Instant Pot Black and White Turkey Chili (Chili a la Santiago)


Chili isn’t a Cuban dish. The closest dish would be picadillo, a ground beef dish cooked in a tomato base and served over rice. However, my father in law makes a really awesome chili using traditional Cuban flavors that we all love and my kids often beg me to make. So of course I had to figure out a way to get the same deep flavors and Cuban umami in my instant pot chili, that my father in law does in his. I did make a few modifications like adding a panade (mixture of bread and milk to make a paste) to the turkey to keep it from drying out during the saute process. I also added a few extra flavor ingredients to mimic the earthy flavors that come from cooking low and slow.

*This chili recipe is not spicy. However, if you like your chili spicy, you can add jalapenos instead of green peppers. You can also add chili powder or hot sauce.

Instant Pot Black and White Turkey Chili 

Recipe by Lana Horruitiner Perez adapted from Santiago Perez

  • 1 cup mix of Red, Yellow, and Green Bell Peppers, chopped fine (I used half a Red Pepper and 1/4 of a green and yellow. However, you can use whatever mix you want.)
  • 1/2 Red Onion, chopped fine
  • 4 cloves of Garlic, minced
  • 1 cup of Corn Kernels, (this is approximately 2 ears of corn or one can of corn. If using canned corn, rinse.)
  • 1 -15.5 oz can of Goya Black Beans
  • 1 -15.5 oz can of Goya Small White Beans
  • 1 -14.5 oz can of Diced Tomatoes
  • 1 slice of White Bread, cut in 1 inch cubes
  • 2 Tbl Milk
  • 1.5 lbs Ground Turkey
  • 1 tsp Cumin
  • 1/2 tsp Black Pepper, ground
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 1 packet Sazon con Asafran (you can also use Sazon packet without asafran or Adobo or your own mixture)
  • 1 cube Caldo Sabor a Pollo (you could also use a cube of chicken bouillon or better than bouillon mixed with the water)
  • 1 1/2 cups of Water
  • 1/2 cup Red Wine (do NOT use red wine vinegar!)
  • 1 Tbl Worcestershire Sauce
  • 2 Tbl Tomato Paste
  • 3 Tbl Vegetable Oil

Finely chop the Red, Yellow, and Green Peppers to make about 1 cup. Chop 1/2 Red Onion and mince 4 cloves of Garlic. Set these aside. sofrito with 2 color peppers

Rinse and drain the Black and White Beans. Set and white beansdrained and rinsed beans

Cut Corn Kernels off the cob or if using canned corn, rinse and drain. Set aside. (click here for a photo guide to and easy way to shuck and cut kernels off the cob. Scroll down the tamales recipe to see video and photos.)corn kernels

In a large measuring cup, pour the 1 1/2 cups water and add the bouillon cube. Microwave for 1 minute to warm up the water to help dissolve the cube. Use a fork and mash the cube to dissolve in the warm water as much as possible. (you can use better than bouillon or chicken broth. If you prefer to use chicken broth, just measure out 1 1/2 cups of broth. No need to warm it in the microwave.) 20190117_182453

Once the bouillon cube is dissolved and mixed in, add 1/2 cup Red Wine, 1 Tbl Worcestershire Sauce, and 2 Tbl Tomato Paste. Mix the liquid well to try and dissolve the Tomato Paste as much as possible. Set aside.


In a large bowl, mash the cubed slice of White Bread with 2 Tbl of Milk and a pinch of salt and pepper. Use a fork and smash until you have a paste. cubed bread

bread smash
Bread, milk, and seasonings is called a panade.

Add the 1 1/2 lbs of Ground Turkey to the Bread and Milk mixture. Use your hands to mix together well. Set aside. ground turkeyground turkey with panade

Add 3 Tbl of Vegetable Oil to the Instant Pot and press “Saute”. Once the oil gets hot add the Red, Yellow, and Green Peppers and the Red Onion. Occasionally stir and saute for about 5 mins until the vegetables are soft and starting to become translucent. 20190117_183350.jpg

Add minced Garlic, 1 tsp Cumin, 1/2 tsp ground Black Pepper, and 1 tsp Salt. Stir and saute for 30 seconds. cumin salt pepper

Add the Ground Turkey mixture and stir continuously while it’s cooking. It’s important to stir well and scrape the bottom as your stir. The turkey will stick tot he bottom, but the more you stir the less will stick. Don’t worry if you get some sticking. Saute the turkey until there is not more pink color.

Add the liquid/tomato paste mixture and stir well. Use a wooden spoon or heavy spatula to scrape the brown stuck bits off the bottom of the Instant Pot liner. This part is very important so you don’t get the dreaded burn notice. Then mix int he packet of Sazon. 20190117_182416

Pour the Corn kernels on top of the chili. Do not stir in, just gently spread the corn out so it’s covered with liquid. Then add the beans and then the canned Diced Tomato with the liquid. Just like the corn, spread the beans and then the tomatoes out but, DO NOT mix into the chili.

Lock the Instant Pot Lid into place and make sure the valve is set to “Sealed” position. Pressure Cook for 10 minutes on High. Once it’s done, Quick Release the pressure. Stir the chili. If you want it thicker, press the “Saute” button and allow to boil for about 2 minutes, stirring a few times. The chili will thicken as it cools. 20190117_193729


Serve with sour cream, cheddar cheese, lime wedge, crackers, or whatever you like.

Buen Provecho!


One Comment Add yours

  1. Gary Kaetzel says:

    This looks really good!!! Next time I make chili I think I'll give this one a shot! Ordinarily I don't use a recipe for chili but I've done it twice so far and I could easily do it again! It's nice to have consistency in a dish!


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