I know, I know – spring is just around the corner and chili is probably one of the last foods on your radar right now.  The weather has warmed up marginally and we have seen the sunshine again.  However, this chicken chili is worthy of your immediate attention.  Why?  Well for starters, this is the time of year here in Indiana when the weather may seem to be warming up a bit, but there is always at least one more bitter cold spell, and often one more snow still to come.  So when that time comes, this chili will be just the thing to get you through until the spring really arrives.

More importantly, I think I like this chili even better than my old favorite.  That’s really saying something considering just how much I love that recipe.  I can’t even put my finger on exactly what it is that I prefer about this version, but I can tell you that we had this for dinner three nights in a row, as well as a lunch or two, and I was still sad when it was gone.  It wasn’t difficult to throw together, and it’s pretty darn healthy on its own.  Of course I can’t resist eating mine with Fritos…mmmm, delicious!

  • Yield about 10-12 servings


3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
Salt and pepper
4 cups chopped yellow onion (2-3 onions)
2 tbsp. olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 bell peppers (I used 1 red, 1 orange and 1 yellow)
2 tsp. chili powder
2 tsp. ground cumin
¼ tsp. red pepper flakes
½ tsp. cayenne pepper
½ tsp. dried oregano
1 chipotle chili in adobo sauce, finely diced
2 tsp. kosher salt
2 (28 oz.) cans whole peeled tomatoes in puree, not drained
2 (15 oz.) cans beans, drained and rinsed (I used 1 can black and 1 can pinto beans)


  • 01

    Preheat the oven to 375˚ F.  Line a baking sheet with foil.  Place the chicken breasts on the foil, and season with salt and pepper.  Fold the foil over the chicken breasts to make a “packet”.  Roast 30-40 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked through.  Allow to cool enough to handle, then shred or chop into bite-sized pieces.

  • 02

    Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a large stockpot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat.  Sauté the onions 10-15 minutes, or until tender and translucent.  Add the garlic to the pot and sauté just until fragrant, about 1 minute.  Mix in the chopped bell peppers, chili powder, cumin, red pepper flakes, cayenne, oregano, chipotle, and kosher salt.  Cook 5 more minutes.  Place the canned tomatoes in the bowl of a food processor.  Pulse briefly so the tomatoes are cut to large chunks.  Add the tomatoes with the puree to the pot and bring the mixture to a boil.  Reduce to a simmer and cook for 30 minutes, uncovered, stirring occasionally.

  • 03

    Stir in the shredded chicken and the beans, and allow to simmer for another 20 minutes.