I know I am not alone when it comes to being a busy parent with sports and activities after school. Whether you are a coach, assistant, youth leader, your own shuttle bus driver, or just the biggest fan in the stands there are some days where making some elaborate supper at home just isn’t happening. Many have freezer ready meals just waiting to be popped into the oven. That’s great if it works for you and you’ve found recipes that taste great after being frozen. I’ve never been a fan of frozen meals, even when homemade but I know they can help on those busy nights. I’m also scared of shattering temperature sensitive Pyrex dish horror stories that I’ve seen passed around. One little kitchen helper that is always ready to lend a hand is the good old Crock Pot or Slow Cooker. When I worked full time, I never felt comfortable leaving it going all day long while I was at work. I had nightmares of our curious dogs smelling the food and somehow pulling it down off the counter, shattering the slow cooker and splattering chili or whatever I had simmering in it all over the kitchen. That would be a fun clean up! I would utilize it when my husband was off through the week with detailed instructions and a little Cooking 101 Support over the phone so he could make sure the house didn’t burn down and supper was ready on time. I have always used the slow cooker for family gatherings where I’ve made a few different kinds of chili or soups, or a huge batch of queso. Now that I’m home more (when I’m not running back and forth on my shuttle bus duty), I am able to utilize the great skills of the slow cooker and gladly accept its helping hand with meals. Oven Roasted Chicken is one of my family’s favorite meals, but some days I just don’t have time to have something in the oven for an hour and a half or so and can’t leave the house with the oven going so this slow cooker method is a way to kind of get that same roasted chicken, but with the help from your slow cooker friend. So this meal is a definite “Keeper” because it helps out on busy days, but also because the chicken is so versatile. You can get a couple meals out of it which helps in the money department, but also helps in you kitchen prep time. I plan on using the leftover chicken for Chicken Pot Pie so stay tuned for that recipe.
Most slow cooker recipes are for 6-8 hours on low . I didn’t prep this until noon so I set it on high. By 4:00, it was done so I just turned the temp down to warm until we were ready to eat. So you could definitely stick with the low and slow method if you have the time, but it’s also fine on the speed method. The chicken was still moist and skin was crispy. The trick to achieving a crispy skin is having the chicken raised up on the foil balls. I didn’t invent this, I’ve just seen it done and looked intriguing so I started trying it and it is great. You can use whatever spices and seasonings you like. I’ll share what I used, but you could even just keep it basic with salt and pepper and I’m sure it would still be great. That way you could have BBQ sauce on the side, or shred it and mix in taco seasonings for tacos, or use it in soups, whatever you like.
Slow Cooker Roasted Chicken
One Whole Chicken – rinsed and patted dry. Make sure to remove any giblets and neck that may be stuffed inside.
Seasonings of your choice.
1 teas Garlic Powder
1 Teas Weber Zesty Lemon Seasoning
1 Teas Paprika
1 Teas Fresh Ground Black Pepper
1/2 Teas Kosher Salt
1/4 Teas Chipotle Chile Powder
2 TBS Olive Oil
Combine all spices in a bowl.
Wad up Aluminum Foil in 5-6 balls and place these in the bottom of the slow cooker.
Rinse and dry chicken.
Brush or rub chicken with oil and then season the entire chicken with your spice mixture. Rub the seasoning in all the crevices and back. Don’t forget to season the inside of the bird too.
Place the chicken on the foil balls in the slow cooker with the breast side facing up.
Cover with the lid and cook on low for 6-8 hours, or high for 3-4 hours until internal temperature reaches 165 degrees F. Mine split down the middle during cooking.
Remove chicken and slice and serve or shred to use in whatever you like. Mine was falling apart tender and falling off the bone. Add sauce, seasonings as desired.
I tossed the remaining liquid that was in the bottom of the slow cooker, but you could definitely use a little of this to make gravy if you like.