White Bean and Chicken Chili

It’s fall here in Tennessee, and although we’re having a little bit of an Indian Summer, it’s time for some fall foods. One of my fall staples is homemade chili, and after having visited my boyfriend’s parents in Hiawassee, GA and ate a few bowls of his Mom, Kathy’s, White Bean and Chicken Chili, I was hooked. I went in search of a recipe that was similar to the Italian version Kathy had made and ran across a 5-star Giada De Laurentiis recipe on foodnetwork.com. I put my own spin on it and it was absolutely delicious, definitely a reason to end my long blogging hiatus!

Okay, so before I get started, the one ingredient in Giada’s recipe that had me just a little skeptical was the fennel seed. I hate italian sausage and the reason being the strong taste of fennel seed. Even after I added it I was really put off by the smell, but after an hour of simmering the flavors really married and wow, what a wonderful, healthy, and absolutely DELICIOUS chili!

White Bean Chicken Chili

What you’ll need:
2 tablespoons olive oil

  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 green bell pepper, chopped
  • garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 pounds ground chicken
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon salt, plus more for seasoning
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon fennel seeds
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 3 teaspoons chili powder
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 2 (15-ounce cans) cannellini or other white beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 bunch (about 1 pound) rainbow or swiss chard, stems removed, leaves chopped into 1-inch pieces
  • 11/2 cups frozen corn, thawed
  • 4 cups low-sodium chicken stock
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper (optional)
  • Freshly ground black pepper for seasoning
  • Grated Parmesan cheese for topping


1. In a large heavy-bottomed saucepan or Dutch oven, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add the onion and green pepper and cook until the onion is translucent and the pepper is soft, about 8 minutes.
2. Add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds.
3. Add the ground chicken, 1 teaspoon salt, cumin, fennel seeds, oregano, and chili powder. Cook, stirring frequently, until the chicken is cooked through, about 8 minutes.
4. Stir the flour into the chicken mixture. Add the beans, rainbow or swiss chard, corn, and chicken stock. Bring the mixture to a simmer, scraping up the brown bits that cling to the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon. Simmer for 55-60 minutes until the liquid has reduced by about half and the chili has thickened.
5. Add the red pepper flakes and cayenne and simmer for another 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper, to taste, and add more cumin and chili powder if needed (I found it did need more than Giada had accounted for, and I already made those adjustments in the recipe I posted).
6. Ladle the chili into serving bowls. Sprinkle with the Parmesan cheese and enjoy!
This entry was published on December 27, 2012 at 2:56 pm and is filed under Chicken, Soup. Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

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