How to Make White Chili Chicken Soup

DennisOn a recent Saturday morning, we made buckets of white chicken chili to serve in the store.
The soup was seasoned with only salt and a little pepper and then we invited visitors to add their own spices. We had about 40 spices lined up on a table from mild to hot. There were great curries and garam masala from India. There were wonderful Mexican spices and berere from Ethiopia. There was a Cajun spice and Jamaican Jerk. Most of these were wonderful blends from the Teeny Tiny Spice Company of Vermont.
People would get a cup of soup and add a spice. Get another cup and add another spice. Sometimes, they would add a little spice and then a little more. Most of the time, people preferred hot or mild, not both. It was a fun event.
This soup lends itself to many spices. Choose a spice that you like and give it try. You don’t have to add the spice before cooking; you can make the soup and try a cup with a spice to see if you like it just like we did in the store. Try a second or third spice and find which you like best.


The Recipe for White Chicken Chili

1 cup chopped onion (or 1/4 cup dehydrated onions)
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 cups dry beans, Parker Bean Blend or equal
6 cups chicken broth
3 cups chopped chicken (3 10 oz. cans chicken plus use the water as part of broth) or equal in cooked chicken meat
seasoning to taste
2 cups shredded Monterey jack cheese
sour cream



  1. To cook the beans, use the quick cook method rather than an overnight soak. Place the beans in large pot with 6 to 8 cups of water. Bring the mixture to a boil and cook for two minutes. Turn the heat off, cover, and let soak in the hot water for an hour. Drain the water.
  2. To cook the soup, add 6 to 8 cups of water and cook the beans until they are soft, about an hour. Drain the water.
  3. Add the onion, garlic, chicken meat, and broth and cook for about 1/2 hour. Season with salt if necessary and the seasoning blend of your choice. We make this with blends from Teeny Tiny Spice Company of Vermont and use about two tablespoons–but add some, taste it, and add more. Some spice blends have salt added so be cautious with blends that contain salt.
  4. Serve with a dollop of whipped cream and a sprinkle of shredded cheese if desired.

This soup can be made with a slow cooker and with fresh chicken.