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Southwest Chicken Chili Mac….Skillet Style

It’s time for chili night! Break out your old cast iron skillet, dinner is about to be served 🙂  This is a flavorful chicken chili seasoned with beautiful southwest ingredients along with some fun wagon wheel pasta. My boys went nuts for this dish. Top with a little sour cream and enjoy!

To speed up the process, purchase a rotisserie chicken and shred about 2 cups. Save the rest for another dinner.

Here’s your line up, nice and easy. Forgot to add a can of white beans.

Boil your pasta 🙂  How fun is wagon wheel pasta?!

Run your pasta under cool water to stop cooking.

I used a rotisserie chicken and shredded it, about 2 cups. Use whatever chicken you’d like.

I like to finish my chili mac with some fresh cilantro. However, if you are not a fan, this could be left out.

A nice teaspoon of this Ranch seasoning adds nice flavor to your chili. Give it a try 🙂

Saute your onions and sweet peppers. I get a nice big bag of sweet peppers from Costco. They are really mild and great in about everything.

Saute for a good 5 minutes then add your minced garlic and stir.

Add your shredded chicken.

Add your diced tomatoes, chicken broth and corn.

Then add your white beans and wagon wheel noodles.

This will be the kids favorite part 🙂

Time for the seasonings. Here you have chili powder, cumin, salt, pepper and Ranch seasoning.

Add those seasonings and cilantro, simmer for 15 minutes and enjoy!


Southwest Chicken Chili Mac…Skillet Style

8 ounces wagon wheel pasta noodles
2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 cup finely chopped white onion

1/2 cup finely chopped sweet peppers (or bell peppers)

1 tablespoon minced garlic

2 cups cooked shredded chicken breast

1o ounce 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 Tablespoon chili powder

1 Tablespoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon dry Ranch seasoning from packet

1/4 cup finely chopped fresh cilantro

1. 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.

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  1. 1

    YES PLEASE! Want want want! Can’t wait to make this!

  2. 2

    the wagon wheel pasta is so adorable! i want to make this over the weekend 🙂

  3. 3

    What a great kid friendly meal!

  4. 4
    Sues says:

    This looks awesome! And pretty simple if you get a rotisserie chicken, which is one of the BEST tricks in the book 🙂

  5. 5
    cindy says:

    Love your recipes AND your pictures! 🙂

  6. 6
    Jenny says:

    Hi everyone, sorry for the website hiccups lately. We just went through a hosting change. Thanks for bearing with us!!

  7. 7

    Wagon wheels remind me of my childhood….LOVE em 🙂 Great recipe.

  8. 8
    Will says:

    This has all the things we like in it. Wife loves the wagon wheels pasta.

  9. 9

    […] Maybe I’m just old-fashioned, but there’s something comforting about a dinner prepared in a big, heavy, cast-iron skillet. Jenny Flake puts that skillet to good use with this chili mac recipe featuring chicken, pasta, corn, tomatoes and lots of Southwest spices. She says her boys “went nuts for this dish,” and I’m sure I’ll get the same reaction at my house. (Picky Palate) […]

  10. 10
    Bev says:

    I made this for our supper tonight and it is delicious, my husband is delighted that there is some leftover for his lunch tomorrow. Thank you Jenny for another wonderful recipe.

  11. 11

    Great recipe! We tried it last night–changed up a few things. It was definitely a winner.

  12. 12
    Mindy says:

    This was AWESOME! My little barely-2-year-old keeps asking for more! He is such a picky eater when it comes to trying new things. I thought it was a little spicy (maybe cut back a little on the chili powder if you are sensitive), but my little boy didn’t seem to care – he just wanted a drink of water after his first bowl (he’s working on his 2nd!). Thank you for the great recipe!

  13. 13
    Christan says:

    Love your site! This recipe is amazing. I am a fan of mexican, southwest, and tex-mex recipes. I followed your recipe, except I made this vegetarian by using vegetable broth with one can white beans and one can black beans.

    Thanks for the ideas!!

  14. 14
    Debbie says:

    I have a question….you say to use 8 oz. of wagon wheels pasta, but then you say to use 1 cup of the boiled pasta. What do you do with the rest of the pasta you boiled? If you boil 8 oz. of dry pasta, you get a lot more boiled pasta than 1 cup. ???

  15. 15

    Thanks Jenny! Just added the link to todays upcoming post 🙂

  16. 16
  17. 17
    Sarah says:

    Made this last night and it was a hit! Love that it makes a ton so there is is plenty for leftovers–thanks for sharing the recipe!

  18. 18
    Sara says:

    This was really good! I did brown rice instead of the pasta (because I was out of pasta). I cooked the rice in the chicken broth then added all the other ingredients. Really good flavor and seasoning was perfect! I think I’ll use black beans next time for a bit more color!

  19. 19

    […] Dinner – Skillet Chicken Chili Mac […]

  20. 20

    Made this for dinner last night, doubled the recipe for everyone to have leftovers today, and it was GREAT!
    The only changes I made was since 2 cans of Rotel made it a tad spicy, I stirred in a half block of cream cheese to “cool” the spice, plus I added cornstarch to thicken it up a bit into a more “stewy” consistency.
    SO GOOD.
    Thanks for sharing. Love your blog and am sharing it with friends who are looking for good recipes as well 🙂

  21. 21

    […] of the things we made was this Southwest Chicken Chili Mac. I had some ckn tenders that I cooked before they went bad, so we shredded those and threw them in. […]

  22. 22
    Erin says:

    I made this tonight, and my husband and I loved it. Thanks for sharing your wonderful recipes 🙂

  23. 23

    […] Dinner – Skillet Chicken Chili Mac […]

  24. 24

    Great recipe! Someone had included a link to this post with their Plan It, Don’t Panic menu plan at Keeper of the Home last week, and I put it on my plan for tonight! My family loved it! Definitely a winner!

  25. 25

    […] recipes that I have stumbled on recently that add a nice flavor and twist to the traditional chili. Southwestern Chicken Chili – This chili definitely describes my hometown, ranch. All things are better with a package of […]

  26. 26
    Lauren says:

    Made tonight and my family loved it! Easy recipe!

  27. 27
  28. 28

    […] for dinner we made Southwest Chicken Chili Mac…Skillet Style, for which Val had found the recipe on Pinterest. It was spicy, but very good. Share:Like […]

  29. 29

    […] have the chicken sitting out. And despite the recipe being for picky eaters, it’s not any of the ingredients he will have a problem with; it’s the witching hour of […]

  30. 30
    carol says:

    The chicken chili looks great, but with wagon wheel pasta there’s a lot of difference between 8 oz (all of a small box) and a cup. Which is it? I assume it goes in raw.

  31. 31

    […] Lime Chicken Deceptively Delicious Lasagna 3 Bean Pasta Fagioli (turned this into a crockpot meal) Southwest Chicken Chili Mac Chicken Pot Pie (we used this as a base recipe, but ended up changing it so much that it’s […]

  32. 32
    Charline says:

    This looks amazing! Can you tell me how many portions this recipe is? I have a family of 8…three of which are teenage boys. I just wasn’t sure if I needed to double or triple!?!

  33. 33

    […] Tuesday: Southwest Chicken Chili Mac […]

  34. 34
    Kimmy says:

    this was most excellent and super easy!!! I used spicy ranch and also a tex mex rotel, and it gave it an extra kick!! So YUMMY!! Thanks for this great recipe!!

  35. 35

    […] night I made chili for the first time using this wonderful recipe.  I didn’t have two of the most important ingredients – chili powder and tomatoes – […]

  36. 36
    Jenny says:

    So glad you enjoyed it Diana! Thanks for the feedback 🙂

  37. 37

    […] night I made chili for the first time using this wonderful recipe.  I didn’t have two of the most important ingredients – chili powder and tomatoes – […]

  38. 38
    sweetpumpkin says:

    What an adventure this recipe was! Right after I began preparing a storm swept in and kept the electricity flickering in and out about 5 times. In the end I had a wonderful result of very yummy chili and a happy husband. I did add more broth since my husband loves broth.

  39. 39
    Anna says:

    I did not have any sour cream so I decided to throw some heavy cream in at the end and it is delicious. I also tried it with a little parmesan cheese on it and it is oh so good! Thanks for the recipe!

  40. 40
    Katie says:

    I think i’m going to make this tonight. Going ot use one of the readers advice and add some cream cheese to “tone down the spice” since I have a 3yo. Can’t wait!

    • 40.1
      Katie says:

      Well my 3yo wanted mac-n-cheese so…. there was more for my husband and I to eat. Loved it–had 2nds and will add to our rotation!

      A chicken tip–i’ve been buying a package of bone-in chicken breasts each week (they are like $5 for 2 huge pieces). I bake them on Monday (with some poultry seasoning etc.) while im preparing another dinner. Then I shred it after it cools. I can usually get 2 meals out of all that chicken!

  41. 41

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  42. 42

    […] Southwestern Chicken Chili Mac: Another pasta-skillet dish, this one includes white beans and shredded chicken! […]

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    […] a fabulous blog with all sorts of fabulous recipes. And my mother taught me to share, so here is Southwest Chicken Chili. Lovely […]

  44. 44

    […] mildly hot Anaheim pepper last year, I needed to find a use for it. At the same time, I discovered this recipe for a white bean chicken chili, and it called for “rotel” […]

  45. 45
    Brittany says:

    Tried making it tonight and it turned out really good!

  46. 46

    this looks yummy! can’t wait to try it! 🙂

  47. 47

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  48. 48
    Becky says:

    Looks like a great meal to try and I must say that your pictures are gorgeous! 🙂

  49. 49

    […] is one of my daughter’s favorite meals, ours too. I originally found it on Pinterest (original recipe here) and made just a couple of adjustments that I thought made it even better. Bon […]

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    […] Southwest Chicken Chili Mac….Skillet Style | Picky Palate […]

  51. 51

    […] Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:LikeBe the first to like this. Tags: chicken, easy […]

  52. 52
    RitaB says:

    Made this for dinner last night and it was AMAZING!! So fast, so easy and definitely full of flavor! We topped the bowls off with shredded co-jack cheese and sour cream! Served with a sweet corn bread. This will be a regular at our house this winter!!

  53. 53
    Sarah Reyers says:

    How many does this recipe serve?

  54. 54
    Heather says:

    Def.trying. Where did you find the mini rosella wheels?

  55. 55
    Karen says:

    I finally gave in and made this recipe and although I’m not a huge fan of Chili, my boyfriend absolutely loved it. It was soo easy && healthy, which is a plus!It had a bit of the kick to it so I will have to adjust the seasoning for next time but still very good! This is a good recipe I can make and put in the fridge for whenever my boyfriend plans to be home for lunch–Thanks for the recipe!

  56. 56

    […] #5. Chicken Chili My substitutes: Substituted the spices (chili packet with 1T of chipotle peppers and 1 T of Chili Pepper), I also substituted the noodles for whole grain penne. We really enjoyed it! […]

  57. 57
    Lilah says:

    I am a kid and my mom has been doing bad on the dinner menu so I love your website!!!!!!! Thanks for being awesome!

  58. 58

    […] Chicken Florentine Bowtie Pasta Tuesday:  Slow Cooked Green Chili Pork Tacos Wednesday:  Southwest Chicken Chili Mac Skillet Style Thursday:  Cream Cheese, Caramelized Onion and Bacon Quiche Friday:  Bacon and Ranch Cajun Baby […]

  59. 59
    Amber says:

    About how many servings is this?

  60. 60
    Tannis says:

    I made this last night and it is was so good. I put chicken in the crockpot to cook while I was at work. Actually had my daugther shred it in the afteroon then came home from work and threw it all together. This is a keeper!! Loved the flavors.

  61. 61

    […] more in) May 20th-May 26th Sunday: Hawaiian Pot Roast + Rice Monday: Leftovers Tuesday: Southwest Chicken Chili Mac Wednesday: Leftovers Thursday: Chicken Kebobs Friday: Leftovers Saturday: Date Night!  (and […]

  62. 62

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  63. 63
    Emily M. says:

    Did you really mean 1 T of cumin? That is A LOT of cumin!!!

  64. 64
    Emily M. says:

    This was great. Are you sure about the Tablespoon of cumin though? I used a teaspoon and a half or so and it was plenty cumin-y and I’m a cumin lover. Just curious! Thanks, it was GREAT! I added jalapeno peppers. Super yum.

  65. 65

    […] are a few on my must-make list: Taco Stuffed Shells, Marsala Chicken and Mushroom Casserole, and Southwest Chicken Chili Mac. What are your favorite weeknight […]

  66. 66

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  70. 70
    Rachel says:

    I have loved all of your recipes that I have made, but this one was a total miss. When a recipe calls for 8oz of pasta, that generally means 8oz of DRY pasta, not ONE CUP. I made it exactly as the recipe called for and it was bland and soupy. Really not thrilled with this. Thanks for posting though!

  71. 71
    Rachel says:

    I tried to salvage this but decided to go to Taco Bell instead.

  72. 72

    […] Chicken Chili Mac @Picky Palate […]

  73. 73
    Charise says:

    Made this for my family and they loved it, though I used sausage instead of chicken cuz that’s all i had on hand lol and i’ll probably use a bit less of the cumin next time but its definitely a keeper recipe

  74. 74
    Diana says:

    Want to make this but is it supposed to be the whole 8 oz. box of pasta like it says in the ingredients or the one cup of pasta after it is cooked like in the directions where is says to add it? Confused. Thank you for your help

  75. 75
    Lisa says:

    Spicy Deliciousness! So easy to make! Thanks for sharing your recipe 🙂

  76. 76

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  77. 77
    Pamela says:

    Love your recipes. First saw you on Pinterest. I just ordered your cookbook!

  78. 78
    Julie says:

    This meal was not only very easy to make, but it was well received by even the PICKIEST eater in our family. Granted she picked out the corn and the bell peppers, but with some cheese mixed in, my little gal was very pleased. Others in the family added a little sour cream in addition to the shredded cheese that topped off our bowls. Great and easy one-pot meal.
    A true review from my littlest gal that she would like to add is: “Yum, yum, yum. I love this meal” – from Sally

  79. 79
    Julie Thomas says:

    This is a hit! I used macaroni pasta and we add cheese and sour cream to the bowl and everyone is happy! Great leftovers too which is a bonus for making midweek life that much better!

  80. 80
    Anna says:

    I’ve made this several times and the measurements just seem off. The recipe says 8 oz of pasta but doesn’t say if it should be cooked or not. Then in the general instructions it says 1 cup. Also the directions omit when to add the corn. The Rotel Tomatoes are what makes the soup very spicy. I love spice but I cook a whole box of pasta and still 1 can is spicy. I just think a quick recheck of ingredients and portions would be good to do.

Jenny Flake

Welcome to Picky Palate, my online kitchen! You'll usually find me with a cookie in one hand and a salad in the other. It's all about the balance :) The recipes you'll see are my creations. The Picky Palate Cookbook is now available. Enjoy!