Chili Verde

Summary: I found the original recipe for this Chile Verde on; it was the 2001 champion and was written by Karen Ray. Since then, I've adapted this in several ways. The recipe below represents my changes and the way I make this now. Chopping pounds of pepper is rather labor-intensive, but this is a fabulous chili! Make the whole batch because extras freeze well. 

Yield: Serves 8


  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 3 tablespoons chile powder, green if you can find it
  • one 15-ounce can green enchilada sauce
  • 32 ounces canned tomatillos with their liquid
  • 7 ounces medium-hot salsa verde
  • 2 pounds ground turkey (original recipe calls for pork)
  • vegetable oil for browning
  • 2 cups minced onions
  • 1½ tablespoons minced fresh garlic
  • 2 pounds fresh green chiles (I use a mix of poblano and anaheim, and usually a large jalapeño too), seeded and diced
  • 1 fresh green bell pepper, seeded and minced
  • juice of ½ a lime
  • ½ cup finely chopped cilantro leaves
  • salt
  • crème fraîche or cheddar cheese, optional


In a small bowl, combine oregano, cumin, and chile powder; set aside. In a large stock pot, combine enchilada sauce, tomatillos and their juice, and the salsa verde. Press tomatillos against the side of the pot to crush. Add the oregano mixture to the liquids, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, stirring frequently.

Brown the meat in vegetable oil in batches with the garlic and onions. Drain any excess fat from the meat and add it and the garlic and onions to the chili pot. Add the diced green chiles. Return pot to simmer.

After about an hour, add half of the finely minced green bell peppers. Add salt if it needs it. Taste and adjust, adding more bell peppers as desired. After another hour, thicken or thin as needed. Just before serving, add lime juice and cilantro. If you like crème fraîche or cheddar cheese, add either at serving time too.