When I think of chili, I normally think of the fall and winter months, but it’s been so cold this spring, that I’ve turned to the following recipe to warm things up at meal time! The lighter color and textures of the beans and chicken make this the perfect comfort food to fight off the chill on cooler, rainy days and nights! Swapping out the beef or pork that’s used in most chili recipes and replacing it with low-calorie chicken is a good option for those watching their diet.
In addition to tasting wonderful, this is really a frugal, low-cost, budget-friendly option for families looking to save money on their grocery bill! Chicken leg quarters are typically 69 cents a pound at regular price, and I can occasionally find them on sale for 29 cents a pound, so I stock up. Dried beans are usually just $1 a pound here, and even less when you catch them on sale or buy in bulk!
2 Pounds of Dried Great Northern Beans
3 Cooked chicken leg quarters. Remove the meat and chop. Save the bones to season the pot.
Two onions, chopped. Reserve the tops and bottoms for the stewing pot.
1 Cup of Your Favorite Chunky Salsa
1/2 packet of Your Favorite Taco Seasoning
1 Cup of Your Favorite Greens, either cooked, fresh and coarsely chopped or frozen, thawed and drained. Spinach, Kale, Collards are all good choices for the chili, as are mustard greens.
Rinse and drain the dried beans. Place in a large bowl or pot of water and allow to soak overnight. Drain and fill the pot with fresh water.
Add the chicken bones, along with the tops and bottoms from the onions. Cook on high heat and bring to a rolling boil. Reduce heat and simmer about 1 1/2 hours.
When beans are not quite tender, but almost, remove the onion tops and bottoms, as well as strain out the chicken bones.
Add the chopped chicken, diced onion, salsa, and greens along with the taco seasoning and return to boil. Simmer for an additional 30 to 45 minutes until the beans are fork-tender and mash easily.
Serve in bowls while hot. If you like toppings on your chili, you can sprinkle the soup with some shredded cheese, and either fresh diced green onions or dried diced chives. Still, this is a chili that really is very good without anything extra. We like to add a serving of tortilla chips or homemade cornbread on the side.