White Bean Chicken Chili

Prep Time:
40 mins
Total Time:
1 hrs 5 mins
8 cups

This family-friendly chili starts with boneless, skinless chicken thighs. After searing them, combine with cooked onions and chopped poblanos before adding in spices (coriander, cumin, and chili powder) and canned green chiles. Thicken with a little cornmeal and stir in two cans of white beans for a hearty, comforting meal. Make it a day ahead if you like; the flavors improve overnight.


  • 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs

  • Salt and pepper

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

  • 1 white onion (10 ounces), chopped (2 cups)

  • 2 poblano chiles (8 ounces), seeded and chopped (1 ½ cups)

  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic (from 3 medium cloves)

  • 1 ½ teaspoons ground cumin

  • 1 ½ teaspoons ground coriander

  • 2 teaspoons chili powder

  • 1 can (4 ounces) mild diced green chiles

  • 4 cups low-sodium chicken broth

  • 3 tablespoons fine cornmeal

  • 2 cans (15.5 ounces each) white beans, rinsed and drained

  • Sour cream, cilantro sprigs, tortilla chips, and lime wedges for serving


  1. Season chicken on both sides with salt and pepper. Heat oil in a large (6 quart) pot over medium-high heat until shimmering. Sear chicken in batches, turning once, until golden, 7 to 8 minutes. Transfer to a plate.

  2. Reduce heat to medium; add onion and poblanos. Cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 5 minutes. Stir in garlic, cumin, coriander, and chili powder, and cook until fragrant, 1 minute more. Stir in canned chiles. Add chicken back to pot along with broth and juices, scraping up bits from the bottom of the pan. Bring to a boil then reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, partially covered, until chicken is cooked through and flavors meld, about 15 minutes.

  3. Remove chicken to a plate and shred into bite-size pieces. In a small bowl, whisk together cornmeal with 1 cup hot cooking liquid. Return to pot, along with beans, and simmer 5 minutes. Stir in chicken until heated through. Taste and adjust seasoning. Divide among bowls and top with sour cream, fresh cilantro sprigs, tortilla chips and lime.

Related Articles