Friday, March 29, 2013

Ground Turkey Chili Mac

* 1.5 cups uncooked whole wheat elbow macaroni
* 1 lb lean ground turkey
* 1 small onion, chopped
* 2 jalapeno peppers, seeded and chopped
* 2 garlic cloves, minced
* 2 tsp olive oil
* 1 cup black beans, rinsed and drained
* 14.5 oz can diced tomatoes, undrained
* 8 oz can tomato sauce
* 2 tbsp hot sauce (eg. Frank's)
* 3 tsp chili powder
* 1 tsp ground cumin
* 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
* 1/4 tsp pepper
* 1 cup shredded cheddar (or cheese of your choice)

1. Cook macaroni according to package.
2. While pasta is cooking, in a large nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray, cook the turkey, onion,  jalapenos and garlic in oil over medium heat until the meat is no longer pink.  Drain if needed.
3. Add the beans, tomatoes, tomato sauce, hot sauce and seasonings to the turkey.  Drain the pasta and add to the turkey.  Mix everything well, and cook over medium-low heat for 5 minutes or until everything is heated through.
4. Mix in the cheese and remove from the heat.  Once well mixed cover the skillet and let stand for 5 minutes of until the cheese is melted.  Serve and enjoy!

We loved this.  It was spicy, but not as overwhelming as you might expect looking at the ingredients list.  You could add a third jalapeno if you really want to crank up the heat.  The original recipe called for a full 15 oz can of beans, but I make mine and keep them in the freezer in one cup portions, so I added that.  I thought it was a good amount of beans - a full can might have been overwhelming!

This dish also had great flavor, so if you are looking for a meatless dinner, I bet this would be great without the turkey!  And if you are looking for less carbs, this would be a great chili with out the pasta, and you could even leave out the beans if your diet suggests avoiding those!  I think this is very versatile.  You could even lighten up the heat by paring back the hot sauce or the jalapenos.  Alter this dinner however best suits your family!

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