January 25, 2021

Healthy White Chicken Chili

This healthy white chicken chili is so easy to make and incredibly flavorful. Not only is it delicious, it is also completely dairy-free and made with simple real food ingredients. Make it on the stove top or in the slow cooker for an easy dinner everyone will love!

The Best Healthy White Chicken Chili

Is there anything better than a hot cozy bowl of chili on a cold day?  Not only is it so easy to make, chili is packed with protein which makes it a great healthy option for a satisfying lunch or dinner.

This healthy white chicken chili is incredibly flavorful and so easy to make. Made with just the right combination of spices, this recipe only takes a few minutes of hands on cooking before simmering to perfection on the stovetop. This yummy recipe is made with real food ingredients and is completely dairy-free unlike most white chicken chili recipes.

Chili Ingredients

(full list of ingredients and instructions in the recipe card, below)

Boneless Skinless Chicken Thighs: I love the flavor of boneless, skinless chicken thighs but you could also you chicken breast if you prefer.

Green Chilies: These add so much flavor and deliciousness to the chili.

Yellow Onion + Garlic: The flavor base of the soup is yellow onion and plenty of fresh garlic. You could use pre-minced garlic if you are really in a pinch but fresh garlic always has the most flavor.

Chicken Broth: Look for a low-sodium broth so that you can manage the salt content in the soup.

Spices: This chili uses just a few simple spices to get that delicious white chili flavor.

White Beans: Cannelini beans are my favorite for this soup.

Corn: Feel free to use either fresh or frozen corn kernels. Your choice!

How to Make Healthy White Bean Chicken Chili

(full list of ingredients and instructions in the recipe card, below)

Step One: First, heat a large heavy-bottomed pot over medium-high heat. While the pot is heating, season each side of the chicken liberally with the salt. Once the pot is hot, add the avocado oil and then sear the chicken for 4-5 minutes on each side until browned and then remove from the pot. 

Step Two: Lower the heat  and then add the diced onion and minced garlic to the pot. Sauté  everything for two or three minutes until fragrant and the onions begin to soften and become translucent. 

Step Four: Next, add the dried oregano, cumin, bay leaves, red pepper flakes (if using) and sauté for an additional minute until everything is fragrant. 

Step Five: Now, add the cans of white beans, chicken broth, green chilies and lime juice to the pot. Stir everything together until well combined. Next, add the seared chicken back to the pot. Bring the chili to a boil, and then reduce the heat to a simmer. Cover and let the chili simmer for 20 minutes. 

Step Six: Once the chili has simmered, remove the chicken from the pot, use two forks to shred the meat, and then add the shredded chicken back to the pot. 

Step Seven: Finally, stir in the coconut cream and corn kernels. This is the perfect time to give the chili a taste and adjust the seasoning as needed. Let the chili simmer for another five minutes until everything is heated through. Serve and enjoy with your favorite toppings!

Can You Make This Chicken Chili Recipe in the Slow Cooker?

Yes! This chili recipe is a great one to make in the slow cooker. To make the chili in the slow cooker:

  1. Add the chicken, onions, garlic, salt, spices, beans, and green chilies to the slow cooker and stir until well combined.
  2. Next, add the broth and lime juice to the slow cooker and cover with lid.
  3. Cook the chili on low for 4-6 hours until the chicken is tender and shreddable.
  4. Remove the chicken from the slow cooker and use two forks to shred the meat before adding it back to the slow cooker.
  5. Next, add the coconut cream and corn kernels to the chili and stir until well combined. Let the chili cook for another 20-30 minutes until everything is heated through. Serve and enjoy!

Topping Ideas

This chili is the perfect blank canvas for all of your favorite toppings. Here are a few of my favorite ways to top this chili!

  • Cilantro
  • Green onion
  • Shredded cheddar cheese
  • Corn chips or tortilla strips
  • Diced red onion
  • Sour cream
  • Fresh limes for lime juice

Tips, Tricks, and Frequently Asked Questions

  • If you are really short on time, you can use pre-cooked chicken, like a rotisserie chicken, in this chili.
  • If you like things a bit spicier, feel free to use ‘hot’ green chilies in the chili.
  • Want to make this even heartier? Add in an extra can of white beans or even black beans.

Reader Favorite Soups and Stews

Healthy Slow Cooker Chili

Salsa Verde Chicken Soup

Healthy White Bean Turkey Chili

Sweet Potato and Black Bean Chili

Healthy Chicken Taco Soup

Healthy Pumpkin Chili

Creamy Chicken and Wild Rice Soup

Print

Healthy White Chicken Chili (dairy-free + easy!)

  • Author: Ashlea Carver
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 6 1x
  • Diet: Gluten Free
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Scale:
  • Author: Ashlea Carver
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 6 1x
  • Diet: Gluten Free

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon avocado oil
  • 1 ½ pounds boneless skinless chicken thighs or breast
  • 1 teaspoon salt, plus more to taste
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon cumin 
  • 2 bay leaves
  • ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional)
  • 215.5oz cans white beans, drained and rinsed
  • 24oz cans green chilies
  • ¼ cup lime juice
  • 2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 cup full-fat coconut cream
  • 1 cup corn kernels

Method

  1. Heat a large heavy-bottomed pot over medium-high heat. Season each side of the chicken liberally with the salt. Sear the chicken for 4-5 minutes on each side until browned and then remove from the pot. 
  2. Lower the heat to medium and add the diced onion and minced garlic to the pot. Saute for 2-3 minutes until fragrant and the onions begin to soften and become translucent. 
  3. Add the dried oregano, cumin, bay leaves, red pepper flakes (if using) and saute for an additional minute. 
  4. Next, add the white beans, green chilies, chicken broth, and lime juice to the pot. Stir until well combined. Add the chicken back to the pot, bring the chili to a boil, and then reduce the heat to a simmer. Cover and let the chili simmer for 20 minutes. 
  5. After the chili has simmered, remove the chicken from the pot, use two forks to shred the meat, and then add the shredded chicken back to the pot. 
  6. Next, stir in the coconut cream and corn kernels. Give the chili a taste and adjust the seasoning as needed. Let the chili simmer for another five minutes until everything is heated through. 
  7. Serve the chili topped with green onions, cilantro, and any toppings of your choice.

Keywords: healthy white chicken chili, white chicken chili, dairy free white chicken chili

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Recipe rating

    12 comments
  1. I am planning on cooking this recipe tonight, but only have a 3-ply stainless steel pot or a cast iron pot… so no heavy bottom. Will one of these options be okay?

  2. The crockpot version turned out PERFECTLY!! Total crowd pleaser and, with some cornbread on the side, made enough to feed an army. Absolutely delicious!

  3. This was DELICIOUS! My household is not a big fan of coconut cream/milk in soups so I used the liquid from the beans and some extra broth and everyone was happy! Definitely don’t forget to top it with fresh cilantro 😍. We’ll have this again for sure!

  4. This was sooooo good! I defrosted some chicken thighs and was trying to figure out what to do with them and came across this recipe. I had most of the ingredients already, I did substitute a can of white beans for garbanzo beans. They’re white too 😏This was just the healthy comfort food I was looking for. Will definitely make it again. Thank you, Ashlea, you are always one of my first destinations when I am looking to try a new yummy recipe. Keep ’em coming!

  5. Perfect meal prep for a rainy week. Really easy to follow and was so delicious and flavorful. I never knew stove top chicken thighs could get so tender and pull apart like that! Great nutritious dish, it was amazing. Also I couldn’t find canned green chiles in the store so I used some jalapeños instead. And for coconut cream I used reduced fat coconut milk instead bc that’s what I had. Still really tasty!! Glad I made double the recipe 😉

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