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Healthy Chipotle Chicken Chili {Shaker Cornbread}

Awaken your tastesbuds with this spicy Healthy Chipotle Chicken Chili! Some of the heat from the chilis is tamed with a touch of maple syrup and cinnamon. Unconventional? Yes. Unforgettably awesome? Absolutely!

Healthy Chipotle Chicken Chili with Shaker Cornbread | Gluten Free Meals | American Heritage Cooking

Chili is apparently the savory version of my Chocolate Chip Cookie obsession: I have more recipes for chili on this blog than any other type of dish. Unquestionably, I just can’t help coming up with new flavor combinations for one of my favorite comfort foods. In this case, my latest is chipotle chilies and maple!

Healthy Chipotle Chicken Chili with Shaker Cornbread | Gluten Free Meals | American Heritage Cooking

I LOVE chipotle chilies in adobo sauce. I will add it to just about anything even Chicken Wings.

Healthy Chipotle Chicken Chili with Shaker Cornbread | Gluten Free Meals | American Heritage Cooking

The flavors of this chili are exceptional! The heat from the chilies is tempered by just a touch of maple syrup (oh yes I did!). A mix of ground chicken and spicy chicken sausage brings more flavor without the fat. More, please!

Healthy Chipotle Chicken Chili with Shaker Cornbread | Gluten Free Meals | American Heritage Cooking

I know there is some fiery debate about beans in chili. I am not from Texas; nor do I don’t know any Texans; and, thus, I do what I want and what I think tastes good. And that includes beans in my chili. #sothere
I love the additional heartiness from a mix of kidney and black beans and the flavor from a bit of corn.

I also thicken my chili with some mashed black beans. <– Seriously best idea ever!

Healthy Chipotle Chicken Chili with Shaker Cornbread | Gluten Free Meals | American Heritage Cooking

This chili was so good, in fact, there was barely enough chili left to photograph. I had a minor panic attack before figuring out a solution, because not bringing you this delicious, unique twist on chili to you was not an option. If you follow me on Instagram you probably also saw that my husband mutilated the healthy skillet cornbread that I made to go with it.

Healthy Chipotle Chicken Chili with Shaker Cornbread | Gluten Free Meals | American Heritage Cooking

Let’s talk about the Healthy Shaker Cornbread. I tried this recipe from The Best of Shaker Cooking, 1985 Edition. It is a moist buttermilk cornbread. I don’t add any sugar, and there are only 2 tablespoons of butter in the whole recipe. It’s as healthy as corn bread gets.

Healthy Chipotle Chicken Chili with Shaker Cornbread | Gluten Free Meals | American Heritage Cooking

My husband and I prefer our cornbread sweet and buttery. Our favorite is this Sweet Southern Cornbread, but one cannot eat decadent, calorie-laden cornbread with every meal and not expect negative consequences.

This cornbread definitely tastes “healthy”, but it is soft and moist and not too dense and it is delicious when dunked in the chipotle chicken chili. I have copied it below in case you are looking for a good, super healthy, gluten free cornbread. If you want an indulgent, sweet, buttery cornbread, this recipe is for you!

Healthy Chipotle Chicken Chili with Shaker Cornbread | Gluten Free Meals | American Heritage Cooking

Kitchen Tip: Rarely does a recipe call for an entire can of chipotle chilies in adobo sauce. I hate waste, so I freeze the leftovers in a small ziptop plastic baggie (labeled, of course). When I need some chipotle peppers, I drop the baggie in warm water until it is still icy but the peppers have separated; I removed what I need and throw the rest back in the freezer.

Healthy Chipotle Chicken Chili with Shaker Cornbread | Gluten Free Meals | American Heritage Cooking
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Healthy Chipotle Chicken Chili {Shaker Cornbread}


  • Total Time: 2 hours 40 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 8 1x

Description

The flavors of this chili are exceptional! The heat from the chilies is tempered by just a touch of maple syrup. A mix of ground chicken and spicy chicken sausage brings more flavor without the fat. This chili is incredibly filling and flavorful! A sure hit!


Ingredients

Scale

For the Chipotle Chili:

  • 3 small yellow onions
  • 5 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • ¼ cup minced chipotle chilies in adobo sauce
  • 1 pound ground spicy chicken sausage
  • 1 pound ground chicken
  • 2 cans black beans, drained (one mashed)
  • 1 cans kidney beans with juice
  • 2 28 oz cans roasted diced tomatoes and juice
  • ¾ cup corn (fresh or frozen will do)
  • 1 ½ cups low sodium chicken broth (Bonus Points for Homemade!)
  • 2 teaspoons paprika
  • 2 ½ teaspoons chili powder
  • 2 ½ teaspoons ancho chili powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon Saigon cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • Salt, to taste

For the Shaker Cornbread:

  • 2 cups white corn meal (I used yellow)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 ¼ cups buttermilk
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 2 eggs, beaten

Instructions

To make the chili:

  1. Heat a Dutch oven or large stock pot over medium heat. Add olive oil and swirl to coat. Cook onions until they begin to release their juices and then add the garlic; cook, stirring frequently to prevent the garlic from burning, until onions are transluscent. Add the minced chipotle peppers and cook a few minutes to mingle the flavors.
  2. Add the ground chicken and sausage and brown until all the chicken has been cooked.
  3. Add all the remaining ingredients. Simmer over low heat at least an hour. The longer the better. I typically cook mine in a Dutch oven for at least 4 hours. I like to taste every hour and adjust the salt and spices as needed.
  4. Serve with cornbread, sour cream, and sharp cheddar cheese.

For the Cornbread:

  1. Preheat the oven to 425°. Butter a 10 inch skillet or 9 inch square baking dish, and preheat it in your oven. I didn’t butter mine and it stuck slightly.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together corn meal, salt, soda, and baking powder.
  3. Add the butter and buttermilk and mix well. Add the eggs and beat until smooth.
  4. Bake in preheated oven for 15-20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Mine took just under 18.

Notes

The chili recipe is my own invention but the Shaker Cornbread is slightly adapted from The Best of Shaker Cooking, 1985 edition.

  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 2 hours 30 minutes

Hungry for more Comfort Food?!

Cilantro Sherry Chili

Sherry Cilantro Chili

French Onion Soup

French Onion Soup

 Sweet Southern Cornbread

Sweet Southern Cornbread

Heritage Beef Stew

Heritage Beef-Vegetable Stew

This recipe is linked to: Inspiration Monday, Merry Monday, Munching Monday, Monday Funday, Two Cup Tuesday, Tasty Tuesday, Party Time, Moonlight & Mason Jars, Gluten Free Wednesday, What’s Cookin’ Wednesday, Gluten Free Friday, Foodie Friday, Food on Friday, Flashback Friday, Saturday Night Fever

49 Comments

  • Josephine
    October 25, 2014 at 2:21 pm

    This looks great! As soon as the weather gets cold, I will make it. Bring on those healthy recipes – I am down 5 pounds going to those darn Weight Watcher meetings. Thank you!

    Reply
    • Lindsey
      October 26, 2014 at 12:40 am

      Hooray for the 5 lbs! That’s great! You know me…a little healthy, a little indulgence! It should be cooling off soon! So unseasonably warm!

      Reply
  • Shashi @ RunninSrilankan
    October 26, 2014 at 7:07 am

    I would never in a million years thought to add maple and cinnamon to chili to take down them fiery chipotle chilies in adobo sauce and other chilies! Brilliant lady! I preserve any extra chipotle chilies in adobo sauce – just like you do!!!! But I am way way less organized – for one, the bag isn’t labelled and, two, I just hack off a frozen bit instead of soaking it in water – clearly I have lots to learn!

    Reply
    • Lindsey
      October 26, 2014 at 1:46 pm

      Thanks, Shashi!! My husband initially turned up his nose at my desire to add maple syrup to the chili but ultimately he gave in. I tried hacking off some frozen chills but it was too hard so I just soak it for 5 minutes. I have to label my baggies and pyrex containers otherwise in 2 months I don’t remember what is in them! Was that pasta sauce or plain diced tomatoes…hmmm…

      Reply
  • Josephine
    October 26, 2014 at 12:27 pm

    I made the quinoa roasted vegetable salad last night for dinner, and it was DELICIOUS!! Loved the recipe!! I will make this one a lot. The salad dressing was marvelous. Thank you!

    Reply
    • Lindsey
      October 26, 2014 at 1:47 pm

      I am sooooo glad you liked it! I LOVE it! Especially the dressing. Now that Randy is back, I don’t make it nearly as often because he doesn’t like to eat the same thing every night for months on end…even if it is delicious. 🙂

      Reply
  • Gayle @ Pumpkin 'N Spice
    October 26, 2014 at 4:35 pm

    I love finding new variations of chili, Lindsey! And I could never get sick of it, so keep ’em coming! This chipotle chicken version sounds mouthwatering! I love that you added maple syrup to this, too. Yum!

    Reply
    • Lindsey
      October 26, 2014 at 4:53 pm

      It sounds like you love chili as much as me!

      Reply
  • Rachel @ Bakerita
    October 26, 2014 at 6:39 pm

    This sounds stick-to-your-ribs delicious, and I love that you lightened it up! I’m super curious about your special ingredients too – totally need to try this. Pinned!

    Reply
    • Lindsey
      October 26, 2014 at 10:38 pm

      Thanks, Rachel! I love me some chipotle and maple! I hope you do try it!

      Reply
  • Jessica @ Sweet Menu
    October 26, 2014 at 6:59 pm

    Oh i love homemade chilli, this looks wonderful! Love chipotle too. Your photos are so good, makes this meal look so tempting!

    Reply
    • Lindsey
      October 26, 2014 at 10:39 pm

      Thanks, Jessica!!! I’ve been really working on my photo editing skills and I think it has helped. 🙂

      Reply
  • Meaghan
    October 26, 2014 at 7:39 pm

    Finally! A person out in the Land of Blog who likes their chili like I do! Thick, spicy, and full of beans and bits of corn! My family prefers bean-less chili and I just think I’m eating bar-b-que’d hamburger with a spoon and some cheese! Can’t wait to try this this winter! Pinning!

    ~Meaghan

    Reply
    • Lindsey
      October 26, 2014 at 10:06 pm

      Haha! You are spot on! Beanless chili is the pits. It is just like bbq’d hamburger. Plus I feel like the beans push it over the edge of “healthy” so that I can eat more sour cream and cheese…hmmm that is probably not sound thinking. whatever. I hope you do try it!

      Reply
  • Renee @ Two in the Kitchen
    October 26, 2014 at 11:07 pm

    I LOVE chipotle peppers and that is such a good tip to thrown them in a baggie in the freezer. This chili looks fantastic!! 🙂

    Reply
    • Lindsey
      October 27, 2014 at 11:55 pm

      Thanks, Renee! Chipotle lovers unite!!!

      Reply
  • annie@ciaochowbambina
    October 27, 2014 at 6:34 am

    It’s definitely ‘chili’ season in our house too…My hubby typically takes charge of the chili but I’m going to have to surprise him with this one. Looks and sounds delicious!

    Reply
    • Lindsey
      October 27, 2014 at 11:55 pm

      You absolutely should, Annie! I don’t mind making chili because it’s super easy!

      Reply
  • Kristi @ Inspiration Kitchen
    October 27, 2014 at 7:32 am

    This chili looks delicious Lindsey! I think putting mashed black beans in it is a brilliant idea – we love black beans and eat a ton of them around here. I also love the tip about chipotle peppers! I’m going to start doing that because I don’t like to waste food either. Great idea!

    Reply
    • Lindsey
      October 27, 2014 at 11:54 pm

      Booo to wasting! You probably just use the whole can of peppers! Heat lover!

      Reply
  • Laura @ Laura's Culinary Adventures
    October 27, 2014 at 2:56 pm

    I like the maple syrup addition! I prefer beans in my chile too!

    Reply
    • Lindsey
      October 27, 2014 at 11:52 pm

      Thanks, Laura!

      Reply
  • Lindsay @ Life, Love and Sugar
    October 27, 2014 at 4:21 pm

    oh my goodness. I want your wings and this chili. I am 100% a beans in my chili kinda gal (and corn) and mashed sounds amazing! Plus, maple syrup and cinnamon – could you be more genius?! Plus, I want the fatty cornbread. #bringit

    Reply
    • Lindsey
      October 27, 2014 at 11:51 pm

      LOL! Bring on the butter! Itssoogoood! I’ll bring the wings and the chili and the fatty cornbread and you bring that oreo cheesecake. Sounds like a party to me!

      Reply
  • David @ Spiced
    October 27, 2014 at 8:12 pm

    Hahaha…maple syrup! A girl after my own heart! Although, I must admit that I’ve never added maple syrup to chili. There is a first time for everything, though, right? And for the record, I was born in Texas. That makes me a Texan. So you do know a Texan. And I say you make chili however the heck you want to make chili. Just as long as you send me the leftovers.

    Reply
    • Lindsey
      October 27, 2014 at 11:49 pm

      Phew thank goodness I didn’t offend your Texan Highness! You should try it…all maple lovers should. Even my husband got over his initial reservation and he loved it! It doesn’t really taste like maple. If only there were leftovers…

      Reply
  • marcie
    October 28, 2014 at 3:53 pm

    Keep bringing these chili recipes — love ’em! I love the sound of these flavors — chipotle and maple sounds delicious! I add maple to everything else, so why not chili? Mmmm-mmmm good!

    Reply
    • Lindsey
      October 29, 2014 at 10:50 am

      For truth. Why not?! It doesn’t taste like maple but it calms some of the heat.

      Reply
  • Kelly - Life Made Sweeter
    October 28, 2014 at 4:41 pm

    Whoa, this chili looks absolutely incredible !! Love me some beans in my chili too and with chipotle chilies in adobo sauce, cinnamon and maple syrup? Genius woman!

    Reply
    • Lindsey
      October 29, 2014 at 10:49 am

      Thanks, Kelly. What can I say? Sometimes it’s just too hard to resist throwing it all in!

      Reply
  • Miss Kim @ behgopa
    November 2, 2014 at 11:11 am

    Good morning. Still feels like an hour ahead. No wonder I feel a bit more well rested…cuz I got an extra hour or zzzz
    Looks so yummy. I love chili. It would be especially good right now since it’s gotten cooler…almost cold (about time). Why cant it be like this all the time?! I love beans in mine too. I also sometimes like to add a little kick to it with jalapenos or Serrano.

    Reply
    • Lindsey
      November 4, 2014 at 8:14 pm

      Doesn’t it!?!? Of course you like to add a bit more kick. Of course. 🙂

      Reply
  • Thao @ In Good Flavor
    November 3, 2014 at 9:14 am

    Gorgeous pictures! I am always cold in the winter time, and I like to eat chili to warm me up. This one looks incredible!!

    Reply
    • Lindsey
      November 4, 2014 at 8:07 pm

      Thanks, Thao! Chili is definitely my favorite warmer-uper too!

      Reply
  • Heartwarming & Healthy Soup & Stew Recipes
    November 13, 2014 at 7:32 am

    […] Next up is this healthy chipotle chicken chili, which is perfect for dinner. This recipe also uses maple syrup and cinnamon which give it an interesting taste. So all of you who crave spicy food, you can find the recipe here. […]

    Reply
  • Game Day Recipes - Sweet as a Cookie
    January 4, 2015 at 10:32 pm

    […] Healthy Chipotle Chicken Chili […]

    Reply
  • Cheryl
    November 24, 2015 at 5:48 pm

    Looks so tempting as I love chipotle flavor. What kind of chicken sausage did you use?

    Reply
    • Lindsey
      November 27, 2015 at 11:37 am

      Hi Cheryl! I use a spicy Italian chicken sausage filling that I get from the Dekalb Farmer’s Market in Atlanta.

      Reply
      • cheryl
        November 27, 2015 at 2:34 pm

        Thanks, Lindsey, I wasn’t sure since is a Mexican dish what you would use, but I’m sure those flavors blend in nicely.

        Reply
        • Lindsey
          November 28, 2015 at 10:50 am

          No problem, Cheryl! The chicken sausage just blends in with the chorizo and the chorizo flavor and chipotle take over. The chicken gives it some body and more protein without the fat of additional chorizo! 🙂

          Reply
          • Cheryl
            November 28, 2015 at 11:07 am

            I didn’t see chorizo in the recipe – just ground chicken in addition to the sausage.

          • Lindsey
            November 28, 2015 at 11:47 am

            Oh! I’m Sorry! I thought this was a comment on the Chipotle Chorizo Chicken Tacos! You’re right! In any case the spicy sausage blends with the chipotles and other spices. 🙂 [I blame not enough coffee!]

          • Cheryl
            November 28, 2015 at 12:14 pm

            Now that I know about those, I need to try them as well…I make my own chorizo so I can control the fat content and seasoning, so I have some in the freezer now. Thanks!

          • Lindsey
            November 29, 2015 at 10:56 am

            That sounds wonderful! I’ve never tried making it!

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    Reply
  • Rosemary
    July 11, 2016 at 7:49 am

    I made this for my Lady’s Club meeting and it was a big hit. Lots of flavor.

    Reply
    • Lindsey
      July 12, 2016 at 12:16 am

      I’m so glad, Rosemary! Have a fantastic week!

      Reply
  • Kasia Reeder
    September 29, 2016 at 9:40 am

    Is there a way to make this is a crock pot???

    Reply
    • Lindsey
      October 2, 2016 at 6:01 pm

      Yes but you will need to add more spice because the crock pot seems to make spices disappear! I would add more at the end to taste.

      Reply

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