CH’s Chicken Chili

Originally I was going to make CH write this post, because this is probably his favourite meal.  I know I say that he loves all the food I make (which must be because he is one lucky man to eat so well), but seriously, he would choose this over any other dish I make. When I asked him if he wanted to write this post, his comment was “all I would write is OMG, SO good…over and over again”. So, I decided to leave him be as my post editor/lighting assistant and I went along writing the post myself.

When CH got his law job I told him we could go out to eat anywhere he wished, as it was an event to celebrate! However, he asked me to make his Chicken Chili and my Mom’s Chocolate Cake at home. Seriously, the man could have eaten anything or anywhere (I offered!) but he chose this, which I think speaks volumes about how delicious it is. CH gets a huge grin on his face when he smells this cooking and I hope you give it a try soon.

I do however, have a confession. When I first made this recipe, I didn’t like it. I continued to make it because it was CH’s favourite meal, but there was something about it that bothered me. Fortunately, for some reason, I now love it and crave it. I have a feeling it was the cumin, as we had a love/hate relationship for a while. I seem to have outgrown that and I enjoy this chili every time I make it, I promise. Okay, confession over!

I hope one of you falls in love with this recipe too!


CH’s Chicken Chili

Yield:  8 main course servings
Prep Time: 45 minutes
Cook Time:  1hr 10 minutes


  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 3 onions, chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic, grated
  • 2 red bell peppers, cored, seeded, and large-diced
  • 1 yellow bell peppers, cored, seeded, and large-diced
  • 1 yellow bell peppers, cored, seeded, and large-diced
  • 1 green bell pepper, cored, seeded, and large-diced
  • 1 cup of fresh spinach
  • 1 can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/4 tsp dried red pepper flakes, or to taste
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper, or to taste
  • 2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 28oz can whole peeled plum tomatoes, undrained and pureed
  • 1 680ml can of tomato sauce
  • chicken…


  • 1 rotisserie chicken from your deli

– OR –

  • 8 chicken thighs, boneless and skinless
  • olive oil, to coat
  • kosher salt
  • freshly ground black pepper

The first thing to decide is whether you want to use a pre-cooked deli chicken or make your own. We go back and forth. If I’m at Costco and this is on the weekly menu, I will grab a deli chicken as it’s quick and convenient. However, if I decided on a whim to make this for CH, I will roast some chicken thighs in the oven (note – you can use any chicken you like: thighs, breasts, drumsticks etc).

For deli chicken: Simply remove all of the skin and discard. Then remove all of the meat from the bones and chop into bite-sized pieces and set-aside.

For home-roasted chicken: Coat chicken with olive oil and S&P. Place in a baking dish and cook at 400 degrees for 45 minutes, or until cooked through. Remove from the oven, let cool slightly and cut it into 3/4-inch chunks.


Heat olive oil over medium heat. Add the onions and cook until translucent, approximately 10 minutes. Add the grated garlic and cook for an additional minute. Add the chili powder, cumin, red pepper flakes, cayenne and salt to the onion mixture. Toast spices for a couple minutes.

Add the bell peppers, spinach and white beans to the onion mixture and stir well to coat with spices.  Cook over medium heat for 5 minutes.

Add the tomato sauce and pureed tomatoes to the mixture. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer, uncovered, for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.

After 30 minutes, add your cooked chicken to the pot and simmer, uncovered, for another 20 minutes.

Top with sour cream or plain yogurt and a sprinkle of cilantro! Serve with a fresh baguette or a toasted English muffin!


Recipe Adapted From Barefoot Contessa

Jill’s Note – this chili freezes really well and is great for lunches!  It also pairs really well for a casual gathering with friends/family.  I usually serve it with a caesar salad and fresh bread and it is always a hit!



Filed under Healthy, Mains, Side Dishes, Soups & Stews

2 responses to “CH’s Chicken Chili

  1. This sounds like it would be great with leftover grilled chicken too.

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