Slow Cooker Jalapeño Popper White Bean Chili

IMG_1632 (575x372)We just had our first major snowstorm here on Cape Cod. On a snowy day, all snug in my kitchen, there’s nothing I like better than to cook some comfort food—preferably something that simmers all afternoon filling the house with a delectable aroma.

Slow cooker jalapeño popper white bean chili filled the bill. When one of my favorite bloggers said it was “freakishly delicious” that was all the endorsement I needed to pull out my slow cooker.

I made an easy recipe even easier by using a rotisserie chicken instead of cooking the chicken in the slow cooker and then shredding it. Other than chopping an onion, two jalapeño peppers, and three garlic cloves, the slow cooker does all the work. You don’t have to sauté anything beforehand. Just throw all the ingredients in the slow cooker and let ‘er rip. At the very end, you throw in some cream cheese until it melts, frozen corn to heat up, and the rotisserie chicken which you have, of course, deboned and cut up. That’s it! Top it off with your favorite garnishes, and you’ve got some mighty good eating ahead of you.

I asked Roger how he liked the chili—and he said, “I only wish my tongue were longer so that I could lick the bottom of the bowl!”

One year ago: Jalapeño Rellenos with Cheese & Bacon

Two years ago: Oreo Football Helmet Cookie Balls

Three years ago: Quinoa Cakes with Poached Eggs

Four years ago: Brownie Mosaic Cheesecake

Slow Cooker Jalapeño Popper White Bean Chili

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Ingredients

  • 1 large yellow or white onion, chopped
  • 2 jalapeño peppers, seeded and finely chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely minced or pressed
  • Approx. 1/2 cup red or yellow bell pepper, small diced
  • 1 pound chicken breasts, trimmed of fat (about 2 chicken breasts)*
  • 1 tsp. chili powder
  • 1 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1 tsp. dried oregano
  • 1 (14-oz.) can diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 12 oz. dry white beans, rinsed and picked through to remove any stones or bad beans
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. pepper
  • 8 oz. cream cheese, cut into cubes
  • 1 cup frozen corn kernels

*I used meat from a rotisserie chicken instead and added at the end of the cooking process.

For Garnish (use any or all)

  • 6 to 8 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled or chopped
  • Chopped Avocado
  • Shredded Mexican blend cheese
  • Sour cream
  • Freshly chopped cilantro

Directions

Soak the white beans in a pan of water overnight to soften them.

The next day, add all the ingredients (including the softened white beans) except the cream cheese, corn and bacon to a 5- to 6-quart slow cooker.

IMG_1619 (575x348)

IMG_1626 (575x340)Cook on high for 5 to 6 hours or until the beans have softened.

If you have chosen to use chicken breasts, remove the chicken and chop into pieces or shred into bite-sized pieces. See my note below about thickening part of the soup. Make your decision. Then return the chicken to the slow cooker.

Stir in the cubed cream cheese and the corn. Cover the slow cooker to let the cream cheese soften and the corn heat through, about 10-15 minutes.

If you chose to use a rotisserie chicken, add the meat now. Stir to combine. Add additional salt and pepper to taste. Serve topped with the crumbled bacon.

Fran’s Notes

Before adding the chicken back in and before stirring in the cream cheese and corn, you can blend a couple cups of the soup to a smooth consistency and stir it back into the pot for a thicker variation. This is a common technique to thicken soups and stews without having to add flour. I thought it was thick enough, so I did not do this step.

This is a very flavorful chili, and I did not find it spicy (I’m a heat wimp!). If you would like more heat, you can use the seeds from one or both of the jalapeño peppers during the slow cooker process—or you can add some cayenne pepper to your bowl.

IMG_1652 (575x383)Source: Another great recipe from Mel’s Kitchen Café

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