Easy 30-Minute Homemade White Chicken Chili

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Easy 30-Minute Homemade White Chicken Chili — Hearty, healthy, loaded with tender chicken, and packed with bold flavor!! Fast and easy comfort food that everyone loves!! It’ll be on rotation all winter!!

Easy 30-Minute Homemade White Chicken Chili - Hearty, healthy, loaded with tender chicken, and packed with bold flavor!! Fast and easy comfort food that everyone loves!! It'll be on rotation all winter!

The BEST White Chicken Chili Recipe

Chili is the ultimate fall and winter comfort food. Who can say no to a bowl of warm, thick chili that’s loaded with tender chicken and hearty cannellini beans?

This white chili recipe was some of the best chili I’ve ever had and is now in our rotation. It’s robustly flavored from sweet Vidalia onions, jalapeño peppers, and green chilis.

It’s so easy and ready in 30 minutes. No need to stand over a simmering pot for hours. Many ingredients get tossed into the pot all at once and in no time this hearty, healthy, and comforting chili is ready.

My family loved this easy white chicken chili, and I love that it’s ready so quickly and with very minimal effort.

Like all chili, it tastes better the day or two after you make it and the flavors marry, making this a perfect make-ahead meal. Make a batch over the weekend and you can enjoy it during the week.

Or you can stash half of it in the freezer for nights when pulling something out of the freezer for dinner is all you can muster.

Easy 30-Minute Homemade White Chicken Chili - Hearty, healthy, loaded with tender chicken, and packed with bold flavor!! Fast and easy comfort food that everyone loves!! It'll be on rotation all winter!

White Chicken Chili Ingredients

For this white bean chicken chili recipe, you’ll need:

  • Olive oil
  • Yellow onion
  • Jalapeño
  • Canned green chiles
  • Garlic
  • Chicken broth
  • Shredded cooked chicken
  • Cannellini beans
  • Lime juice
  • Dried herbs and spices
  • Fresh cilantro

Easy 30-Minute Homemade White Chicken Chili - Hearty, healthy, loaded with tender chicken, and packed with bold flavor!! Fast and easy comfort food that everyone loves!! It'll be on rotation all winter!

How to Make White Chicken Chili

Add the olive oil to a large stockpot or Dutch oven and sauté the onion, chiles, and jalapeño until softened. Add the garlic and continue cooking until fragrant. 

Dump the remaining ingredients into the pot and bring to a boil. Let the mixture simmer for 10 minutes, then stir in the cilantro.

Ladle into bowls and garnish with tortilla chips, cheese, cilantro, and / or sour cream.  

Easy 30-Minute Homemade White Chicken Chili - Hearty, healthy, loaded with tender chicken, and packed with bold flavor!! Fast and easy comfort food that everyone loves!! It'll be on rotation all winter!

How to Make Chili Thicker 

I prefer my white chicken chili to be fairly thick. To achieve this, I blend about 1 cup of the cannellini beans in a food processor to make a bean paste of sorts. This gets added to the white chili to make it even heartier. 

For a super thick chili, let it simmer uncovered for longer than the recipe calls for. 

How Long is Chili Good For? 

This white bean chicken chili will keep airtight in the fridge for 5 to 7 days or in the freezer for up to 6 months.

Easy 30-Minute Homemade White Chicken Chili — Hearty, healthy, loaded with tender chicken, and packed with bold flavor!! Fast and easy comfort food that everyone loves!! It'll be on rotation all winter!!

Can I Make The Chili In A Slow Cooker?

I’m sure you ‘could’ but I don’t see the point because it’s ready in 30 minutes. Why lengthen an already rapid cooking time is my question? You’re just lengthening (and complicating) the amount of time it will take from start to finish for you to be enjoying this fabulous chili.

If you want to keep it warm in a slow cooker for an event or something along those lines, go for it. But prepare it on the stove as written is my advice. 

Easy 30-Minute Homemade White Chicken Chili — Hearty, healthy, loaded with tender chicken, and packed with bold flavor!! Fast and easy comfort food that everyone loves!! It'll be on rotation all winter!!

Tips for Making White Chicken Chili

This white bean chicken chili has mild to medium kick, but you can make it spicier by using the jalapeno seeds or by adding more red chili flakes or cayenne pepper.

To save time, use a store-bought rotisserie chicken or leftover chicken that you have on hand. Of course, you can roast or pan sauté chicken if you’re so inclined.

Make sure to salt your chili to taste. I use low-sodium chicken broth, low-sodium beans, and add a bit of salt to the chili so I can control the overall salt level. The saltiness of low-sodium broth, beans, rotisserie chickens, and personal preferences for salt all vary so salt to taste.

 

Easy 30-Minute Homemade White Chicken Chili — Hearty, healthy, loaded with tender chicken, and packed with bold flavor!! Fast and easy comfort food that everyone loves!! It'll be on rotation all winter!!

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Yield: 8

Easy 30-Minute Homemade White Chicken Chili

Easy 30-Minute Homemade White Chicken Chili

This white chicken chili is hearty, healthy, loaded with tender chicken, and packed with flavor!! Fast and easy comfort food that everyone loves!!

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes

Ingredients

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 cups sweet Vidalia or yellow onion, peeled and diced small (about 2 medium/large onions)
  • 1 large jalapeno pepper (about 4 to 5 inches long), diced very small (the seeds are where the heat is concentrated; included or discard them based on preference)
  • 7 to 8 ounces canned green chiles, don’t drain (I used mild heat)
  • 4 garlic cloves, peeled and finely minced
  • 32 ounces (4 cups) low-sodium chicken broth
  • 4 cups shredded cooked chicken (use about 1 whole storebought rotisserie chicken to save time; or roast or cook your own chicken in a skillet)
  • two 15-ounce cans cannellini beans, drained and rinsed (see step 4 below about blending 1 cup of the beans with a splash of chicken broth or water)
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoons salt, or to taste
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon red chili flakes
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper, optional and to taste
  • 1/3 cup fresh cilantro leaves, finely minced
  • tortilla strips, chips, crackers, diced avocado, shredded cheese, and/or sour cream; all are optional for garnishing

Instructions

    1. To a large Dutch oven or stockpot, add the olive oil and heat over medium-high heat to warm.
    2. Add the onion, jalapeno, green chilis, and sauté for about 7 minutes, or until vegetables begin to soften. Stir intermittently.
    3. Add the garlic and sauté for 1 to 2 minutes. Stir intermittently.
    4. Add the chicken broth, chicken, cannellini beans including whole beans and blended bean mixture (take 1 cup of the beans, add to a food processor or blender, add a splash of chicken broth or water and blend until smooth; mixture should be thick.
    5. Add the blended bean mixture along with the whole beans to pot), lime juice, cumin, oregano, salt, pepper, red chili flakes, optional cayenne pepper, and bring to a boil.
    6. Allow mixture to boil gently for about 7 to 10 minutes. It’s unlikely, but if at any point the overall liquid level looks low or you prefer your chili to be thinner, add 1 cup of water or as desired; you’ll adjust the salt and seasoning levels at the end. For thicker chili, allow mixture to boil longer and reduce until desired thickness is reached.
    7. Add the cilantro and boil 1 minute.
    8. Taste chili and add salt to taste. This will vary based on how salty the chicken broth, beans, and rotisserie chicken are, and personal preference. Make any necessary seasoning adjustments (i.e. more salt, pepper, cumin, cayenne, lime juice, etc.).
    9. Ladle chili into bowls, and optionally garnish with tortilla strips, chips, crackers, avocado, cheese and/or sour cream; serve immediately.

Notes

  • Chili will keep airtight in the fridge for 5 to 7 days or in the freezer for up to 6 months.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

8

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 604Total Fat: 24gSaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 15gCholesterol: 88mgSodium: 4395mgCarbohydrates: 64gFiber: 13gSugar: 19gProtein: 40g

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Originally published October 19, 2015 and republished February 19, 2020 with updated text.

About the Author

Welcome to AverieCooks! Here you’ll find fast and easy recipes that taste amazing and are geared for real life. Nothing fussy or complicated, just awesome tasting dishes everyone loves!

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Please note: I have only made the recipe as written, and cannot give advice or predict what will happen if you change something. If you have a question regarding changing, altering, or making substitutions to the recipe, please check out the FAQ page for more info.

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Comments

  1. Made this tonight.  Delish!  I added grated zucchini and carrots – always try to add extra veggies.  I actually followed the recipe otherwise which is something at which I do not excel. I almost always go rogue on recipes especially soup.  But this one is pernearly (my grandmothers word for pretty nearly) perfect.  

    Rating: 5
  2. This is the 4th tome I’m making this and it’s always a hit! I love how quick it comes together with so few ingredients. I always trust a recipe from Averie, they never fail!

    Rating: 5
    1. Thanks for the 5 star review and glad this is always a hit and that it comes together easily for you! I really appreciate what you said too about my recipes, that they never fail. I truly appreciate that because that is my goal and I test them and write them in a way that I just hope everyone has success!

  3. I cooked my chicken in a crockpot with cumin and chili powder.  It was delicious and I think next time I’ll add great northern beans too!

    Rating: 4
  4. This was easy! Chop, sauté, mix, boil DONE. It had heat but not overbearing. Thank you for another great and EASY dish. All day crockpot was usually how I’d cook this bit now I’ve got alternative .

    Rating: 5
    1. Thanks for the 5 star review and glad it was great for you and that now you don’t need to wait around all day on your Crockpot :)

  5. It looks lovely… I’m going to try it tonight, I’m curious about the reheating instructions though, in the UK we’re generally discouraged from reheating chicken more than once, though perhaps it differs around the world! I’d be interested to know.

    1. We aren’t too concerned with that in the US (at least not anyone I know). I would portion the leftovers of this chili in individual serving containers, store in fridge, reheat as needed throughout the next few days.

  6. So…I’ve made this so many times now that I decided I should actually review it. It’s so good that my significant other actually has asked me to make this dish, specifically, every few weeks or so over this past fall/winter. The only change I make is I don’t add the cilantro because I’m not a huge fan of it, though I’m sure it’s probably great with it included. Try it…you’ll love it!

    Rating: 5
    1. Thanks for the 5 star review and for taking the time to review it after you’ve made it many times – glad it’s a hit!

  7. Hi,

    This looks delicious. I’m curious about the nutrition info though..does that include all the optional toppings? Its hard to believe a chicken chili recipe with no cream or cheese has that much fat and calories in one serving.
    Thanks!

  8. Outstanding! I just made this & I added a little cornstarch to thicken the liquid a bit more. The taste is phenomenal! I did leave some of the jalapeno seeds in as I like a nice spicy dish & this is definitely it!

    Rating: 5
    1. Thanks for the 5 star review and glad that it was sufficiently spicy for you and it turned out outstanding!

    1. Maybe but since it’s such a fast and easy stovetop recipe a CP to me would just unnecessarily lengthen and complicate it. Although feel free to experiment and see how things go for you.

  9. Awesome recipe!! It came out perfectly I didn’t have to make any adjustments. Thank you, my son loved it!

    Rating: 5
  10. Hi Averie,I made Your recipe last night, it was hit with my family.I’m always looking for healthy quick recipes to make for myself and family.Because I’m usually training for a marathon or two. This dish is going on my food prepping recipes for sure.It’s definitely a great recovery meal after a long run or training session. Thank you for your recipe.I look forward to fueling my body and feeding my family, with more of your quick recipes.Happy eating.Kim

    Rating: 5
    1. Thanks for the five star review and I’m glad this was a hit for you and your family! I am an avid (distance) runner and wish you the best in your races!

  11. Not a review-yet. Wondering if you have tried making this in the instant pot and if so how long did you put the pressure on?

    1. No because it’s only a 30 minute recipe. I don’t see the point of the I.P. in this situation since it’s already such a fast recipe, why bother. Also I created this recipe in 2015, long before the IP was on anyone’s horizons. Make it as written, you will love it.

  12. This was super tasty, thank you! My only question is have you ever adapted the recipe for a pressure cooker? I just got an instant pot over Christmas and would love to cut down the shredding and cook time by putting a chicken breast in the pressure cooker with the beans, broth, etc.

    Rating: 5
    1. Thanks for the five star review and I’m glad you enjoyed the recipe!

      No I have not because honestly I find it more work to use a pressure cooker (in general) when it’s a 30 minute recipe normally. Yes you do have to shred chicken and I’m sure your could quickly roast your own and shred it, but for soups like this I use rotisserie store bought that I shred in no time at all.

  13. This recipe looks fantastic and I’m definitely trying it out soon. My only question is what vegetables might go well in this chili? I know chili doesn’t traditionally have veggies, but I’m trying to get more veggies in my meals.

  14. I have found so many great recipes from your site, and I really love easy ones like this! I don’t usually make changes to recipes and rate them, but I feel this one tiny change was harmless. My husband hates to eat chicken in soups and stews because he thinks the texture is “stringy”. I love it myself, but I’m all about making dishes my husband will eat and he’s not a big soup/stew eater, so this was a WIN. I substituted the shredded chicken for ground chicken. Everything else was exact to the recipe and it was fantastic! We enjoyed your White Chicken Chili with a pan of Mexican cornbread. Love this and it’ll go on my ‘Successful Pinterest Recipe’ board. Thank you for posting tasty, easy recipes for our busy lives!

    Rating: 5
    1. Thanks for the 5 star review and I’m glad you’ve been finding recipes that work for you and that are tasty and easy – that is my goal with everything I post!

  15. It was great! Thanks so much. We Added cream cheese to thicken it,and we always add it to most chili. My kids said yummy.

    Rating: 5
  16. My husband and I are obsessed with this recipe and make it very frequently. We cut out the jalapeño and add corn to suit our tastes!

    Rating: 5
  17. Absolutely delicious!! My whole family lived it; which is crazy! Even my picky daughter had seconds🙂. Definitely a keeper!

    Rating: 4
  18. Sooooo good! One of my husbands FAVORITE meals I’ve made and (he doesn’t even like beans usually)

  19. Wonderful , flavorful Sunday afternoon / evening meal.
    We added another can of cannelloni beans (blended 1 can & 2 cans whole) and blended a head of steamed cauliflower with one can of beans and broth which added texture and thickened the chili.
    Definalty will make again soon.

  20. I made this tonight and it was incredible! The flavor was so balanced and wonderful. I also added white corn just because, and it was a welcome addition. Can’t wait to make this again!

  21. I just wanted to say I made this last night with a roasted turkey breast from Costco and it was delicious! Slight substitutions – I used 3 cans of beans instead of 2, and one of the cans was Bush’s Beast White Chili Beans in Chili Sauce, which is what I blended (1/2 can). I also used a serrano pepper instead because I like them. I avoided the red chili flakes and cayenne as between the spiced beans and the serrano she had plenty of heat. Served it up with sour cream and Mexican cheese blend – divine!

    When (definitely when!) I make this again, I plan to blend the whole can of spiced beans as I prefer more of a thick chili, and cut down to maybe 3 cups of broth as well. That was my only complaint on the first batch was it was just a bit too soupy for me. Otherwise I’m not changing a thing!

    1. Sounds like it was a success overall and yes, the thickness of chili is definitely a personal preference and you can always cut back on the broth and/or blend up the beans to your liking.

  22. This was so delicious! I have made it a couple times now and I won’t try another white chicken chili recipe. A rotisserie chicken breast made this so quick and easy that it doesn’t have to be a weekend recipe. Made it after work in only about half an hour. We ate it with a little bit of shredded cheddar cheese and light sour cream. So good!

    1. Thanks for trying the recipe and I’m glad it came out great for you and that you won’t cheat on the recipe :) I love using rotisserie chicken too for this soup because it makes it truly do-able as a weeknight easy meal!

  23. Made this tonight and the flavor and everything was great! My only suggestion would be to add the shredded chicken maybe in the last 5 mins or so of cooking. I used a is series chicken and shredded it and it got very very shredded and mushy. Maybe I shredded too small? Either way next time I will be adding it later on. Great recipe though, it’s not often to find a recipe that has the spices down perfectly.

    1. I think you shredded it a bit too finely. I keep mine pretty chunky that’s for sure. Glad you enjoyed the recipe overall!

  24. I made this chili last night and we loved it!! It was not only easy to make but also incredibly filling and delicious. I can’t wait to have leftovers this week :)