When your summer garden gives you loads of veggies, make this easy and healthy summer chili! Also known as farmstand chili, this is a great way to use extra squash, corn, and tomatoes. So delicious, you’ll crave this any time of the year!
If you’re a gardener like me, sometimes you have so much extra produce you don’t know what to do with! Since chili is always a hit at my house, I love making this vegetable studded chili loaded with freshness and big flavor.
Don’t like to garden? Summer is the best time to visit your local farmer’s market. The freshly picked vegetables are at their peak flavor and perfect in a summer chili like this!
Summer Chili Ingredients
- Farm Fresh Veggies: bell peppers, zucchini, jalapeno, corn, and tomatoes.
- Chili Seasoning: cumin, chili powder, dried oregano, and minced garlic.
- Pinto Beans: Sorry Texas, this Midwest girl can’t have chili without beans!
- Ground Beef or Turkey: Optional if you need chili with meat, otherwise, this recipe is pretty filling with beans and veggies only!
How to Make Summer Chili
- Get chopping! Start preparing all of your fresh produce by medium dicing all the vegetables. Don’t worry about being precise; just make sure everything is about the same size.
- Heat a large dutch oven over medium, and cook your ground beef or turkey until cooked all the way through. Using a slotted spoon, scoop out the meat and set it aside. Do not drain!
- Next, cook the onion, bell pepper, jalapeno pepper, and zucchini until tender. Add garlic and cook for two minutes.
- Return the meat and then add the remaining ingredients. Cover with the lid and simmer for 35 minutes.
- Garnish with fresh cilantro.
- This is a very forgiving recipe, adjust the quantities as needed and feel free to play around with additional farmers market finds!
- To remove the skin off of fresh tomatoes, drop them in boiling water for about 30 seconds or until the skin peels easily off.
- Can’t find fresh corn? Swap for canned or frozen corn!
- If you like your chili extra spicy, add more chili powder and possibly some cayenne for an extra kick!
- Store leftovers covered for up to 7 days. I usually wait for the dutch oven to be cool enough to handle and then store my dutch oven in the fridge with an extra pot holder underneath.
- This recipe freezes very well! Make a double batch and store in 1-2 gallon freezer bags. You’ll appreciate having this on hand when back to school gets busy!
More Recipes Like This
Summer Chili (Farmstand Chili)
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 onion chopped
- 1 cup bell pepper chopped
- 1 jalapeno pepper minced
- 1 cup zucchini chopped
- 1 cup yellow zucchini chopped
- 1 lb ground beef or turkey
- 3 garlic cloves minced
- 1 tbsp chili powder
- 3 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 1/2 tsp dried oregano
- 28 oz can crushed tomatoes
- 15 oz can pinto beans
- 1 cup fresh tomato chopped
- 2 corn cobbed cooked and cut off the cob
- 1 cup water
- fresh cilantro for garnish
- Prepare the ingredients as listed above.
- In a large dutch oven or pot, cook the beef or turkey over medium heat until thoroughly cooked through. Remove the meat from the pan and set aside. Do not drain.
- Using the same dutch oven or pan, cook the onion, bell pepper, jalapeno pepper and zucchini until tender.
- Add the garlic and cook for two minutes.
- Return the meat to the pan and add the remaining ingredients.
- Reduce the heat to simmer and cover with a lid. Simmer for 35 minutes.
- When finished, garnish with some fresh cilantro and serve.