White Bean Chicken Chili Recipe

Few foods are as comforting a really good bowl of chili and every region has their own special take on it. For example, in Texas, chili means just meat and spices, where in other parts of the country, chili can have beans or other ingredients in it. Some believe that chili should only be made with beef while others are more progressive and extend the dish to other meats like turkey. Regardless of what you call chili, there are some common factors and the spices play a big role in that. This chili recipe is somewhat unorthodox depending on your view of chili. Nonetheless, whether you do or don’t eat red meat, this recipe is delicious and if you need to call it something else to ease your conscience, then do that before you deprive yourself of something so tasty.

The recipe is very different from a traditional red chili, but the preparation and, more importantly, the flavors are very similar. It’s like a cross between chicken soup and your favorite chili spices. The recipe is pretty versatile because you can swap the potatoes for corn or use any other kind of bean such as white kidney or even switch the chicken for turkey (or omit the chicken altogether) for example. This dish packs all the richness of a traditional bowl of chili and echos many of the flavors, while still providing a lighter, different alternative for lunch or dinner. 

Makes about 6 servings at about 228 – 248 calories each
+ 150 calories per cup of cooked white rice

+ 60 calories per tablespoon of sour cream


  • 3/4 to 1 pound of boneless, skinless, chicken breasts (around 3 pieces – 360 to 480 calories)
  • 1/2 sweet onion roughly chopped (about 30 calories)
  • 4.5 oz. can of mild (or hot) diced green chilies (about 20 calories)
  • 15 oz. can of navy beans (315 calories)
  • 15 oz. can of cannellini beans (280 calories)
  • 2 medium potatoes or 4 baby potatoes peeled and cubed (about 300 calories)
  • 1 tsp olive oil (40 calories)
  • 32 oz. chicken broth (about 20 calories)
  • Spices
    • 2 teaspoons onion powder
    • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
    • 1 teaspoon salt
    • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
    • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
    • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
    • 1/2 teaspoon dried parsley
    • 1/4 teaspoon cumin
    • 1/4 teaspoon crushed coriander seed
    • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional for some heat)
    • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper


  • Large pot
  • Medium to large saute pan or skillet (preferably non-stick)
  • Wooden spoon / rubber spatula
  • Cutting board(s)
  • Knife
  • Cup and teaspoon measurement tools
  • Ladle / serving spoon
  • Colander


  1. Open the cans of beans and give them a rinse with cold water. Let them drain until you are ready to use them.
    Man Fuel - Food Blog - White Beans
  2. Roughly chop half an onion into 1/2 inch pieces and set aside.
    Man Fuel - Food Blog - Onions
  3. Peel and chop the potatoes into 1-inch cubes and place them into a large pot on the stove.
    Man Fuel - Food Blog - Potatoes
  4. Cut the chicken breasts into 1 to 2 inch pieces.
    Man Fuel - Food Blog - Chopped Chicken
  5. In a medium to large skillet place a teaspoon of olive oil and bring the heat up to medium-high. Sear the chicken in batches until the sides are golden-brown. You are not trying to cook the chicken, but rather just give the pieces some color. It’s ok if not all of the chicken has hit the pan and still looks a little raw, so don’t overdo it.
    Man Fuel - Food Blog - Sauteed Chicken
  6. Place the chicken into the large pot after browning the meat a bit.
  7. In the same pan toss in the onions and stir frequently until they start to get a little translucent. Don’t let the onions burn or singe.
    Man Fuel - Food Blog - Sauteed Onions
  8. When the onions are ready, at them to the pot and turn the heat on the stove under the pot to medium-high. With the heat on, make sure to stir the ingredients in the pot every minute so that nothing burns.
  9. Again, in the same saute pan open a can of mild (or hot) diced green chiles and saute them while stirring frequently until some of the moisture boils off a bit.
    Man Fuel - Food Blog - Sauteed Green Chilies
  10. After a couple of minutes add the green chiles along with all of the spices to the pot and mix all of the ingredients thoroughly.
    Man Fuel - Food Blog - White Bean Chicken Chili and Spices
  11. Add the beans and mix the ingredients again.
    Man Fuel - Food Blog - White Bean Chicken Chili Mixed with Spices
  12. Add in all of the chicken broth and bring the pot to a boil.
    Man Fuel - Food Blog - White Bean Chicken Chili Simmering
  13. When the chili is boiling, reduce the heat to a low simmer and simmer everything for at least an hour or up to 2 hours.
  14. After an hour, the chili is ready to serve. Serve it over rice with some fresh cilantro, scallions, and a dollop of sour cream. Any leftovers will reheat very well in the microwave or on the stove.
    Man Fuel - Food Blog - White Bean Chicken Chili

One thought on “White Bean Chicken Chili Recipe

Add yours

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Create a website or blog at WordPress.com

Up ↑