White Chicken Chili is loaded with shredded chicken, cannellini beans, green chiles, and corn! It’s the perfect way to change up chili night and hits the spot on a cold night.
This recipe and photos have been updated since their original post on 1/6/2016
Fall and winter are soup and chili season for me. Some people willingly eat it year-round, but I just can’t do it. The thought of eating a steaming hot bowl of chili in the middle of summer makes me break out in a sweat.
Luckily the weather is starting to cool off a little and it feels like a good time to share the recipe for this white chicken chili. In my opinion, this is a lighter chili. It’s not a thick and loaded with meat and beans. Although, that doesn’t mean that it isn’t a hearty meal.
The flavor of white chicken chili versus traditional chili is quite different. This Southwest flavor loving girl is partial to white chicken chili for that reason.
What Is White Chicken Chili
There are two main types of chili. The one most people are familiar with uses lot of canned tomatoes, peppers, onions, chili powder, some type of ground meat and/or beans.
White chicken chili is a chicken broth based chili. There are no tomatoes, but rather green chiles. Instead of ground meat this chili uses shredded chicken. It also uses white beans in place of kidney, pinto or black beans.
Ingredients For White Chicken Chili
- boneless skinless chicken breasts or thighs
- yellow onion
- ground cumin,ground coriander and smoked paprika
- canned diced green chiles
- frozen corn
- cannellini beans
- low sodium chicken broth
How To Make White Chicken Chili
This is a recipe for stovetop white chicken chili. Assuming you already have a couple cooked chicken breasts or some rotisserie chicken, it should only take 30 minutes to make.
Use a large heavy bottomed pot and add the olive oil. When the oil is hot, add in the onion, garlic, jalapeño, spices, salt and pepper. Sauté for several minutes until the vegetables soften.
Add the green chiles and corn in and sauté another minute. Turn the heat down to low and scoop out about a 1/2 cup of the vegetables and put them into a blender. Add in a little bit of chicken broth and a 1/2 cup of the beans. Blend everything until it’s smooth and creamy.
Pour the creamy mixture back into the pot and add in the remaining chicken broth and beans. Bring it to a boil and then simmer for 10 minutes. The soup won’t be thick and creamy, but the puréed bean and vegetable mixture does thicken the broth slightly.
For the final 5-10 minutes of cooking add in the shredded chicken and cilantro. I like to add the cooked chicken at the end so that it doesn’t become dried out. Squeeze in the juice of a lime and taste the soup for seasoning.
How to Make Creamy White Chicken Chili
Many white chicken chili recipes are creamy. This recipe is more broth based, with a little creaminess from the puréed beans and vegetables. If you’d like to make this a creamy chili, add in 4 ounces of room temperature low fat or full fat cream cheese just before squeezing in the lime juice. Stir it in until it’s completely melted.
For additional creaminess try stirring in 1/2 cup of plain low fat or full fat Greek yogurt, similar to what I did in this slow cooker green chile chicken enchilada soup.
How To Make Slow Cooker White Chicken Chili
If you prefer to make the white chicken chili in the slow cooker, here’s what you’ll need too do.
- Sauté the vegetables and spices, then blend the same amount as the stovetop recipe until they’re puréed. Add the vegetables, purée, two uncooked chicken breasts seasoned with salt and pepper, the remaining beans, and chicken broth to the slow cooker.
- Cover with the lid and cook on low heat for 4-6 hours or until the chicken is cooked through.
- Remove the chicken and shred it. Place it back into the slow cooker along with the cilantro and lime juice. Stir everything together and adjust the seasoning as needed.
More Chili Recipes
- 2 cups cooked and shredded boneless skinless chicken breasts
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 3/4 cup diced yellow onion
- 2 cloves of garlic, grated or minced
- 1 jalapeño, seeded and minced
- 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 3/4 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
- Kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste
- 8 ounces canned diced green chiles
- 3/4 cup frozen corn, defrosted
- 15 ounce can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
- 32 ounces low sodium chicken broth
- 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
- 1 lime
- Limes, shredded Monterey Jack cheese and plain Greek yogurt or sour cream for topping the chili
- In a large pot over medium high heat, heat the olive oil. When the oil is hot add in the onion, garlic, jalapeño, cumin, coriander, and smoked paprika. Season with a little salt and pepper.
- Sauté the vegetables until tender, about 3 minutes, then add in the diced green chiles and corn and sauté another minute.
- Remove the pot from the heat and scoop out a scant 1/2 cup of the vegetable mixture and add it to a blender with a 1/2 cup of chicken broth and a 1/2 cup of cannellini beans. Purée the mixture until smooth then add it back to the pot.
- Place the pot back on the stove over medium high heat and stir in the remaining chicken broth. Bring it to a boil then reduce the heat to medium low and simmer for 10 minutes.
- Add the shredded chicken, cilantro and remaining cannellini beans to the soup and simmer for another 5 minutes. Squeeze in the lime juice, stir, and taste for seasoning. Add more salt and pepper as needed.
- Serve the chili topped with shredded Monterey Jack cheese, more cilantro, a squeeze of lime juice and plain Greek yogurt or sour cream if desired.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 323Total Fat: 8gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 60mgSodium: 542mgCarbohydrates: 30gFiber: 9gSugar: 5gProtein: 35g
Nutritional information is an estimate. Please consult a registered dietician for the most accurate nutritional information.