My opinion is the most popular crock pot recipes are the ones that are easy to make, taste great, and are crowd pleasers. Following are what I consider 5 of the most popular crock pot recipes–part 1.
Here are my favorites:
- Scalloped Potatoes
- Baked Beans
Not necessarily in that order, although the chicken has been the one I like best and the one that’s gotten the most positive reactions over the years.
We’re talking a few minutes of preparation and walk away. Let the crock pot do the rest. When you come home, the house smells wonderful and it’s time to eat. If you’re home all day, you’re likely to be tantalized waiting till it’s time to eat.
It’s the way to go if you’re single or if you’re feeding a group, such as your family or friends.
By the way, there’s no law that says you can’t cook with more than one crock pot at a time. I’ve been known to cook with as many as four at the same time.
There are cook books that are specifically geared toward crock pot cooking. They’re great for ideas, especially for the novice cook. I’ve used them and still do. However, the beauty of crock pot cooking is that there really isn’t a right or wrong way. Just about anything can be cooked in the crock pot. It’s a great way to experiment.
Even if you don’t know what you’re doing, if you have some basic seasonings like garlic powder, salt, and pepper, as well as barbeque sauce, you’re in business. You really can’t go wrong. You definitely won’t go hungry.
What better way about how do we get out of own way than to keep it simple and enjoy a good meal at the same time?
I’m not exactly sure when or how I came up with these recipes. Some I probably got from a cook book. Others I simply invented, or modified something I read in a cook book.
- 3-4 pound Whole chicken with giblets
- Various vegetables
- Potatoes or rice
- Garlic or garlic powder
- Salt and pepper
- Bay leaves
What I like most about this recipe is that it is or at least can be a complete, balanced meal.
I buy a whole 3-4 pound chicken, although you can buy it however you like–whole legs, breasts etc. I prefer organic. That’s just me. You can choose whatever you like, whether or not it’s organic.
I like the whole chicken uncut up, mainly because it’s the easiest and because I like the giblets etc. Again, it’s completely up to you.
Here’s how I do it
I cut up a large onion in small pieces
I cut up two or three carrots, two or three celery sticks and if I have brussels sprouts or aspargus, I’ll use them as well. Basically, whatever veggies I have in the refrigerator is what I use. I use fresh veggies, although there’s no law that says you can’t use canned.
Green leafy veggies such as dandelion, chard, collard greens, spinach, and cabbage are also some of my favorites.
Broccoli and zucchini are some others.
In any case, I put an onion and a bunch of veggies in the crock pot.
Place the chicken on top of the veggies. Season to taste. I like to add basil and I crumble up a couple of bay leaves. I also like to top it with paprika. However, you can have fun with the seasonings and add whatever you like.
Turn on the crock pot to high and it’ll be ready to eat in 6-8 hours. You can cook on low and it will take 10-12 hours.
I generally have a chicken in the freezer and I put it in the pot frozen. When it’s frozen, I always cook it on high. It generally is ready in 7-9 hours.
Feel free to cut up potatoes and add them with the veggies prior to putting the chicken in the pot. If you prefer whole potatoes, you can do that rather than cut them up. If you like them whole, they should probably be small and I put them in around the sides after putting the chicken in the crock pot.
It’s possible the lid to the crock pot may not go all the way down. It’s ok. As it cooks, somehow everything seems to find its place. Sometimes, after it’s been cooking for a while, you have to give the lid a little persuasion by pushing down on it a little to make it close all the way.
One thing you do NOT want to do any time you cook with a crock pot is to remove the lid. Part of the secret to good crock pot cooking is to leave the lid on. Everytime you remove the lid the pot loses a lot of its heat which affects the time it takes for the cooking to be completed.
Another alternative is to add rice during the last hour of cooking. By then the cooking process should be almost, if not completely done. Removing the lid just that once shouldn’t spoil the cooking process.
You don’t need to add water. The juices from the chicken will provide all the liquid you need.
If you like barbeque sauce, it’s also an option.
Serve with veggies and juices as a soup or with veggies on the side and the juices as gravy. Serve with home made bread or store-bought if you don’t know how to make it yourself.
One other reason I like crock pot cooking, especially a crock pot cooked chicken is that unless you’re cooking for a large group, there will probably be plenty of leftovers.
I usually separate the leftover meat from the bones, put the meat in a storage bag, keep it in the refrigerator for chicken sandwiches or a topper for a salad.
The veggies and juices can be stored and refrigerated in a plastic container or bowl and can be reheated later as a side dish with another meal, which could include a chicken sandwich while using the juices and veggies as vegetable soup.
There you have it–a simple, healthy, and tasty Crock Pot chicken recipe.
To learn about another one of 5 of the most popular crock pot recipes,<<<<<<<< click the link to read part 2.
Try it. You’ll like it.
Leave comments or questions below and I’ll get back to you as soon as I can.