppers, onion and spices into the pot with the meat when it is browned and saute the vegetables until softened.

While thats cooking, cut your squash (I used 1/2 of a 2 pound squash), scoop out the seeds, and then just scoop out the flesh. I pureed the squash in my mini food processor, but you could mash it by hand, too. Put squash, beans, and tomatoes into pot. Stir to combine. Lower heat to medium-low. Simmer for 20-30 minutes.

The simmering serves to thicken the chili and combine the flavors, so whenever you feel the desired consistency, serve with the fixing...cheese, sour cream, crackers, whatever floats your boat!


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  1. What a great idea to add winter squash to chili. I will have to give it a try - still have a couple of them leftover from this week's CSA delivery :)


    P.S.: I am stopping by from SITS Sharefest :)

  2. This sounds really tasty - I love food this time of year - all homely and comforting and this fits the bill!

    I would love to invite you to post this over at my link party on The Purple Pumpkin Blog! Hope to see you there :)

    Michelle xoxo

  3. Sounds and looks so heartwarming and perfect for Fall.
    I would love to have you join my new link party Wednesday Extravaganza! Come by and share this or other recipes. Here is the link

    Can't wait to see you there!

  4. Mmm perfect time of the year for chili! Would love it if you linked up on my blog hop Also let me know if you'd like to follow each other!

  5. This looks so good...thanks for sharing!! laurel

  6. YUM! Looks delicious. Thanks for sharing and linking up at Glued To My Crafts on Thursday Obsessions. Hope to see you next week!

  7. This looks so good. would you come link this up to my weekly recipe linky party? I'd be so honored if you did! I have 5 children, my oldest are twins too. i remember when they were so they are 12!

  8. Looks delish and I love that you made it with squash! Thanks for sharing. :)

  9. Totally pinning this....for the next time I make candles :)