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Pinto Bean Chicken Chili

A warm, comforting pinto bean chicken chili recipe that’s easy to make. Each bowl is hearty and healthy, and wonderful when served with a side of cornbread.

Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
45 min
Total Time
50 min

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bowl of pinto bean chicken chili

Every now and then I love a little real-talk blogging. Today is one of those days.

The past year has been full of life-altering changes for me. I’ve shed many layers from my life…. and can I just admit that it’s all been incredibly difficult?! I’ve started my own business, traveled at least a week out of every month, lived in three states, and have literally been pulling my hair out trying to figure out where this is all leading to!

So what does this translate into? Basically working insane hours and jeopardizing A LOT. Honestly it’s been a complete struggle. I’m sure it’s something you might be able to relate to: failure, disappointments, and well… whatever life throws at you. Of course, I’m a huge believer that everything happens for a reason. My passion for success and a career in food pushes me every single day to keep pursuing my dream no matter how many times I fail. And trust me, I fail more than you know! My list of unsuccessful ventures will always be longer anything I accomplish; it will be for all of us. However, these failures push you to become better and to learn.

In a sense, I feel as though I’m in the middle of a transformation. I’m trusting my intuition and regardless of how difficult it becomes or what disappointments I find myself in, I’m both blessed and thankful to be on this journey.

pot of pinto bean chicken chili

So my question to you, is what pushes you to be the best you can be? What drives you to be better than you were yesterday?

I’m just a twenty-four year old girl who is literally obsessed with food, styling, photography and the inspiration I find in every day life. I’m not here to pretend I’m perfect in any way, because I’m not. I’m just explicitly in love with sharing my passion with you.

Oh sorry, that’s a bit obvious and this is getting preachy. Excuse me, let’s get to the FOOD!

bowl of pinto bean chicken chili
I made this sensational chili last week and it reminded me of my Grandmother because she seems to always incorporate pinto beans into whatever she’s cooking. And for good reason, too! In my opinion, they’re one of the best comfort foods — flavorful and creamy in texture.

I devoured a bowl with a side of honey cornbread. Coincidentally, self reflection pairs perfectly with the chili too. Enjoy!

bowl of pinto bean chicken chili

More healthy chili recipes you’ll love:

Slow Cooker Black Bean Quinoa Pumpkin Chicken Chili

Slow Cooker Salsa Verde Chicken Chickpea Chili

The Best Healthy Turkey Chili

Slow Cooker Black Bean Pumpkin Turkey Chili

Two-Bean and Corn Chipotle Turkey Chili

Pinto Bean Chicken Chili

5 from 3 votes
bowl of pinto bean chicken chili
Course Dinner, Healthy, Soup
Keyword Pinto Bean Chicken Chili
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Serves 6

A warm, comforting pinto bean chicken chili recipe that’s easy to make. Each bowl is hearty and healthy, and wonderful when served with a side of cornbread.


  • 2 teaspoons olive oil, plus extra
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 3 tablespoons chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • fresh black pepper
  • 1 pound chicken breast (about 3 cups)
  • 1 - 15 ounce cans pinto beans, drained
  • 1 - 28 ounce can diced tomatoes in juice
  • 2 1/2 cups canned low-salt chicken broth
  • 1 ounce semisweet chocolate, chopped
  • black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes, plus more to taste


  1. Heat olive oil in dutch oven or large pot over medium high heat until shimmering. Add onion and bell pepper and saute until onion is soft and translucent, about 6-8 minutes. 

  2. Add the garlic and cook a few minutes more until fragrant then add in chili powder, cumin, oregano, salt, and a bit of fresh black pepper and stir for 1 minute more. 

  3. Add in the tomatoes, chicken broth, pinto beans, chocolate, cinnamon, tomato paste, and red pepper flakes and bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer uncovered for 30-35 minutes, stirring occasionally.

  4. To cook chicken: Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Drizzle or rub a tiny bit of olive oil over chicken and generously season with salt and pepper. Place on baking sheet and bake 18-25 minutes, baking times differ depending on the size of your chicken breast but remember to cook until juices run clean. Alternatively you could use about 3 cups of rotisserie chicken. 

  5. Cool chicken for 5-10 minutes then pull and shred chicken with two forks and add to chili, simmering uncovered for about 20 more minutes or until chili reaches desired consistency. Serve with fresh queso, cornbread or chips if desired. I love topping mine with a little bit of greek yogurt.

Recipe Notes

This recipe is freezer friendly and can also be made in the slow-cooker.

Servings: 6
Serving size: 1
Calories: 286kcal
Fat: 6.8g
Carbohydrates: 26.3g
Fiber: 6.2g
Protein: 31.2g

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