Oh my gosh, you all…this soup. I have made this recipe five times in just as many months. It is definitely the most delicious soup I have ever made at home and is high up on the list of the best I’ve ever had. It’s the perfect ratio of chicken to beans to veggies to broth, and let me tell you about the dreamy broth…it has barbecue sauce!!! Barbecue sauce is already one of my favorite condiments ever, but it does amazing things to this soup by making it taste like it was simmering away all day when it really takes under an hour from start to finish. The jalapeño adds just a touch of heat and the roasted red peppers add a different texture. Oh, and did I mention this recipe is freezer friendly?
This recipe is pretty versatile. Feel free to sub in a different type of onion or shallots for the red onion (red onions can be pretty pricey at my local grocery store) and switch out the type of beans. The initial recipe called for cannellini beans and kidney beans, but I’m not the biggest cannellini bean fan, so I opted for black beans. On one occasion, I was convinced that I had a large can of diced tomatoes in the pantry, only to discover as I was prepping all of the ingredients that I had crushed tomatoes instead. I used them and it turned out to be just as delicious.
One thing that is not acceptable to sub/leave out would be the smoked paprika. I occasionally shy away from recipes that require me to go out and buy yet another spice for my already massive spice cabinet, but I promise you that this one is worth it. I was introduced to smoked paprika about a year ago and it is now my favorite spice. It tastes nothing like regular paprika, so don’t try to be sneaky and use that instead. I promise to post more recipes using smoked paprika, so your jar won’t go to waste!
Two more tips. First, use a thinner barbecue sauce for this recipe. Locals – I love using barbecue sauce from Mark’s Feed Store in this (it’s available for purchase at Kroger and probably some other local grocery stores as well). I just prefer the broth consistency when thinner barbecue sauce is used. My second tip – if you’re going to by pre-shredded cheese, go all out and get Sargento. I’m usually a big fan of freshly grating my own cheese for recipes (it melts better), but Sargento grated cheese is really tasty and well worth the price difference in my opinion. I love the 4 State Cheddar and 4 Cheese Mexican Blends. Ok, enough about cheese (for now).
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 cup red onion, diced
- 1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and diced
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 tablespoon + 1½ teaspoons smoked paprika
- 1 tablespoon + 2 teaspoons chili powder
- 1 tablespoon ground cumin
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- pinch red pepper flakes
- 12oz cooked boneless, skinless chicken breasts, shredded
- 12oz jar roasted red peppers in water, drained and chopped
- 14oz can black beans, drained and rinsed
- 14oz can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
- 3 cups low sodium chicken broth or stock
- 28oz can diced tomatoes
- ½ cup barbecue sauce
- 11 tablespoons shredded cheese for topping
- Optional toppings – tortilla strips/chips, sliced green onion, sour cream/plain Greek yogurt, chopped cilantro
- Heat a large soup pot over medium heat and add the olive oil, onion, jalapeño, and garlic. Cook until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the paprika, chili powder, cumin, black pepper, salt, and red pepper flakes. Stir and cook for 5 additional minutes.
- Add the chicken, roasted red peppers, beans, chicken stock, tomatoes, and barbecue sauce, stirring to combine. Cover the pot, lower the heat to medium low, and cook for 20 minutes. Remove the lid and taste, adjusting the seasoning as desired. Cover and cook another 10 minutes.
- Transfer chili to bowls, sprinkle on toppings, and enjoy!