Whole30 Creamy Chicken Chili

Denver Tex-Mex Style

Last week I was brainstorming recipes I wanted to create, and my heart landed on a creamy chicken chili, something that sounds so comforting and delicious I couldn’t pass up the chance to create it!

This creamy chicken chili is Whole 30 compliant. I’m calling it Denver-style because it has a can of Hatch roasted green chiles in it, a staple in Denver cuisine. It is Tex-Mex style because it relies on easy powdered spices that you most likely have in your pantry! It’s also a smooth chili–like Texas-style–but with ground meat instead of chunks, making it something you could whip up in a flash! This is an instant crowd pleaser and I promise you have most of the items in your pantry right now!

This recipe can be made in an Instant Pot utilizing pressure when you are in a hurry, or on slow cook when you just want it to simmer all day. You can also use any Dutch oven or similar pot you are comfortable with using. I like the Instant Pot because it has a sauté function for browning meat. For all intents and purposes the following directions are the same whether you slow cook in the Instant Pot or use a Dutch Oven. If your slow cooker does not have a sauté function, complete steps 1 and 2 in large skillet.

The perfect comfort meal!

Gabbie’s Creamy Chicken Chili

serves 4-6 people

  • 2.5 lbs. ground chicken
  • 3 tbsp. ground cumin
  • 3 tbsp. chili powder
  • 3 tbsp. smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp. chipotle pepper
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 tsp. onion powder
  • salt & pepper to taste: for me it was a scant tsp. pink Himalayan salt and a scant tsp. fresh ground black pepper
  • 1 6oz. can of tomato paste
  • 1 7oz. can mild diced green chiles
  • 1 6oz. can coconut milk or 1.7oz can coconut cream
  • 24 oz of chicken bone broth or stock, I use Bonafide frozen bone broth from Whole Foods when I do not have it on hand
  • 1 tsp. olive oil or rendered animal fat
  • For serving: sliced avocado, green onions, and chopped cilantro


Step 1: Brown the chicken meat with 1 tsp. olive oil or rendered animal fat. When the chicken is almost fully cooked, add 1 tbsp. each of cumin, chili powder, and smoked paprika, 1 tsp. of chipotle pepper and the salt. Mix together until the spices are fully incorporated into the chicken mixture.

Step 2: Add the green chiles and let their liquid cook off for two minutes. Then add the tomato paste, stirring vigorously to caramelize it a bit so it will no longer taste raw. After a few minutes of sautéing the tomato paste, add the chicken stock or bone broth.

At this point you can set your Instant Pot on slow cook for 5-7 hours, and forget it until you are ready to eat. Likewise, you can let your Dutch oven simmer away with a lid on making sure to stir frequently and add liquid (I would just use water) as needed.

If you are cooking without pressure, you will want to add the rest of the spices slowly in stages. I learned this watching Texas chili cooking competitions. The winning contenders always add their spices in stages!

If you would like to cook at pressure, add the rest of the spices now. Cook at manual high pressure in your instant pot for 30 minutes. You may slow release or rapid release the pressure. BUT it’s not done yet! It may need to sit on saute for a bit longer to cook off excess liquid and get to your desired thickness.

Step 3: Before serving add the coconut cream, stirring until melted into to the chili and taste to make sure the salt and pepper is to your liking!

Optional additions: Vital Proteins collagen peptide powder (dissolve in hot water first), diced jalapeno (I would add with green chiles), unsweetened cocoa powder for a mole flavor profile, Nom Nom Paleo Magic Mushroom Powder. This chili is easy to customize and make your own!

For non-Whole30’ers my husband and brother love this chili over Fritos Scoops with a heap of cheddar or chihuahua cheese.

Sometimes the simplest things, are the most enjoyable!