Lighter White Chicken Chili is not only healthier than traditional chicken chili but easier too because it’s made in one pot! In this updated version, diced chicken breast cooks with onions, garlic with a load of spices and then simmers in chicken broth with white beans, hominy and green chiles. To thicken this chili I swapped in smashed white beans and Greek yogurt instead of sour cream. Serves 6 in about an hour.
Who here loves white chicken chili? Years ago, you may remember I shared my recipe for homemade white chicken chili. You also probably thought that making white chicken chili from scratch can be somewhat of a process. It is. In that recipe you have to poached chicken and then the soak dry beans and then cook them before adding them to the chili. Work.
It was definitely not a recipe I made often.
Nowadays I make this version. Because helloooo? easy-one-pot dinner and with a few simple shortcuts – sold. Don’t worry, this lighter white chicken chili is still from scratch but now it’s made easier and a little lighter.
Lighter chicken chili means more toppings, right?
To make this one-pot Lighter White Chicken Chili you will need:
- olive oil
- large yellow onion
- fresh garlic
- boneless skinless chicken breast halves
- ground cumin
- dried oregano
- ground coriander
- great northern beans
- diced green chiles
- low-sodium chicken broth
- plain nonfat Greek yogurt
- half & half
- kosher salt
- white pepper
Start by sautéing 2 cups diced yellow onion in 2 teaspoons of olive oil over medium to medium-low heat. Once the onions are soft and translucent, add in the garlic and cook or 1 to 2 minutes.
Increase the heat to medium high, then add in the diced chicken breast, 1-1/2 teaspoons ground cumin, 1 teaspoon dried oregano and 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander. Stir occasionally, until the chicken is fully cooked and no longer pink. About 8-10 minutes.
Next, add in 2 (of the 3) cans of white beans, all of the hominy and green chiles and stir to combine. Add the third can to a bowl and mash with a fork, or add to a mini food processor and blend.
For those who are unfamiliar with hominy, in a nutshell it’s white corn. However Wikipedia has a long more thorough explanation of how the white corn becomes hominy, so check it out to get the deets.
Next add in the 1-3/4 cups broth, the smashed beans and half and half. Cover and bring to a simmer. Once simmering, remove the lid and continue to cook 25 to 30 minutes.
Lastly, stir in the cup of greek yogurt, taste and season with kosher salt to taste and add in 1/4 teaspoon white pepper, right before serving.
Finally, top with as much or as little toppings as you’d like.
- lime wedges
- Monterey or pepper jack cheese
- plain fat free Greek yogurt or sour cream
- tortilla chips
Easy, flavorful and yet still comforting and soul warming. I hope you love this lighter white chicken chili as much as we do!
How To Freeze Chili And Reheat Later:
- COOL: make sure the chili is completely cool before freezing. Never place hot or very warm items in the freezer (or fridge!) as it can thaw and negatively affect the nearby food.
- PORTION: when cool, divide chili into portions. Whether it’s a single serving, two or four, portion the cooled chili into either freezer safe bags or air-tight containers. I prefer using freezer safe bags and removing as much air as possible, this helps with storing.
- FLATTEN: once portioned, lay flat on a rimmed baking sheet and freeze for a few hours. Like in this post.
- STORE: stack the flat frozen chili portions vertically or horizontally saving so much freezer space. Store chili in the freezer for up to 6 months.
- REHEAT: I prefer to thaw frozen chili overnight in the fridge. However you can soak in a sink of lukewarm water for 20 to 30 minutes – flip every so often and change out the water at least once or twice. You can also defrost in the microwave until thawed. Lastly, add thawed chili to saucepan or dutch oven and heat until thoroughly heated throughout.
Enjoy! And if you give this Lighter White Chicken Chili recipe a try, let me know! Snap a photo and tag me on twitter or instagram!
One Pot Lighter White Chicken Chili
- 1 teaspoons extra light olive oil
- 1 large yellow onion, diced (about 2 cups)
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1¼ pounds boneless skinless chicken breast halves
- 1½ teaspoons ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
- 3 (15 ounce) cans great northern beans, drained, rinsed and divided
- 1 (15 ounce) can hominy, drained and rinsed
- 8 ounces diced green chiles
- 1¾ cups low-sodium chicken broth
- 1/4 cup half & half, or whole milk
- 1 cup nonfat plain Greek yogurt
- kosher salt, to taste
- 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon white pepper
- Heat olive oil a large Dutch oven on medium to medium-low heat.
- Add in the onion and sauté until soft and translucent. Then add in the garlic and cook or 1 to 2 minutes.
- Next increase the heat to medium-high and add in the diced chicken, cumin, oregano and coriander. Stir the chicken occasionally until fully cooked and no longer pink.
- Meanwhile use a fork or mini food processor to smash one can of (drained and rinsed) white beans.
- Add in the remaining 2 cans of the [drained and rinsed] beans, the hominy and green chiles into the pot with your chicken. Stir and pour in the broth, half & half and the smashed white beans. Cover and bring to a simmer. Once simmering, remove the lid and continue to cook 25 to 30 minutes.
- Stir in the greek yogurt and season with the white pepper and then salt to taste.
- Garnish with desired toppings and enjoy!
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THANK YOU in advance for your support!
What is hominy?..
Also wanted to tell you that I made your Mexicali Chicken and Nachos this past weekend and it was very good! Going to use the leftover chicken tonight for chicken tortilla soup.
Hi Julie! Hominy is white corn but Wikipedia has a more thorough explanation about the process of how white corn becomes hominy. Here’s the link: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hominy
And I’m so glad you made the nachos! ❤️❤️
your white chicken chili is a family staple in our house. (In fact, we shared it in my Heidi’s first grade recipe book (credited to you) they prepared at Christmas time and also made it for a dinner for the teachers. Heidi is now known by her peers in association with her favorite chili. ) guess we will just have to try this one and decide which one we like better now!
Oh that’s awesome, Danielle! I hope this one lives up to the other