Green Chicken Chili is a delicious alternative to beef chili, with unforgettable flavors and just the right amount of heat. This thick hearty soup is full of juicy pieces of chicken and white beans in a cheesy creamy, perfectly seasoned broth. Garnish with some tortilla strips and a drizzle of fresh lime and this Mexican inspired dish will soon become a family favorite. On repeat!
If Mexican food is commonplace in your home like it is mine, then you’ve got to try both the Homemade Salsa Verde and Green Enchilada Sauce which pretty much pairs well with anything! As a side, as a dip, or as a topping, these two sauces will elevate all of your Mexican inspired dishes!
What is Green Chicken Chili?
Bring your tastebuds on a journey with this green chicken chili with white beans recipe. It’s a true crowd-pleaser not just because it’s out of this world, warming comfort food, but because it is brimming with bold flavors that combine so nicely together. Your crowd will get all of the different tastes and textures in every bite.
This chili has chunks of chicken and tender white beans, combined with a broth so thick and creamy and perfectly seasoned with oregano, cumin, and paprika. A layer of heat is provided by the roasted chili peppers and all of this is finished off with a hint of citrus from the lime and added salty crunch from the tortilla strips.
What is the difference between White Chicken Chili and Green Chicken Chili?
You might be wondering what the difference between white chicken chili and green chicken chili is. Well, truth be told, so am I! ha. There may, in fact, be no difference at all because just when I think I’ve found what might be a difference in one version, I find a similar recipe in the other version. In the end, it’s so good, it doesn’t really matter what it’s called.
Do I need anything special to make Green Chicken Chili?
Large Pot – Making soups in a Dutch oven or large stockpot is handy for making big batches of soup.
Immersion blender – Otherwise known as a hand blender this handy tool will keep you from having to transfer the soup to a blender for pureeing.
- Hatch chilis – Anaheim chilis will also work.
- Olive oil – You can also use canola oil.
- Onion & garlic – Diced and minced.
- Chicken broth – Use homemade broth if you have some on hand; homemade has more flavor and nutrients and not as much sodium.
- Seasoning – Cumin, paprika, ground coriander, dried oregano, salt, and pepper to taste. This blend of seasoning is pretty much magic.
- White beans – Drained and rinsed. Cannellini beans or smaller white beans are readily available at your local grocery store. Canned beans are easy to use; dried beans aren’t necessary! A great source of fiber and protein and will give your soup its body and thick consistency.
- Cooked chicken breast – You can use whatever leftover you have. Either shred a cooked rotisserie chicken or cut up your leftover herb-roasted chicken.
- Cream cheese – Adds a smooth creamy rich texture to the soup broth.
- Toppings – Avocado, tortilla strips or chips, grated jack cheese. The more the better!
- Garnish – Cilantro and lime juice. These garnishes pack a bunch of flavor into every bite of the soup!
How to Make Green Chicken Chili:
Step 1: Rub the chiles with oil and roast them under the broiler until each side is blistered. This will give it such a nice smoky note to the heat. Once nicely charred, remove to a bowl until cooled enough to handle.
Step 2: Grab your cooled chiles and remove the stem and seeds from the inside. If you want more spice, leave more of the seeds, if you want a mild soup, remove all of the seeds. If you want medium heat, well, you get the idea. You can also scrape out the flesh and discard the peel if you’d prefer.
Step 3: Meanwhile, in a large stockpot or Dutch oven, saute the onion and garlic in a bit of oil. To the pot, add the chicken broth, cumin, paprika, coriander, oregano, salt, and pepper. Then, add the chiles to the pot.
Step 4: Simmer the soup and add just a portion of the white beans, reserving the rest. Using a hand blender, blend the soup mixture to as smooth a consistency as you desire. Keep in mind, you’ll have added textures included next.
Step 5: Add the reserved beans, chicken, and cream cheese to the pot and stir until combined. Simmer the soup until the cheese melts, your desired consistency is reached and all of those amazing flavors have formed lasting meaningful relationships.
Make a big batch (double or triple, in fact) and have lunch leftovers for days. A great budget-friendly meal to feed a big family and perfect as a meal prep freezer meal for down the road when those cravings strike. Because believe you me, they will!
Have separate bowls for your toppings. Sliced avocado, tortilla chips, shredded cheese, and even some slices of lime. Lay them out on your table so people can pick and choose their own. Load it up!
It will keep in the fridge for up to 4 days stored in an airtight container.
This is a simple green chicken chili recipe, but it is so easy to make! This one-pot meal is done on the stovetop but you can definitely cook this meal in the slow cooker or the Instant Pot! Roasting the chile peppers is the only step done apart from combining everything in the pot!
Quick and easy recipes are always handy to have around. This Green Chicken Chili doesn’t miss a beat! It’s a must-try any day of the week!
Green Chicken Chili
- 4 Hatch chilis
- 1-2 tablespoons olive or canola oil
- 1/2 yellow onion diced
- 2 teaspoons garlic minced
- 4 cups chicken broth
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
- salt and pepper to taste
- 2 cans white beans drained and rinsed (15.5 oz cans)
- 2 cups cooked chicken breast
- 4 oz. cream cheese
- 1 cup fresh cilantro for garnish
- 1 avocado for topping
- 1 cup tortilla strips or chips for topping
- 1 cup grated jack cheese for topping
- lime juice for garnish
- Rub chiles with oil. Roast under the broiler for 6-8 minutes on each side until blistered.
- In a large stockpot or Dutch oven, saute onion and garlic in one tablespoon of oil.
- Add chicken broth, cumin, paprika, coriander, oregano, salt, and pepper to the pot. Remove the stem and seeds from the roasted chiles and add them to the pot (you can scrape the flesh away from the peel and discard the peel if you'd like).
- Simmer soup for about 10 minutes.
- Drain and rinse white beans well. Add 1/2 cup of the white beans to the pot of soup, reserving the rest.
- Use a hand blender to blend the soup mixture into a fairly smooth consistency (or as desired).
- Add the reserved beans, chicken, and cream cheese to the pot and stir.
- Simmer soup 5-10 minutes or until the cream cheese is melted and the soup is heated through.
- Top with freshly chopped cilantro, tortilla chip pieces/strips, grated cheese, avocado slices, and a squeeze of lime.