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Chicken Chili with Black Eyed Peas Recipe | Grandbaby Cakes
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4.75 from 12 votes

Chicken Chili with Black Eyed Peas Recipe

Chicken Chili with Black Eyed Peas Recipe- A hearty unique and comforting chili flavored with traditional chili flavors and the unique addition of black eyed peas.  Recipe from Now & Again cookbook by Julia Turshen.  Reprinted with permission from Chronicle Books.
Prep Time25 mins
Cook Time1 hr
Total Time1 hr 25 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Servings: 4 servings
Calories: 410kcal


  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 1/2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breasts and/or thighs cut into bite-size pieces
  • 2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 large red onion finely diced
  • 2 bell peppers stemmed, seeded, and finely diced
  • 4 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 tbsp ground cumin
  • 1 tbsp red chile powder
  • 1 tbsp ground oregano
  • 1 (28 oz) can whole peeled tomatoes
  • 1 (15 1/2 oz) can black eyed peas
  • 3 tbsp pickling liquid from jar of pickled jalapeño chiles, or 1 1/2 tablespoons distilled white vinegar
  • optional: hot sauce, sour cream, grated cheddar cheese, sliced avocado, cilantro, pickled jalapeño chiles, and sliced scallions for serving


  • In a large, heavy pot heated over medium-high heat, warm the olive oil. Add the chicken in a single layer, working in batches if necessary, and sprinkle with 1 teaspoon of the salt (divide the salt between the batches if necessary). Cook, stirring now and then, until browned all over, about 15 minutes. Add the onion, bell peppers, garlic, cumin, chile powder, and oregano and cook, stirring now and then, until the vegetables begin to soften and brown in spots, about 10 minutes. Add the tomatoes with their juice, the black-eyed peas with their liquid, and the remaining 1 teaspoon salt. Bring the mixture to a boil and then immediately lower the heat to a gentle simmer.
  • Cover with the lid slightly ajar to let some steam escape. Cook, stirring now and then and breaking up the tomatoes as you stir, until all of the flavors have melded and the chicken is very tender, about 1 hour. (If you’re using thighs, the meat will begin to shred.) Add the pickled jalapeño liquid, then taste the chili and add more jalapeño liquid and/or salt if needed. (If you can, let the chili cool down, then cover and refrigerate it overnight and reheat it the next day. The flavor will be even better.)
  • If using, set out the hot sauce, sour cream, cheddar cheese, avocado, cilantro, pickled jalapeños, and scallions. Serve the chili piping hot.


If you don’t have a jar of pickled jalapeños on hand, use 1 1/2 tablespoons distilled white vinegar in place of the brine.
Make ahead: This chili is great on the first day, but tastes even better if you make it ahead of time and gently reheat when it’s time to serve.


Calories: 410kcal | Carbohydrates: 31g | Protein: 44g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 7g | Trans Fat: 0.02g | Cholesterol: 109mg | Sodium: 1686mg | Potassium: 1436mg | Fiber: 9g | Sugar: 11g | Vitamin A: 2790IU | Vitamin C: 100mg | Calcium: 143mg | Iron: 6mg