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White Chicken Chili

This is the BEST White Chicken Chili recipe, and it’s easy to make it on the Stove Top or in the Crock Pot! The creamy broth adds the perfect contrast to the green chilies, corn, shredded chicken, and simple seasonings.

A soup pot filled with White Chicken Chili with a ladle in it.

White Chicken Chili

I have to say, when I posted my easy chili recipe the other week, beef got all the attention. Now it’s time we give chicken a shot!

This recipe is like…chili meets soup. You really get the best of both worlds here. The broth is so creamy, which is a perfect way to offset a little heat from the green chilies. The corn adds a hint of sweetness, the chicken is juicy and tender, and the seasoning blend is simple and perfect. 

Trust me when I say… it’s hard not to lick the bowl clean!

How to Make It

See recipe card below this post for ingredient quantities and full instructions.

Soften onions, jalapeno peppers, and garlic in butter. Add flour and cook for 2 minutes. Add the chicken broth and half and half in small splashes, stirring continuously.

Cooking onions and peppers in a skillet and adding chicken broth and half and half.

Optional: Puree 1 cup of cannellini beans with some chicken broth and add it to the broth with the remaining whole beans. (Otherwise, all beans can be added whole.)

A bowl of cannellini beans before and after being pureed with broth.

Add the seasonings, hot sauce, Worcestershire sauce, and green chilies. Bring to a boil. Let it boil for 15 minutes, uncovered, then reduce to a simmer. Add the chicken and corn and simmer gently for 15-20 minutes. 

 

A soup pot with chicken and corn being added to it.

Shred the chicken and add it back to the chili along with the softened cream cheese. Stir until well-combined, then serve with cornbread

A soup pot with cream cheese being added and combined into White Chicken Chili.

Do You Rinse Kidney Beans for Chili

  • You’ll want to drain the white kidney beans, but rinsing them is optional. Doing so will reduce the amount of sodium that gets carried into the dish.
  • I choose to let mine sit in the strainer for awhile, but I don’t rinse them.

Optional Additions

  • Beans: Black beans and Pinto beans can also be used for this recipe.
  • Vegetables: Mushrooms, zucchini, celery,  carrots, parsnips, and sweet potatoes are all good vegetable additions.
  • Meat: Leftover chicken, rotisserie chicken, and leftover turkey are great options for this soup. Uncooked Bone-in chicken breast or thighs will add the most flavor to the broth.
  • Garnishes: Sour cream, shredded cheese, lime wedges, diced avocado, Fritos, and tortilla chips.

Pro Tips

  • The Worcestershire sauce, mustard powder, and hot sauce act as flavor enhancers and can’t be tasted outright. I use Frank’s hot sauce for this recipe.
  • Spice Lovers: If you like heat, I would use a little extra hot sauce and use a little more cayenne as well. Consider adding additional spice gradually and tasting until desired level is obtained.
  • Make Ahead Meal: This is a great recipe to make up to 2 days ahead of time and reheat on the stove top when ready to eat! 

Storage

  • Store in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months. Leftover chili makes a great freezer food. 

A bowl with a spoon scooping up white chicken chili.

Tools For This Recipe

(Amazon affiliate links)- Check out all of my kitchen essentials here.

  • Le Creuset 4.5 quart Dutch Oven– This is the one I use for this recipe, it’s the perfect size and it conducts heat really well.
  • Measuring Spoons I have these magnetic ones which stay nice and organized in my utensil drawer.
  • Pinch Bowls for measuring out seasonings ahead of time.
  • Chefs Knife– I have this one. It’s affordable but high quality.

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White Chicken Chili

5 from 4 ratings
This White Chicken Chili recipe is easy to make on the Stove Top or in the Crock Pot! The broth has the BEST creamy white broth with cream cheese, green chilies, corn, shredded chicken, and simple seasonings.

Ingredients

Seasonings

  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • ½ teaspoon each: ground cumin, dried oregano, salt, mustard powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper, cayenne pepper
  • 1 pinch red pepper flakes

Chili

  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • 1 large jalapeno pepper, seeded and diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, diced
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 6 cups chicken broth
  • 1/3 cup half and half, (half milk, half cream)
  • 2 (15.5 oz.) cans cannellini beans, drained
  • 1 teaspoon Hot Sauce
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 (4 oz.) cans mild green chilies
  • 1 ½ lbs. bone-in skinless chicken breast, see notes
  • Salt/Pepper
  • 1 (15.25 oz.) can whole kernel sweet corn, drained. Can sub frozen corn.
  • 8 oz. cream cheese, softened

Garnish Options

  • Lime wedges, Diced Avocado, Sour cream, Tortilla Strips, Fritos, Monterey or Pepper Jack cheese.

Equipment

Instructions

  • Combine the seasonings and set aside.
  • Melt the butter in a 4 1/2-quart pot. Add the diced onions and jalapeno pepper and cook for 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute.
  • Add the flour and toss to coat. Cook for 2 minutes, until raw flour smell is gone.
  • Add the chicken broth in small splashes, stirring continuously. Add the half and half in the same manner.
  • Optional: Reserve 1 heaping cup of drained beans and combine it with ½ cup broth. Blend in a food processor, blender, or immersion blender. Add it to the soup along with the remaining whole beans. (This helps to thicken the broth. Otherwise, all beans can be added whole.)
  • Add the seasonings, hot sauce, Worcestershire sauce, and green chilies. Bring to a boil. Let it boil for 15 minutes, uncovered, then reduce to a simmer.
  • Season each side of the chicken with salt/pepper. Add the chicken and the corn to the pot and let it simmer gently for 15-20 minutes, uncovered. (Cooking too rapidly will make the chicken tough.) Stir throughout cooking to lift any beans that may have settled to the bottom.
  • Remove the chicken and shred it once cooked through. Return it to the pot.
  • Reduce heat to low and stir in the softened cream cheese. Stir continuously until the cheese is fully melted into the chili.
  • Taste and adjust seasonings as needed. Serve with cornbread!

Notes

Pro Tips:
  • Chicken: Bone-in chicken breast or chicken thighs will add the most flavor to the broth. You can also use 2 large boneless/skinless chicken breasts or 2 ½ cups cooked/leftover chicken.
  • Rinsing the beans is optional and is a measure that can be taken to remove additional sodium.
    Green Chilies: I recommend getting mild green chilies unless you like a lot of heat.
    Cream Cheese: The cream cheese needs to be fully softened to melt well into the soup. Neufchatel cheese/light cream cheese can also be used.

Crock Pot Method
  • Note: The liquid in this chili is able to reduce and concentrate with the stove top method as liquid evaporates during cooking. If using the Crock Pot, feel free to use ½ cup less broth and add ½ bouillon cube to the soup if desired.
  • Sauté the diced onions and jalapeno pepper in melted butter over medium heat for 5 minutes.
  • Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add the flour and cook for 2 minutes, stirring continuously. Set aside.
  • Optional: Reserve 1 heaping cup of drained beans and combine it with ½ cup broth. Blend in a food processor, blender, or immersion blender.
  • Add the chicken to the crock pot along with the chicken broth, softened onions/peppers/garlic, chicken broth, pureed and whole beans, hot sauce, Worcestershire sauce, green chilies, corn, and seasonings.
  • Cook on low for 8 hours or on high for 4.
  • Remove chicken and use 2 forks to shred it, then return it to the crock pot.
  • Stir in the softened cream cheese and half and half.
  • Cover and cook on high for 10 minutes. Stir again, and serve!

  • Nutritional information is per cup, this recipe makes approximately 12 cups.

Nutrition

Calories: 302kcal, Carbohydrates: 28g, Protein: 21g, Fat: 13g, Saturated Fat: 6g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 3g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 67mg, Sodium: 765mg, Potassium: 769mg, Fiber: 5g, Sugar: 4g, Vitamin A: 544IU, Vitamin C: 16mg, Calcium: 95mg, Iron: 3mg

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10 comments on “White Chicken Chili”

  1. This is the BEST chili recipe I’ve ever made! Only modification I made was leaving out the jalapeño pepper and red pepper flakes because my family tends to like a little less spicy. Absolutely delicious and was an easy reheat the next day. Huge hit, thank you so much! Will definitely make again. 

  2. This recipe was SUPER good! I slightly modified the crock pot method so it would work in my Instapot, and it was really easy. I followed those instructions with these slight modifications:
    1) Sauté the sautéed ingredients with the sauté feature on the Instapot
    2) Pressure cook on high for 24 minutes
    3) Once it’s done pressure cooking and you shred your chicken and add in the cream cheese and half and half, set to the slow cook feature, cover, and wait 10 minutes (or until the cream cheese has dissolved enough)

    I’ll definitely be making this recipe again in the future!

    • Hi Claire! I’m so happy you enjoyed this one! I love hearing the changes you made, thanks so much for sharing and for taking the time to comment!😍

  3. Literally the BEST chicken chili ever!!!!

    I left out the cayenne because I didn’t have any but I added a little more than a pinch of red pepper flakes to make up for it, totally worked out!

    I also cubed up the chicken breast from frozen because I forgot to thaw it before putting it in, game changer, you don’t have to remove it from the pot to shred it, totally recommend doing that! I seasoned with salt, pepper, and a little Tony’s for flavor, chefs kiss!

    For sure will make again!!

    • Wahooo! I love hearing such great comments Cammie! Thanks so much, I’m extra proud of this one because I think it’s perfect (not that I’m biased lol). Thanks again for the great comments and review!😍

  4. By far the best chili dish I’ve ever made, so much flavor and everything I look for in White Chili, this is a new family favorite, thank you for the recipe!

    • I am so happy to hear that Haley!! Everyone always loves this recipe when I make it too, we make it for company often! 🙂 Thank you so much for taking the time to leave this review, I really appreciate it! -Stephanie

  5. I made this White Chicken Chili recipe last night for my family. It was sooooo delicious with the cream cheese, chicken broth, and green chilies in there. Our family enjoys a little kick so I decided to use spicier local chilies and it was phenomenal!!!! So creamy and my five year old had two serving!!! This is definitely a keeper. The best part is that it is freezer friendly. Everyone ate this pot but next time I might double the recipe and freeze some for quick lunches or dinners. Thank you so much!!!

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