Slow cooker white chicken chili will become your go-to recipe for cool weather entertaining and busy weeknights. Included in the recipe are more than 5 ways to adapt this and make it perfect for YOU!
Why you’ll love it: The recipe is very easy to make and is a real crowd-pleaser.
How long it takes: 15 minutes to prep, 4 to 8 hours in the slow cooker
Equipment you’ll need: crockpot
Michigan wants to keep winter around FOREVER! Have you heard? Michigan + Winter = BFFs. Best friends forever! Michigan is wearing the half of the heart necklace that says “best” and winter is wearing the half that says “friends,” because clearly winter isn’t “best.”
I’m trying my hardest to roll with the punches, because after all, it’s my 34th year in Michigan and this is not new behavior for our dear old mitten state.
I do, however, refuse to wear my big puffy parka in April. I just won’t do it, I don’t even care how cold I am.
While I’m ready to say good-bye to winter, the slow cooker can stick around. Truthfully, I love the slow cooker all year round. In the winter, it makes cozy soups and stews and in the summer, it makes meals without heating up the whole house. It works just fine in April winter, too.
I’ve made this slow cooker white chicken chili hundreds of times, and it’s always a little different but always so, so, so easy. The recipe card has the most common version, and ideas to make it your own. There are ways to make it healthy (it’s quite healthy as is), and there are ways to make it creamy and rich.
Slow cooker chicken chili is as perfect for parties as it is for busy days. Throw all the ingredients in the slow cooker (it will take you five minutes, ten if you haven’t had your coffee yet), head out and when you come back, your house will smell amazing and dinner will pretty much be D-O-N-E.
About This White Chicken Chili Recipe
- It uses pantry items, except for the chicken. As with most of my go-to recipes, I almost always have all the ingredients I need for this recipe on hand, or some form of them. We’ll discuss some adaptations you can make if your pantry isn’t stocked with these exact ingredients.
- This chili is popular at parties. I love making this chili for parties because it’s always a huge hit and people can dress it up with their own toppings. It’s a staple at our annual fall harvest party, but I make it nearly year-round.
- You can cook it various ways. This chili recipe can be cooked on the stovetop, in the Instant Pot, or in the slow cooker. Choose the method that works best for your day.
Ways To Change Up White Chicken Chili
- Omit the beans. Are you doing a Whole30? Leave out the beans! If you want, replace them with a couple of diced potatoes.
- Make it with dark meat. Don’t like chicken breasts? Boneless skinless chicken thighs work well too, or a combination of the two.
- Extra ingredients you can add: Want to bulk it up a little? Add a can of black beans or corn, either fresh, frozen, or canned. Add the corn right before serving so it doesn’t get tough.
- Add cheese. When I’m making this for a party, I almost always stir in 1 to 2 cups of shredded (shred it yourself!) Monterey Jack cheese. It adds so much great flavor and it also thickens up the chili a little to make it more chili-like and less soup-like. Alternatively, you could keep the cheese on the side and use it as a garnish.
- Creamy chicken chili: Stir in 4 ounces of full-fat cream cheese just before serving the chili. You’ll love the flavor cream cheese adds to this chili.
- Substitute salsa. Don’t have green chiles and/or tomatoes? I often throw in a jar of my favorite salsa instead of those two ingredients. It’s easy and the taste is fantastic.
- Love cilantro? Instead of just sprinkling it on top, chop up a bunch and stir it right into the chili.
- Make it spicy. Add more green chilies, diced jalapeño, or red pepper flakes to turn up the heat.
Different methods To Cook White Chicken Chili
- Instant Pot: Cook on high pressure for 15 minutes before doing a quick release. Take out the chicken breasts, shred them, return them to the chili.
- Stovetop: Dice the raw chicken and sauté it first with the onions, before adding the rest of the ingredients and simmering until it’s deliciously cooked through and the flavors are perfect.
Are you guys getting the point here? You can make this completely your own in about 100 different ways, but it’s also perfect as written on the recipe card. How are you going to try it first?
Suggested Toppings for Chicken Chili
I like Greek yogurt, fresh cilantro, and sliced jalapeños. Try tortilla chips or strips, diced avocado, shredded cheese, sour cream, chopped tomatoes or onions.
Storage & Reheating Tips
Refrigerator: Cool chili to room temperature and refrigerate in a covered container for up to 4 days.
Freezer: Place cooled chili into freezer-safe containers; freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.
Reheating: Individual servings can be reheated in the microwave. Heat larger amounts in a saucepan over medium heat on the stove.
- 1 ½ pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts
- 1 cup diced yellow onion (1 medium onion)
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 1 ½ teaspoons dried oregano (or Mexican oregano)
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 jar (48 oz.) great Northern beans, rinsed and drained
- 1 can (14.5 oz.) petite diced tomatoes, undrained
- 1 can (4.5 oz.) chopped green chiles
- 4 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
- optional toppings: tortilla chips/strips, chopped or sliced jalapeño peppers, diced avocado, fresh cilantro, shredded cheese, sour cream, etc.
- Add all ingredients to a 6-quart slow cooker. Stir to combine.
- Cover and cook for 4 to 5 hours on High, or 7 to 8 hours on Low.
- Remove chicken breasts to a large plate and use two forks to shred it into bite-sized pieces.
- Return shredded chicken to slow cooker; cover and cook on low for 15 to 20 minutes, or until you’re ready to eat.
- Serve with your favorite toppings!
- If desired, substitute a jar of your favorite salsa for the tomatoes and green chiles.
- Thicker Chili: add a can of rinsed and drained black or pinto beans and a can of drained canned corn.
- Creamy Chili: Stir in 4 ounces of cream cheese just before serving, or melt 1 to 2 cups of shredded Monterey jack cheese into the chili when it’s finished cooking.
- Instant Pot Directions: Cook on high pressure for 15 minutes before doing a quick release. Take out the chicken breasts, shred them, return them to the chili.
- Stovetop Directions: Dice raw chicken and sauté with a tablespoon of oil and the onions, before adding the rest of the ingredients and simmering until it’s deliciously cooked through and the flavors are perfect.
This website provides approximate nutrition information for convenience and as a courtesy only. Nutrition data is gathered primarily from the USDA Food Composition Database, whenever available, or otherwise other online calculators.