Chicken Chili on a Chilly January Day


I hope you are having a great start to the new year.  Choosing Happiness is the goal that we set for this new year.  On our road trip home on New Year’s Day, Dave and I did some reflecting on 2014 and vision casting for 2015 and realized that last year was more of “survival” year in many respects and we want this year to be marked with more joy, happiness, play and laughter!  I have determined that my motto for this year is: “Complain Less, Hug More, Choose Happiness!”  We’ll see how it goes.  So far, I already feel more hopeful.  I realize that when I extend love (via hugs and other extensions of generosity and compassion), it’s hard not to be happier.

I’m glad that the bleak, cold, grey days are more than 1/2 way over. In the meantime it helps if I look for the wintery beauty in the midst of the bleak.  And I find great comfort with a piping hot bowl of soup!

I have made this Chicken Chili several times over the past month.  During the winter, I really just want to eat soup, sliced apples and crusty bread everyday.  Healthy and Comforting!

This recipe has become a new favorite in our house.  I’m delighted to have another soup that is 5 for 5 at my table!
This is so very easy to make.  In fact, there aren’t very many photos because… there is not much to photograph, unless you want photos of me opening cans and stirring.
Also, this soup is hard to capture in photos because the good stuff tends to sink to the bottom of the bowl and pictures don’t do it justice.
Every year our Social Work department has a chili supper and the faculty/staff provide crock pots of Chili for students to enjoy.  Patsy always makes this Chicken Chili and I always choose it.  It is delicious!  I got the recipe years ago, but was reluctant to make it for the family because my girls are sensitive to spicy (sad!), and my boy has a bean aversion (really sad!).  But Dave loves chili and wishes that I would make it more. So, I decided to make it with mild salsa and reduce the number of beans to accommodate my kids and give it a go.  It was very well received!  I was happily surprised!  It wasn’t too spicy and Asher had just come from a 2 hour wrestling practice and was famished and therefore wasn’t too picky with the beans!  Progress is being made in the bean situation!
It is a Weight Watchers recipe originally, so it is healthy and is simple and versatile.
I roast chicken tenderloins in the oven while I “prepare” the rest of the soup.  (The original recipe says to boil them but I prefer the roasted flavor.)  It only takes about 25 minutes to roast and then I tear it apart and add it to the soup.


I serve it with sour cream and shredded cheese, like the recipe recommends, but I also add some slices of lime, tortilla chips and diced avocado.  OH MY!

I have shared the recipe with a couple of friends and decided that I needed to post it to share with even more friends.  It’s too great to not pass along!

Chicken Chili

6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (or I used about 12 tenderloins)
2 Tbsp. olive oil
2 jars (16 oz. each) of picante salsa
49 oz. chicken broth
48 oz. Northern white beans
1 tsp. cumin
1 tsp. garlic powder

Roast chicken in oven:  Preheat oven to 400˚.  Drizzle or brush chicken with olive oil.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper (and garlic powder and cumin, if you’d like).  Place on baking sheet, place it in the oven and bake until fully cooked.

Mix all other ingredients: salsa through garlic powder.  Shred cooked chicken and add to the pot.  Bring to a boil and cook 20 minutes.  Reduce heat and simmer slowly until time to serve.  (You can also put it in the crockpot in the morning and let it cook on low all day).

Garnish with sour cream, shredded cheese, slices of lime (for squeezing), tortilla chips and diced avocado.  And if you want to turn up the heat, you can splash some hot sauce in your bowl!

Another new year’s goal is that I hope I will be able to blog more frequently this year.  Last year was much less often than I would choose (thus, the year of surviving). December was so full and blogging didn’t happen after all of the grading and closing down of the semester, and then Christmasing and New Year’s travel.  But I sure did cook a lot last month!  And I made some really yummy things, which I photographed for the time when I can post them here and share the recipes.  Some will probably have to wait until next year, as they are Christmasy, but others, I will share promptly – like this Chicken Chili.   
Enjoy! Wishing you the happiest new year!



5 thoughts on “Chicken Chili on a Chilly January Day

  1. Jennifer Jones says:

    Yay! For blogging and soup and newness! January is not a favorite around here with the cold, gray days, so I have dubbed it Soup Month to make it a little more fun. I can't wait to try this one and add it to my list of favorites from your blog!


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