Healthy? White Bean Chicken Chili
October 5, 2015 | Posted in: Recipes
Ingredients (What you need)
2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, chopped
2 (4 oz) cans chopped mild green chilies
¼ teaspoon ground red pepper (cayenne)
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon dried oregano
½ teaspoon ground white pepper
¼ teaspoon ground cloves
3 pounds cooked Great Northern beans canned
4 cans chicken stock or broth
20 oz Monterey jack cheese, grated and divided
Canned jalapeno peppers, chopped
Directions (What to do)
I have to be honest that healthy eating is not really my strong suite. But enjoying life is good for you, right? And I can assure you that you will, in fact, enjoy life while savoring every morsel of this white bean chicken chili, so that makes it healthy-ish, right? I would think that swapping the chicken for turkey might be a healthier option for some folks and you’re in control of the spice factor. I like a kick to it so I keep the chilies and Monterey jack cheese but if your belly is temperamental then I’d advise subbing a milder cheese and avoiding the peppers and chilies all together. You could also add more sour cream at the end to subdue the flavor if you like.
Now, this delicious meal DOES require a bit of prep so you’ll want to make it on a day when your helpers are available. For me, the teenagers do just fine. They’ve both taken culinary at school so they can even do some of the chopping and shredding if need be. If you don’t have teenagers readily available hopefully you have some sort of food processor that will do most of the tough work for you. Also, if bending over is sometimes painful for you like it is for me, have your significant other get all the ingredients and dishes out and place the on the counter for you ahead of time. That way you can cook from a stool and then enjoy tasty leftovers for days!
Place your chicken in a Dutch oven or large saucepan.
Add cold water to cover: bring to a simmer. Cook until tender, approximately 15-20 minutes. Remove chicken from saucepan, dice or shred. Discard water.
Using the same pan, heat oil over medium heat. Add onions, cook until translucent, about four minutes. Stir in garlic, chilies, cumin, red pepper, oregano, and cloves. If you are like me, you might want to measure all of your spices ahead of time and just dump them all in at once—right now. Saute 2 to 3 minutes. Add chicken, beans, stock and three cups of cheese. Depending on your budget and energy level you can decide on whether to grate the cheese yourself. I did it once. Never again. Now the recipe says to let it simmer for 15 minutes, I’m going to tell you that the longer you let it simmer, the better it will taste. Like, let it get some hours in. Let those flavors mingle. THEN ladle into large bowls. Top each bowl with an ounce or so of remaining cheese. Serve with sour cream and chopped jalapenos on the side.
I got this recipe from my friend Crystal several years ago. She throws a holiday party each year JUST so she can make this chili. It’s that good. Enjoy!
Your turn. I’d love to share your recipes with everyone. Have some tastiness that’s actually healthy? Send it on over to Chronicallywhole@gmail.com and maybe you’ll see it on the blog next time!