White chicken chili is the perfect bowl of yummy when you need a quick and easy dinner recipe for a cool fall night or a cold winters day! Thick and hearty, the chili ingredients come together to create a soup recipe that will warm both your body and your soul – all while filling your belly!
Here in Texas, traditional chili is a tomato based product made with hamburger or steak, peppers, chili powder and cumin. Occasionally you’ll find a recipe with other ingredients, but those are the basics. While I adore traditional beef chili, sometimes I just want something different.
And when I want something different, I tend to turn to the easy recipes that I know are simple to make, quick to cook and taste absolutely amazing. In other words, I use a favorite recipe that I know will have us at the dinner table enjoying our meal in a jiffy.
Are you the same way?
I’m sure some of you are and if so, this creamy white chicken chili recipe is the perfect thing for those busy weeknights when you don’t want to run to the grocery store, you don’t want to order out and you just need…a break.
What Is White Chicken Chili?
It is delicious chili, that’s what! Okay, I’ll explain.
White chicken chili is also known as white bean chili made with heavy cream, green chilies, canned beans or white chili beans, sour cream and just the right amount of spice. Because it has a heavy cream base, it is literally white in color. Hence the name; easy white chicken chili recipe.
Is White Chicken Chili Healthy?
I can’t speak for other recipes since there are probably thousands of them around, so I will only speak for my own. Yes…ish. Because it has a cream base, healthy white chicken chili is kind of a misnomer. It isn’t unhealthy but it is also not incredibly healthy either. Heavy cream is all fat which makes the soup be sort of high in fat.
So, if you are watching your fat intake, you will want to portion out the amount of soup you eat.
However, heavy cream may be high in fat content, but it is very low in carbs. Because of this, my white chicken chili recipe is keto friendly. My recipe is also gluten free since my own family and I eat gluten free due to my health issues.
If you were looking to cut the fat amounts to make a healthy white chicken chili, you could use half heavy cream and half water.
I can’t guarantee it will taste anywhere close to what the full fat version does though.
It also uses chicken broth or stock. Store bought stock is full of sodium which is not ideal for people with high blood pressure. If you’re using store-bought versions, opting for low-sodium chicken broth can reduce the amount of sodium quite a bit.
What’s In White Chicken Chili?
As I mentioned a moment ago, it has a heavy cream base. We drink raw milk and as such, we use raw heavy cream that I make from our milk. However, any heavy cream will work as will making a heavy cream substitute recipe.
This recipe also uses:
- Canned Green Chilies
- Great Northern Beans
- Raw Skinless Chicken Breasts or Chicken Thighs – You can even use a rotisserie chicken with skin removed.
- Chicken Stock
- Large Yellow Onions
- Sour Cream
- Vegetable Oil
What is in White Chicken Chili Seasoning Mix?
The combination of seasonings gives the final product a mild to medium heat. If you would like you soup to be spicier, consider adding jalapeño peppers or a small amount of ancho chili powder to dial the spice level up a notch.
Whether you turn the heat up or not, the seasonings this recipe uses combine together to create a flavorful white chicken chili that I am sure will have everyone asking for seconds.
How to Make White Chicken Chili Creamy?
If you have every tried to make this soup, I am sure you’ve discovered that a lot of white chili recipes just are not creamy. In fact, a lot are downright watery. Luckily, there is an easy way to make it so.
This particular recipe is already rather thick and creamy on it’s own, but if you would like it to be more so, just make your white chicken chili with cream cheese added in. You should not need to add much and since I don’t personally use it, you will be 100% on your own with what the perfect amount is.
Can you Freeze It For Later?
I wish. I adore freezer recipes, but unfortunately, since this recipe is cream based, it isn’t possible to freeze it for later. If you’ve never tried to freeze a cream based sauce, it doesn’t work too well.
Cream based sauces will separate when they are frozen. Unfortunately, it is almost impossible to get them to recombine usually resulting in a soggy mess by the time you’re done.
I know. It makes me sad too. I would love to be able to freeze my Copycat Olive Garden Chicken Fettuccine Alfredo recipe but it just doesn’t turn out well.
What to Serve with White Chicken Chili?
I know this might sound odd, but we love to serve our chicken chili with a pull apart garlic bread recipe. We pull the bread apart and dip it in the chili for a flavor that meshes so well together! Of course, since we are gluten free, we use a gluten free flour to make it, but otherwise, I make it just as the recipe calls for.
It is also very delicious served with a dollop of sour cream, tortilla chips and a little bit of cheese on top. We prefer to use shredded Colby-Jack, but it’s also great with cheddar cheese as well. You can even use salsa verde, or even lime juice or lime wedges! To garnish your bowl of white bean chicken chili and to give it a more memorable flavor, you can use fresh cilantro if you can stand the flavor of it.
I can’t. Cilantro tastes like soap. Prove me wrong.
The next time you’re looking for a new recipe that tastes amazing, give this one a shot. It really is the best white chicken chili recipe I have ever tasted! Plus, it’s a one-pot meal and as a busy mom and wife, I’ll tell you this; you can never go wrong with only using one pot!
Healthy White Chicken Chili
- Medium Skillet (Optional)
- 1 lb. chicken breast
- 2 tsp. garlic powder
- 2 4 oz. cans green chilies chopped
- 2 15 oz. cans great northern beans rinsed and drained
- 1 14.5 oz can chicken broth
- 1 Medium Yellow Onion Chopped
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1 tsp. ground cumin
- ½ tsp. black pepper
- ¾ tsp. cayenne pepper
- 1 c. sour cream
- ½ c. heavy cream
- 1 tbsp. vegetable oil
- Shredded Cheddar Optional to top
- Sour Cream Optional to top
- Rinse the chicken and remove as much fat as possible. Cube the chicken in as large or as small chunks as you want. Add vegetable oil, chicken and garlic to the stockpot and cook until chicken is no longer pink and juices run clear.1 lb. chicken breast, 2 tsp. garlic powder
- Once chicken is cooked, add beans, broth, chilies and the rest of the seasonings to a large stockpot and stir.2 4 oz. cans green chilies, 2 15 oz. cans great northern beans, 1 14.5 oz can chicken broth, 1 Medium Yellow Onion
- Bring to a good boil, then reduce heat and simmer uncovered for 30 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in the sour cream and whipping cream. Once mixed well, simmer for 5 minutes then top with shredded cheese and serve hot.