What comes to mind when you are cold and hungry? For me, it’s always chili! My Mom’s White Chicken Chili recipe is sure to hit the spot, and warm you right up, from the inside out. Creamy chili made with chicken, Monterrey Jack cheese, sour cream, green chiles, spices and jalapeños. Prepare it on your stovetop or in your slow cooker.
Whenever my mom stays with our kids, this White Chicken Chili recipe is one my kids always ask her to make. Unfortunately, when I get home there is never any left! So, I figured if I wanted to eat some, I needed to make it for myself!
It’s cold here, and this warming chili really hits the spot!
The inspiration for creamy white chicken chili
I will tell you that my mom never made this when my brother and I were young. I’m not really sure who she got the recipe from? My guess is a friend at work. Wherever it came from, we are happy she found it because it really is a delicious alternative to traditional beef chili with tomatoes.
I had gotten a deal on some chicken breasts at the store, and cooked them in chicken stock and shredded them. I used them to make a few recipes, keeping batches of what I needed in the freezer.
This is a great recipe for leftover chicken, or you could buy Rotisserie chicken and shred that if you prefer dark and white meat. It’s also a fantastic way to use leftover turkey!
What is Chicken and White Bean Chili Made of?
White chicken chili is as easy to make as red chili and provides a fun alternative. It is kind of the opposite of everything many consider “chili”. White instead of dark red or brown. Chicken instead of beef. Green chiles instead of red. Chicken stock instead of beef stock.
I use Great Northern Beans or navy beans, but any light-colored bean works too. But it is still a chili, no doubt about it!
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If you can’t wait to make this white chicken chili recipe, don’t forget where you found it! Pin it to your favorite Pinterest recipe board before you go!
Ingredients in Mom’s White Chicken Chili Recipe
For this white chili recipe, you’ll need:
- leftover or pre-cooked chicken, shredded
- garlic, onions, cilantro, green onion and jalapeños
- cumin, cayenne pepper and oregano
- chicken stock and chicken bouillon
- green chiles and Great Northern Beans
- sour cream and Monterrey Jack Cheese
Full, complete, printable recipe at the bottom of this post.
Are Great Northern Beans the same as Navy Beans?
Great Northern Beans and Navy Beans are not the same, but are perfectly interchangeable. I struggle sometimes to find the Great Northern Beans, and when I do I use navy beans.
They both are a mild-flavored white bean and oval-shaped. Great northern beans resemble white lima beans, they have a thinner skin and are larger than a navy bean and navy beans are slightly plumper than a Great Northern.
Either of these beans will work for this chili recipe.
How to prepare White Chicken Chili
Heat a couple of Tablespoons of olive oil in a dutch oven on the stove top. Add onions and garlic and cook until translucent.
Add cooked chicken, chilies, jalapeño, cumin, oregano, broth, cilantro, beans, cayenne and soup base. Bring to a boil and simmer covered for 15 minutes.
Just before serving add sour cream and cheese, cooking over low heat until cheese is melted.
Serve at once, topped with green onions, fresh jalapeños and tortilla strips or tortilla chips if desired.
Dinner this good in about 15 minutes?! Heck yea! But — if you want to set it and forget it, you have options.
How to cook Mom’s White Chicken Chili in the Crockpot
Making this dish in a crockpot provides some “set it and forget” convenience. Depending on how fast or slow you need to serve, cooking on the high, medium, or low temperature works.
A crockpot also provides convenience if you want to serve many, and leave it handy for folks to grab their own seconds.
If you want to make this in the slow cooker, simply put all of the same ingredients you added to your Dutch oven for the stovetop method to the crockpot, and add in that sour cream and cheese a few minutes before you want to serve it.
Easy White Chicken Chili Soup Recipe
So the next time that you are looking for a warm and comforting meal, think white chicken chili! Whether you make it in minutes on your stovetop or slow cook it all day, this recipe is a keeper!
Let’s get to the recipe for this delicious White Chicken Chili!
- Olive Oil
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 6 cloves garlic, minced
- 5 cups cooked chicken, shredded
- 2 (4oz) cans green chilies, drained
- 1 large jalapeno pepper, seeds removed, chopped
- 3 teaspoons ground cumin
- 2 teaspoons oregano
- 40 ounces chicken stock
- 2 Tablespoons chicken soup base, (chicken bouillon)
- 2 (14-16 ounce sized) cans Great Northern Beans
- 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 12 ounces shredded Monterey Jack cheese
- 1 1/2 cps sour cream
- Chopped green onion
- 1 1/2 cups fresh cilantro, chopped
- Heat a couple of Tablespoons of olive oil in a dutch oven on the stovetop. Add onions and garlic and cook until translucent.
- Add cooked chicken, chilies, jalapeño, cumin, oregano, broth, cilantro, beans, cayenne and soup base. Bring to a boil and simmer covered for 15 minutes. **OR put in your crockpot and set on low.
- Just before serving add sour cream and cheese, cooking over low heat until cheese is melted.
- Serve at once, topped with green onions, fresh jalapeños and tortilla strips if desired.
Canned navy beans can be used in place of Great Northern Beans if you can't find them.
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 464Total Fat: 28gSaturated Fat: 12gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 14gCholesterol: 123mgSodium: 544mgCarbohydrates: 15gFiber: 2gSugar: 4gProtein: 37g
nutrition isn't guaranteed accurate.
This recipe was originally posted on January 16, 2015. It was updated to improve user experience and re-shared on November 27, 2020.