8 oz. bacon, cut into 1/2″ pieces
1 medium onion, finely chopped (about 1 1/2 c.)
1 large green bell pepper, seeded and chopped (about 1 1/4 c.)
4 jalapeños, seeded and finely chopped, plus sliced jalapeños for serving
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp. kosher salt, divided
1/4 c. all-purpose flour
4 c. low-sodium chicken broth
2 c. whole milk
4 oz. cream cheese, cut into 1″ pieces, room temperature
2 c. cooked shredded chicken breast
1 c. shredded cheddar
In a large pot over medium heat, cook bacon, stirring occasionally, until crisp, 8 to 10 minutes. Transfer bacon to a plate, leaving about 1/4 cup bacon fat in pot.
Add onion, bell pepper, chopped jalapeños, garlic, and 1/2 teaspoon salt to pot and cook over medium heat, stirring, until softened, 5 to 6 minutes.
Stir in flour until it coats vegetables and forms a paste that starts to stick to bottom of pot. Whisk in broth and milk until combined. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, stirring occasionally, until liquid is reduced by about one-quarter and slightly thickened, about 10 minutes.
Stir in cream cheese until fully melted, then add chicken and three-quarters of bacon. Cook, stirring, until chicken and bacon are heated through, about 1 minute. Taste and season with remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt, if needed.
Divide soup among bowls. Top with cheddar, remaining bacon, and sliced jalapeños as desired.