squash in your chili?

Yes, squash in your chili. Make it; it’s good.

Chili is one of the best comfort foods. Almost everyone likes chili; it’s easy to make; and there are so many different versions.

However, I sometimes get in a chili rut. I can make it without a recipe, and that can get a little boring.

To change things up, I used this recipe from the November issue of Cooking Light Magazine.

Now I know squash in your chili sounds wrong, but this was really tasty.

Only problem is that I hate, really hate, dealing with butternut squash. Luckily, I found peeled and cubed butternut squash in the produce section at Walmart {yay}.

Try not to let the long list of ingredients turn you away because this is worth making.

I tried to follow the basic idea of the chili recipe from Cooking Light but did change it up a little. Here is my adaptation of this delicious version of chili:

Beef and Butternut Squash Chili

by Meme Inge

Keywords: simmer soup/stew entree gluten-free egg-free high protein veggie-ful no-sugar-added dairy free red meat veggies winter fall

Print this recipe

Ingredients (Serves 6)

  • 1 TBSP canola oil, divided
  • 1¼ lb. boneless chuck roast, trimmed and cut in ½-inch cubes (I got the butcher to do this for me)
  • ¾ tsp salt, divided
  • 1½ cups chopped onion {about 1 large onion}
  • 1 cup chopped green bell pepper {about 1 bell pepper}
  • 2 TBSP tomato paste
  • 1 TBSP minced garlic {about 6 cloves}
  • 1 cup dry red wine
  • 1¼ tsp ground ancho chile pepper
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • ¼ tsp ground red pepper
  • ¼ tsp ground cumin
  • ¼ tsp ground coriander
  • ⅛ tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 (28 oz) can whole tomatoes, undrained & chopped
  • 1 (15 oz) can reduced-sodium or no-salt-added kidney beans, rinsed and drained
  • 4 cups cubed, peeled butternut squash {I used the entire bag of pre-cut squash}
  • 1 cup chopped carrots {about 2-3 carrots}


Heat a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add 1 tsp oil to pan. Sprinkle beef with ½ tsp salt, and add beef to pan. Cook for 8 minutes, making sure to turn so all sides are cooked. Remove beef from pan and set aside.

Add remaining 2 tsp oil to pan. Add onion and bell pepper to pan, and cook for 5 minutes. Add tomato paste and garlic; cook for 2 minutes stirring constantly. Add the wine to the pan. Bring to a boil, scraping the pan. Cook for 2 minutes. Add beef back to the pan.

Stir in ancho chile powder, oregano, red pepper, cumin, coriander, cinnamon, tomatoes, kidney beans, and remaining ¼ tsp salt. Bring to a boil; cover, reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer gently for 45 minutes. Make sure to stir occasionally.

Add butternut squash and carrots to the pan. Simmer for 1½ to 2 hours, until beef is tender.

Serve & enjoy!! You can top it with a TBSP of light sour cream if desired.

This chili is great as leftovers and freezes well.

Based on this recipe from Cooking Light Magazine November 2011


You can use more ancho chile powder if desired, but be sure to taste it before adding! The chili is pretty spicy

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Have a good weekend!



  1. […] I’ve mentioned before, I love chili {see here and here for other chili recipes}, and I love lentils {see here, here, and here for other lentil […]

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