Thursday, September 27, 2012

Recipe: White Bean Chicken Chili

I realize that the last 3 recipes I've shared have all been soups/chilis/stews: this is not a coincidence. When cooler weather arrives, I make a lot of these meals. Here is another that I just have to share with you: white chicken chili. My recipe is adapted from this version on Epicurious... and it is not health conscious, in case you were wondering. To my credit, I did reduce the amount of half-and-half and cheese that were called for in the original recipe :)

Let's face it, though: sometimes you have to treat yourself.  Tom Haverford and Donna say it best:

Sidenote: I couldn't be more excited for the season premiere of Parks and Recreation tonight. I've been watching marathons of past seasons all summer, and I need some new episodes. Update: Somehow I'd missed the fact that it premiered last week! So bonus, I got to watch two new episodes tonight instead of one!  Yes, I'm a TV nerd.

So next time you have a treat yourself day, here's what you need for dinner...


  • 1/2 pound dried navy or pinto beans (If you don't want to take the time to soak and cook beans, you can substitute 1 can of navy, cannellini, or pinto beans.)  
  • 1 large onion, chopped 
  • 1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter 
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour 
  • 3/4 cup chicken broth 
  • 1 to 1 1/2 cups half-and-half 
  • 1 teaspoon hot sauce, or to taste 
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons chili powder 
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin 
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste 
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper, or to taste 
  • 1 4-oz can of chopped green chilies, undrained 
  • 1 to 1 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts 
  • 1 cup cheese -- cheddar, Monterey Jack, whatever your preference 
  • 1/4 cup sour cream (optional)
  • Garnish: tortilla chips, fresh cilantro, salsa (optional)


1) In a pot, soak beans in cold water overnight (or 8 hours). Drain beans and return to pot, and cover with cold water. Cook beans at a low simmer until tender, about 1 hour, and drain in colander. If you use canned beans, skip this step.

2) In a different pot, bring water to boil. Boil chicken breasts until no pink remains, remove from pot and set aside to cool.

3) Saute onions in 2 tbsp butter over medium heat, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.

4) In a large pot (to which you will eventually add all other ingredients and cook the chili), melt the remaining 6 tbsp of butter over low heat. Next, add the flour a little at a time, using a whisk to stir it in constantly, so that it doesn't get lumpy. Allow this mixture (called a roux -- so fancy, right?) to cook for 3 minutes over low heat. Throughout the 3 minutes, whisk the roux continuously so that it doesn't burn.

5) After the roux has cooked for 3 minutes and begun to brown, add the onion, and stir to combine. Next, slowly whisk in the chicken broth and half-and-half. Increase heat to medium or medium high, and bring this mixture to a boil. Then reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes.

6) Meanwhile, shred the chicken with two forks.

7) Add the hot sauce and spices to the pot, then stir in the chicken, chilies, beans, and cheese. Let the chili simmer for 20 minutes so the flavors can combine.

8) Taste the chili to see how you like the flavor. Personally, I like mine a little spicier, but if you think it is too hot, add the sour cream to mellow out the flavor. Then, serve with your choice of garnish! (I skipped the garnish, too.)

Hope you enjoy this recipe -- it may not be good for you, but it is so, SO delicious -- as are most rich and unhealthy foods :)


1 comment:

  1. thank you for this recipe! i've actually been doing the same thing lately, cooking lots of soups/stews/chilis on account of the fall weather. i actually have a lot of this stuff laying around, so i think i might have a stab at making it sometime soon!