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White Chicken Chili

Makes 6 servings30 minutes hands on time50 minutes total time

Makes: 6 servings

Total Carbohydrates:  18 grams per serving

Hands-on Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 50 minutes

This creamy stew is bursting with more deliciousness than its pale demeanor would lead you to suspect. It’s tangy, and a little bit spicy, and somehow the cauliflower absorbs all of the chili flavors to become more of a subtle, lovely texture than an assertive cabbage-y presence. This stew is even better the next day, so don’t fear leftovers.

If you’re looking to:

Lower the carbs: Skip the beans and add another cup or two of cauliflower; serve smaller portions.

Lower the fat: Use chicken breasts; decrease the oil to 1 tablespoon; reduce the sour cream to ½ cup.

Lower the salt: Reduce the salt; use low-sodium chicken broth.


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped (or ½  teaspoon garlic powder)
  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts or thighs, cut into bite-size pieces
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • Something spicy (1/4 teaspoon cayenne, 1 teaspoon chipotle puree*, or 1 finely chopped jalapeno)
  • 1 ½ teaspoons kosher salt (or ¾ teaspoon table salt)
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 2 cups finely chopped cauliflower (or 12 ounces cauliflower rice)
  • 2 (4 ½-ounce) cans diced green chilis
  • 1 (15-ounce) can white beans (great northern, cannellini, navy, small white, or butter beans) undrained
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • Cilantro and/or chopped fresh or pickled jalapenos for garnish (optional)

* To make spicy, smoky chipotle puree, I buy a small tin of chipotle peppers in adobo sauce (if there's a Mexican section of your supermarket, you'll be able to find it there). Puree it in the blender, and store it in a clean glass jar in the fridge, where it keeps almost forever as long as you don't stick a dirty spoon (or finger) in it. I find this incredibly handy to have around for those times you want to stir a bit of smoky heat into something like chili, mayonnaise, or salsa.


  1. In a large pot or Dutch oven, heat the olive oil over medium-low heat, and sauté the onion and garlic with the salt until they’re nice and soft and translucent, around ten minutes.
  2. Add the chicken, turn the heat to medium-high, and sauté until the chicken is just browning and turning opaque, around five minutes (it won’t be cooked through at this point, which is fine).
  3. Add the spices and salt and sauté just until fragrant – this should only take a few seconds – then add the broth, cauliflower, chilis, and beans (with their liquid).
  4. Bring to a boil, then cover the pot and lower the heat to low and simmer gently for 20 minutes, until the cauliflower is tender and everything is delicious.
  5. Turn off the heat, stir in the sour cream, and taste for salt and spice, adding more if it needs it.
  6. Serve in bowls, garnished with cilantro and/or jalapenos as you like.