Olga's White Bean Chicken Chili Recipe

Olga’s White Bean Chicken Chili Recipe

Looking for a chili recipe that will set your taste buds free? Look no further than Olga’s White Bean Chicken Chili.

This tantalizing dish combines tender chicken, creamy white beans, and a medley of spices for a flavor explosion that will leave you craving more.

With just a few simple steps, you’ll have a hearty, satisfying meal that’s perfect for cozy nights in or gatherings with friends.

Get ready to savor the freedom of delicious homemade chili.

Olga's White Bean Chicken Chili Recipe
Olga’s White Bean Chicken Chili Recipe

Key Takeaways

  • Marinate the chicken in lime juice, cumin, and paprika for added flavor.
  • Soak the white beans beforehand to improve digestion, reduce cooking time, and enhance nutrient absorption.
  • Use a combination of chili powder, cumin, and oregano for a classic Tex-Mex flavor.
  • Simmer on low heat for a longer period of time to meld flavors together.

Olga's White Bean Chicken Chili Recipe

Recipe by Heather SmithCourse: MainCuisine: AmericanDifficulty: Easy


Prep time


Cooking time





Prepare to be embraced by the comforting flavors of Olga's White Bean Chicken Chili. This recipe is more than just a meal; it's a warm, hearty hug in a bowl. Picture succulent chicken, tender white beans, and a symphony of spices that create a harmonious blend of flavors. Olga's White Bean Chicken Chili is a timeless classic, a recipe passed down through generations that's perfect for any season. Whether you're a seasoned cook or a newcomer to the kitchen, this dish promises a taste sensation that's as heartwarming as it is delicious.


  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cubed

  • 2 cans (15 ounces each) of white beans, drained and rinsed

  • 1 large onion, chopped

  • 2 cloves garlic, minced

  • 1 can (4 ounces) of diced green chilies

  • 4 cups chicken broth

  • 1 teaspoon cumin

  • 1 teaspoon oregano

  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper

  • Salt and pepper to taste

  • Olive oil for sautéing

  • Shredded Monterey Jack cheese and fresh cilantro for garnish


  • Sauté Chicken and Aromatics:
    In a large pot, heat olive oil over medium-high heat.
    Add cubed chicken and cook until it turns white.
    Stir in chopped onions and minced garlic, sautéing until onions become translucent.
  • Add White Beans and Green Chilies:
    Incorporate 2 cans (15 ounces each) of drained and rinsed white beans.
    Stir in 1 can (4 ounces) of diced green chilies for a mild kick.
  • Season and Simmer:
    Pour in 4 cups of chicken broth for a rich base.
    Add 1 teaspoon of cumin, 1 teaspoon of oregano, 1/2 teaspoon of cayenne pepper, and salt and pepper to taste.
    Stir well and let the chili simmer for 20-25 minutes, allowing the flavors to meld.
  • Serve and Garnish:
    Ladle the chili into bowls.
    Garnish with shredded Monterey Jack cheese and fresh cilantro leaves.
    Serve piping hot and enjoy your Olga's White Bean Chicken Chili.


To make Olga’s White Bean Chicken Chili, gather the following ingredients:

  • 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 2 cans of white beans
  • 1 cup of chicken broth
  • 1 onion
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1 jalapeno pepper
  • 1 teaspoon of cumin
  • 1 teaspoon of chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon of oregano
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Start by cooking the chicken breasts using your preferred technique – grilling, baking, or pan-searing – until they’re cooked through and then shred them into bite-sized pieces.

In a large pot, sauté the onion, garlic, and jalapeno pepper until they’re soft and fragrant.

Add the shredded chicken, white beans, chicken broth, and all the spices.

Let it simmer for about 30 minutes, allowing the flavors to meld together.

Taste and adjust the seasoning as needed.

This recipe is incredibly versatile, so feel free to experiment with different cooking techniques and flavor variations to make it your own.

Preparing the Chicken

Once the chicken breasts have been cooked and shredded, you’ll frequently find that the next step in preparing Olga’s White Bean Chicken Chili is sautéing the onion, garlic, and jalapeno pepper. This step adds a delightful aroma and depth of flavor to the chili.

Here are some tips to make the most out of this stage:

  • Marinating the chicken: Before cooking, you can marinate the chicken in a mixture of lime juice, cumin, and paprika. This will infuse the meat with a tangy and smoky flavor that complements the other ingredients in the chili.

  • Alternative protein options: If you prefer not to use chicken, you can easily substitute it with other proteins such as turkey, pork, or even tofu. Just make sure to adjust the cooking time accordingly.

  • Sauté to perfection: To achieve a perfect sauté, heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic, and jalapeno pepper, and cook until they become fragrant and slightly softened.

  • Don’t rush it: Take your time during this step to allow the flavors to develop fully. Stir occasionally to prevent any burning and ensure even cooking.

Cooking the White Beans

Now that you’ve prepared the chicken for Olga’s delicious white bean chicken chili, it’s time to focus on cooking those white beans to perfection.

One important step is soaking the beans beforehand to help soften them and reduce cooking time.

But how long should you cook the beans?

Let’s dive into the discussion and find out!

Olga's White Bean Chicken Chili Recipe
Olga’s White Bean Chicken Chili Recipe

Soaking the Beans

Start by rinsing the white beans under cold water to remove any impurities. Soaking the beans is an important step in preparing them for cooking.

Here are some key reasons why soaking the beans is beneficial:

  • Improved Digestion: Soaking helps to break down the complex sugars and starches in the beans, making them easier to digest.
  • Reduced Cooking Time: Soaking the beans can significantly reduce the cooking time, saving you precious minutes in the kitchen.
  • Enhanced Nutrient Absorption: Soaking allows the beans to release phytic acid, which can hinder nutrient absorption. This makes the beans more nutritious and easier for your body to assimilate.
  • Alternative Bean Options: Soaking opens up a world of alternative bean options, from kidney beans to black-eyed peas, giving you the freedom to experiment with new flavors and textures.

Soaking the beans not only improves their taste and texture but also allows for better digestion and nutrient absorption. Give it a try and see the difference it makes in your next batch of white bean chicken chili.

Cooking Time Required?

To cook the white beans, you’ll need to simmer them in a pot of water until they’re tender. This step is crucial to ensure that the beans are cooked to perfection and have a soft, creamy texture. The cooking time required can vary depending on the type and size of the beans, but it usually takes about 1 to 1.5 hours.

While the beans are simmering, you can prepare the rest of the ingredients for your white bean chicken chili. This recipe offers a variety of options for customization, allowing you to add your own twist to the dish.

If you’re looking for quick and easy cooking tips, consider using canned beans instead of dried ones. This will significantly reduce the cooking time and make the recipe more convenient. Additionally, you can use a pressure cooker to cook the beans in a shorter amount of time.

These tips will help you save time without compromising the delicious flavors of your white bean chicken chili.

Adding the Spices and Seasonings

You’ll need to add the spices and seasonings to your white bean chicken chili to give it a flavorful kick. Here are some tips and variations to help you adjust the spice level and create different flavor profiles for your chili:

  • Use a combination of chili powder, cumin, and oregano for a classic Tex-Mex flavor.
  • Add a pinch of cayenne pepper or red pepper flakes if you like it extra spicy.
  • For a smoky twist, try adding a bit of chipotle powder or smoked paprika.
  • Experiment with different herbs and spices like thyme, basil, or even cinnamon to add depth and complexity to your chili.

Simmering the Chili

Now it’s time to let your white bean chicken chili simmer and develop its rich flavors.

Simmering is a crucial step in creating a delicious and hearty chili. There are a few simmering techniques you can employ to enhance the taste of your chili.

One technique is to simmer the chili on low heat for a longer period of time, allowing the flavors to meld together and intensify.

Another technique is to partially cover the pot, allowing some of the liquid to evaporate and thicken the chili. This will result in a more robust and concentrated flavor.

You can also experiment with different flavor variations by adding ingredients like smoked paprika, chipotle peppers, or even a splash of beer.

Remember to stir occasionally to prevent the chili from sticking to the bottom of the pot.

Serving and Garnishing the Chili

First, garnish your white bean chicken chili with your favorite toppings. Here are some different types of garnishes for white bean chicken chili that you can try to make your dish even more delicious:

  • Shredded cheese: Sprinkle some cheddar or Monterey Jack cheese on top of your chili. The melted cheese adds a creamy and savory touch.
  • Sour cream: Add a dollop of sour cream to your chili for a cool and tangy flavor.
  • Fresh herbs: Chop up some fresh cilantro or parsley and sprinkle it on top. The herbs will add a pop of freshness to your dish.
  • Tortilla strips: Crumble some crispy tortilla chips over your chili for a crunchy texture.

Now that your chili is garnished, it’s time to serve it in creative ways. Here are some tips to make your chili presentation more interesting:

  • Serve in bread bowls: Hollow out a crusty bread loaf and pour your chili inside. Not only does it look impressive, but you can also enjoy the chili-soaked bread.
  • Make chili nachos: Layer tortilla chips, chili, cheese, and other toppings on a baking sheet. Bake until the cheese is melted and bubbly. Serve with a side of guacamole and salsa for a delicious twist.
  • Use chili as a topping: Instead of serving chili in a bowl, use it as a topping for baked potatoes, hot dogs, or burgers. It adds a hearty and flavorful touch to these classic dishes.
  • Create a chili bar: Set up a chili bar with various toppings like cheese, sour cream, diced onions, jalapenos, and tortilla chips. Let your guests customize their chili bowls to their liking.

With these garnishing and serving ideas, you can elevate your white bean chicken chili and impress your guests with a delicious and visually appealing dish. Enjoy your freedom in creating a chili experience that’s uniquely yours.

Nutritional Facts:-

  • Calories: 350
  • Protein: 30g
  • Carbohydrates: 35g
  • Fat: 10g
  • Saturated Fat: 4g
  • Fiber: 9g
  • Sugar: 2g
  • Sodium: 750mg

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I Substitute Black Beans for White Beans in This Recipe?

Yes, you can substitute black beans for white beans in this recipe. Black beans have a slightly different flavor and texture, but they are just as nutritious. They are packed with fiber and protein, making them a great addition to any dish.

How Spicy Is This Chili Recipe?

To adjust the spiciness level in chili recipes, you can experiment with different types of chili peppers. From mild jalapenos to fiery habaneros, the choice is yours. Find the perfect balance that gives you the freedom to enjoy your chili just the way you like it.

Can I Use Ground Chicken Instead of Chicken Breast?

Yes, you can use ground chicken instead of chicken breast in the recipe. The flavor and texture will be slightly different, but it will still be delicious. Adjust the cooking time and temperature accordingly. Enjoy your chili!

Can I Make This Chili Recipe Vegetarian by Omitting the Chicken?

Yes, you can make this chili recipe vegetarian by omitting the chicken. There are plenty of delicious alternatives like tofu, tempeh, or even a medley of vegetables. Get creative and experiment!

How Long Does It Take to Simmer the Chili for Optimal Flavor?

For optimal flavor, simmer the chili until the ingredients blend together, creating a mouthwatering symphony of flavors. Let the simmering time work its magic, enhancing the taste and making every spoonful a delight.

Olga's White Bean Chicken Chili Recipe
Olga’s White Bean Chicken Chili Recipe


Get ready for a mouthwatering adventure with Olga’s White Bean Chicken Chili! As the aroma fills the air, you’ll be tantalized by the rich flavors and tender chicken.

Each spoonful is a burst of warmth and comfort, making you crave more. With the perfect balance of spices and seasonings, this chili is a true delight for your taste buds.

So gather your loved ones, garnish with a sprinkle of fresh cilantro, and savor this delicious bowl of goodness.

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