Made with chicken, corn, beans and a tomatillo salsa verde, this easy and healthy Chicken Chili Verde is a perfect family meal for any night of the week!
This soup came to fruition when I was being queen of the lazy.
Despite most people's opinion, I don't always like spending hours upon hours cooking in the kitchen.
Yes, I love to cook.
Yes, I love to make delicious and healthy food.
Yes, I like to drink wine while I cook.
But spending hours in the kitchen, not always my jam.
We can co-queen this lazy cooking thing together if you want. Because I know you have nights/weeks/months when you don't want to spend countless hours in the kitchen as well, that's why we are such good friends.
This soup was made with 3 things in mind 1) how can I make a delicious meal for Christmas lunch without spending more then 20 minutes on it? 2) how can I make a soup that Parker will actually eat because she firmly believes soupy soup is for pouring onto the table to play in? 3) how can this magical soup taste like my moms homemade chicken tomatillo enchiladas? Because my moms homemade tomatillo sauce is to.die.for!
That's right, the first time I made this soup I served it for Christmas lunch at my house for 10 people.
I wasn't even sure 10 people could fit into my tiny bungalow (turns out they can) but I for sure knew there was no way to fit 10 people around my small dinning room table (turns out 6 people make a tight fit).
So lap eating was key to making this lunch work.
And while I was thinking about having a more festive and traditional meal for everyone, queen lazy showed up and I decided to make a low key lunch so I could hang out, talk with my family and play with the girls instead of being confined to the kitchen. Plus, it is a light green in color, topped with green avocado and green cilantro, that is pretty festive if you ask me:)
Turns out this soup hit the spot for all of us.
We all just ended up serving ourselves whenever we were ready to eat and piled our bowls high with whichever toppings spoke to us - sour cream, cilantro, shredded white cheddar, avocado and of course some tortilla chips for some crunch were all piled high in my bowl.
Plus, Ellie and Parker devoured it!
And anytime both of the girls devour any meal, it gets immediately added into my regular meal rotation. Especially if it's easy-peasy to make!
With dreams of my moms tomatillo sauce and this recipe on my tastebuds, I got to work. But first, I knew I had to make them extremely toddler friendly - i.e. blend all the green salsa verde ingredients together and have some more chunky food for them to pick up with their fingers, I mean pick up and eat with their spoons. We always use spoons in our house during meals, like always, for everything <----- this absolutely never happens. The spoon is the first thing that gets tossed aside, usually before dinner is even on the table.
Let's get cooking in absolutely the laziest way possible...
First we blend up a super quick salsa verde - roasted (or un-roasted if you are running short on time) tomatillos, onion, garlic, cilantro, a jalapeño, cumin and some oregano for kicks.
Then in a big pot, we add the salsa verde, some corn, a ton of beans, cooked chicken and some broth. Then we bring it all to a boil, reduce to a gently simmer and let it cook happily until we are finished chopping up all the extra add-ins.
Then dinner is DONE!
And because I have now made this recipe almost every week since Christmas, I have provided recipes adaptations for the slow cooker, un-cooked chicken, an easier way to make the salsa (aka using a jar of store bough salsa, no judging) and some ideas for additional veggies you can add in if you want to get a gold-star for the night!
Lazy dinner recipe, wine, gold stars - my work here is done.
Chicken Chili Verde
3-4 cups cooked shredded chicken (or 1 pound raw chicken if using slow cooker method)*
2 cans great northern beans, drained
1 can corn, drained
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tbsp cilantro, finely chopped
4-6 cups chicken broth
For Salsa Verde**
1 pound (10-12) tomatillos, husked
1/2 onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves
1 jalapeno pepper, de-seeded and minched
1/4 cup packed cilantro
1 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp oregano
1 tsp salt
Diced avocado, cilantro, plain yogurt, sour cream, shredded cheese, corn chips, chopped onions or sliced green onions.
Stove Top Instructions
1. Preheat oven to broil. Place the tomatillos on baking sheet and broil for 5 minutes, flip and broil for an additional 4-5 minutes or until blistered.
2. Place the tomatillos, onion, garlic, jalapeño, cilantro, cumin, oregano and salt into a blender and puree until smooth.
3. Place the cooked chicken, beans, corn, cumin, broth and salsa verde into a large stock pot and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and let cook for at least 20 minutes.
4. Serve with choice of toppings and enjoy.
Slow Cooker Instructions
1. Make the salsa verde following directions above.
2. Place the raw chicken, beans, corn, cumin, broth and salsa verde into slow cooker and let cook for 3-4 hours on high or 6-8 hours on high.
3. Take chicken out, let cool slightly and then shred. Return back to slow cooker and stir back in.
4. Serve with choice of toppings and enjoy.
* If you don't want to do the slow cooker method and you don't have cooked chicken, I cooked my chicken with this method after step 1. I pounded my chicken into cutlets and then cooked for 20 minutes, shredded and added back into the soup right before serving.
** You can also use 2 cups of store bought salsa verde.
*** You can also add cubed potatoes, cut up green peppers, sliced zucchini or chopped green beans during step 2. Just make sure they are tender before serving. You can also add a heaping handful of spinach to the salsa verde before blending.
Yield - 8 adult servings
Storage - 1 week in fridge or 2 months in freezer