Friday, October 21, 2011

Crockpot Roasted Chicken

Growing up, my definition of chicken was boneless, skinless chicken breasts. They're cheap, healthy, and easy to use. In the past year or so I've tried out recipes using other cuts of chicken, too, and have found that there are advantages to them as well.

One of these is a whole chicken. I stocked up recently when they were on sale for 79 cents/lb, making a whole chicken about $3.50. For that price I can get two dinner's worth of meat, plus a few quarts of broth.

I found this recipe on a website called (They have tons of good, wholesome recipes) It is such an easy way to cook a whole chicken. When I make it, I use half of the meat that night, and half for another dinner. The possibilities for the cooked chicken are endless- you can eat it as-is (just cut into pieces and serve with sides), in soups, casseroles, chicken salad, etc.

Here's the gist of the recipe:

Make a spice rub

Put sliced onions in the bottom of the crockpot, place chicken in, cover with rub

Put lid on, cook on high for 4 hours, and it's done!

Does it get much easier than that?? I use a strong wooden spoon to get the chicken out- I put it in the cavity of the chicken, hold it upright to drain the liquid, then transfer it to a baking sheet (so it could cool a little, and the juices won't run all over). Then I peel the skin off, and cut it up however I'd like. I then make chicken stock with the leftover ingredients- the link above gives directions for that.

Crockpot Roasted Chicken
Printable version here

2 teaspoons paprika
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon thyme
½ teaspoon garlic powder
¼ teaspoon cayenne (red) pepper
¼ teaspoon black pepper
1 onion
1 large chicken

1. Combine the dried spices in a small bowl.

2. Loosely chop the onion and place it in the bottom of the slow cooker. Remove any giblets from the chicken and then rub the spice mixture all over. You can even put some of the spices inside the cavity and under the skin covering the breasts. Put prepared chicken on top of the onions in the slow cooker, cover it, and turn it on to high. (Or, you can put the chicken in the crockpot, then cover with the spice mix) There is no need to add any liquid.

3. Cook on high for 4 – 5 hours (for a 3 or 4 pound chicken) or until the chicken is falling off the bone. (My chicken was about 3 pounds and was perfect in 4 hours) Enjoy!

Why I love it? It is very easy- really! I was scared of cooking with whole chickens before finding this recipe. Now, I stock up when I find them on sale, just so I can make this. Like I said, I get two dinner's worth of cooked chicken plus a good amount of stock out of this. It would also be a good recipe to make in the summer when you want shredded chicken, but don't want to turn on the oven.

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