Chili del Pollo

I hesitate to call this white chili because its not strictly that. Its also not strictly winter chili, although its awfully good on cold days. What it is is this: its chili made using, and especially in harmony with, chicken.


  • 2 lbs Chicken Pieces (Dark or White)
  • 15 oz Can of Del Monte Diced Tomatoes (Chili Recipe)
  • 8 - 10 Fresh or 1-30 oz Can of Tomatillos
  • 2 Fresh Green Tomatoes
  • 6 - 8 Hungarian Wax Peppers
  • 1 Yellow Bell Pepper
  • 1-8 oz Can of Hot Salsa Verde
  • Large Sweet Yellow or Spanish Onion
  • 2-15 oz Cans of Bush's Best Great Northern Beans
  • 2-15 oz Cans of Bush's Best Pinto Beans
  • Mesquite Smoke Flavoring
  • Cumin
  • Oregano
  • Cilantro
  • The Method:

    Fry the diced onion with a liberal splash of the mesquite smoke flavoring in a skillet or a heavy bottomed 8 qt pot. If you want more smoky or charred flavor, you can toss in the Hungarian peppers at this point as well to cook. When the onion is done to your liking (I like them golden and translucent) add the chicken.

    In an 8-qt. pot combine the fried onions and chicken with the peppers, tomatoes and beans. If you are a purist for white chili, you can leave out the red tomatoes in favor of green tomatoes and tomatillos exclusively and also leave out the pinto beans. I like the contrast. For me, most white chilis are too bland.

    The Hungarian wax peppers can vary quite a lot in heat, so exercise some judgment. If your fingers start to burn from cutting them up, you've got some live ones. A secret to reducing the heat without losing the flavor is to slice the peppers lengthwise and then scrape out the seeds and especially the pulpy ribs and filaments inside. That is where the capsaiscin is concentrated.

    Add some cumin to give a warm, earthy aroma, but don't get carried away - chicken can't carry the strong spices like beef or venison can do. A little bit of oregano and cilantro will bring out the chicken flavors perfectly. A little fresh chopped garlic (in moderation) won't hurt either as a variation.

    Let simmer for 30 minutes or so on low heat. The more it simmers, the better it gets, and of course chili is always better the next day.

    Serve with baked cheese sandwiches or (my favorite) peanut butter and jelly. This also begs for some real beer, like Negro Modelo, Dos Equis or one of the seasonal brews such as Blue Moon Full Moon winter lager. Season with Tabasco to taste.

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