There's been a lot of demand for healthy slow cooker recipes now that winter is upon us, so we have a dozen recipes coming your way over the next few weeks. If you have favourite slow cooker recipes, please be sure to share them on our "food" page form.
We thought we'd start with cooking a chicken. Not only is it hard to mess up cooking a chicken in a slow cooker (it seems to only get better the longer you cook it), chicken is versatile and knowing how to cook a whole chicken can open us a ton of tasty recipe options for you, from soup to salad to...poutine!
We like to cook our chickens overnight because we usually end up using it cold in a variety of recipes.
Here's how to prepare and cook the chicken...it's ridiculously easy:
Ingredients & supplies:
- 1 whole medium chicken, thawed & rinsed (usually takes 2-3 days to thaw in the refrigerator)
- 1 6-quart slow cooker, digital is more convenient to use if you have one
- 1/8 cup Montréal Chicken Spice (or your preferred chicken seasoning)
- Put chicken breast down in slow cooker.
- Sprinkle spice on top.
- Put lid on slow cooker and turn it on on "low" for 5.5 hours.
- If you have a digital slow cooker, it will turn itself to "warm" after cooking, giving you time to tend to the cooked chicken when you get a chance, such as when you get home from work.
- Turn off the slow cooker and pour out the hot chicken stock (pictured, above right). Careful, the contents will be very hot!
- Let stock cool and store in the refrigerator or freezer for later use.
- Then let the chicken cool by taking the lid off and cutting the chicken off in a criss-cross shape (pictured, below right).
- Once the chicken is cool enough to process, separate the chicken into:
- skin & fat
- white meat
- dark meat
- Use your hands and a fork to separate the meat from the skin and bones.
- Discard bones and skin & fat (or use the skin & fat as a treat for your family pets). Isabelle, our resident Chrysalis mascot, loves it when we cook chicken in the slow cooker!
- Store your white and dark meat for later use...unless you intend to dive right in and have some ASAP. CAUTION: The smell will make it hard to resist!
Variations on a theme...
Don't be scared to experiment. We love cooking drumsticks in much the same fashion as above. A club pack of drumsticks takes about 4 hours to cook and they are delicious!