Buffalo Chicken Chili

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Buffalo Chicken Chili is a total crowd-pleaser, blending the kick of Buffalo sauce with tender shredded chicken and the best spice blend. It’s a complete “dump it and forget about it” kind of meal!

A big bowl of Buffalo Chicken Chili with a spoon in it.

Buffalo Chicken Chili

We’re huge Buffalo chicken fans in my house! Favorites like Buffalo Chicken Wraps, Buffalo Chicken Pasta, and Buffalo Chicken Lettuce Wraps are our go-to choices, especially on busy weeknights.

And speaking of busy weeknights, this chili is the ideal meal for those hectic evenings. It’s a real “dump it and forget about it” kind of deal. Just toss everything into your slow cooker and let it be!

Hours later, you’ll be treated to an incredibly creamy, flavor-packed chili with a spicy Buffalo sauce kick and a subtle ranch dressing flavor from the spices. You’re going to love this one!

QUICK TIP

Buffalos don’t have wings, do they? How did Buffalo chicken get its name? It is unclear who exactly invented Buffalo chicken wings, but it is believed that the dish was created in the 1960s in Buffalo, New York. That spicy seasoning blend is now widely available and goes way beyond wings–as evidenced by this recipe!

Ingredients used in this dish, including hot sauce, corn, beans, tomatoes, chicken stock, and chicken.

Buffalo Chicken Chili Ingredients

  • Chicken thighs: Ideal for slow cooking; they stay seriously juicy and tender.
  • White navy beans: Creamy and flavor-absorbing. Any white beans will work.
  • Fire-roasted tomatoes: Adds smoky depth; regular diced (or crushed) tomatoes also work.
  • Frozen corn: Sweet crunch; fresh corn is great in summer.
  • Chicken stock or broth: Stock will deliver a richer flavor.
  • Buffalo wing sauce: Central to the dish’s spice level; adjust to taste.
  • Spices: Create a warm and flavorful base; adjust amounts to personal preference.
  • Cream cheese: Adds creaminess; we recommend using the full-fat version.
  • Dill and parsley: Optional, but they add a brighter flavor and help get that classic “ranch” taste.

QUICK TIP

We love using freeze-dried herbs in colder weather when fresh ones aren’t as readily available. These herbs are preserved through a freezing and drying process, maintaining their delicious flavor, which tastes great in this Buffalo Chicken Chili. Bonus: They’re convenient, too–they’re already chopped.

All the ingredients for the Buffalo Chicken Chili being added to the crockpot and it all being cooked.

Toppings To Choose From

  • Sharp Cheddar cheese: It pairs well with spice. Alternative options include Monterey Jack for mildness or blue cheese for a bolder flavor.
  • Avocado: Add creamy coolness with avocado; they’re best when ripe.
  • Green onions or chives: They offer a fresh crunch, with chives being milder and green onions sharper.
  • Cilantro: Brings a fresh, bright note to this Buffalo Chicken Chili.
  • Extra options: Try sour cream for creaminess, tortilla strips for crunch, and tortilla chips for dipping.

Chicken being shredded, cream cheese being added, and it all being mixed together.

How To Make Buffalo Chicken Chili

  • Combine ingredients: In your slow cooker, add chicken, beans, tomatoes, corn, chicken stock, Buffalo sauce, and spices.
  • Cook: Cover and cook on high for 3-5 hours or on low for 5-8 hours, until chicken is easily shredded.
  • Shred chicken: Remove chicken, shred it using forks, and then return it to the cooker.
  • Add cream cheese: Soften cream cheese, add to the cooker, and whisk until smooth.
  • Final stir: Mix in dill and parsley if using, and adjust seasonings.
  • Serve: Ladle into bowls and add toppings.

STORAGE

Storing Buffalo Chicken Chili

  • Refrigerate: Transfer to an airtight container and refrigerate for 3-5 days.
  • Freeze: For longer storage, freeze in freezer-safe containers or bags for up to 2-3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.
  • Reheat: Warm up on the stove or in the microwave (low heat to avoid curdling), stirring occasionally until heated through.

Buffalo Chicken Chili in the crockpot ready to be served.

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Buffalo Chicken Chili

5 from 1 vote
Buffalo Chicken Chili is a total crowd-pleaser, blending the kick of Buffalo sauce with tender shredded chicken and the best spice blend. It's a complete "dump it and forget about it" kind of meal!
A big bowl of Buffalo Chicken Chili with a spoon in it.
Print Recipe

Buffalo Chicken Chili

A big bowl of Buffalo Chicken Chili with a spoon in it.
5 from 1 vote
Buffalo Chicken Chili is a total crowd-pleaser, blending the kick of Buffalo sauce with tender shredded chicken and the best spice blend. It's a complete "dump it and forget about it" kind of meal!
Course Dinner, Main Course, Soup
Cuisine American
Keyword buffalo chicken chili
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 3 hours
Total Time 3 hours 10 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Chelsea Lords
Calories 1261kcal

Ingredients

Add At Beginning

  • lbs. (uncooked) boneless skinless chicken thighs (Note 1)
  • 2 cans (15.5 oz each) white navy beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 can (14.5 oz) diced or crushed tomatoes, undrained (we like fire-roasted)
  • cups frozen corn
  • 1 cup chicken stock or broth
  • ¼ cup buffalo wing sauce up to ½ cup depending on preferences (Note 2)
  • 1 tablespoon each: chili powder and paprika
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • ½ teaspoon each: onion and garlic powder
  • Fine sea salt and pepper

Add At The End:

  • 8 oz full-fat, brick-style cream cheese, very soft
  • 2-3 teaspoons each: freeze-dried dill and parsley, optional but delicious! (Note 3)
  • For serving: sharp Cheddar cheese, avocado, green onions/chives or cilantro, tortilla strips or chips

Instructions

  • CROCKPOT: In a large slow cooker (I use a 6-quart Crockpot), add in "beginning" ingredients. Season to taste (I add 1 tsp salt and ¼ tsp pepper). Stir well and press chicken below the liquid.
  • COOK: Cover and cook on high for 3-5 hours or low for 5-8 hours (just until chicken shreds easily).
  • SHRED CHICKEN: Remove the chicken from the slow cooker and shred in another bowl, using two forks. Set aside.
  • CREAM CHEESE: Meanwhile, soften the cream cheese (by microwaving for 30-45 seconds) and add to the crockpot. Use a whisk to briskly whisk until melted and smooth.
    All the ingredients for the buffalo chicken chili being added to the crockpot and it all being cooked.
  • ADD CHICKEN: Add the shredded chicken back into the slow cooker along with dill and parsley, if using. Stir and then taste for any additional salt/pepper needed.
    Chicken being shredded, cream cheese being added, and it all being mixed together.
  • SERVE: Ladle chili into bowls. Serve bowls garnished with your favorite toppings such as Cheddar cheese, diced avocado, and fresh herbs. Chips for dipping or topping are also delish!

Recipe Notes

Note 1: Chicken: We love thighs in this recipe; the chicken ends up ultra tender! Breasts are less forgiving and more prone to be dry. No need to remove fat before cooking, it comes off super easily once the meat is cooked.
Note 2: Buffalo sauce: Use Buffalo sauce, not just hot sauce. Start with ¼ cup and add more at the end (to taste). Keep in mind the cream cheese will reduce the heat. We like this chili best with ½ cup.
Note 3: Herbs: These herbs deliver a delicious "ranch" flavor and freshness. Freeze-dried herbs are delicious and convenient. Dried herbs are stronger (use less) and not as fresh-tasting. Fresh herbs are also a good option, though they require more prep time (chopping). Add herbs slowly and to taste.

Nutrition Facts

Calories: 1261kcal | Carbohydrates: 161g | Protein: 91g | Fat: 32g | Saturated Fat: 14g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 6g | Monounsaturated Fat: 9g | Trans Fat: 0.03g | Cholesterol: 221mg | Sodium: 1031mg | Potassium: 3669mg | Fiber: 57g | Sugar: 16g | Vitamin A: 1048IU | Vitamin C: 14mg | Calcium: 443mg | Iron: 16mg

We do our best to provide accurate nutritional analysis for our recipes. Our nutritional data is calculated using a third-party algorithm and may vary, based on individual cooking styles, measurements, and ingredient sizes. Please use this information for comparison purposes and consult a health professional for nutrition guidance as needed.

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