Lean, Mean & Easy Chili

One of the Ghoens' fall recipe staples is CHILI... You aren't a red blooded American if this doesn't frequent your fall meal plan.. Kidding. Kind of..
One of the reasons I love this classic, cool weather dinner is that I can basically dump {any} soon-to-be-expired veggies into it!
The bones of my chili are:
• 1 (Large) Can of CRUSHED tomatoes
• 1 Can of diced tomatoes & green chilies
• 2 Cans of kidney beans
• 1 lb. of lean ground turkey
• 1 packet of HOT chili seasoning
•  any available veggies
I don't like to babysit dinner when I don't have to and I LOVE to cook ahead, so this is a no brainier crockpot concoction.
Here are some of the veggies I have added to my chili before:
• cubed squash &/or zucchini
• onion (basically always)
• minced garlic
• green beans 
• tomatoes- yep, more of 'Em. I HATE wasting food!
• corn
• mushrooms
• okra
• carrots 
• cubed sweet potato (or russet!)
• jalapeƱo
• the list goes on!
I don't think you can really go wrong with chili variations. Sometimes if I have black beans and no kidney beans, I'll rock it out and call it "southwestern."
One of our favorite ways to eat a bowl of this goodness is on top of quinoa or brown rice. Then -> portion put your leftovers for lunch -> or use it as a non-conventional "spaghetti sauce" & put it on top of spaghetti squash, noodles made with a vegetti or whole grain pasta -> or scoop it onto a whole grain pita or bread for some fancy sloppy joes!
I don't want to blow your mind too much in one post, but I've heard (and yet to try) that dark chocolate is a great addition!! We HAVE boozed our chili up before though with a bottle of red wine that needed to be finished.. YUM!
I hope you get the gist and decide to liberate yourself of the plain Jane chili out there. Be resourceful and use what you have.. Or get a little crazy and surprise your taste buds!
Drop any suggestions below that we need to try.
Happy cooking, friends!!
Xo, Linz

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