Slow Cooker Turkey Tomatillo and Pinto Bean Soup with Corn

This chile pepper gets its name from its origin. In Spanish, serrano is an adjective meaning “from the mountains” which is where it originated-in the mountains of Hildalgo, Mexico. The serrano is normally about twice as hot as Jalapeno (about 10,000 to 15,000 Scoville units). It is the second most popular chile pepper in Mexico. This chile is used mostly for salsas but can also be used in soups, sauces, chili or stews. Try these as a hotter substitute for Jalapeno.

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1 tablespoon olive oil
4 to 5 cloves garlic
1 serrano or jalapeno pepper (see NOTES for spiciness recommendation)
2 green bell peppers
2 celery stalks
1 large sweet onion
1 dried bay leaf
1 teaspoon dried oregano
½ tablespoon ancho chili powder
1 teaspoon + ¼ teaspoon ground cumin , divided
½ tablespoon + 1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
12 ounces (3/4 pound) chopped or shredded turkey or chicken breast
2 cans pinto beans, rinsed and drained (or 3 cups cooked)
1 15-once can crushed tomatillos
1 4-ounce can hot diced green chiles
4 cups broth
4 cups water or bean broth
2 cups organic frozen corn kernels
¼ cup coarse corn meal
shredded cheese, fresh cilantro and baked tortilla chips for serving


Prep garlic, serrano chile, bell peppers, celery and onion for food processor by cleaning and chopping into chunks. Place garlic, serrano and bell peppers and celery into bowl of food processor. Process until pureed and slightly foamy. Add in onion chunks and pulse until onion is roughly chopped and still in visible pieces.

Heat a large pan over medium high heat and add olive oil. Once hot, add in onion mixture from food processor along with bay leaf, dried oregano, ancho chili powder, 1 teaspoon of ground cumin and ½ tablespoon kosher salt. Cook, stirring frequently, for 5 to 7 minutes.

Transfer to slow cooker and add all remaining ingredients EXCEPT ¼ teaspoon of ground cumin and 1 teaspoon of kosher salt. Stir and set on LOW for 8 Hours. I used a 6.5 Quart Slow Cooker.

When cooking time is up, adjust seasonings by adding remaining ground cumin and kosher salt. This thickens as it sits, freezes great and is better the next day. If you eat it immediatley, note it will be a bit looser and more like a Soup than a Chili. Serve with shredded cheese and baked tortilla chips or over cooked brown rice or quinoa and Enjoy!