Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Spicy White Bean and Chicken Chili - A White Chili to Battle the Winter Blues

This white chili video recipe was inspired by a cup of spicy chicken and white bean soup I had during my recent trip back east.

love chilis (yes, that's how you spell it) of all shades and spices. While beef is most familiar to my chili kettle, pork, turkey, and even lamb do make the occasional appearance. But, what about chicken?

I rarely think of using chicken, so I was glad that cup of soup came along to remind me how great a chili, chicken can make - if you stay away from the horrible ground stuff. For
me, chicken makes for a very poor ground meat. It's too lean, too dry, too chalky, and too "I wish this was ground chuck."
The key here is chicken thighs - moist, shapely, boneless-skinless chicken thighs. The difference they make in taste and texture is significant.

By the way, don't s
ubstitute chicken breasts. In my opinion, the small amount of fat savings are not worth the step-down in flavor. Enjoy!


2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thigh, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
2 tbsp vegetable oil
1 onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 tsp ground chipotle pepper
2 tbsp ground cumin
1 tsp oregano
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp fresh ground black pepper
cayenne pepper to taste
1 red bell pepper, s
eeded, diced
1 green bell pepper, seeded, diced
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded, diced
1 can (10-ounce) diced tomato with green chilies
4 cups chicken broth
2 (15 ounce) great northern, or navy beans, drained
chopped fresh cilantro to garnish, optional

Other Super Cool Chili Recipes:

Spicy Three-Bean Chili
Chicken Chili Verde
Turkey Chili

* Please help support free video recipes, and visit my new sponsor, MOZO Shoes. Find out why chefs (like me) are buzzing about their great shoes!


Bill W, NH said...

sounds good, will have to wait though, have a pot of Sopa de Albondigas (enough to feed an army) on the stovetop right now. Getting a foot of snow on top of an immense amount already.

Anonymous said...

Is ground chipotle pepper
the same as cayenne pepper, I can't fine ground chipotle pepper in any of the stores around . Upstate NY

Chef John said...

no it's ground smoked jalapeno. They have it at Wegmans.

still dabbling in Boston said...

Chef John thanks for all the wonderful recipes, you seem to have gotten me over my cooking phobia (or maybe it's just that no one in my immediate family cooks so I have no instinct for it).

I was wondering, though: whenever a recipe calls for "crushed tomatoes"--and a lot of them do--do you use the regular kind or the "no salt added" kind? It seems weird to me to add an ingredient that already has salt, since you can't control the amount, but the cabbage rolls I made came out a bit bland on the outside and I'm thinking it's because I added no-salt tomatoes.

Chef John said...

they would not have caused blandness. salt is very personal, everyone tastes differently. just add more next time

Netts Nook said...

Thanks for sharing such a great recipe. Can't wait to try.....

Anonymous said...

seems like the video was taken down. hope you repost it.

Chef John said...

taken down?

Susannah said...

This sounds wonderful. Too spicy for me but wonderful. My mother always put a few whole cloves in her regular chili. Have you ever heard of that Chef John? It's great. A friend of mine down under puts cloves in his spaghetti sauce. I don't know if I would like that. The cinnamon in the white chili made me think of cloves.

Chef John said...

no, but i put 1 clove when i make a big pot of chicken stock

Anonymous said...

ahh, it was giving me a "this video does not exist" message in the afternoon. but everything seems to be working now. awesome recipe. looks delicious

GRANNY said...


Bill W, NH said...

question arising from something I read on another blog: Would you, as a Chef eating out, return a badly prepared meal to the kitchen?

Chef John said...

Of course. The worst kind of customer is the one that suffers in silence.

Bill W, NH said...

from the QuizLaw.Blog:

This Is Why I Don’t Send Food Back
I don’t care how bad it is, or how screwed up an order, I’ll almost always accept what is given me at a restaurant and shut the hell up, knowing that sending something back or complaining is never going to have a positive result, even if you don’t realize your ingesting a cook’s saliva. Cooks are very defensive people. Of course, it rarely gets this bad:

Flagler County authorities say a restaurant owner pistol-whipped and beat a customer who complained that his takeout order was incorrect.
Joseph Milano, the owner of Goomba’s Pizzeria, has been charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and released on bail.
According to a police report, security footage from the pizzeria shows that Milano struck Richard Phinney with a gun. He then jumped over a counter and started to assault Phinney and his roommate.
Phinney was at the pizzeria to collect a refund for a calzone, which he said was prepared incorrectly. He was taken to a hospital after the incident with a bloodied head.
If the guy says you’re calzone was prepared correctly, just take him at his word. It’s a lot easier for everyone, and it’ll save you a trip to the hospital. "

Jen said...

Would I totally throw off this recipe if I used dried beans pre-soaked overnight?

Chef John said...

not at all, but they need to go in at the beginning so they cook.

Kevin said...

What a tasty looking chili! t would be perfect on these cold days!

Hillary said...

I thought about going the chicken route but went with turkey chili instead. Yours looks amazing! Going to make it again for the Super Bowl? :)

Anonymous said...

We made this yesterday for the Super Bowl... Delicious.. Thanks for posting!

Jen said...

I made this tonight, and it was very tasty! Thanks for the recipe and the great site.

Anonymous said...

Great meal! I made this for our dinner tonight, and it was so delicious, and easy to make, too.

mug shot said...

made it today & chef, you hit a homerun in the off season!

Anonymous said...

Made this today, the weather was cold my friend, This chili warmed me , my friends and the whole east coast up...

Anonymous said...

hey chef.. its me one of ur regular readers. i recently just cooked the beef merlot. tonight, im cooking this white chili for dinner... prob is: i cant find ground chipotle where im from. il just substitute it w/ regular chili powder and cross my fingers. watchu think???????

Chef John said...

it's spicier than chili powder, more like cayenne

Anonymous said...

Chef- I found you on YOUTUBE and fell in love. You take the fear out of cooking! Thank you so much for making these videos and answering on your comment blogs!
Your the best!!!! xxooo

Anonymous said...

Great recipe and video! Made this last night with the following additions: added a big handful of collard greens at the end for more veggies and thickness. Also added two stalks of celery earlier on.

I thought the chili was a bit too salty in the end, so next time, I'll omit some salt and probably use more water than broth.

It also wasn't as thick as I was hoping (even with the mashing) so I might use more beans, too. Overall, an absolute winner!

JudyR said...

Chef John,

I just came across your site a week ago and am hooked. I made this recipe and one other and both were great.

Thanks for getting me out of the weekly taco and speghetti routine. My family thanks you too!!

Chef John said...


Anonymous said...

This turned out AMAZING! I added some freshly grated, locally produced mozzarella ; and I also skipped on the hot peppers because adding that kind of spice makes more sense to me upon tasting it.

A few splashes of water also seemed to neutralize the excess taste of saltiness. And yes, the Cinnamon was turned out to be a great addition, although the water seemed to limit its role in the taste (I just added a pinch more).

Anonymous said...

I just made a big steaming pot of this recipe for the second time in as many weeks. Absolutely delicious, and perfect for a guy who regularly works outdoor night shifts in sub-zero temps!

I also immediately tasted and felt the difference upon replacing chicken breasts with thighs for round II. The result was much, much more flavorful.

Thanks for the recipe!

Anonymous said...

Hello John,

Can you post (anytime) a Video Recipe for: BBQ Beans?
I had some at KC Jack Stack BBQ
But, how do you do/make that at home? It's a impress the wife thing....
That would be great!!Thx!

(Did also order some Pimenton de La Vera, what a GREAT TASTE SENSATION!

Like your taste, spicy and all with the sambal. Try the sambal Badjak if you did not have already

All the Best

regards Gui

Wuraola said...

Hi chef I'm from Lagos Nigeria and I love your cooking it's really changing my orientation about cooking.please can I get the videos of your recipes cos I can't get to download hem on the internetI really would want to be a good cook like you cos I love cooking

DukeCitySnapShooter said...

Really... ADD THE CINNAMON! When I mixed the spices and smelled them, I realized I hadn't smelled anything that exotic since I was in India. In the West we associate cinnamon with sweet dishes, in the Orient, they use cinnamon for Savory dishes so go ahead and use it. It works. On another note, I didn't have a red or green bell pepper, but I did have handfuls of red and green jalapenos so I used them and it was great! I've made this six times in the past two weeks and my friends leave me no left overs; they clean the pot.

Anonymous said...

I'm cooking this right now, are you simmering this covered or uncovered?

Chef John said...

i did uncovered, but doesn't really matter. You adjust the thickness with extra liquid if you need anyway.

BeginnerMom said...

So great! It was spot on! I cannot see the video anymore but still made it with the listed ingredients . I'm going to make another one. Third one so far.

jadamson8 said...

Chef John,
This is the best chili recipe! I've made it many times and every time it is a big hit! In fact, I've won two chili-cook-offs with this chili! Thanks for posting great recipes!