Sunday, November 29, 2015

Buffalo Chicken Chili

1 lb chicken, cooked and shredded
15 oz can white navy beans
14.5 oz can fire roasted tomatoes
2 cups chicken broth
1/4 cup buffalo chicken wing sauce (Frank's Red Hot Wings Buffalo Sauce)
1 pkg dry Ranch dressing mix
1 cup frozen corn kernels (we like super sweet white frozen corn)
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp celery salt
1/2 tsp freeze dried cilantro (I've used finely chopped fresh with success as well)
1/4 tsp (optional to add at end if needed)
4oz to 8oz of cream cheese, softened to room temperature (do not use low fat, result is a grainy soup)
Bleu cheese crumbles, optional

1. Cook chicken
2. Simmer all ingredients except cream cheese for 30 minutes. Or 4-6 hours on low in crockpot.
3. Remove from heat and add cream cheese in small chunks.
4. Whisk carefully until smooth and serve with bleu cheese crumbles

More in depth instructions:
I like to use my crockpot to cook my chicken with a little chicken broth. I put all remaning ingredients, except cream cheese, in a bowl to combine with chicken later. I just keep it in the fridge until I'm ready. Makes it fast and easy! However, this is originally all done in the crockpot & you can do it that way as well. Your chicken just needs to be cooked first. A word of caution, if you don't like the "heat" from the buffalo sauce, start with 2 tbsp and then add in 1 tsp increments at the end to your desired heat. I've found 1/4 cup is just right for me and my family. The recipe originally called for 1/2 cup and that is a hold-onto-your-seat level of hot for our family. So, test it out and see what works best for you.

Once my chicken is cooked and shredded, I pour the ingredients from the bowl into a 3.5 quart pot and add the chicken. I bring it to a boil over medium high heat, then turn temperature to low and simmer for 30 minutes. (Note: if you do this in the crockpot, you can cook it on low for 4-6 hours.) Remove from heat and add the cream cheese in small clumps using a fork. Allow cream cheese to warm up in soup, then carefully whisk until the cream cheese is melted down and smooth. I used to use an entire package of cream cheese, but I've since found that about 6 oz is right. Perfect amount of creamy and buffalo heat. If you're trying to cut calories, just use 4 oz. However, the cream cheese tempers the buffalo sauce "heat." If some of your family likes it hotter than others, simply place the bottle of hot sauce on the table to add additional "heat."

Recipe adapted from crockpotgourmet.net. My changes include: chicken broth reduced from 4 cups to 2 cups, not draining the beans or tomatoes, reduced cream cheese, and optional salt.

This recipe makes about 12 cups. Nutritional facts per serving: Calories-163, Fat (g) 5.1, Carbs (g) 12.3, Protein (g) 15.6.

I could not get a picture of this because we would always forget! My family loves it. I barely remembered to get a picture until the bowl was almost gone. It isn't a flattering picture but I promise the picture doesn't do it justice. The chili/soup is delicious and I always get rave reviews when I share it with family and friends! Hope you enjoy!!!

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