BBQ Chicken Chili

posted by Andrea | 01/16/2019

Dave and I have always loved any type of soup or chili — but in the process of feeding 4 small children over the past 7 years, I’ve noticed that I stopped making it as often since it’s a pain to feed toddlers liquid foods (and SO messy when they try to feed themselves!)

Now that our kids are getting a bit older and more self-sufficient, I’ve started making soup and chili much more often again.

I’ve also started baking bread from scratch again… and soup + bread just seems to be the perfect cold-weather meal!

Today’s recipe for BBQ Chicken Chili was one I tried first a few months ago with huge success. It is so quick and easy to throw together, and the BBQ sauce gives great flavor!

At the time, I was in the middle of “cleaning out our pantry and freezer” so this soup was a big hit as it used up several canned goods and a handful of chicken from our freezer!

As added bonuses, our kids liked it and it heated up REALLY well as leftovers! 

I have yet to try freezing this soup as we always eat it all before I have time to freeze it, but based on my history of freezing similar chicken/chili recipes, I’m certain it will freeze and defrost well. .

Recipe for BBQ Chicken Chili

serves 4

{print recipe}


  • oil or butter to sauté veggies
  • 1 small onion; diced
  • 1 bell pepper; diced (I used some green, red, and orange and left the rest raw for snacking)
  • 3 garlic cloves; minced (or 1 t. garlic powder)
  • 1 T. chili powder
  • 1 t. paprika
  • 1 t. ground cumin
  • 1 t. salt
  • 1/2 t. pepper
  • 2-3 c. broth or water (more or less if you want thinner or thicker soup)
  • 1 can (15 oz) corn; drained (or use fresh or frozen)
  • 1 can (15.5 oz) white beans; drained and rinsed
  • 1 can (15.5 oz) kidney beans; drained and rinsed (not pictured)
  • 1/2 lb. to 1 lb. cooked chicken breasts; diced or shredded (he’s my tip to quickly shred chicken)
  • 1/2 c. BBQ sauce
  • Shredded Cheese
  • Cilantro (optional garnish)
  • Green onions (optional garnish)
  • Sour cream or plain Greek yogurt (optional garnish)
  • More BBQ sauce (optional garnish)


Heat oil or butter in a large pot.

Add chopped onions, pepper, and garlic. Sauté until soft (roughly 5 minutes).

When veggies are soft, stir in seasonings, salt, and pepper until fragrant (2-3 minutes)

Add in broth, corn, beans, chicken, and BBQ sauce and bring to a boil.

Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 10-15 minutes, adding more liquid if necessary (depending on how thick or thin you want your soup).

Serve hot, garnished with cheese, cilantro, green onions, sour cream, and/or more BBQ sauce.

NOTE: I did NOT use all the broth pictured above, I just put the whole slow cooker in the picture as I had just finished making another batch of broth when I was making this soup.

The soup pictured above was  more watery than normal (I got a little carried away with the broth and added too much extra). However the taste was still fantastic!

Want to make it in a slow cooker?

Go for it!

Just dump everything in and heat on low until warmed through. Or, put raw chicken breasts in the bottom of the slow cooker, topped with all the other ingredients, and cook on low for 6-8 hours.

Mix up the flavors with different BBQ sauces!

You can easily change up the flavor by using different BBQ sauces — or omit the BBQ sauce from the recipe and let everyone choose their own flavor as a garnish.

And of course, if you actually have leftover BBQ chicken, this recipe would be a FANTASTIC way to use it up! Simply shred or chop it and add it to the pot! YUM!!!!


This chili has been on regular rotation in our kitchen these past few months — it’s such a quick weeknight meal I can have on the table in roughly 30 minutes.

Plus, it gives me an excuse to make more bread!! 

If you’re looking for a yummy warm-weather comfort food, give this BBQ Chicken Chili a try! 

What are your favorite soups?

Visit my virtual recipe box for more simple, delicious, family friendly recipes!


Filed under: Food

Leave a comment


  1. BETSY


    Made this tonight and the whole family loved it. Thanks for sharing!!!


    Andrea Reply:

    awesome!! So glad to hear this!


  2. Dawn


    Tried this Chili last night! So simple and delicious. I used a can of great northern beans and a can of garbanzo beans (that’s what I had on hand). Also used all dark meat chicken from some drumsticks I had roasted up. Delicious!! Thank you so much for sharing!


    Andrea Reply:

    oh good — glad to hear you approve!!


  3. Lorrie


    This looks delicious! Can’t wait to give it a try. Thanks for sharing!


    Andrea Reply:

    you’re welcome! Hope you enjoy the chili!


  4. Dawn Smith


    That bread looks fantastic!


  5. Jen


    This sounds yummy! I’m interested in that bread in the photo–it looks like a savory bread. Hope you’ll be sharing the recipe soon!


    Andrea Reply:

    The bread in the 3 little pans? That was a recipe for garlic cheddar zucchini bread. I basically just swapped out the sweet cinnamon and sugar for cheddar, greek yogurt (sour cream) ,garlic, and some other herbs. I don’t have a recipe — but it WAS good!


    Jen Reply:

    Yes! That sounds great. I will give it a try!


  6. Annette Silveira


    I have everything I need to make this on this rainy Wednesday. It will be a great, warm dinner!


    Andrea Reply:

    oh good — hope you enjoy it!


  7. Chris


    The sounds good! I don’t think I’ve ever thought of putting BBQ sauce in soup. I recently started making the Pioneer Woman chili and we really like it. I leave out the corn flour she puts in. I don’t think it needs to be thickened. In fact, last time I added water. Maybe I’m doing something wrong ? but it sure is delicious!


    Andrea Reply:

    I didn’t really either — until I decided I wanted to use up the BBQ sauce we had in the fridge! HAHA!