Chicken Chili Verde

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Alright guys – it’s still freezing pretty much everywhere so let’s make some Chicken Chili Verde for lunches and dinners.

Chicken Chili Verde from (@whatsgabycookin)

Chicken Chili Verde was a HIT when we were kids growing up in Tucson. I’d go over to my best friends house anytime this was on the menu. Literally it’s one of the easiest things to make and I can’t get enough. It’s especially perfect because it’s feels freezing in LA right now and I know that means it’s even colder in the rest of the country. It’s 100% healthy if you leave out the chips and just serve it on it’s own as a soup/chili/stew. Trust me, you’re going to want this one on regular rotation for the next few months. It’s that good.

The cooking method is similar to how we make my Mexican shredded chicken. And it also has the most delicious peppery base with poblanos and other assorted peppers that are easy to come by at the grocery store! Ugh, literally can’t get enough!

A word about the peppers in this recipe:

Poblano peppers are commonly mislabeled at the grocery store – sometimes they are called Pasilla peppers. They are dark green and shiny. And while they have a little bit of smokiness to them, they are not spicy once cooked!

Anaheim peppers are light green and not spicy at all! If you can’t find them in the produce section, I’ve seen them a time or two in the canned food aisle and you could easily substitute the canned peppers in this recipe. No need to roast them if you’re using canned.

Jalapeño pepper – I think we all know what these are. If you want to majorly cut down on spice, just use half. But this recipe isn’t super spicy as is!! But just a heads up if you’re making it for say, a 3 year old, maybe omit the jalapeño.

Chicken Chili Verde

4.9 from 8 votes
Chicken Chili Verde was a HIT when we were kids growing up in Tucson. It’s one of the easiest things to make. Trust me, you’re going to want this one on regular rotation.
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 45 mins
Total Time 55 mins
Course Main Course, Dinner
Cuisine Mexican
Servings 4 servings


  • 2 pounds tomatillos husked and halved
  • 3 poblano peppers halved
  • 2 anaheim peppers halved
  • 1 jalapeño pepper halved
  • 1 yellow onion thinly sliced
  • 6 garlic cloves
  • 1 bunch cilantro stems removed
  • 1 lime juiced
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 1 1/2 lbs chicken thighs boneless, skinless


  • Place tomatillos cut side down, poblano peppers, anaheim peppers, jalapeños and unpeeled garlic cloves on a foil-lined large baking sheet. Place in the oven on broil for 10 minutes or until the tomatillos and peppers char.
  • Transfer the poblano and jalapeno peppers to a glass bowl and seal with plastic wrap to steam (leave the tomatillos and garlic on the baking sheet for now). After steaming for 10 minutes, remove skin and discard.
  • In a blender, combine the tomatillos and all their juices, peeled garlic cloves, assorted roasted and peeled peppers, cilantro, lime juice, cumin, salt, pepper and chicken stock. Blend the ingredients until they are well combined.
  • Season chicken thighs with 1 teaspoon kosher salt and 1 teaspoon ground black pepper.
  • In a large heavy bottom skillet or dutch oven, add 2 tablespoon olive oil and heat over medium high heat. Add the chicken and sear both sides until golden brown. Add the onions and saute for a few minutes before adding the mixture from the blender. Bring the mixture to a boil, reduce heat to medium and cover and simmer for 20-30 minutes until the chicken is cooked through and shreds easily with a fork. Taste and adjust salt and pepper as needed.
  • Serve in a bowl with tortilla chips on the side and tons cilantro on top.


Tomatillos might be new to some of you. They need their papery husks removed and then give them a quick rinse as they are often somewhat sticky.

Nutrition Information

Calories: 520kcal | Carbohydrates: 28g | Protein: 33g | Fat: 32g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 7g | Monounsaturated Fat: 13g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 168mg | Sodium: 320mg | Potassium: 1288mg | Fiber: 8g | Sugar: 15g | Vitamin A: 918IU | Vitamin C: 115mg | Calcium: 71mg | Iron: 4mg


  1. Bonjour Gabby!
    Just looked at this wonderful recipe…! I will definitely try this recipe.

    It’s freezing here in the province of Québec, Canada today!! -39 C today with wind!! Tomorrow even colder… Sitting by the fireplace with my knitting, candle and coffee cup! Definitely a “hygge” moment!

    Merci Gabby! Always look forward to your comments and recipes! Stay warm! ⛄️

  2. This sounds amazing. Do you recommend using boneless / skinless chicken thighs, or ones with skin and bone? (Would doing one or the other change the cooking time?) Thanks!

    1. that’s a great question – can you make the recipe as is, and then add a cup or two of salsa verde to the pepper mixture?

  3. Made this tonight and it was delicious! The sauce to chicken ratio is a little high – you could definitely do 2 pounds of chicken and still have plenty of sauce. Would be delicious over rice or wrapped in tortillas with cheese and broiled.

  4. This was easy and delicious! I served it with tortilla chips and crispy quesadilla. Will definitely make it again. Thanks Gaby.

  5. made this last night and it was delicious!! Whole Foods ran out of fresh tomatillos so I had to buy the canned ones but still turned out great. I think next time I’ll use chicken breast vs thighs.

  6. My husband and I love this recipe. Made it for the 2nd time tonight! Any advice on how to tame the spiciness? I can usually handle the hottest of the hot but for some reason, I’m getting my butt kicked with this one. I’m removing half the seeds in the jalapeño and almost all seeds in the poblanos. I’ll remove all seeds from the jalapeño next time. Im removing the skin from most of the peppers as instructed but not all of the skin isn’t falling off easily – not sure if this matters re: spiciness.

    1. you could just ditch the jalapeno entirely!! maybe you got an extra spicy jalapeno this time around – its happened to me before! BRUTAL

  7. Amazing!! Used 2 # of chicken thighs and added an extra cup of chicken broth and a cup of salsa verde I had left over from another recipe. I love beans in chili so I added a can of drained white beans. My sister and I almost devoured the whole pot!
    A+++ without my additions!! Thanks for a great chili recipe to add to my favorites!!

  8. Sounds delicious! Would this recipe work well in an instant pot? If so, which settings do you recommend (I just got one for xmas and still need to figure it out!)?

  9. I searched for a white chicken chili recipe and chose this one. I made it tonight and it is fantastic! Love it!

  10. hey Gabby! Im loving trying your recipes! next up on my list is the chicken chili verde but im having a hard time finding Anaheim peppers….is there a suitable substitute?? ive looked/called 4 grocery stores. thanks
    -kim in SC

  11. You can use canned Ortaga Chiles. They are always Anaheim chiles… I think a small can has 2 or 3 peppers. Ortaga also has chopped peppers. I hope this helps you out.

  12. Hi Gaby!

    I really wanna make this recipe but I live in the UK and it’s hard to come across tomstillos, Anaheim and poblano peppers. Do you have any recommendations for substitute’s? Or something I can get on Amazon at least


  13. 5 stars
    Made this recently and it was a huge hit ! Very simple to make , I had already cooked and shredded a bunch of chicken so it was super fast to make and had great flavor. Looking for something warm and delicious but not heavy this is your recipe. I served mine over brown rice and it was a wonderful match .

  14. 5 stars
    Um… I knew this would be good! I had no idea it would be *this* good! Wow! My husband and kids loved it! Thanks for another winner Gaby!

  15. This is DELICIOUS!! I needed two sheet pans to broil everything and needed to occasionally rotate the peppers to char them all over. But otherwise I changed nothing and it was absolutely fantastic!!

  16. Love this recipe and want to make it ahead and take it on spring break next week. Can you freeze this?

  17. 5 stars
    Fabulous! Loved the peppers, I three in a bit of everything, bell, poblano, Cuban and jalapeno. Delicious.

  18. 5 stars
    I made this for a chili cook off at work, and it was a big hit!! The sauce to chicken ratio is pretty high, so I doubled the chicken. Other than that, recipe was followed exactly and we loved it!

  19. 5 stars
    So good!!! Can’t wait for to eat the leftovers tomorrow – the possibilities are endless – over rice, over nachos, make enchiladas! It was so comforting and flavorful!

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