Slow cooker chicken chili with pablano peppers comes together in no time. Just dump in the ingredients and let the slow cooker do all the work. A healthy dinner the whole family will love.
As the weather turns colder and we’ve been splurging on holiday treats, I could use a hearty and healthy easy meal. Slow Cooker chicken chili, checks all the boxes in that it’s healthy, delicious, it’s a dump and go recipe with 10 minutes of prep time and it has no beans. (You can add beans, but I’m not a fan of chili with beans so I always leave them out)
You get to stay out of the kitchen and still have a family friendly meal with great leftovers for lunches. It’s as easy as queso chicken but you can start this in the morning and just walk in the door and be ready to eat.
For the peppers in chicken chili, I used a pablano. It’s a long dark green pepper that’s used for chili relleno’s which I absolutely love! Pablano peppers add a little heat to the chili but they’re not as spicy as a jalapeno, just spicer than a bell pepper. They have their own distinct flavor which comes through in the chili.
All the flavors will come together while you sit back and enjoy the smells.
If you’re watching your carbs, this is a keto friendly low carb meal.
What you’ll need
- Chicken breasts – use boneless chicken breasts
- Pablano pepper – spicier than a bell pepper but not as spicy as a jalapeno.
- Diced tomatoes – I like the fire roasted type but they’re not necessary.
- Salsa – fresh from the produce section.
- Ancho chili powder – this is chili powder made from dried pablanos, it’s spicier once dried but has more flavor. If you don’t want this spicy at all, leave this out.
- Chili powder – this is what gives it a chili flavor. If you don’t want to use ancho chili powder, just add more regular chili powder.
- Pantry items – onion, garlic, chicken broth, tomato sauce, and cumin.
- Optional toppings – jalapeno slices, fresh cilantro, cheddar cheese, and sour cream.
You’ll also need a slow cooker or a crockpot. I don’t think people really make the distinction between the two. However, a crockpot is actually a stoneware round pot surrounded by a heating element while a slow cooker is a metal pot on top of a heating element.
If doesn’t matter which one you have, the cooking time is generally the same. If you’re not going to be home, you need one that has a timer so that it’ll turn itself off after 8 hours. I have an All-Clad that I’ve had for years, it’s a little pricey but it’s a workhorse. (affiliate link)
How do you make chicken chili in a slow cooker
Chicken chili is so easy to make in a slow cooker, just dump and go.
Step 1: Add raw chicken breasts to the slow cooker and add all of the ingredients except for the toppings. Cover and cook on low for 7-8 hours.
Step 2: Remove the chicken breasts to a cutting board and shred with a fork.
Step 3: Add the shredded chicken back to the slow cooker and mix together.
Step 4: Top with cheese and sour cream and jalapeno slices if, you want it spicy.
You can start this in the morning and forget about it. If you end up getting home late, the sauce will keep the chicken from drying out.
If you find yourself cooking with chicken a lot and want to know for sure that your chicken is cooked thoroughly, head to my informational page on ways to make sure your chicken is cooked all the way but still remains juicy and delicious.
FAQ’s and tips
If you love beans you can add to the chili, just rinse them first.
If you don’t like spicy food, or are serving to kids, you can easily cut bak on the heat by leaving out the jalapenos and removing the seeds from the pablano pepper.
All slow cookers are a little different, but it should cook for 7-8 hours on low or about 4 hours on high. The chicken should easily shred if it’s cooked through.
Chili freezes great, just let it cool completely before freezing.
What should you serve with chili
More chili recipes you’ll love
Looking for some healthier dinner ideas
- Baked chicken in wine
- Chicken marsalla meatballs
- Chicken with mozzarella and roasted tomatoes
- Chicken parmesan meatballs
- Chicken orzo soup
Slow Cooker Chicken Chili
- 4 chicken breasts boneless and skinless
- 1 cup sweet onion diced
- 1 poblano pepper diced with seeds removed
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 2 14.5 ounce cans fire roasted diced tomatoes
- 8 ounces roasted garlic tomato sauce
- 1 cup chicken broth
- ½ cup roasted tomato salsa
- 2 teaspoons ancho chili powder
- 2 teaspoons regular chili powder
- 1 teaspoon dried cumin
- fresh cilantro optional
cheddar cheese, optional
Sour cream, optional
- Add chicken to the bottom of a slow cooker. Combine all of the ingredients except the topping and pour over the chicken.
- Cover and Cook on low for 7-8 hours.
- Remove chicken and shred with a fork, add back to the slow cooker and mix together.
- Top with fresh cilantro, cheese, sour cream and jalapeno slices.
Barbara’s Tips + Notes
- If adding beans, make sure you rinse them first.
- To make it mild, leave out the ancho chili powder and don’t top with jalapenos.
- If you’re in a hurry, you can cook it on high for 4 hours