Creamy White Chicken Chili

By: Amber

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This easy white chicken chili can be made on the stovetop, Instant Pot, or Crockpot and is a creamy, delicious meal for a cold night!

easy white chicken chili in a bowl topped with lime, sour cream, avocado, and cilantro on a marble surface with a grey towel beside it

I love chili, whether it's a classic Texas chili, green chili, or even this pumpkin turkey chili, I love ALL of the varieties! This white chicken chili is one I find myself making over and over again in the winter though. And even though it's called chili, I'd say it has a more stew or chowder-like consistency. It is easy to make, has just a hint of spice from the diced green chilis, a bit of sweetness from the corn, a smoky hint of bacon, and a creamy broth thanks to sour cream. Even better, it is perfect for piling high with toppings to make it your own! We've included stovetop, slow cooker, and Instant Pot instructions for this chili so you can make it whichever way you'd prefer. This recipe has been a fan favorite from our book, Cook Once, Eat All Week, so we've adapted it here!

Creamy White Chicken Chili Ingredients

Here's what you'll need to make this chili:

  • Boneless, Skinless Chicken – you'll need about 1 1/2 pounds of chicken for this recipe, we recommend using boneless/skinless so it is easy to shred later!
  • Chicken Broth – you'll need 5 cups of chicken broth for this recipe, either store-bought or homemade will work!
  • Diced Green Chilis – you can typically find these canned chilis in the Mexican food section of your local store. If you can't find any green chilis, a diced poblano pepper or jalapeno will work in its place.
  • Bacon – you won't find bacon in most white chicken chili recipes, but we find that a few slices lend a delicious smoky, salty flavor to the chili!
  • Onion and Garlic – fresh onion and garlic give this chili great flavor, but if you want to save even more time, you can substitute 1 teaspoon of onion and garlic powder instead.
  • Corn – 1 cup of frozen corn lends just a bit of sweetness to the chili that makes it taste so good!
  • White beans – white beans have a great creamy consistency that fits perfectly with this white chicken chili.
  • Sour cream – sour cream is what makes this chili creamy, and it adds a great tangy flavor.
  • Lime juice – the juice of a lime brightens up the soup and adds another layer of flavor.
  • Spices – This chili is simply seasoned with salt, pepper, and a bit of oregano and cumin.
  • Garnishes – you can garnish this with as few or as many things as you'd like! A few of our favorites are extra lime wedges, sour cream, avocado, and fresh cilantro. You could also add cheese, sliced jalapenos, hot sauce, or tortilla strips.

white chicken chili with chopped cilantro on top in a white pot on a marble surface

How to Make Easy White Chicken Chili

This white chicken chili really is simple to make, just follow the steps below:

  1.  Make the bacon – First, you'll fry the bacon in the bottom of the pot you're using for the soup. Once it is crisp, set it aside and drain all but 1 tablespoon of oil from the pot.
  2. Cook the onion and garlic – Next, add the diced onion and garlic and cook for 3-4 minutes, until the onion is translucent.
  3. Add the green chilis – Once the onion and garlic is cooked, add your canned green chilis to the pot and cook for an additional minute.
  4. Add the spices, chicken, broth, corn, and beans – Next, you'll stir the spices into the onion and green chili mixture, then add in the chicken broth, chicken breast, corn, and beans and cover and cook for 30 minutes.
  5. Shred the chicken – After 20 minutes, remove the chicken from the pot and shred with two forks, then return it to the pot. Stir in the sour cream, lime juice, and crumbled bacon.
  6. Serve! – Spoon the chicken into bowls, then top with your favorite garnishes and enjoy.

Can I Make White Chicken Chili in a Crockpot or Instant Pot?

Yes! We've included instructions below for how to make white chicken chili in your Crockpot and Instant Pot. You'll essentially follow the same steps for both but adjust the cooking times accordingly.

Can I use rotisserie chicken instead of chicken breast?

Yes! Using pre-cooked, shredded rotisserie chicken makes making this white chicken chili even easier. When using it in place of raw chicken, you only need to simmer the soup for 10 minutes rather than 30.

white chicken chili with chopped cilantro on top in a white pot on a marble surface

Can I make this white chicken chili Paleo?

You can make this chili Paleo with a few simple substitutions. You can omit the beans and corn and either reduce the broth by 1 cup, or you add in about 2 1/2 cups of extra veggies to bulk it up. Zucchini, carrots, and sweet potato would all be great options for this chili. Next, substitute the sour cream for coconut cream from the top of a can of full-fat coconut milk and add 1 extra tablespoon of lime juice to the soup.

Can white chicken chili be frozen?

Yes, this easy white chicken chili freezes beautifully! Just portion it out into one of our favorite meal prep containers, label it, and freeze for up to 5 months. To reheat, you can either put it in a covered pot over medium heat for about 10 minutes or microwave for 4-5 minutes on high, stirring halfway through.

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Creamy White Chicken Chili

easy white chicken chili in a bowl topped with lime, sour cream, avocado, and cilantro on a marble surface with a grey towel beside it

This easy white chicken chili can be made on the stovetop, Instant Pot, or Crockpot. With simple ingredients, it is a creamy, delicious one-pot meal!

  • Author: Amber Goulden
  • Prep Time: 00:10
  • Cook Time: 00:35
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: Serves
  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: American

Ingredients

  • 4 slices bacon
  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • 2 teaspoons minced garlic
  • 1 (4-ounce) can diced hot or mild green chilis, drained (depending on preference)
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano leaves
  • 1 teaspoon coarse sea salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 5 cups chicken broth
  • 1 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breast or thighs*
  • 1 (15-ounce) can white beans, rinsed and drained*
  • 1 cup frozen yellow corn*
  • ½ cup sour cream*
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 1 avocado, sliced, for garnish
  • 1/4 cup fresh chopped cilantro, for garnish
  • 4 lime wedges (from ½ lime), for garnish
  • Additional sour cream, for garnish

Instructions

Stovetop:

  1. Cook the bacon in a large pot with matching lid over medium-high heat. Once crisp, remove from the pot and set aside, then drain all but one tablespoon of drippings from the pot.
  2. Still working over medium-high heat, add the onion and garlic and sauté for 3 to 4 minutes, until the onion is translucent.
  3. Add the green chilis and cook for 1 minute, until fragrant, then add the seasonings and stir to combine.
  4. Pour in the chicken broth and add in the chicken, beans, and corn. Cover and simmer for 30 minutes, over medium heat, until the chicken shreds easily with a fork.
  5. Remove the chicken from the pot and shred it with two forks, then return it to the pot and turn off the heat and stir in the sour cream, lime juice, and bacon.
  6. Garnish each serving with avocado slices, cilantro, sour cream, and a lime wedge and enjoy!

Instant Pot:

  1. Set your Instant Pot to saute mode and cook the bacon in it. Once crisp, remove from the pot and set aside, then drain all but one tablespoon of drippings from the pot.
  2. Add the onion and garlic and sauté for 4 to 5 minutes, until the onion is translucent.
  3. Add the green chilis and cook for 1 minute, until fragrant, then add the seasonings and stir to combine. Pour in the chicken broth and add in the chicken, beans, and corn.
  4. Using the manual setting, place the lid on pot, making sure the valve is sealed, then set it to cook for 15 minutes. Once the 15 minutes is up, let the pot naturally release pressure for at least 10 minutes before turning the valve to “venting” to manually release the remaining pressure.
  5. Remove the chicken from the pot and shred it with two forks, then return it to the pot and stir in the sour cream, lime juice, and bacon.
  6. Garnish each serving with avocado slices, cilantro, sour cream, and a lime wedge and enjoy!

Slow Cooker:

  1. Cook the bacon in a skillet over medium-high heat. Once crisp, remove from the pot and set aside, then drain all but one tablespoon of drippings from the pan.
  2. Still working over medium-high heat, add the onion and garlic and sauté for 3 to 4 minutes, until the onion is translucent.
  3. Add the green chilis and cook for 1 minute, until fragrant, then add the seasonings and stir to combine, then remove from heat.
  4. Place the chicken in the bottom of the slow cooker, then spread the green chili and onion mixture over top. Pour in the chicken broth and add in the beans and corn.
  5. Cook on high for 3-4 hours or on low for 6-8 hours, until the chicken pulls apart easily.
  6. Remove the chicken from the pot and shred it with two forks, then return it to the pot and and stir in the sour cream, lime juice, and bacon.
  7. Garnish each serving with avocado slices, cilantro, sour cream, and a lime wedge and enjoy!

Notes

  • If using rotisserie chicken: Use 4 cups of shredded chicken and simmer for 10 minutes on the stove, cook for 5 minutes in the Instant Pot, and the same amount of time in the slow cooker.
  • To make this recipe dairy-free: replace the sour cream with an equal amount of coconut cream from the top of a can of full-fat coconut milk and 1 additional tablespoon of lime juice.
  • To make this recipe Paleo/Whole30: Follow the dairy-free substitution and omit the beans and corn. You can either replace them with 2 1/2 cups of chopped veggies (zucchini, carrots, kale, or sweet potato would be great options), or simply reduce the broth by 1 cup.

Keywords: easy, creamy, crock pot, slow cooker, instant pot, stovetop, paleo, gluten free

Comments

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  1. Kris says:

    This was an excellent recipe! Indulgent but healthy, especially since it was not made with cream cheese which tends to make dishes seem heavier. I served this with some tortilla chips for the rest of the family and I had some too 😉

  2. Chriss says:

    Absolutely delicous! We used rotisserie chicken and added a bit more broth and low fat sour cream to stretch it a but further. We also tossed in some carrots for color. My only concern with this dish is the sodium content, but that tends to be the case with most soups. We’ll be doing this one again for the Superbowl when friends come over, and it’s -10F outside where we live!

  3. Laura says:

    Made it in the instant pot and unfortunately it came out really liquidy.
    Tasted good though!

  4. Ronda says:

    Can the carbs be correct? I’m not sure where all those 43g are coming from. ??

  5. Colleen says:

    Made this for the Superbowl last night. SO tasty and easy. Used rotisserie chicken which made it exceptionally easy and quick. A tad too much liquid for my taste, so I’d probably omit at least one cup of broth when I make it again. But definitely a recipe that will make an appearance in our house this winter – thank you!

    5.0 rating