Warm up with white bean and chicken chili | VailDaily.com

Warm up with white bean and chicken chili

Versatile dish is easy to modify for dietary needs

After a long day on the slopes, come home to a warm pot of chili and give your family and friends a feast. Chili is a crowd-pleaser with so many varieties, it can be enjoyed by all and adaptable to all preferences and dietary restrictions. Chili is also a hearty, nutrient-dense comfort food that warms your belly and soul during the wintertime. 

Mix things up by making this white bean and chicken chili from Ally Stephens, chef and owner of Season to Taste catering company. “Chicken chili can be a healthier variation of the typical red meat and red bean chili,” Stephens said. “The flavors are completely different than that of red chili. White beans pair better with chicken as they are not only aesthetically more appealing than red beans with chicken, but white beans also tend to have a milder flavor than the red bean varieties.” 

For the chicken, Stephens recommends either making it yourself at home by roasting a chicken or sautéing chicken breasts and shredding them by hand once cool enough to handle. If you want to save some time, buy a rotisserie chicken at the grocery store and shred it. 

Greek yogurt or a blend of Greek yogurt and sour cream is what Stephens used in the recipe. This recipe is very adaptable if you are catering to the dietary needs of someone who needs it to be dairy-free. “You can absolutely make this chili dairy-free by substituting the butter, milk, cheese, and yogurt or sour cream with almond milk or a nut-free coconut milk and nutritional yeast or dairy-free cheese can be served instead of animal milk cheese,” Stephens said.

“This chili is delicious the day it’s made but it’s even better the next day,” Stephens said. “If cooled and stored properly, this chili can last in the fridge for a few days or in the freezer for a month or two making for a perfectly easy and quick weeknight meal or for when unexpected guests pop over.”

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White Chicken Chili


16 ounce canned white beans, drained and rinsed

2 medium yellow onions, diced

½ cup unsalted butter

¼ cup AP flour, or GF 1:1 flour

1-2 cup chicken broth

3 cups milk

1 teaspoon hot sauce

1 ½ teaspoon chili powder

1 teaspoon ground cumin

½ teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon pepper

8 ounce can mild green chilies

1 roasted chicken, bone removed, about 2 pounds

1 ½ cup grated Monterey Jack or cheese of choice

½ cup plain Greek yogurt or sour cream

Desired garnishes


Roast chicken, or use a rotisserie chicken, remove skin and shred meat off the bone. In a large heavy pot, melt 2 Tbsp of butter and cook the chopped onions until softened. Remove and set aside. Melt the remaining butter over low heat and whisk in flour. Whisking constantly, cook the roux for about three minutes. Stirring constantly, add in the cooked onion and gradually add the broth and milk. Bring mixture to a boil and then simmer, stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes or until thickened. Stir in hot sauce, chili powder, cumin, salt and pepper. Add beans, chilies, chicken and cheese and stir to combine. Cook over low heat for about 20 minutes. Add Greek yogurt or sour cream. Season to taste and then either serve immediately or let sit overnight in the fridge and enjoy the next day. Garnish with cilantro, jalapeños, tomatoes, scallions, etc.

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