White Chicken Chili

Friday, October 9, 2020
White Chicken Chili surfaced somewhere back in the 1980s and is considered a Southwestern style of cooking and if you love a meat chili, this is a delicious alternative with chicken and white beans.

The flavors in this chili are pretty not exactly like the chili con carne which is made with meat and a thick chunky sauce.

Instead, this will have cubed boneless chicken breasts, spices, and a chili sauce with a thickener of pureed cannellini beans, still red just different in flavors.

I really love mine with a dollop of sour cream on top and even some crumbled bacon (then of course) shredded melted cheese on top.

This chili is thick and very flavorful and like no other and quick to make.

I love the fact that this easy pot of delicious chili can be made with a rotisserie chicken off the bone to save time and it can be used as a dip.

This can be made on the stovetop, instant pot of slow cooker, and super easy to throw together to feed a crowd.

If you are a huge fan of chili, time my Old World Classic Chili, Merlot Chili, or Venison Chili, they're all family favorites.

Scroll down to get our printable recipe card for two styles of our favorite ways to prepare White Chili both outrageously delicious.

this is a bowl of chicken chili topped with olives, sour cream and avocado with tortilla chips

this is a bowl of chicken chili with tortilla chips then topped with olives, cheese, avocado in a red crock

Chili is Pure Comfort Food

I love this chili all year round it's also perfect for nachos and using it on top of taco salads.

During the week if you have leftover chicken, here is a perfect way to repurpose those leftovers , just add it in around 1 hour before it's completed cooking.

There are so many topping ideas to make this hearty chicken chili over the top in flavor, just check out my many suggestions.

this is a pan of chicken chili simmering

Ingredients You Will Need (for exact measurements keep scrolling the to the recipe card)

  • boneless cubed chicken breast(or use ground chicken, leftover turkey or ground turkey)
  • green chiles
  • cannellini beans canned or fresh ( I use dried beans and cook them)
  • cumin, granulated garlic powder, chili powder
  • fresh garlic
  • chicken broth
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • diced tomatoes
  • garlic
  • fresh parsley
  • water
  • any kind shredded cheese

this is a le creuset an with the ingredients started for chicken chili in the pan

Cooking Methods

  1. The stovetop simmered for at least 2 hours
  2. Instant Pot using the pressure cooker mode to instruction book (around 45 minutes)
  3. Slow cooker/crockpot on low 6 to 8 hours or high heat 4 to 6 hours

these are white cannellini beans simmering


  • any kinds of sliced olives
  • any kinds of shredded cheese or queso
  • chopped onions, jalapenos, diced tomatoes, diced peppers
  • sour cream
  • avocado slices or guacamole
  • salsa
  • corn
  • crumbled bacon
  • tortilla chips, or crackers

this a food processor full of white cannellini beans pulsed


  1. 5 to 8-quart Dutch oven pot with cover
  2. optional: slow cooker/instant pot
  3. measuring cup
  4. knife for cutting chicken and vegetables
  5. cutting board
  6. food processor
  7. measuring spoons

this is raw cubed chicken

Pin for later

this is a pin for later how to make white chicken chili

Try Some of Our Other Favorite Recipes

Chili Mac

Hot Dog Chili

Vegetarian Chili

Fish Tacos with Chili Lime Sauce

this is a photo of le creuset pan with chicken broth and chicken to make chicken chili

Chicken Chili Lovers

We are fans of chicken chili and it's so versatile.

Again leftover chicken chili is great in a taco, on salads, and even over nachos so nothing goes to waste.

Perfect for feeding a large crowd and everyone loves this at a pot luck function.

Just get creative and set up a chili bar with assorted toppings with my suggestions above then when you build your bowl of chili this will be a great fun meal.

If you want a true white chili just check out the pure white chicken chili recipe below.

pure white chicken chili

White Chicken Chili

White Chicken Chili

Yield: 10
Author: Claudia Lamascolo
Prep time: 15 MinCook time: 40 MinTotal time: 55 Min
This is a Southwestern-style white chili that was popular back in the 1980s. The chicken is simmered in a chili sauce with the addition of white beans.


  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 or 4 boneless chicken breasts cut into cubes(you can also use rotisserie chicken off the bone or ground chicken or leftover turkey, ground turkey chopped around 2 pounds)
  • 2 cloves minced garlic
  • 3 cans cannellini beans drained see note below (I use one pound of dried beans and cook them separately first)
  • Note for thicker chili: (2 cans cannellini  keeping them whole beans and using 1 can  slightly to be pureed in a food processor keeping them a just little chunky bits)
  • 7 - ounce can of chopped mild chiles peppers, (or use bell green peppers chopped or any hot peppers)
  • 15 ounce can of chicken broth plus 1 can of water (or more if it gets too thick)
  • 1/2 cup diced plum fresh tomatoes or use canned
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon granulated garlic powder
  • salt and pepper to taste and an optional dash of cayenne pepper
  • Note: for extra thick chili add 1 tablespoon fine masa (cornmeal) mixed with water and add to the pot while it's boiling at the end
  • Optional: Sour cream, avocado slices, crumbled bacon, chopped onion, fresh cilantro, corn off the cob, black beans, salsa, freshly chopped sweet or hot peppers, chopped jalapeno peppers, shredded mozzarella, provolone, or white cheddar cheeses, crackers, garlic bread, croutons, or tortilla chips


  1. Slice the chicken on a cutting board into cubes.
  2. Heat the oil in a 5- quart dutch oven (that has a cover) and add the chicken.
  3. Saute for two to three minutes until the chicken starts to brown.
  4. Add the garlic saute for one more minute then add the chile peppers, seasonings, diced tomatoes, chicken broth, beans, salt, and pepper to taste.
  5. Stir to blend.
  6. Add the last can of cannellini beans to a food processor and pulse a few times leaving them a little chunky.
  7. Stir in the pureed beans to the chicken chili.
  8. Simmer until the chili thickens and chicken is tender around 1 hour on medium heat.
  9. If the chili starts to thicken too much add more chicken broth or water.
  10. For slow cooker or instant pot, place on high for 4 to 6 hours.
  11. Serving Suggestions:
  12. Add some crushed tortilla chips, garlic croutons, garlic bread or oyster crackers, crumbled fried bacon on top of any of them listed in the ingredients section.
  13. For Pure White Chicken Chili here is an alternative recipe:
  14. 1 tablespoon olive oil
  15. 1 pound skinless, boneless chicken breast halves, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  16. 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  17. 2 (15.5 ounce) cans white beans, rinsed and drained
  18. 1 (14.5 ounces) can of chicken broth
  19. 2 (4 ounces) cans chopped green chiles
  20. 1 teaspoon salt
  21. 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  22. 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  23. 1/2 teaspoon ground  white (black) pepper
  24. 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  25. Stir this in at the end:
  26. 1 cup sour cream
  27. 1/2 cup heavy cream
  28. Heat olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat; cook and stir chicken, and garlic into the hot oil until chicken juices run clear.
  29. Mix the beans, chicken broth, green chiles, salt, cumin, oregano, black pepper, and cayenne pepper into the chicken mixture; bring to a boil. 
  30. Reduce heat and simmer until flavors have blended about 30 minutes. 
  31. Remove chili from heat and stir in sour cream and heavy cream until evenly blended.



Fat (grams)


Sat. Fat (grams)


Carbs (grams)


Fiber (grams)


Net carbs


Sugar (grams)


Protein (grams)


Sodium (milligrams)


Cholesterol (grams)

white chicken chili, chili with white beans, southwestern chili, white bean chili with chicken
chili recipes, chicken recipes, white bean recipes
Southwestern, American, Mexican
Created using The Recipes Generator

Pin for Later

this is a pin for making chicken white chili

Try Some More Of Our Favorite Recipes

Grandma's Home Chicken Soup

Italian Minestrone

this is a red crock over flowing with white chicken chili

Disclosure: This recipe was originally shared in 20013. It was edited and re-published in 2020.