Butternut Squash Chili

It’s always risky experimenting with recipes when you have guests over for dinner. But it’s also good…in that you get great feedback. Good or bad.

And this chili…only good feedback :)

We had our family join us for dinner last weekend and this is what I made. I can’t not purchase butternut squash at the store each week because they are so inexpensive. So easy to cook with. And so delicious.

Chili is usually inexpensive and is a wonderful meal to serve to a crowd when you’re on a tight grocery budget. I was able to cook up a big pot of chili for my family without having to go to the store! Love it when I can make that happen!

{101 Chili Recipes on Pinterest}

(Well, not quite 101, but we’re working towards that number!)

(Also, how to cut and freeze butternut squash.)


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Butternut Squash Chili

Yield – 8 servings

Preparation Time – 15 minutes

Cooking Time – 40 minutes


  •  1 1/2 lb ground beef ($2.98)
  • 1 onion, diced ($.40)
  • 1 small butternut squash, diced ($.99)
  • 1 lb baby carrots, halved ($.99)
  • 2 15 oz. cans diced tomatoes ($1)
  • 1 15 oz. can black beans (red or pinto beans would be great too!) ($.79)
  • 3 Tbsp chili powder ($.15)
  • 1 tsp garlic powder ($.05)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Homemade or store bought bread/rolls ($1)



  • In a large saucepan or Dutch oven, brown the ground beef with the diced onion. Once browned, drain and then return to the pot. Add the squash, baby carrots, diced tomatoes with juices, black beans with juices and about 4 cups of water. (Add more or less depending on how soup-y you want it!) Stir in the chili powder and garlic powder.
  • Bring to a bubbling boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 20-30 more minutes, or until the squash cubes are soft. (Cooking time will vary depending on thickness of the squash cubes.)
  • Season with salt and pepper. And some crushed pepper, if you want some extra heat!
  • Prepare bread.
  • Serve Butternut Squash Chili with side of bread.

Cost $8.35 (8 servings!)

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  1. says

    This is a really, really good idea. I have trouble thinking of new ways to incorporate more veggies (in an affordable way), so I was really intrigued when I saw the picture of this chili. I would eat this with the cheap Jiffy cornbread mix :)

  2. Amanda says

    I just found your blog (thanks, Pinterest!) and I absolutely love it! I have a family of 5 and I regularly have dinner guest so the more I can stretch my food budget the better! Thanks so much for the wonderful recipes!

  3. Carla says

    I love squash chili. This would not be a $5 recipe here in the Pacific NW… Ground beef was almost $4/lb last time I went to the store. I have also made it with ground turkey as sometimes it’s cheaper and tastes just as good.

  4. Danie says

    Another great place to use butternut squash is in baked mac and cheese. When you add it in with your 1/2 and 1/2 or milk, it adds thickness and makes it really creamy.

  5. Rhonda says

    My family makes this all the time. We omit the carrots, because my kids hate cooked carrots, and add in a ton of cumin. When I make a double serving we use two different kinds of beans. We serve with shredded cheese and sour cream. Yum!


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