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Turkey Chili Cornbread Skillet

Turkey chili cornbread skillet is a one-pan dinner that comes together in a cast iron skillet, leaving you less dishes to wash. Not only is it quick and easy to make, it’s delicious, too!

I completely appreciate cooks who create recipes based on the weather, using whatever ingredients are in season.  But, there’s just something special about chili for me.  It could be 105 degrees in the shade and I still wouldn’t turn down a bowl full of that spicy comfort food.  Especially if it’s chili served with carbs, like my turkey chili cornbread skillet.

This recipe is double happiness for me, because cornbread is another one of my favorite foods, and there’s a comfy blanket of it over the turkey chili that’s hiding underneath.

Turkey Chili Cornbread Skillet - a one pan dinner that the whole family will love! Recipe on

I think my mom made casseroles and one pot dishes more than any woman living on our street.  Six growing kids and a husband waiting for dinner probably fueled her desire to get dinner made quickly.  Mom was queen of pulling leftovers out of the fridge to create masterpiece casserole dinners from them.  She would have rocked the ingredient baskets on Chopped!

If Mom was queen of casseroles, my dad was the chili king in our house.  He made a mean pot of chili, and he worked feverishly to assure that nobody was able to watch him cook a batch from start to finish. Heaven forbid, lest we learn what his secret ingredient was!  Only big Ed was allowed to know how to create his smoky, spicy, not-too-thick and not-too-thin stew.

A few months before he passed away, my dad taught my older brother the recipe.  By looking at him, you’d think my brother had just been handed the keys to the Ark of the Covenant.  He walked around like a proud rooster for days, taunting the rest of the family.

Turkey Chili Cornbread Skillet - a one pan dinner that the whole family will love! Recipe on

Several years later, my brother decided that it was time for all of us to learn the secret ingredient to my dad’s chili.  Truth is, it’s not a very unique ingredient, but it gives great flavor and richness to the chili.  The ingredient is one square of Baker’s unsweetened chocolate.

Chocolate? Really? That’s it?!?!  Uh huh, and I was deflated to learn that one simple ingredient was all that stood between the perfect pot of chili and myself.

Cover this turkey chili in cornbread and you’ll have your hands full, trying to keep enough of it on the table.

I hope you enjoy this turkey chili cornbread skillet!

Turkey Chili Cornbread Skillet - a one pan dinner that the whole family will love! Recipe on

Turkey Chili Cornbread Skillet

Smoky, spicy turkey chili topped with a layer of moist, crispy crusted cornbread. Cooked up in a cast iron skillet to assure that you won't spend a load of time doing dishes!
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Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 25 mins
Total Time 35 mins
Servings 6
Calories 516 kcal


  • 1 pound lean ground turkey
  • 1/2 cup red or yellow onion coarsely chopped
  • 1/2 cup celery diced
  • 1/2 cup red bell pepper diced
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 jalapeno pepper seeded, membrane removed, and finely diced
  • 1 ounce (1 square) unsweetened chocolate (I used Baker's)
  • 1 Tablespoon chili powder
  • Kosher salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 (8 oz.) can no-salt-added tomato sauce
  • 1 cup corn & black bean salsa
  • 1 cup frozen corn niblets
  • 1 cup black beans
  • 1 cup chili beans
  • 1/2 cup reduced-fat cheddar cheese shredded
  • 1 (8 oz.) package corn muffin mix plus ingredients called for on box


  • Brown ground turkey in an oven safe cast iron skillet over medium heat. Drain excess fat from skillet.
  • Add onion, celery, bell pepper, jalapeno, garlic, chili powder, salt, and peppers. Cook until onions turn translucent and peppers are softened, about 4 minutes.
  • Add in tomato sauce, salsa, corn, and beans. Cook until mixture is hot and bubbly. Turn heat to medium low and allow mixture to simmer for 10 minutes.
  • Heat oven to 400 F.
  • Mix corn muffin mix according to directions on package. Stir in cheese. Spoon the mixture evenly over top of skillet. Sprinkle top with additional cheese, if desired.
  • Place skillet in oven and bake for 20-25 minutes or until cornbread is golden brown.
  • Carefully transfer skillet to a wire rack and allow it to cool for 10 minutes before serving.


Sodium: 1068mgSugar: 6gFiber: 12gCholesterol: 66mgCalories: 516kcalSaturated Fat: 6gFat: 18gProtein: 30gCarbohydrates: 63g
Tried this recipe? Mention @itsyummi or tag #itsyummirecipe!

If you want to try another delicious turkey chili recipe, check out my turkey chili con frijoles.

Turkey Chili Cornbread Skillet - a one pan dinner that the whole family will love! Recipe on

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    1. Thanks so much for stopping by, Sue! I’ll admit that the recipe prep does make it sound a bit time consuming, but truthfully, it’s not as tedious as it appears to be. I’m the type of cook that likes everything to be uniform in size and appearance, so I spend a bit extra time on my chopping and slicing. This really is a simple one pot dish. I hope you’ll try it and enjoy it as much as I do! πŸ™‚

  1. I always serve cornbread with Chili, but I never would have thought to cook the cornbread right on top of the chili in the same pan. And I just love cutting down on dishes.

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