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White-Bean Chili



White-Bean Chili

Although most people think of chili as a spicy tomato, kidney bean, and beef stew, we’ve changed it up by adding none of those ingredients! Like the classic, our stick-to-your-ribs version is warm, delicious, and super adaptable. If you like your chili soupier rather than thicker, use the larger amount of broth. Likewise, if your family likes it spicy, use more chili powder. It’s totally up to you and your taste buds!
Prep Time 20 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 8 Cups

kitchen gear

  • Cutting board
  • Sharp knife (adult needed)
  • Large heavy-bottomed pot with lid
  • Measuring spoons
  • Measuring cup
  • Strainer or colander
  • Large spoon
  • Pot holders
  • Can opener


  • 1 tablespoon vegetable or olive oil
  • 1 large onion, peeled and chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
  • 1 bell pepper (any color), cored, seeds and white ribs removed, and cubed
  • 1 large or 2 small zucchini, trimmed and cubed
  • 2 teaspoons to 2 tablespoons chili powder (depending on how mild or spicy you like it)
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1⁄4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 (15-ounce) cans low-sodium small white beans (such as navy or Great Northern), drained and rinsed
  • 2 to 4 cups low-sodium chicken or vegetable stock (depending on whether you like it thicker or soupier)
  • 2 cups chopped or shredded cooked chicken, from a rotisserie chicken or home-cooked
  • 1 cup frozen or fresh corn kernels


  • Put the pot on the stove and turn the heat to medium. When the pot is hot, add the oil.
  • ​Add the onion, garlic (fresh or powder), bell pepper, zucchini, chili powder, oregano, cumin, and salt and cook on low heat until the onion is very soft, about 20 minutes. Stir from time to time.
  • Add the beans, stock, and chicken, cover and cook 15 minutes.
  • Remove the lid, add the corn and cook until somewhat thickened, about 10 minutes. Now taste the chili. Does it need more spices? If so, add some, then taste again.
  • Garnish and serve right away, or cover and refrigerate up to 3 days.


Garnishes for each serving (use any or all):
1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro leaves
1 scallion, greens and whites, chopped
1⁄4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
2 tablespoons shredded cheddar cheese 
Wedge of lime
Serving vegetarians? Skip the chicken and add an extra can of white beans.
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