Photo of Chicken & black bean chili by WW

Chicken & black bean chili

Total Time
4 hr 25 min
20 min
4 hr 5 min
Hearty and satisfying, the key to this delicious, crowd-pleasing chili is to cook the chicken in a skillet before adding it to the slow cooker. The deep flavor developed from browning the chicken gets infused into the broth yielding a rich tasting end product. Meaty chicken thighs stand-up to low and slow cooking much better than chicken breasts so it’s best not to substitute breast meat here. The cornmeal slightly thickens the soup and lends a tortilla chip essence.


Canola oil

1 tsp

Uncooked skinless boneless chicken thigh

1 pound(s), trimmed and cut into 1/2-inch pieces

Chili powder

2 Tbsp

Red bell pepper

2 large, chopped

Uncooked onion

1 large, chopped

Canned black beans

15½ oz, rinsed and drained

Canned diced tomatoes

14½ oz

Chicken broth

½ cup(s)


2 clove(s), minced

Ground cumin

2 tsp

Dried oregano

1 tsp

Table salt

½ tsp

Black pepper

¼ tsp

Yellow cornmeal

2 Tbsp

Reduced fat cheddar cheese

4 Tbsp

Reduced fat sour cream

2 Tbsp


2 medium, thinkly sliced


  1. Heat oil in large heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken and sprinkle with 1 tablespoon of chili powder; cook, stirring occasionally, until browned, about 5 minutes. Transfer chicken to 5- or 6-quart slow cooker.
  2. Add remaining 1 tablespoon chili powder, the bell peppers, onion, beans, tomatoes, broth, garlic, cumin, oregano, salt, and black pepper to slow cooker; stir to combine. Cover and cook until chicken and vegetables are fork-tender, 4–5 hours on High or 8–9 hours on Low.
  3. About 20 minutes before cooking time is up, gradually stir cornmeal into chili until blended. Cover and cook on High until mixture bubbles and thickens, about 15 minutes. Ladle chili evenly into bowls and top each with 1 tbsp cheese, 1/2 tbsp sour cream, and a few sliced scallions.
  4. Serving size: 1 rounded cup