Slow Cooker Pumpkin Chicken Chili

Slow Cooker Pumpkin Chicken Chili can be made quickly in your crockpot, Instant Pot or on the stovetop. You can customize the flavors with your favorite spices and ingredients and a vegetarian option is easy too!

Slow Cooker Pumpkin Chicken Chili from Barrie Hill Farms.

You can use a pumpkin puree or can puree your own! I wanted some naturally roasted flavors so I brought home a pumpkin from the farm, cut it into chunks, roasted it and then pureed. Oh my goodness – the flavor! It’s the first time I’ve roasted my own pumpkin but it sure won’t be the last.

Pumpkins on Barrie Hill Farms

Pumpkin Chili Ingredients

The ingredients for this recipe are simple and you likely have most of them in your pantry right now.

  • Pumpkin puree. Pick up a pumpkin next time you’re at the market or use canned.
  • Chicken breasts . I use organic for the best flavor. If you want a vegetarian dish, simply leave it out. There are lots of other flavors that make this dish delicious.
  • Vegetables – onion and lots of red pepper. For some extra zip, add some jalapeno.
  • Chicken broth – or use vegetable broth
  • Red kidney beans. You can use black beans or chickpeas.
  • Seasonings – chili powder, cumin, garlic, paprika and cayenne. Add a little cinnamon for some fun!
  • You can add a wee bit of tomato paste if you like. It would add some thickness if that’s your thing but I found this to be a great consistency without it.
  • Cheddar cheese would be a great topping as well.

Slow Cooker Pumpkin Chicken Chili

Slow Cooker Pumpkin Chicken Chili can be made quickly in your crockpot, Instant Pot or on the stovetop. A creamy delicious chili with surprising flavors!

  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 cup onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 2 cups red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1.5 cups pumpkin puree
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 2 teaspoons paprika
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 2 cups chicken stock or vegetable stock
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Optional toppings: avocado, cilantro, parsley, green onions, cheddar cheese
  1. Add all of your ingredients into a 6 quart slow cooker, making sure to get some liquid underneath the chicken breasts, give it a good stir, and cook your pumpkin chili for 6 hours on low in the Crock-Pot.

    Remove lid and shred your chicken. Stir and serve with your choice of toppings.

Instant Pot Recipe:

  1. Set your 6 quart Instant Pot to the saute function and add olive oil, onion, bell pepper, and jalapeño. Saute for 4-5 minutes.
  2. Add crushed garlic and saute for 1 minute or until lightly browned.
  3. Add chicken broth and be sure to scrape the bottom of the pot to loosen up any bits that might be stuck.
  4. In a small bowl whisk together the pumpkin chili seasoning ingredients.
  5. Add chicken breasts, pumpkin puree, red kidney beans and seasoning ingredients to the Instant Pot. Give it a few stirs and make sure some liquid gets underneath the chicken breasts.
  6. Cover Instant Pot with lid, ensure the pressure release valve is set to sealed, and turn on high pressure for 12 minutes.
  7. Once the Instant Pot is done cooking the chili, let chili sit in the Instant Pot for 10 minutes. (10 minute Natural Pressure release.)
  8. Release the pressure valve. Shred chicken breasts with a fork.
  9. Serve pumpkin chicken chili with finely chopped green onions and avocado slices and cheddar cheese if desired.

Stove Top Method

  1. Heat the oil in a large pot on medium high.  Add onions, garlic and red pepper.  Saute for 3-4 minutes.  Add remaining ingredients. (Add desired amount sliced chicken from your store bought rotisserie chicken or cook chicken ahead of time)
  2. Bring to a boil and reduce heat, cover and simmer for 30 -40 minutes. Top with green onions, avocado and cheddar cheese if desired.
Recipe courtesy of Simply Fresh Dinners,  A partner with Barrie Hill Farms in bringing fresh recipes to your table.

Follow us on Facebook and Instagram for more delicious farm-fresh recipes, and updates on our growing seasons!

More Pumpkin Recipes at Barrie Hill Farms

Vegan Pumpkin Bread (GF)

Vegan Pumpkin Pasta with Fresh Herbs

When are Pumpkins Available at Barrie Hills Farm?

A calendar showing when crops are available at Barrie Hills Farm.

Found the Perfect Pumpkin at the Patch? Here’s How to Decorate it.

Kids decorating small pumpkins with their mom.

After finding your pumpkin at the pumpkin patch, it’s time to search for a little carving inspiration, perhaps while sipping a pumpkin spice latte!

Pumpkins will last a few weeks on your front step if left uncarved. We recommend carving only a few days before Halloween. If hollowing out a pumpkin isn’t your idea of a good time, you can try painting your pumpkins, or creating an artful pumpkin display on your front step.

However, to be sure that the kids in costume show up, it’s best to have your Jack O’Lantern lit up. It’s a signal to kids it’s okay to come knocking for candy.

The History of Pumpkin Carving

Carving pumpkins is a favourite pastime in North America. However, do you know the roots of this favourite children’s tradition?

It is said that the tradition of the Jack O’Lantern originates from Ireland, where strange lights appeared in the bogs and marshes at night. Not having an explanation for this natural phenomenon (which was caused by decomposing plant material coming into contact with electricity,) people created stories about a ghost doomed to wander the fields alone at night with only a lantern.

Later, it became a common trick for kids to scare the neighbours, running through the fields with hollowed out turnips and beets as lanterns.

Pick Your Pumpkin Right from the Patch for Best Results

You’ll get the best choice of pumpkin if you go directly to the farm to get it. Pumpkins are best when left to cure in the field for a few weeks. Kids love to get their pumpkin from the farmer, and many farms have special events and activities planned.  

Pumpkin Carving and Painting

Pumpkin carving is the traditional way to enjoy the season. To do this, simply remove a circle of pumpkin around the stem, pull it out, and scoop out the insides. Using a small knife (or a special carving tool), you can cut out shapes, spooky scenes, or a face.  There are a great many stencils you can download to use, as well.

If scooping and cutting don’t appeal to you, or if you have small children that aren’t ready to handle a knife, you can also try pumpkin painting. For best results, start with a very clean surface. Try a light solution of bleach and water to remove any bacteria that can cause rotting. Next, you can paint your pumpkin with acrylic paints. Try funny faces or spooky designs. Small painted gourds lend themselves well to a tabletop display.

The Teal Pumpkin Project

Halloween is a ton of fun, but it also poses some risks for kids with allergies. This great project helps to keep kids with allergies safe. Homes that provide non-food treats for kids with allergies can place a pumpkin that is painted in teal on the step to let parents know that safe treats are available.

The Teal Pumpkin Project can be another fun Halloween DIY project. Providing non-food tricks and treats is a fabulous way to be inclusive and a good neighbour!

Visit the Pumpkin Patch at Barrie Hill Farms

The pumpkin patch at Barrie Hill Farms is open from late September to the end of October. Visit us to find the you perfect pumpkin for Halloween.

Pumpkin Picking Tips for Kids of All Ages

A pick your own pumpkin patch in the sunshine

Picking your own pumpkins is the perfect way to celebrate the spooky season, and that’s why kids of all ages love it. Getting outside and finding the perfectly round or ‘perfectly imperfect’ pumpkin is an excellent way to enjoy the fall sunshine.  

In Ontario, we are fortunate to be close to the pumpkin farm.  This means you don’t have to settle for a store bought version.  Here are our tips for the best pumpkin picking outing – ever!

Dress Appropriately for the Pumpkin Patch

Don’t be afraid to dress spookily, but warmly. Make the occasion fun by letting the kids try out their costumes while they explore the pumpkin patch. Rubber boots, a warm hat, and gloves are always recommended for a chilly October day. For parents, we recommend a pair of work gloves and clothes that are easily washed, because sometimes the pumpkins in the field can be a little dirty.

Gather a Little Inspiration

Visit Pinterest for some great pumpkin carving ideas.  If you don’t like getting your hands gooey, try a fun craft, such as pumpkin painting. Think outside the box for decorating. Faces are fun, but for a more sophisticated front porch, you can use a power drill to make little holes in the shape of an interesting pattern. Once you have an idea in mind, you can start your pumpkin search.

What to Bring to the Pumpkin Patch

We recommend you bring paper towels and some old newspaper or a garbage bag to wrap your pumpkin to keep your car clean. You may want to bring some garden shears to cut the vine if it is still attached. Check with your farm to see if you can bring a child’s wagon to load your pumpkin haul back to the car. Bring a camera too. You won’t want to miss the perfect pumpkin Instagram opportunity. #pumpkinpatch

Pick A Pumpkin with Character

Natural lumps and bumps make great scary faces. Stems make creative pumpkin noses. Don’t be afraid to pick a pumpkin with character. The best pumpkins are the ones that are unique.  Your pumpkin patch may also have a selection of pumpkin ‘babies’. These are actually called ‘gourds’ and make excellent fall decorations.

Handling Pumpkins

Pumpkins that are ripe and ready for picking have an even orange colour, sound hollow when they are tapped and have a dried out stem. Clip the pumpkin from the vine, leaving 3-5 inches of stem. Pick up your pumpkin from the bottom, not from the stem, because it may break. Once you arrive home, it’s best to leave your pumpkin outside in the sunshine. Bringing it inside may cause it to rot before the big day.

Barrie Hill Farms has pumpkins available for picking in good supply from late September until the end of October.  For more information, visit our pumpkin picking page.

8 Reasons to Visit the Pumpkin Farm and Apple Orchard this Fall

Pumpkin Farm Barrie Hill Farms

Every fall should celebrate the changing of the seasons. But in the midst of back-to-school from summer vacation, homework, and a return to being busy, families often forget. But fall shouldn’t be all about work! Take a day off and enjoy the fall season: the crisp fall air, the colours of the leaves, and of course, a trip to the farm.

There are many, many reasons to plan a visit to the pumpkin farm. Here, we’ve listed a few of our favourites, and some you may not have thought of before:

The Pumpkin Farm and Apple Orchard is Close to Home.

Pumpkin Farms and Apple Orchards are always close by in Ontario. We have a proud agricultural tradition, as one of Canada’s best farming regions. It’s especially important to plan a trip to the country, even if you’re in the city. Let the kids discover first-hand where their food comes from.

Picking Pumpkins is So Much Fun.

Even big kids enjoy carving Jack-o-Lanterns. Some people look for the biggest, bumpiest pumpkin to make the scariest Jack-o-Lantern. Others look for symmetry. The perfect pumpkin is sitting in the field, waiting for you.

Pumpkins are Good For You.

Pumpkins are tasty when roasted, and so are their seeds. Pumpkins are loaded with vitamins A, C, and potassium, and high in fibre. They are high in iron, zinc, calcium, magnesium, and contain 3 different carotenoids. Try roasting pumpkin by cutting it up and seasoning lightly with olive oil, salt, and pepper.

Put the ‘Thanks’ into Thanksgiving.

Whether it’s roasted pumpkin, pumpkin pie, or other delicious fall treats from the farm, such as apples, you’ll feel grateful for the harvest. Feel connected to your food source and appreciate the freshness of farm-to-table eating.

Spend the Day Outside.

Don’t spend the fall indoors. When the winter comes, you have many indoor days ahead. Get your dose of fresh air and vitamin D. The added bonus is how well you’ll sleep at night.

Stock-up on Other Festive Fall Decor.

Your Pumpkin Farm or Apple Orchard often sells perfect items to decorate your home for fall. Look for multicolour corn, hay bales, corn stalks, mums and other items to make your front porch more welcoming.

Sweets to Take Home.

Fresh apple cider, sparkling cider, and baked goods are typical finds at your local farm. Set a pot of cider on the stove and let it simmer with cinnamon sticks and cloves to add a wonderful, warm scent to your home. While you’re at it, bring home some pie and other seasonal baked goods, as well as other locally-sourced goodies such as maple syrup or honey.

Postpone the Holidays. Just a Little!

Everyone loves the Holidays so much, it’s easy to see why the Fall is overlooked in preparations for December. But may we suggest leaving it until November? Savour the wonder of fall, the joy of the harvest, and make Fall last a little longer! Eating farm-to-table and discovering the ‘roots’ of our food, makes us slow down just a little bit – and that’s a good thing.

If you’re convinced, plan to make a fall visit to the pumpkin farm and the apple orchard at Barrie Hill Farms to fully appreciate the changing seasons and the delicious taste of fresh-picked apples and get your pumpkin for Halloween.

Vegan Pumpkin Pasta With Fresh Herbs

This creamy Vegan Pumpkin Pasta will delight your taste buds with its tantalizing flavor combo of pan-fried capers and slivered almonds, roasted shallots, garlic and sage along with the addition of creamy vegan goat cheese.  Try making this vegan penne pasta with high quality and all the delicious herbs and you will want to experiment with more punpkin pasta dishes like this one!

overhead shot of vegan pumpkin pasta on a set table with a small pumpkin in the corner

What Makes Vegan Pumpkin Pasta Awesome?

Are you ready for another season of pumpkin crazed recipes?   I don’t have a lot on my blog so I decided it was time to combine it with some penne pasta and make a vegan penne pasta!   I’m finding that I’m leaning towards more vegan recipes these days as well so this was the perfect opportunity to play mad scientist in my kitchen.  I was pretty impressed with this one once it was all done.  This is a recipe that everyone will enjoy and you get those healthy carbs into your active families diet!

So what makes this dish so tasty? I believe the high quality organic extra virgin olive oil is what helps it be that much more delicious.  I use this oil to pan fry the shallots and capers. and then I reserve the leftover oil.  Place the garlic and sliced shallots on your cookie sheet and top the shallots with fresh sage leaves and drizzle it all with the oil.  Fabulous.

overhead closeup shot of vegan pumpkin pasta on a set table with a small pumpkin in the corner

The Secret is in the Blender

It’s so much fun to experiment with this healthy Vegan Pumpkin Pasta in my kitchen and there is no end to the types of dishes you can make with gorgeous, seasonal produce. I am just loving the pumpkin from Barrie Hill Farms this season – there is something amazing about this seasons crop!

One of my biggest tips for this recipe is to make sure you are using a high-quality blender.   I have never gone cheap with my blenders because I use them soo much and they are a really important part of my kitchen.  Do yourself a favor, and invest in a great blender (and food processor!)  For this recipe, you can roast the pumpkin but I’m all about quick and easy so I went with pumpkin puree this time. You can use a food processor or your high powered blender to bring it all together and you’re ready.  Quick and easy, right?

vegan pumpkin pasta mixture in an open blender

With the holiday season fast approaching, this is a great go-to meal for the nights when you’re in need of some clean eating.  A simple dish with robust flavors.  Enjoy and let us know how it turned out. If you are on Instagram, please hashtag your photos with #barriehillfarms. Thanks and Cheers!

Vegan Pumpkin Pasta

This creamy Vegan Pumpkin Pasta will delight your taste buds with its tantalizing flavor combo of pan-fried capers and slivered almonds, roasted shallots, garlic and sage along with the addition of creamy vegan goat cheese.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
Servings: 4
Calories: 574kcal
Author: Robyn Gleason @ Simply Fresh Dinners


  • 1/2 cup raw cashews
  • 4 tbsp olive oil extra virgin
  • 2 tbsp capers dried
  • 1/4 cup slivered almonds
  • 2 shallots sliced
  • 5 cloves garlic peeled
  • handful of fresh sage leaves
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 4 oz vegan goat cheese
  • 1/2 cup vegetable stock
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • pinch red pepper flakes
  • 8 oz pasta penne


  • Soak the cashews in water overnight or a minimum of 3 hours.
  • Heat olive oil in small pan on medium high. Add capers and almonds and saute until almonds are toasted; about 4 minutes.
  • Remove capers and almonds with a slotted spoon and set aside. Reserve oil.
  • Preheat oven to 350 F. On baking sheet place garlic and shallots. Top each slice of shallot with a fresh sage leaf. Use reserved oil to drizzle over sage, shallots and garlic. Roast for 15 minutes. Remove from oven.
  • Pour the vegetable broth into the blender. Add raw cashews, pumpkin puree, goat cheese, shallots, garlic and sage. Add salt and pepper to taste. Reserve a few roasted sage leaves for garnish.
  • Blend on high speed and smooth and creamy. You may need additional vegetable broth to get your desired consistency.
  • Cook your pasta according to package directions. Reserve 1 cup of pasta water. Drain, rinse and return to pot.
  • Add 1/4 cup of pasta water along with pumpkin sage sauce to your pasta, tossing lightly until penne is coated. Add additional pasta water if you want it super creamy.
  • Top with reserved sage leaves, capers and almonds. Sprinkle with a pinch of red pepper flakes.


Calories: 574kcal | Carbohydrates: 57g | Protein: 18g | Fat: 31g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Cholesterol: 13mg | Sodium: 351mg | Potassium: 463mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 9890IU | Vitamin C: 4.7mg | Calcium: 103mg | Iron: 3.8mg
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

overhead shot of vegan pumpkin pasta on a served dish with cutlery

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Recipe courtesy of Simply Fresh Dinners,  A partner with Barrie Hill Farms in bringing fresh recipes to your table.


More Winter Squash Recipes from Barrie Hill Farms

Vegetarian Butternut Squash Soup

Quinoa Stuffed Acorn Squash


When are Pumpkins Available at Barrie Hills Farm?A calendar showing when crops are available at Barrie Hills Farm.