Chicken Chili Recipe

This Chicken Chili Recipe is a delicious way to lighten up chili! Load up on all your favorite chili toppings, including chips on the side for scooping!

A chicken chili recipe (that’s not white chicken chili) that’s good for you and the kids love, too? Sounds impossible, but here it is. You can spice up this chili in your own bowl and leave it on the mild side for anyone that doesn’t like the heat!

Chicken chili recipe in red bowl with cheese on top

A Healthy Chili Recipe

Chili is pretty healthy as it is, with lots of vegetables and beans and usually a good amount of garlic. It’s the toppings that get us, and the toppings are a super important part of eating chili if you ask me.

So a lot of the time we’ll make this Chicken Chili Recipe, swapping out ground beef for ground chicken and adding three different kinds of beans to amp up our fiber. That way we don’t feel bad about loading up on sour cream, guacamole and a good amount of cheese.

And yes, of course, you can follow this same chili recipe and use ground beef, too. We do that a lot also. It’s just what we’re in the mood for, if we’re watching what we’re eating at the moment or maybe just what we have on hand.

Tips For Making The BEST Chicken Chili

So you might be wondering why this chili isn’t white? It’s not a white chicken chili recipe, it’s just a chicken chili recipe. So like the regular chili that you’re probably used to, just adding an ingredient or two and swapping out the ground beef for ground chicken.

ground chicken in a pot for making chicken chili

When cooking the ground chicken, we like to keep it in slightly larger pieces like you see here for a heartier texture. When you’re picking up ground chicken at the store, there’s usually two different options. There’s ground chicken and there’s ground chicken breast, which is much leaner.

For this recipe, we like to use the ground chicken breast so that it saves some calories and yep, so we can add more toppings and chips on the side. But either type of ground chicken will work in this chili recipe.

Ingredients for making chicken chili recipe in pot

Now we’re ready for the secret ingredient! After you cook the ground chicken with onion and garlic, stir in a whole can of fat-free refried beans. I know it seems strange but trust me, it’s the most delicious way to thicken up this chili recipe and also add more fiber and protein.

Pour in a can of crushed tomatoes and tomato sauce, along with your basic chili seasonings, black beans, kidney beans and diced green chilis.

Chicken chili in a pot with ladle

Now that you have the chili put together it’s time to let it simmer on LOW heat to let the flavors blend together. I stress low heat because of the thickness of this chili recipe. It will bubble and pop in the pot so make sure you have it partially covered with a lid and get in there and stir it pretty often.

What Kind Of Toppings Are Good With Chicken Chili?

Any kind of topping that you would normally add to a bowl of chili! If you need some topping inspiration, we’ve put a list together for you…

  • Sour Cream
  • Guacamole
  • Shredded Cheese
  • Hot sauce
  • Shredded Lettuce
  • Diced Onions
  • Chopped Scallions
  • Pickled Jalapeños
  • Diced Tomatoes or Pico de Gallo
  • Cilantro
  • Lime Wedge

Chicken Chili with chips on the side for dipping

Can I Make This Chicken Chili In The Slow Cooker?

Yep! The best way to do it though is to really “make” the chili in a pot on the stove and then transfer it to a slow cooker instead of simmering on the stove top. You can cook the chili on high for 3 hours or on low for 6 hours and then keep the chili on the warm setting if needed.

Looking For More Chili Recipes?

Chicken chili recipe in red bowl with cheese on top

Chicken Chili Recipe

  • Author: Dan
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 60 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 5 minutes
  • Yield: 8 servings 1x

This Chicken Chili Recipe is a family favorite! Since we’ve lightened up this chili recipe you can feel free to load up on all your favorite toppings!



  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 pounds ground chicken
  • 1 1/2 cups diced onion
  • 1 1/2 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • (1) 16 ounce can refried beans (fat-free or regular)
  • (1) 28 ounce can crushed tomatoes
  • (1) 28 ounce can tomato sauce
  • (1) 4 ounce cans diced green chilis
  • (1) 15.5 ounce can kidney beans, rinsed and drained
  • (1) 15.5 ounce can black beans, rinsed and drained


  1. Add the oil to a large pot over medium heat. Add the onions and cook for 5-7 minutes, until softened. Add the ground chicken to the pot and break up into crumbles. Cook until the chicken is cooked through and no pink remains. Drain any dripping from the pan, then add the garlic and cook one minute longer.
  2. Season the chicken with the salt, cayenne pepper, chili powder, oregano, cumin and garlic powder. Stir to combine and then stir in the refried beans.
  3. Pour in the crushed tomatoes and tomato sauce along with the green chilis, kidney beans and black beans and stir to combine. Partially cover the pot with a lid and turn the heat to low. Simmer the chili, stirring often, for 45 minutes to 1 hour. Taste for seasonings and adjust if needed.
  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Stove Top
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: mantitlement, chili recipe, chicken chili, healthy recipes, ground chicken recipes, low fat recipes, easy recipes

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