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Make Panera’s turkey chili at home

Noelle Carter

Reader Joan Mack of Palm Desert, California, is a big fan of the turkey chili at Panera Bread. Ground turkey is slowly simmered with a blend of black, pinto and navy beans in a rich tomato sauce flavored with garlic, peppers, cumin, chili powder and a cup of amber ale.

The recipe, adapted from Panera head chef Dan Kish, is ready in just 90 minutes. As with any good chili, this is one dish that continues to improve with time.

Panera Bread’s Turkey Chili

Prep time: 11/2 hours

Servings: 6

3 poblano peppers

2 tablepoons canola oil

1 large onion, finely diced

11/2 teaspoons minced garlic

1/2 pound ground turkey,

2 teaspoons chili powder, more to taste

1 teaspoon ground cumin, more to taste

1 cup amber ale

6 ounces boneless, skinless and shredded roasted turkey (about 11/2 cups)

1 (28-ounce can) crushed tomatoes

1 cup drained cooked black beans

1 cup drained cooked pinto beans

1 cup drained cooked navy beans


Roast the poblano chiles: Place the chiles on a rack set over a gas stove-top burner at high heat. Roast, turning frequently, until the skin on all sides of each chile is charred, about 5 minutes. (If you have an electric or ceramic stove-top, roast the chiles in the oven using the broiler setting until charred on all sides.) Wrap each pepper in plastic wrap and set aside until the peppers are cool enough to handle, then peel the skin (the skin should stick to the plastic wrap). Rub the plastic wrap against the skin to loosen and remove it. Do not rinse the peppers to remove the skin, as rinsing will remove flavor. Stem and seed each pepper, then finely dice the chiles and set aside.

In a heavy-bottom pot, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring frequently, until the onion is softened, 6 to 8 minutes. Stir in the diced chiles and garlic and cook until the garlic is aromatic, about 1 minute. Stir in the ground turkey and cook until the turkey is browned, 6 to 8 minutes.

Add the chili powder and cumin and cook, stirring for 2 to 3 minutes to marry the flavors. Add the ale and continue to cook, scraping any flavoring from the bottom of the pot.

Stir in the shredded turkey, crushed tomatoes and beans, along with 1 teaspoon salt, or to taste, and bring to a very gentle simmer. Cover loosely and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 30 to 40 minutes to develop the flavors. Taste and adjust the flavorings and seasonings as desired.

Each serving: calories 361; protein 27 grams; carbohydrates 41 grams; fiber 13 grams; fat 10 grams; saturated fat 2 grams; cholesterol 55 mg; sugar 7 grams; sodium 718 mg

Note: Adapted from a recipe by Panera head chef Dan Kish.