Heart Healthy Turkey and Sweet Potato Chili

September is National Cholesterol Education Month and we are sharing a classic recipe, with a few simple swaps to keep your cholesterol levels in mind and still keep it delicious. Eating a balanced diet can be difficult, especially when Fall is almost here. Today we are going to show you some easy swaps to make a favorite cozy meal a bit more heart healthy.

Traditional chili is made with ground beef, vegetable oil, and is usually topped with sour cream and cheese. Let us be clear, traditional chili is delicious, full of flavor, and still completely fine to eat. However, if you are looking to manage your cholesterol, or just want to make this recipe fresher the first thing we are going to do is switch the meat we are using to ground turkey. While ground beef and ground turkey can both be included in a healthy balanced diet, 99% Fat-Free ground turkey has the same amount of protein and more than half the amount of fat and saturated fat than 95% lean ground beef.  The next swap to make here is the type of oil used. We are swapping vegetable oil, which is high in omega-6 fatty acids that can lead to inflammation, to olive oil or avocado oil. Both olive and avocado oil are considered heart healthy oils, because both are low in omega-6 fatty acids. 

The best part about making chili is that you can put whatever you want to it. Below is the full recipe and options for some heart healthy toppings!


1 tablespoon of olive oil or avocado oil

1 pound of 99% fat free ground turkey

1 tablespoon of chili powder

1 teaspoon of cumin

1 yellow onion diced

1 green bell pepper diced

1 tablespoon of minced garlic

2 Louisiana sweet potatoes peeled and diced small

2 cups of chicken stock (use reduced or low sodium)

2 bay leaves

28oz can of stewed tomatoes


1. To a dutch oven over medium heat add oil and ground turkey

2. Using a spoon, break up the turkey into small pieces

3. Once the turkey is cooked, add chili powder, paprika, and cumin and mix well

4. Using a slotted spoon, remove the turkey and set aside

5. Add the onion and bell pepper  to the pot and cook until softened

6. Add the garlic and stir to incorporate

7. Add the remaining ingredients and add the turkey back to the pot

8. Bring to a simmer, put the lid on, cook for 20-25 minutes or until potatoes are fork tender

This recipe makes 6 servings

Heart Healthy Optional Add-Ins

  • leafy greens such as Kale
  • avocado as a topping
  • tomatoes
  • beans
  • brown rice  to accompany

This recipe was created by Chef Bret Monteleone from Juniors on Harrison. To find out when Chef Brett's next Healthy Cooking Class visit https://www.slidellmemorial.or...