Mexican Street Corn Chicken Chili

I’ve been entering cooking contests now for about 18 months, so it’s a really big honor to be featured on, the premiere website for cooking contesters, for winning the Member’s Only Chili Cooking Contest this month.

The win qualified me for a Golden Ticket to the World Food Championships-you can only get in by winning a qualifying contest.

Cooking Contest Central is run by Kristina Vanni who is a third generation cooking competitor.  Her site offers up to date lists of all the cooking contests being held, recipes, Q & A’s, and forums for fellow contesters to chat and ask questions.  It’s been a very helpful resource for me in my competitive cooking endeavors.

You can read the article about me and my chili on CCC here.

Mexi chili

I’ve noticed that breaking into the world of chili cook-offs is another realm altogether from contests featuring other foods.  There’s a true cult of die-hard chili contesters and it has proven to be difficult to rank amongst those that have been doing it for years.  I feel confident with my Mexican Street Corn Chicken Chili though, because is creative and delicious.  I really worked hard to develop the flavors by using whole roasted chilies, aromatics, and fresh, authentic street corn ingredients.  It isn’t your run-of-the-mill chili!


If you haven’t yet indulged in Mexican Street Corn, please don’t wait until next grilling season to do so.   You have been missin’ out!  This chili is a perfect, seasonal way to experience the bright, exciting flavors of the traditional street corn delicacy.

In this chili we have freshly roasted Anaheim peppers, a rich, full-bodied broth, charred fresh corn, red onions, tender poached chicken, and plentiful spices.  I puree part of the ingredients for a velvety mouth feel.  There’s a little heat, but it’s not overbearing.  The use of fresh chilies, lend a nice smoothness to the liquid, and there’s no gritty texture from too many bottled spices.  It’s got everything a great chili has and so much more.  My favorite thing about it is, it’s not one note.  Red chili has it’s merit’s but by the end of the long winter, it can get a bit old.  This recipe changes it up a bit.


This recipe will be getting a full page spread in my cookbook, “Have Yourself a Time in the Kitchen”, which will be ready at Christmastime!  For now, here’s the recipe for ya!

Mexican Street Corn Chicken Chili


  • 6 Anaheim chilies
  • 6 ears fresh corn, husked
  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 quart chicken stock
  • 1/2 Cup Mexican Beer (optional)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 jalapenos
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 2 Table spoons olive oil
  • ½ stick salted butter
  • 1 sweet onion, diced
  • 1 red onion, diced
  • 4 14.5 ounce cans white chili beans
  • 1 Tablespoon Ancho chili powder
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • Salt and pepper
  • 3 limes
  • 1 bunch cilantro
  • 1 cup shredded pepper jack cheese
  • ½ cup cotija cheese, crumbled


  1. Place chilies on a sheet pan & broil 15 minutes, until the skin is blackened, turning once. Place in a zip top bag and let sit for 10 minutes, then pull off skin, discard seeds, and dice.
  2. Use a sharp knife to remove the corn from the cobs. Place in a hot, dry skillet & cook for a few minutes, stirring occasionally, until the corn becomes slightly charred. Set aside.
  3. Place chicken breasts into a pot. Pour in the broth & beer, add bay leaf, 1 of the garlic cloves, & 1 jalapeno sliced in half. Bring to a bare simmer. Cover and turn off heat. Poach 10 minutes. Remove the chicken. Run broth through a mesh strainer & reserve liquid. Shred chicken.
  4. In the same pot used for the chicken, heat the olive oil and butter. Add the onion, reserving half of the red onion for garnish. Add the remaining garlic cloves. Cook over medium low heat until translucent.
  5. In a food processor add one can of the chili beans, ½ cup of the chicken broth, ½ of the cooked onions, the cooked garlic cloves, and 2 tablespoons of the roasted chilies. Puree and add back to the pot.
  6. Add the rest of the beans, the green chilies, the corn, the shredded chicken, the broth, the ancho chili powder, and the cumin. Taste for seasonings and add salt and pepper as needed to taste.
  7. Allow to simmer for 20 min to marry the flavors.
  8. Chop ½ Cup of the cilantro and add it to the chili. Squeeze in the juice of ½ lime, and add the pepper jack. Add more salt and pepper if needed.
  9. Garnish with raw red onion, jalapeno slices, cotija cheese, fresh cilantro, and a squeeze of lime juice.