Super simple to make, this white bean chicken chili is made with rotisserie chicken (easy!) and a combination of quality chicken broth, fresh chopped cilantro, lots of garlic and green chilis. Serve with biscuits or bread and a side of fruit for a complete meal.
While we love our basic chili recipe, it’s nice having a chicken version for weeknight meals.
I’m embarrassed to say, but there have been times in my life when I’ve been served something delicious to eat, I ask for the recipe, and then lose track of the recipe… for years. I know, life happens. I find that recipe stuck to the back of my giant binder or behind the oven or who knows where and think “man, I should really make this!” So, I make the recipe and it’s just as wonderful as I remember! WHY did it take me so long to actually make it at home?!
It’s a new year, my friends, and one of my resolutions is to make those recipes that have gotten lost…and then found again. Today’s White Bean Chicken Chili is where I will begin. The recipe comes from my days at Ashland University, where I worked as a Graduate Assistant from 2004-2006. The theater and music departments used to be put on a grand madrigal feast every December with costumes, choirs, and the most delicious soup. I remember contemplating this white chili I was served and asked for the recipe before leaving. I have no idea who created it or the history of it….only that it took me over a decade to make it! It’s super simple (even with the couple changes that I made) and it’s really, really yummy. A perfect soup for a cold January day.
Are you ready to make my loooooonnnng awaited White Bean Chicken Chili with me?
Come on in to my kitchen!
White Bean Chicken Chili Ingredients
CHICKEN: I use rotisserie chicken for this recipe because it’s super easy to use. You can also use baked chicken breasts.
SEASONINGS: There is lots of flavor in this chili from the Pepper, lime, onion, cilantro, chili powder and cumin and green chilis!
CHICKEN BROTH: I recommend a quality chicken broth. I typically keep better than bouillon on hand for hearty soups like this one.
How to Make Chicken Chili
STEP 1: In a large saucepan, sauté the onion, garlic, and red pepper on medium heat for about 5 minutes. This recipe calls for 2 tablespoons of garlic…which is about 6-7 cloves…which is about 2/3 of a bulb. Um yeah… this is essential to the flavor of this soup, trust me!
STEP 2: Next, add in your white beans (we chose great northern beans), can of green chilies, spices, and chicken broth. Simmer for 10 minutes. While it’s cooking, juice enough limes to get 2 Tablespoons and measure out 1 cup of half and half. If you don’t have any on hand, you can substitute heavy cream mixed with regular milk.
STEP 3: Add your fresh chopped cilantro and rotisserie chicken pieces. I bought my chicken yesterday and while it was still warm (much easier), I pulled the chicken off the bone and stored it in the refrigerator overnight. Let that cook for about 5 minutes and then just before serving, stir in your lime juice and half and half.
Doesn’t that look appetizing? It tasted just a good. All four of my kids LOVED it. We ate it with crusty bread and some fruit for a complete meal.
My resolution is well underway. Next time, I won’t wait 15 years to make a recipe like this white bean chicken chili that impacted my evening. Life is too short.
Happy New Year! 🙂
To Make In Slow Cooker
To make this in the slow cooker, sauté the onion, garlic, and peppers and then put them in the slow cooker. Add all other ingredients except the lime juice and half and half. Cook the soup on LOW for 6-8 hours or HIGH for 4 hours. Just before serving, stir in the fresh lime juice and half and half.
Questions and Tips
How can I make this soup creamier? This soup is made creamy with half and half, if you want a creamier texture you can add more half and half or let the soup simmer longer. I recommend letting the soup simmer longer.
Can I freeze the leftovers? Yes! This soup recipe freezes well. Once the soup has cooled, place in an airtight container in the freezer for up to three months.
Can I use other beans that great northern? Sure. You can use whatever beans you prefer like kidney beans. We just love the flavor of great northern in this recipe which is why we recommend it.
More Soup Recipes
White Bean Chicken Chili
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- 1/3 cup white onion chopped
- 2 Tablespoon garlic minced
- 1 Cup red pepper chopped
- 30 oz. Great Northern beans drained, rinsed
- 4 oz. green chilis chopped, undrained
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin
- 4 cups chicken broth
- 3 cups rotisserie chicken chopped
- 2 Tablespoon cilantro chopped
- 2 Tablespoon lime juice
- 1 cup half and half
- In a large saucepan, sauté the onion, garlic and red pepper on medium heat for about 5 minutes. Next, add in your beans, green chilies, spices, and chicken broth. Simmer for 10 minutes.
- While it’s cooking, juice enough limes to get 2 Tablespoons and measure out 1 cup of half and half.
- Add your fresh chopped cilantro and rotisserie chicken pieces to the soup base. Let that cook for about 5 minutes and then just before serving, stir in your lime juice and half and half. Serve hot.