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Chicken and Bell Pepper Chili

Home ยป 50+ Best Soups and Stews Recipes ยป Chicken and Bell Pepper Chili

When the weather turns cool, I frequently cook up my favorite classic chili recipe. Often, I shake things up by adding this out of the ordinary, scrumptious Chicken and Bell Pepper Chili to our dinner menu!

Without any exotic ingredients, this is the best chili recipe to share with friends and family. Everyone loves it!!

Chicken and Bell Pepper Chili in a white bowl.

Chicken and Bell Pepper Chili

This Chicken and Bell Pepper Chili made its debut at a Super Bowl party we hosted eons ago. The crowd went nuts and I had numerous recipe requests. This was back in what my kids might refer to as the Stone Age, before most of my friends used the Internet.  I printed off copies of the Ina Garten recipe and dropped them in the party-goers’ mailboxes. Years later, I made a batch for a family dealing with health issues. The husband, a self-proclaimed foodie, told Bill he wasn’t too excited when he heard my dinner delivery was “chicken chili.” But he changed his tune after sampling this splendid version.

This is a bit more sophisticated than your usual chicken chili, but still simple to throw together. Having to hand-deliver numerous recipes was the ultimate endorsement. I guess you expect that with a wonderful Barefoot Contessa recipe.

When our beloved Packers finally made it to the big game, this seemed like the perfect Super Bowl Sunday dinner. Our Packer lights were positioned around the doors, our not so attractive Packer gnome was facing the TV, and Lambeau (named after Curly Lambeauโ€ฆa very famous Green Bay Packer player and coach) was around for good luck. The family was a bunch of nervous wrecks, and I had to snake off to the kitchen to escape the shouting, groaning and armchair refereeing! We had to wait until the game was over to dine, but once again, this best chili recipe with chicken disappeared quickly.

Chicken and Bell Pepper Chili in a small white bowl garnished with basil

Tips for Making This Chicken Chili

There’s a bit of chopping involved, but this is not a complicated recipe. Here are some tips for making a fabulous chicken chili.

  • Start with roasting a few bone-in, skin on chicken breasts. Drizzle them with olive oil and a generous sprinkling of seasoning salt. Roast at 375ยบ for about 45 minutes.
  • Bone-in chicken breasts have more flavor and will not dry out as quickly as boneless.
  • Ina’s basic recipe can easily be tweaked depending on your tolerance for heat. The recipe, as written, has crushed red pepper flakes and cayenne pepper. If you are nervous about adding these ingredients, start with half the amounts, then taste and adjust after it simmers for a while.
  • Serving with sour cream was enough to tone down the spice for the hubby’s tender palate, but my boys didn’t mind it simply topped with cheese and tortilla chips.
  • Add some frozen corn and/or black beans if you’d like. I used a few colors of bell peppers, but all red will work perfectly, too. I find green peppers are not as sweet, so rarely use them in my cooking.
  • PRO-Tip: Since fresh basil is added to the recipe, reserve a few sprigs to garnish. Using an ingredient used in the recipe gives a cue to the flavors in the dish.  Besides sour cream, you can provide grated cheddar cheese, corn chips, diced onions, diced jalapenos for additional garnishes. I love to serve this chicken and bell pepper chili with Buttermilk Corn Muffins.

You may also enjoy this Easy Black Bean Chili, White Chicken Chili, or healthy Chili Blanca.Chicken and Bell Pepper Chili photo and text Pinterest collage

Chicken and Bell Pepper Chili featured image

Chicken and Bell Pepper Chili

This unusual, pepper filled chicken chili is ALWAYS a hit!

Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Yield 8


  • 2 yellow onions, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 bell peppers, chopped (I used 2 red, 1 orange, 1 yellow)
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 2 28-ounce cans whole peeled plum tomatoes with juice, I use San Marzano
  • 1/4 cup basil, minced
  • 4-6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and chopped OR 3-4 bone-in, skin on chicken breasts, roasted
  • Freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • Tortilla chips, shredded cheddar cheese, sour cream to garnish, optional


  • Cook the onions in the olive oil till translucent, about 10 minutes. Add garlic and cook 1 minute. Add peppers and seasonings (except for fresh basil)and cook for about a minute. Add tomatoes with juice, and use spatula to cut into bite sized pieces. Cook 20 minutes. Add chicken and basil and simmer about 20-60 more minutes. I used to cook this the shorter amount of time, but find the flavor develops even more if you have time to cook for at least an hour. Just add back in some water if it reduces to much.
  • Serve with tortilla chips, shredded cheese and sour cream.


Adapted from Ina Garten.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 281Total Fat: 9gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 81mgSodium: 660mgCarbohydrates: 19gFiber: 4gSugar: 12gProtein: 32g


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54 comments on “Chicken and Bell Pepper Chili”

  1. Yummy! That’s a colorful dish. I like chicken and capsicum combination.

  2. This sounds extremely tasty … I would definitely put the sour cream on top! Thanks for the chili list as well … so useful and I’m going to book-mark it for later!

  3. I know I’ll love this! I’m putting peppers on my list:@)

  4. What colorful and chunky chili! I can see why it would be a hit.

  5. Love how big and chunky this chili is and so full of wonderful ingredients!!!

  6. Love all the gorgeous colors! And I love making chili a little extra spicy then topping with sour cream or greek yogurt.

  7. LOVE that burst of color in your chili, Liz! Oh my gosh… winner, winner, chicken chili for dinner! ๐Ÿ™‚
    PINNED to my Chili Creations board ๐Ÿ™‚

  8. Anytime our two Bill’s give a recipe a ‘thumb’s up!’ is a guarantee of deliciousness! We’d love this chili, Liz, and I know that my Bill would agree with your Bill!

  9. Just love the colors of your chili, Liz. So, so pretty. I don’t know where you find the time to do what you all do, but you do it all so very well, and make it look effortless to boot! Nice recipe!

  10. Liz!
    love the big chunks of chicken and bell peppers! and you can’t go wrong with an Ina recipe! love this!

  11. Always looking for a good Chicken Chili recipe and I heart Ina! I can’t wait to try this out. Pinned for next week when Hubs gets back in town!

  12. What a beautiful bowl of chili! I love chicken and you know me and peppers! This is so perfect Liz!!

  13. Chicken chili can be seriously good stuff. In fact I have a batch in the freezer right now! I love all the colors in yours — so attractive. And I’m a big fan of adding frozen corn to chili — just put it in maybe 10 minutes before you want to serve the chili, and the corn will be perfectly cooked. Anyway, this is super. ๐Ÿ˜‰ Thanks.

  14. This looks really delicious — I love these kind of Tex-Mex chilis/soups. I love to put toppings on them like cheese, sour cream, green onions, corn chips, etc, etc. Yum!

  15. That looks incredibly good Liz, I wish I had taken chicken out of the freezer for supper tonight insteadโ€ฆI’ll have to make this tomorrow night. YUM.

  16. Bright color, bold flavor and adaptability…what’s not to love? Pinning this for good measure. I smiled at how you got your family friend to turn his thinking around. Speaking of thoughts, sending good ones your way. Take care, Liz.

  17. I just had chili the other week because everywhere I turned there was a new recipe. I couldn’t resist. Now look at all of these! Looks like I will be having some more soon. Chili really is the ultimate winter food.

  18. I love that it’s chicken chunks and not ground. Yummy and hearty! And the peppers? HEALTHY!

  19. I love love love chicken chili, I love how different this version is! Thanks for sharing.

  20. Chicken and capsicum or bell peppers… a favourite of mine, Liz. Love the vibrant colours of the dish too!

  21. I am yet to try a chicken chili and this is going to be the first one I will cook! It looks so good and your pictures are so beautiful Lizzy!

  22. I love the big chunks in your chili! It looks so hearty and comforting…

  23. I love chili, your recipe looks delicious!! ๐Ÿ™‚

    Michael ๐Ÿ˜‰
    Recent post Sloppy Joe’s –

  24. What a bright and colorful chili!

  25. Oh yummy chunky chicken. I always enjoyed chili that was more chunks than liquid – yummm!

  26. All these chili recipes are just wonderful! Chicken and Bell Peppers are always wonderful together and in a chili it sounds great!

  27. I’ve made chili many times, but never chicken chili. This recipe looks like a keeper!

  28. Ina’s chili has been my go-to chili for years. EVERYONE loves it!!!

  29. I love the color and those bright bell peppers. I can absolutely see why everyone loved it.

  30. We love chilli! This is a really warming and comforting meal.
    Have a wonderful week ahead, Liz.

  31. Now that looks like a very yummy dinner. What delicious flavours. I love how it can be versatile as well by adding a bit of this or that. And it’s so good to hear that this is a meal everyone in your family enjoyed. A keeper for sure! xx

  32. Ha I love proving people wrong when they think they know what a dish is going to taste like before they try it.

  33. Is everyone on recovery? Sending some positive thoughts your way… This chili looks like the perfect way to warm up from the warmth of the chili bowl and the chili heat.

  34. The bell peppers make your chili so gorgeous! I love the colors.

  35. Such a colorful and delicious looking Chili Liz! I would go for seconds and thirds ๐Ÿ™‚ Sending you warm hugs for a enduring a difficult time and wishing for a speedy recovery!xo

  36. Love all those chunks of pepper and chicken.

  37. Once upon a time I swore I would never eat chicken chili. My how the times have changed!

  38. Lizzy,
    Your chili got my vote. Hope you win.

  39. So many good chilis listed. But this looks like a winner in my book!

  40. Voted for your yummy chicken chili ร  la Ina! Looking forward to seeing you at the F & Wine Conference, Liz =)

  41. What a lovely chili! I know I can always trust an Ina recipe, especially one with such stellar reviews!

  42. I love this colorful chili, the peppers add such appeal!

  43. This sounds so lovely, Liz. I chuckled at the stone age reference ๐Ÿ™‚

    Oh, and I am glad to hear that my husband is not the only one with a tender palate ๐Ÿ˜‰

  44. I love this version of chicken chili…it’s nice to have a healthier version as an option…especially for a chili lover like me!

  45. Looks and sounds wonderfully delicious! A perfect comfort food for a cold winters day!

  46. Love chili especially during this time of year. This looks incredible with all the bell peppers – a hot bowl sounds perfect to warm up with ๐Ÿ™‚

  47. Hi Liz,

    Sounds really delicious. I think I have voted. Should there be something to acknowledge the vote once you click on the little star?

    Fingers x’d for your lovely dish.

  48. Hi Liz,

    Sounds really delicious. I think I have voted. Should there be something to acknowledge the vote once you click on the little star?

    Fingers x’d for your lovely dish.

  49. Chicken and Bell Pepper Chili from That Skinny Chick Can Bake

  50. Love the big chunks of veggies here ๐Ÿ™‚

  51. Fabulous! Great alternative to “regular” chili. I made a half recipe and it would still serve at least 4. Yummy. A keeper!

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