This delicious Southwest Chicken Chili Mac is easy to make in a skillet and perfect for picky eaters! It’s packed with chicken, pasta and delicious chili flavors the whole family enjoys!
Southwest Chicken Chili Mac
It’s time for chili night! Break out your cast iron skillet or favorite pot, dinner is about to be served. This is a flavorful chicken chili seasoned with fragrant southwest ingredients along with some fun wagon wheel pasta. My boys went nuts for this dish. Top with a little sour cream and enjoy!
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
- Kids as well as adults love this fun dinner recipe!
- It’s not only easy to make, but delicious!
- Makes delicious leftovers too!
What You’ll Need
Here are the ingredients you’ll need to make Southwest Chili Mac at home. See the recipe card located at the bottom of the post for full instructions.
- small pasta shells– Use any small pasta shape you like. The wagon wheels are fun if you can find them.
- extra virgin olive oil– Olive oil is used to saute the vegetables.
- onion– I like to get a white onion. Finely chop before adding to hot pan.
- bell pepper– Finely chop and de-seed bell pepper.
- fresh garlic– Mince the garlic before adding to pan.
- cooked chicken breast such as rotisserie– I use rotisserie chicken often for quick dinners.
- diced tomatoes– Any canned diced tomatoes work great.
- chicken broth– Look for reduced sodium chicken broth.
- corn– Drain the can of corn before adding to chili mac.
- white beans– You can substitute for any white beans you’d like.
- chili powder– Chili powder adds that great chili flavor to the dish.
- ground cumin– Cumin is smoky and aromatic. Great in chili recipes.
- Ranch Dressing Seasoning mix– Find the Ranch Dressing seasoning mix in the dressing isle of the grocery store.
- fresh cilantro– Fresh cilantro adds color and freshness to the chili.
How To Make Chicken Chili Mac
Cook Pasta. Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain and run under cool water to stop cooking.
Saute Vegetables. Heat oil in 9 inch deep cast iron skillet. Stir in onions and peppers, cook stirring until softened about 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook stirring for 1 minute.
Add Chicken and Chili Ingredients. Place chicken, tomatoes, broth, corn, beans, 1 cup wagon wheel pasta, chili powder, cumin, Ranch seasoning and cilantro into pot, stirring to combine.
Simmer. Stir until well combined. Reduce heat to low and simmer until ready to serve.
How To Serve
Serve Chili Mac hot, in individual serving bowls. Top with shredded cheese and more cilantro if desired.
How To Store Leftovers
Store any leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 3 days in an airtight container.
Recipe Tips For Success
- Be careful not to overcook your pasta, it will continue to cook some in the hot chili. I like to check my pasta 2 minutes before the package recommends. Once it’s al dente drain immediately.
- Use different variations of pasta if you’d like. The wheels are fun, but any small shaped pasta works great.
- You can substitute the beans for other varieties. Black, kidney and pinto all work well. You can even omit the beans.
- Try using cooked beef instead of chicken for another varation.
Try More Delicious Chili Recipes
Southwest Chicken Chili Mac
- Dutch Oven or large pot
- can opener
- measuring spoons
- mixing spoon
- strainer for pasta
- 8 oz wagon wheel pasta noodles
- 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 cup finely chopped white onion
- 1/2 cup finely chopped sweet peppers or bell peppers
- 1 tbsp minced garlic
- 2 cups cooked shredded chicken breast
- 10 oz can rotel diced tomatoes mild
- 1 1/2 cups reduced sodium chicken broth
- 1/2 cup corn fresh or canned
- 1/2 cup white beans drained and rinsed
- 1 tbsp chili powder
- 1 tbsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp dry ranch seasoning from packet
- 1/4 cup fresh cilantro finely chopped
- Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain and run under cool water to stop cooking.
- Heat oil in 9 inch deep cast iron skillet. Add onions and peppers, cook stirring until softened about 5 minutes.
- Add garlic and cook stirring for 1 minute. Add chicken, tomatoes, broth, corn, beans, 1 cup wagon wheel pasta, chili powder, cumin, Ranch seasoning and cilantro.
- Stir until well combined. Reduce heat to low and simmer until ready to serve.