By Cassie Johnston
6 hours, 15 minutes
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I know. When you think of chili, you think of sweatshirts and changing leaves and football games and chai lattes and pumpkin ALL THE THINGS, not the middle of summertime. But if you really think about, chili is actually the perfect summer meal! Let me explain.
Think about all the ingredients in chili—peppers, tomatoes, onions, fresh herbs—all items that are currently being produced by the literal truckload at your local farm. They are at their most flavorful, most fresh, and most affordable! So of course summer is the perfect time to make chili!
The result is a hearty, yet light, version of the winter classic. The flavors are brilliant and vibrant thanks to the abundance of vine-ripened tomatoes, spicy peppers, and fresh herbs. The use of chicken in place of heavier red meat keeps the soup feeling summer-y while still giving it that stick-to-your-ribs feeling that chili is known for.
And since it is all pulled together in the slow cooker, there is no need to heat up your kitchen by using the stove. Which is always a win in my books in the middle of summer.
Because the broth for the chili is a little bit thinner than the standard heavy chili base—this could be considering more of a chili soup—I like to serve mine over a bed of brown rice. The rice soaks up the sauce and adds a nice hearty grain to the mix.
You could also put it over cauliflower rice, quinoa, noodles, or mashed potatoes—or, if you prefer a thicker chili, just use a slotted spoon to serve.
If you are still a little concerned about serving chili in the middle of the summer, all you have to do is serve it alongside a cold frozen margarita. Balance at its finest. Enjoy!
A chili may seem out of place in hot weather, until you remember that all the ingredients are at their peak in the summer. Slow Cooker Summer Chicken Chili is a hearty, yet light, version of the winter classic.
You could also serve the chili over cauliflower rice, quinoa, noodles, or mashed potatoes—or, if you prefer a thicker chili, just use a slotted spoon to serve.
Keywords: gluten-free, summer, slow cooker, chicken, chili
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I love chicken chili, and this looks delicious. I can’t recall making chili in the summer though I have been craving it. As a matter of fact, I had some chili yesterday. I can’t wait to try your recipe, and I like that you put it over rice.
Thanks! The rice was an awesome addition. :)
I made a large roast pan of chili last summer for Steve’s bbq here at our place, thinking oh, i’ve made too much. On the grill were Oktoberfest Sausages and hamburgers. They went and so did all the chili.
Great dish for summer bbq’s obviously. Yours looks awesome Cass.
Thanks Mama J! :D
This looks fabulous! I’m sold on anything with a slow cooker anyway.
Me too! I love my slow cooker so much. :)
Ooh, I’ve been on a chicken chili kick ever since I first made a recipe that I had torn from a Martha Stewart magazine in the winter. It is definitely not for the faint of heart (or palette). I make a bunch and store it in the freezer and before I know it, I have to make more.
I’ll definitely give this one a try because I never regret getting out my slow cooker!
White chicken chili is one of our absolute favorite winter dishes! Yum. :D
This looks AMAZING, I love how it’s a lighter version of a classic chili!
Thanks! I love it too. :D
This recipe looks wonderful – a perfect send-off for summer! New to your blog and love it – a great balance of recipes, workout, goals, info and tutorials – keep up the great work!
Thanks so much! :D
Such a marvelous and appetizing meal. I would love to have some of it.
Whip yourself up a batch! You won’t be sorry. :)
I loooove your blog! new follower! xoxo :D
Aww, thanks! :D
Cassie I just made this last night (with a few small changes) and it is AWESOME! I even posted about it on my blog. Thank you for sharing such a great recipe :) Your photo is beautiful!
So glad you liked it Maggie! :)
I was looking for a recipe that used up the overabundance of tomatoes in my house and found this one. I made it tonight and it was a HIT! Thanks so much for posting this :)
Yay! So glad you liked it. :D
Now I’m wanting some chili..this looks fabulous, Cassie..and with the temps we’re having now, it would be perfect…
Definitely perfect for this weather!
Love this summer chili! I will be linking back to is today :)
Thanks! Glad you liked it. :D
This chili is in my slow cooker as we speak and smells delicious! I can’t wait to have some tonight!! Thanks for the recipe, enjoying the blog!
Thanks for the article. I had to learn a new dish for the family.
Oh wow, this looks great. Chilli is something I love about winter – having a summer-appropriate recipe is wonderful. I’ll definitely be putting extra jalapeño in mine!
Chili or other spicy ingredients are not so bad for hot summer days. It makes you sweat but this is good for your health. Anyway great and delicious looking meal.
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