Bulgur Butternut Squash Chili

by Natalie on September 12, 2012

I know fall must be around the corner because I have been making chili!

The change of seasons is definitely my favorite time of year.  There is just something about the transition that I love.  I think it’s because I don’t like when things stay the same too long, and I love cooking more comfort food when the weather gets cooler.

I forgot how much I like this chili recipe.  It is really, really good.  I have been making it for years and I think it’s getting close to perfection. The subtle sweetness of the squash really balances out the acidity of the tomatoes.

Bulgur is a great addition to this chili.  It gives the chili a really nice texture – similar to what you would find in a ground beef chili.

Bulgur Butternut Squash Chili


  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 bell peppers, cored, seeded and chopped (any color is fine)
  • 2 Tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 3 large cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 small can of green chilis (fire roasted if you can find them)
  • 3 cups chopped tomatoes (canned is fine)
  • 1/2 of a medium butternut squash, peeled and chopped into 1/2 inch chunks
  • 1 Qt. Vegetable stock
  • 1 cup bulgur


  1. Put oil in a medium-large stockpot over medium-high heat. Add the onion, bell peppers, chili powder, and cumin. Cook for about 5 to 7 minutes, until the vegetables are softened. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add in chilis, tomatoes, squash, and stock.
  2. Bring everything to a boil, then turn down heat so the chili simmers. Stir occasionally. Let simmer about 30 minutes. Stir in bulgur. Let simmer for 10 minutes. Take chili off heat and let sit for 15 minutes, or until bulgur is tender. Taste chili and add salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Enjoy!

Optional add-in: 1 to 2 cups of cooked beans. I don’t always add beans, but its a great way to add more texture and nutrition to the chili. The last time I made the chili, I used garbanzo beans.


Bulgur is wheat berries that have been boiled, dried, and broken into small pieces. It is a whole grain product. Sometimes it is difficult to find bulgur at the store. I usually buy it in the bulk section at Whole Foods. Stores that carry the line of Bob’s Red Mill products may also have it.

Butternut squash is tricky to peel. Unless you have a super sharp vegetable peeler, I recommend using a paring knife to cut off the tough skin. Cut off one or both ends of the squash before you try to peel it – that way you can stand the squash up and gently run your paring knife down the sides.


Cara September 17, 2012 at 5:24 pm

This looks fantastic! I’ll be cooking it tonight…I’ll let you know how it goes 🙂 Thanks for sharing!

Comments on this entry are closed.

Previous post:

Next post: