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White Chicken Chili

This White Chicken Chili is packed with flavor. It’s a hearty and filling meal option that’s certain to warm you up from the inside out.


Easy White Chicken Chili Recipe

Simmering a batch of chili is like a pot filled with comfort that families always love to eat. This white chicken chili is full flavored and when topped with cheese, sour cream, green onion and tortilla strips it turns into a one dish meal. I like making this in my Dutch oven, but you can certainly utilize any heavy bottomed pot that allows plenty of room to add all of the scrumptious ingredients with a little room to spare.


How to Make the Best White Chicken Chili Recipe

White chicken chili may be a milder version when compared to a red chili recipe it does still pack a punch of flavor. This recipe does include both poblano and jalapeno peppers, so depending on the level of heat in those two ingredients it can still have a little spice, too.

  • Ingredients you’ll need to make homemade White Chicken Chili: Boneless skinless chicken breasts, diced onion, poblano pepper, jalapeno pepper, vegetable oil, garlic, garlic salt, lemon pepper, cumin, navy beans, canned diced green chiles, Mexican oregano, chive and onion cream cheese and chicken stock.
  • To serve chicken chili you’ll need: Shredded cheese, chopped cilantro, sour cream, sliced jalapenos, lime wedges and tortilla strips or chips.
  • White chicken chili is typically made with white beans. I use navy beans in this recipe but you could also use cannellini beans.
  • This recipes takes you from the point of prepping the chicken to the finished product. If you’re short on time, you could probably adapt using rotisserie chicken from the supermarket deli to expedite the process.
  • The purpose of cooking the chicken in larger chunks and then shredding it later in the process, is to prevent overcooking and causing the chicken to dry out.
  • In this instance, cream cheese acts as a thickener for the broth. You can adjust the amount according to how thick you’d like the chili to be by adding half and adding more, or not, from that point.
  • Likewise, you can thin the chili using additional chicken stock.
  • Using both poblano and jalapeno peppers rounds out the flavor of the chili beautifully. If it’s your preference, you could opt to use on or the other or adapt using milder chilis.
  • You can store leftover chicken chili in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. You can also freeze it for up to 2 months.
  • Reheat leftovers over medium heat in a saucepan or in the microwave in single serving portions.

Southern Style Side Dishes to Serve with White Chicken Chili

Cornbread is always a winning choice to enjoy alongside a bowl of chili. Whether it’s classic chili with beans, all beef Texas style or a white chicken chili in the instance of this recipe.

Suggested Toppings:

  • Jalapeno slices, either fresh or pickled.
  • Shredded cheddar cheese or Monterey jack cheese. Use pepper jack for additional kick.
  • Sour cream or a drizzle of crema.
  • Seasoned tortilla strips. You could also opt to crush your favorite Doritos, fritos or tortilla chips on top.

More Easy Chicken Recipes Make

I often find chicken on sale which makes it a regular ingredient often used in my Southern kitchen, It’s one of those ingredients that can be personalized using pantry items and it goes a long way to stretch your grocery budget. More chicken recipes you may like to try:


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5 from 1 vote

White Chicken Chili

Prep Time20 minutes
Cook Time30 minutes
Total Time50 minutes
Course: Main Course, Poultry
Cuisine: American
Keyword: white-chicken-chili
Servings: 6 servings
Calories: 493kcal


  • 3 8 oz boneless skinless chicken breasts (each piece cut into 3 pieces)
  • 1 medium onion diced
  • 1 medium poblano seeded and diced
  • 1 medium jalapeno pepper seeded and diced
  • 2 Tbsp vegetable oil
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 32 oz low sodium chicken stock
  • 3 15 oz cans navy beans drained
  • 2 4 oz cans chopped green chiles preferably fire roasted, don't drain
  • 1 Tbsp ground cumin
  • 1 1/2 tsp garlic salt
  • 1 tsp lemon pepper
  • 1 tsp Mexican oregano
  • 1 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 8 ounce container chive and onion cream cheese softened
  • 2 Tbsp chopped fresh cilantro plus additional for garnishing
  • lime wedges, shredded cheddar cheese, sliced jalapeno, cilantro, sour cream, tortilla strips for serving


  • In a large pot or Dutch oven brown the chicken in oil over medium high heat for 1-2 minutes per side, just until it begins to brown. (It doesn't have to be cooked through.) Remove to a platter.
  • To the pot add onion, poblano, jalapeno and garlic cooking until softened and beginning to brown. Scrape any brown bits from the bottom of the pot.
  • To the pot add broth, beans, green chiles, cumin, garlic salt, lemon pepper, oregano and red pepper flakes. Mix well. Return chicken to the pot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer uncovered, for 30 minutes.
  • Use 2 forks to pull chicken apart. Add ½ of cream cheese and chopped cilantro to the pot. Simmer just until cream cheese is completely melted and chicken is evenly distributed, stir well. Test thickness, adding the remaining cream cheese only if needed, to thicken to your taste.
  • Serve with lime wedges, sour cream, jalapeno slices, cilantro, shredded cheese and tortilla strips.


Serving: 1serving | Calories: 493kcal | Carbohydrates: 43g | Protein: 29g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 10g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 96mg | Sodium: 2121mg | Potassium: 527mg | Fiber: 13g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 261IU | Vitamin C: 22mg | Calcium: 33mg | Iron: 1mg
Tried this recipe?Mention @melissassk or tag #melissassk!


  1. 5 stars
    Loved the white chill, mine wasn’t as thick as yours but it was delicious. Made a pan of cornbread just what we needed on this cold rainy day.

    1. I’m so happy you enjoyed it! Next time, if you’d like to thicken without adding more cream cheese then mash 1/4 cup or so of the beans and mix into the broth.

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