This Nourishing Chicken Chili is bound to become a household favorite. Made with hearty beans, ground chicken + bone broth, flavorful veggies, and tons of seasoning, it’s a deliciously wholesome meal.

Easy to make, creamy without the cream (aka dairy-free), protein-packed and super nourishing, it’s a must-make. If you’ve made my Hearty Paleo Chili before, then you will love this lighter version that you can definitely make year-round, even in warmer weather.

NOSTALGIC AND NOURISHING WHITE BEAN CHICKEN CHILI

There’s just something so nostalgic and nourishing about any kind of soup. Chili especially is one of my favorites to make when I want to feel nourished from within. Plus, I love that it’s freezer-friendly and perfect for meal prep.

I can confirm that this Nourishing Chicken Chili checks all of those boxes. It’s seriously so satisfying to make, eat, and reheat!

Now you might not believe me when I tell you that blending together (yes, blending – love a blender moment in any recipe) white beans, chicken bone broth and pumpkin seeds makes for the most perfect light-but-creamy base of this chili, but trust me, it’s so delish.

You’ll simmer together that protein-packed, fiber-filled and nutrient-rich blend with more of the bone broth, beans, green chiles, all of your sautéed veggies (onions, poblano and jalapeño peppers), flavorful seasonings, and of course the cooked, ground chicken.

Add in some fresh squeezed lime juice and chopped fresh cilantro at the end, and prepare for your kitchen to smell insane!

YEAR-ROUND CHILI

If you didn’t think this White Bean Chicken Chili could get any more mouthwateringly wholesome, then we need to talk about all of the tasty topping options. More pumpkin seeds + cilantro, minced red onion, Greek yogurt (or dairy-free sour cream), shredded goat cheddar and crushed tortilla chips.

I mean… does it get any better? Serve with just a few, or all of these nutritiously delicious toppings. You really can’t go wrong.

Like I said, I love this White Bean Chicken Chili because it’s easy to make and light enough to enjoy year-round. You may or may not have noticed I have a White Bean Chicken Chili recipe in my cookbook, Rachael’s Good Eats, but because the craving recently hit, I wanted get creative and come up with another version to bring to the blog. So, here you go! Hope you love it.

INGREDIENTS YOU’LL NEED:

For the Chili:

  • Avocado oil 
  • Yellow onion
  • Poblano pepper
  • Jalapeño
  • Garlic cloves
  • Chili powder
  • Ground cumin
  • Dried oregano
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Ground chicken breast 
  • White beans, drained and rinsed, divided
  • Low-sodium chicken bone broth, divided
  • Mild green chiles
  • Raw pumpkin seeds
  • Freshly squeezed lime juice
  • Fresh cilantro

For Serving:

  • Pumpkin seeds
  • Chopped fresh cilantro 
  • Minced red onion
  • Dairy-free sour cream or Greek yogurt 
  • Shredded goat cheddar (optional)
  • Crushed tortilla chips (I like Siete Foods)

HOW TO MAKE MY NOURISHING CHICKEN CHILI

For the Chili:

In a large Dutch oven, heat the avocado oil over medium heat. Once hot, add the onion, poblano, and jalapeño. Sauté, stirring occasionally, until the veggies soften, about 5 minutes.

Add in the garlic, chili powder, cumin, oregano, salt, and pepper. Stir to combine and cook until the spices are fragrant, about one minute.

Add in the chicken, breaking it up with the back of a wooden spoon. Cook until the chicken is fully cooked, stirring occasionally, about 6-8 minutes.

Pour in 1 can of the drained beans, 2 cups of the bone broth, and the green chiles. Stir to combine.

In a high-speed blender, add the remaining can of drained beans, 2 cups of bone broth, and pumpkin seeds. Blend until totally combined, about 30 seconds.

Pour the mixture into the Dutch oven and stir to combine. Bring the mixture up to a simmer. Once simmering, turn the heat down to low and continue to simmer uncovered for about 25-30 minutes, stirring intermittently. The liquid in the chili will reduce considerably during this time. Remove from the heat and add the lime juice and fresh cilantro. 

For Serving:

To serve, ladle into bowls and top with pumpkin seeds, cilantro, red onion, sour cream (if using), goat cheddar, and crushed tortilla chips. Enjoy!

To Freeze:

Allow the chili to cool entirely before ladling into airtight containers (leaving about 1 centimeter of space between the chili and the lid). Transfer to the freezer and store for up to 3 months. To thaw, place in the refrigerator overnight and re-heat over the stove.

RECIPE SUBSTITUTIONS & QUESTIONS

Feel free to use any type of white beans for this recipe, or even a combo if you’d like – but cannellini or great northern beans will work best. Also, I recommend using fresh minced garlic instead of jarred, and fresh squeezed lime juice instead of the bottled stuff for this recipe.

All toppings are optional – get creative and use all or a mix of your favorites!

ARE BEANS A SUPERFOOD?

Beans are considered a superfood because they are incredibly nutritious. They’re a legume that contains a significant amount of plant-based protein, are high in fiber (which is great for digestion/gut health) and can help to regulate blood sugar. They’re also filled with a handful of vitamins and minerals, like iron potassium and magnesium.

SHOULD I USE CHICKEN BONE BROTH OR CHICKEN STOCK FOR CHILI?

Up to you! I generally prefer to use bone broth as it contains more vitamins, minerals, amino acids and other health-promoting nutrients per serving than stock. But whatever you have on hand works!

If you’re feeling up for it, you could easily make a homemade bone broth. This is done by simmering marrow-rich animal bones – like chicken, beef, or turkey – for hours, usually with a variety of vegetables and herbs. But I usually go the store-bought route to save time. 

If you’re interested in learning more about the differences between bone broth, stock and regular broth, I wrote a blog post on the differences between the three here.

IF YOU’RE LOOKING FOR MORE HEARTY, HEALTHY SOUPS, TRY THESE:

Chicken & Wild Rice Soup

Hearty Paleo Chili

Sausage, White Bean & Kale Soup

Shredded Chicken Verde Bone Broth Soup

Nourishing Chicken Chili

By Rachael DeVaux
Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 45 minutes
Total: 1 hour
Servings: 4 – 6
This Nourishing Chicken Chili is bound to become a household favorite. Made with hearty beans, ground chicken + bone broth, flavorful veggies, and tons of seasoning, it’s a deliciously wholesome meal.

Equipment

  • large Dutch oven
  • high speed blender

Ingredients 

For the Chili:

  • 2 tablespoons avocado oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced
  • 1 medium poblano pepper, seeded and diced
  • 1 jalapeño, seeded and diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 pounds ground chicken breast
  • 2 cans white beans – drained and rinsed, divided
  • 4 cups low-sodium chicken bone broth, divided
  • 2 (4-ounce) cans mild green chiles
  • 1/2 cup raw pumpkin seeds
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped fresh cilantro

For Serving:

  • Pumpkin seeds
  • Chopped fresh cilantro
  • Minced red onion
  • Dairy-free sour cream or Greek yogurt
  • Shredded goat cheddar, optional
  • Crushed tortilla chips, I like Siete Foods

Instructions 

For the Chili:

  • In a large Dutch oven, heat the avocado oil over medium heat. Once hot, add the onion, poblano, and jalapeño. Sauté, stirring occasionally, until the veggies soften, about 5 minutes.
  • Add in the garlic, chili powder, cumin, oregano, salt, and pepper. Stir to combine and cook until the spices are fragrant, about one minute.
  • Add in the chicken, breaking it up with the back of a wooden spoon. Cook until the chicken is fully cooked, stirring occasionally, about 6-8 minutes.
  • Pour in 1 can of the drained beans, 2 cups of the bone broth, and the green chiles. Stir to combine.
  • In a high-speed blender, add the remaining can of drained beans, 2 cups of bone broth, and pumpkin seeds. Blend until totally combined, about 30 seconds.
  • Pour the mixture into the Dutch oven and stir to combine. Bring the mixture up to a simmer. Once simmering, turn the heat down to low and continue to simmer uncovered for about 25-30 minutes, stirring intermittently. The liquid in the chili will reduce considerably during this time. Remove from the heat and add the lime juice and fresh cilantro.

For Serving:

  • To serve, ladle into bowls and top with pumpkin seeds, cilantro, red onion, sour cream (if using), goat cheddar, and crushed tortilla chips. Enjoy!

To Freeze:

  • Allow the chili to cool entirely before ladling into airtight containers (leaving about 1 centimeter of space between the chili and the lid). Transfer to the freezer and store for up to 3 months.
  • To thaw, place in the refrigerator overnight and re-heat over the stove.

Welcome! I’m Rachael.

I enjoy sharing my love for food and fitness. I'm a registered dietitian, certified personal trainer, and a New York Times Bestselling author. Here you'll find all kinds of recipes and kitchen hacks, as well as workouts and fitness motivation. Enjoy! — xx Rachael

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