BEST White Chicken Chili

5 from 1 vote

This white chicken chili recipe is packed with vegetables, salsa verde and all of the best toppings! There is something magical about a giant pot of simmering chili. Can’t wait for you to try my BEST White Chicken Chili.

finished photo of white chicken chili

White Chicken Chili

Chili night is always a favorite in our home! The kids love personalizing their own bowls with toppings of their choice. This easy white chicken chili recipe is one of our favorites to enjoy all year round, but is even more delicious during the chili months of the year. You’ll love this perfectly spiced hearty chili recipe.

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

  • Chili is great for weekend entertaining or for busy weeknights!
  • Everyone loves a nice warm bowl of chili during chilly months.
  • It’s not only easy to make, it’s delicious and hearty.

Try my Perfect Weeknight Chili Recipe too! Follow Picky Palate on Instagram for daily recipe inspiration.

ingredients for white chicken chili

What You’ll Need

Here are the ingredients you’ll need to make white chicken chili at home. See the recipe card located at the bottom of the post for full instructions.

  • extra virgin olive oil– You’ll use the olive oil to saute the onion and garlic.
  • onion– I like to use white onion, finely diced.
  • garlic– You can mince your own garlic or get the jar of already minced garlic found in the produce department of the grocery store.
  • cooked chicken such as rotisserie– I love using rotisserie chicken for quick fix recipes. I keep it on hand, shredded in the refrigerator.
  • chicken broth– Look for the reduced sodium chicken broth.
  • white beans– Canellini beans work great here.
  • salsa verde – I usually pick up the Herdez brand for my salsa verde.
  • Ranch Dressing Seasoning– Find the seasoning packets in the salad dressing section. Also comes in a box of 4.
  • ground cumin– Ground cumin is a nice aromatic spice that goes perfect in chili recipes.
  • lime juice– Fresh lime juice works great here.
  • kosher salt- Kosher salt is a coarse salt. I prefer using it in my cooking and baking.
  • freshly cracked black pepper– For best tasting results, use freshly cracked black pepper.
  • garlic salt– Look for the Lawry’s brand of garlic salt.
  • fresh cilantro– Fresh chopped cilantro adds the perfect fresh touch for chili.

Can I Substitute White Beans For Other Varieties?

You can use your favorite beans for this recipe, but for white chili, I prefer the white Great Northern Beans. Black beans, kidney beans, pinto beans, garbanzo beans all work just fine too.

adding chicken broth to white chicken chili pot

How To Make White Chicken Chili

Saute Vegetables. Heat oil in large pot over medium heat. When hot, add onion and garlic. Cook and stir for 5 minutes, until softened.

Add Remaining Chili Ingredients to Pot and Simmer. Add chicken, chicken broth, beans, salsa verde, Ranch Dressing Mix, cumin, lime juice, salt, pepper, garlic salt and cilantro. Stir and simmer on low for at least 30 minutes before serving. Simmer for a couple hours for even better flavor!

Serve With Toppings of Choice. Serve each bowl or cup of chili with toppings of choice.

Mistakes To Avoid When Making Chili

  1. Don’t Add raw meat to your chili, make sure it’s browned first. The first order of business before adding anything else to the pot is to brown any meat in your recipe. This important step adds an extra savory flavor that simply cannot be replicated by simmering on the stovetop or in a slow cooker. Plus, the texture is vastly improved when the meat is seared.
  2. Don’t buy the store bought “chili seasonings.” Use fresh ground cumin and chili powder and other seasonings to taste.
  3. Don’t wait to season the chili until the end, season as you go! Season early and season often. When you add seasoning early on, the flavors develop an even rich taste while the chili simmers. Taste test along the way.
  4. Don’t forget a squeeze or two of lime juice before serving! This brings a bright tang to each bite.
  5. Have LOTS of toppings available for your guests, not just cheese and sour cream 🙂 See my favorite chili toppings at the bottom of this post.
adding cilantro to white chicken chili pot

What’s The Best Kind of Pot To Use To Make Chili?

For years, I’ve used the Le Creuset line of cast iron skillet pots. They are a bit of an investment, but if you get one in each size that you use most often, they will last you for years and years. I’m not kidding, I’ve had mine for over 10 years and they’re still in excellent condition. Check TJ Maxx, Homegoods, and Marshalls for Le Creuset at a discounted price. Usually a number to choose from.

white chicken chili

A big handful of cumin for that perfect chili flavor!

Tips For Making The Best Chili

While making chili can be easy, there are a number of ingredients you’ll need for the perfect chili! If you are making a chicken chili, I would recommend using a fresh Rotisserie Chicken for the shredded chicken in this recipe. They’re generally packed with flavor and saves you time in the kitchen. You can also look in your grocery store’s produce department for already chopped vegetables. I found these perfectly diced onions at my grocery store and am all for time saving ingredients!

  1. When you’ve got the time, it’s all about the simmer. The longer you simmer, the more amazing flavor you’ll get.
  2. I like to place a whole Anaheim Chili inside the chili to simmer as well. You get even more flavor this way!
  3. Serve this recipe with a nice chef salad with lots of vegetables.
  4. Store any leftovers in an airtight container for 3-4 days in the refrigerator.  Mason Jars work great too.
spooning up white chicken chili

The Best Toppings For Chili

  1. Avocado– I like to chop avocado and add them to the top of my chili. The creamy texture is perfect with the chili spices.
  2. Sour Cream– Adding a dollop of sour cream can add creaminess to your bowl of chili.
  3. Cilantro– Chopped fresh cilantro adds a little freshness to each bite of chili.
  4. Diced tomatoes– Diced tomatoes or pico de gallo is another great option for topping your bowls of chili.
  5. Salsa– Spoon your favorite salsa on top of individual bowls of chili for an added spice.
  6. Cheese– Shredded cheese is another great choice for toppings on top of chili.
  7. Onion– Diced onion added to chili is a popular topping for chili.
  8. Jalapenos– For some added heat, remove seeds and membrane from jalapeno and slice. Add sliced jalapeno to top of chili if desired.
  9. Crackers– Saltine crackers are a popular side/topping for bowls of chili.

How To Serve

Serve white chili at any dinner occasion with family and friends. It’s great during chilly months and even good when it’s warm outside. A perfect dinner all year round. I like to enjoy chili with a side of crusty bread. Cornbread is also a delicious side to your bowl of chili.


Store any leftovers in an airtight container for up to 3 days in the refrigerator.

Reheating Instructions

Reheat in a heat proof bowl, covered in the microwave as needed, losely covered in a bowl for 60-90 seconds. You can also warm up leftovers in a saucepan over low-medium heat until hot. You can also freeze your leftovers. Place cooled chili in an airtight container and freeze up to 3 months.

Try More Easy Chili Recipes

white chicken chili
5 from 1 vote

Best White Chicken Chili Recipe

This is the Best White Chicken Chili Recipe! Simmer on low and top with your favorite chili toppings. Perfect for feeding a crowd.
Course: Dinner, Main Course
Cuisine: Mexican
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings: 12
Calories: 197kcal
Author: Jenny
Cost: $25
Print Pin Rate


  • Dutch Oven
  • Stove or Dutch Oven
  • cutting board
  • chef knife
  • measuring cups
  • measuring spoons
  • mixing spoons


  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 cups finely chopped white onion
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 6 cups chopped/shredded chicken I used a rotisserie chicken
  • 64 ounces reduced sodium chicken broth
  • 4 15 ounce cans Great Northern beans drained
  • 1 cup mild salsa verde I used Herdez brand
  • 1 ounce packet Ranch Dressing Mix
  • 4 tablespoons ground cumin
  • 1-2 fresh limes juiced
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic salt Lawry’s is great
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped cilantro leaves
  • shredded cheddar cheese topping option
  • sour cream topping option
  • chopped green onion topping option
  • bacon crumbles topping option
  • tortilla chips topping option


  • Heat oil in large pot over medium heat. When hot, add onion and garlic. Cook and stir for 5 minutes, until softened. Add chicken, chicken broth, beans, salsa verde, Ranch Dressing Mix, cumin, lime juice, salt, pepper, garlic salt and cilantro. Stir and simmer on low for at least 30 minutes before serving. Simmer for a couple hours for even better flavor! Serve each bowl or cup of chili with toppings of choice.


Calories: 197kcal | Carbohydrates: 9g | Protein: 19g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 54mg | Sodium: 705mg | Potassium: 420mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 211IU | Vitamin C: 5mg | Calcium: 43mg | Iron: 2mg
Keywords: easy white chicken chili, white bean chicken chili, white bean chicken chili recipe, white chicken chili, white chicken chili recipe

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