Chicken Chili Stew

You guys!  You are the best.  Thank you, thank you for indulging me with your comments and sharing my pancakes.  Sorry I hogged the syrup.

In other news and happenings, I’d like to inform you that if a person didn’t know that the Super Bowl was going to happen next weekend, a person might, I mean maybe, accidentally book tickets for her and Ben and Emily and Dan to go see a musical show.  Four glorious tickets to a matinée of Wicked (!), on Super Bowl Sunday.  A person might do this!  By accident.

But let me tell you, if a person did do this, she wouldn’t hear the end of it.  The Ben, and also the Dan, wouldn’t be entirely happy with the person.  Because the person would have inadvertently taken away a Ben’s and a Dan’s ritual of manhood, one of body-bashing and fist-waving/yelling-at-the-tv and zone-blitzing and chicken-winging, and replaced it with… Glinda.


Let’s eat some chicken chili stew?  A warm and hearty peace offering?  It’s totally manly.  You can smother it in shredded cheese and sour cream and eat it with corn chips.  Like men.  Like men at a Super Bowl party.  Or, um, the theater.

Just… just eat.  We’re cool, right?

Chicken Chili Stew

Adapted from Simply Classic, the Junior League of Seattle

The lowdown: roasting chicken is pretty easy, but you could make this REAL easy (and quick) with a store-bought rotisserie chicken.  Also, this is a dish easily made in advance (it also freezes well), so make it this weekend to serve at your Super Bowl musical party!  Tra-la-laaaaaa football!


  • 1 whole chicken, broken down into 8 pieces (leave bone-in and skin-on)
  • olive oil
  • salt and ground black pepper
  • 2 large yellow onions, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped or grated
  • 2 (4 ounce) cans chopped mild green chilies
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 2 (15 ounce) cans Great Northern beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 (15 ounce) can pinto beans, rinsed and drained
  • 8 cups chicken stock
  • 1 (12 ounce) can beer (I used Stella Artois)
  • shredded cheddar cheese, sour cream, and chopped cilantro for topping


Heat oven to 425 degrees F.

Place chicken pieces on a rimmed baking sheet or large pyrex baking dish, and sprinkle each piece liberally with salt and pepper.  Drizzle olive oil over chicken (about a teaspoon oil per piece) and rub to evenly coat.  Bake chicken until cooked through (chicken skin should be nicely crisped and juices will run clear), about 30 minutes.  Set aside to cool.  Turn oven off.

While chicken cooks, heat a tablespoon of olive oil in a large pot over medium heat.  Add onions and sweat for 10 minutes, until softened and translucent.  Add garlic and green chilies and cook 2 minutes more.  Next, add all of the spices — cumin, oregano, cloves, chili powder and cayenne — and a large pinch of salt, and sauté until nice and fragrant, about 5 additional minutes.

Add the beans and chicken stock.  Bring to a boil.  Reduce heat slightly and let the stew boil gently (you don’t want a rolling boil, which will quickly break down the beans), for about 30 minutes, until liquid has reduced by and inch or two.

While stew is softly boiling away, remove the skin from the cooled chicken.  Remove all of the meat from the bones and shred or chop it up into small pieces.  Add the chicken pieces to the stew.

Once chicken has been added and some of the stock has reduced out of the stew, add the beer.  Continue to simmer for about 10 minutes, or until the chicken chili stew has reached your desired thickness.  Taste the stew and season it to your liking with salt and ground black pepper.

Serve stew hot, sprinkled generously with shredded cheese, chopped cilantro and spoonfuls of sour cream.

Makes 8-10 cups stew.

This entry was posted in Dinner, Recipes, Soup. Bookmark the permalink.

10 Responses to Chicken Chili Stew

  1. Katie says:

    Molly! This should technically be on your last post, because I am (without a doubt) a loyal follower, but I figured I’d continue the comment party over here.

    First off, your ability to make me awkwardly giggle (in a quiet room) at the computer screen is impressive. ALSO, in regards to that, I am very curious about the outcome of this scheduling conflict. Will these gentlemen accompany you to see Wicked, afterall? ….whilst very manly things are happening on tv?

    Off subject thought: curious if this ‘questionable pop music’ taste still applies to happy to Nysnc – which you hint at in your “About” page. (I definitely just bursted your bubble.) I can still remember that awesome jerky arm dance move that I practiced after summer of 1998 – inspired by the older girls at camp! And if you’re responsible for the “like a prayer” dance I reconstructed also after one of those summers, consisting of flashlight and pillow case as props, let me know…

    • Katie says:

      (don’t know how that ‘to happy’ snuck it’s way in. where’s the edit button?!!!)

      • molly gilbert says:

        hahah HI Katie! Yes, the gentlemen are going to suck it up and come see Wicked with us ladies… they’re just, like, so secure in their manhood that it’s no bigs. Sort of.

        Also YES, questionable taste in popular music absolutely applies to NSYNC, not to mention Backstreet Boys, 98 degrees and, obviously, Justin Beiber. Sorry I’m absolutely not sorry. I still remember that dance, by the way. Which is SO COOL AND TOTALLY NOT WEIRD AT ALL.


  2. Emily says:

    Its Ga-linda…with a ga.

  3. Erin says:

    Luke doesn’t believe it. He said, “What are they going to do?! Dan isn’t going to NOT watch the SUPERBOWL??”

    We’re still in shock over here.

  4. Liz Bien says:

    I told your Mom that this sounds like something I might do but not you!

  5. Kara says:

    This looks delicious. Where do you get all your gorgeous plates, bowls, tablecloths, etc.? I’ve always wanted mismatched old dishes collected from thrift and antique stores. My husband likes simple stuff though, so we got basic white dishes…but one day when I have excess cabinet space, maybe I’ll start collecting.

    I love your writing, your photography, and your cheeriness. Thanks for sharing. 🙂

    • molly gilbert says:

      Thank you, Kara! My dish ware/towels are a mishmash of finds from thrift stores, Anthropologie, Ikea, Fishes Eddy and Cost Plus – I’m always on the lookout for elegant & fun shapes and patterns! As a result, my kitchen shelves are entirely random and mix-matchy. I’m okay with it.

  6. Emily says:

    Wicked + halftime + last half of the Super Bowl + chili may actually be the exact right way to watch the Super Bowl.

    I don’t think you messed up at all. You may have uncovered gold here.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.