Chicken Chili Blanco

Prep Time: 20 min
Cook Time: 30 min
Serves: 12

If you’ve never tried a white chili before, this recipe is for you! With a slightly more delicate flavour than traditional red chili, this dish uses lighter-coloured vegetables such as parsnips, corn, and yellow pepper to maintain its pale hue.


4 bone-in, skinless chicken breasts
1 cup (250 mL) navy beans, dried
1 can navy beans
2 poblano peppers, dried
1 tbsp (15 mL) chili powder
4 cups (1 L) water
5 cloves garlic, minced
1 bay leaves
1 tbsp (15 mL) olive oil
1 cup (250 mL) white onion, diced
2 cups (500 mL) parsnip(s), peeled, diced
2 cups (500 mL) carrot(s), peeled, diced
2 cups (500 mL) yellow pepper(s), diced
1 cup (250 mL) corn niblets, frozen
1 jalapeño pepper, diced
2 tsp (10 mL) cumin, ground
2 tsp (10 mL) oregano, dried
1 tsp (5 mL) thyme, dried
1 tsp (5 mL) salt
1 cup (250 mL) light sour cream
1/2 cup (125 mL) cilantro, fresh, minced
10 sprigs cilantro, (optional garnish)
1/2 cup (125 mL) green onion(s), thinly sliced


1 Soak white navy beans overnight in 6 cups (1.5 L) of water. Cover and cook in plenty of cold water, adding more as necessary. Simmer 2-3 hours until tender. Drain and set aside. Alternatively you can use 2 cups (500 mL) of cooked white navy beans. Drain and rinse in a colander to remove most of the sodium.
2 Soak the dried poblano peppers in boiling water. Remove peppers and cut into fine strips. Add reserved liquid and water to measure 4 cups (1 L).
3 Bring chicken breasts, water from step 2, two minced garlic cloves and bay leaf to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer until the chicken is cooked through – about 20 minutes. Remove pot from heat, cover and set aside to cool. Drain stock and reserve. When chicken is cool use your hands to pull meat off the bone and set aside.
4 Heat olive oil in large soup pot over medium high heat. Add diced onion, the remaining minced garlic, diced parsnips (or carrots), diced yellow peppers, frozen corn and jalapeño and cook, stirring, until softened, about 5 minutes.
5 Add reserved beans and chicken stock, shredded chicken, cumin, oregano, thyme and cook for another 20 minutes, or until vegetables are tender. Season with salt to taste. Stir in cilantro and sour cream.
6 To serve, ladle into bowls and sprinkle with the thinly sliced green onions and a cilantro sprig.