Crock Pot Chicken Favorites

My crock pot is still one of favorite Christmas presents, and I love it to bits. It’s so easy to just toss some everyday items into it, leave it for a few hours, and come home at the end of the day to a delicious and filling meal. I can’t wait to try out a bunch of recipes up at school this year, since I’ll be moving into my own apartment and will finally have a proper kitchen!

Chicken recipes are my favorite ones, because after cooking for six or eight hours, the chicken is so juicy and just falls apart when you cut into it. Two of my go-to recipes are chicken with gravy and chicken fajitas. They’re super easy and delicious, perfect for when you are in a rush, but actually want to come home to a decent meal.The chicken and gravy will be perfect for the cold winter months when I’m back at school, but even in the dead of summer here it is awesome. And, come on, fajitas are always a good idea. Give them both a try and let me know what y’all think of these quick to put together and delicious recipes!

Chicken and Gravy

img_3076

Cook Time: 6-8 hours
Yield: serves 4

Ingredients

  • 1 pound of chicken breast
  • 2 packets of dry chicken gravy mix
  • 2 cups of water
  • 1 can of cream of chicken soup (10.75 oz)
  • Garlic powder
  • Black Pepper
  • Salt

Instructions

  1. Season chicken with garlic powder, pepper, and a little bit of salt to taste. There is salt in the gravy mix and cream of soup, so you don’t want it to be overpowering.
  2. Whisk together gravy packets, water, and soup in the crock pot.
  3. Add the chicken to the mixture, making sure to cover them with gravy.
  4. Cook on low for six to eight hours.
  5. Serve the chicken breasts whole or shred after cooking and serve over mashed potatoes.

I prefer to shred my chicken, but my family likes the chicken breasts whole. Try it both ways and tell me which you think is best. Also, try serving it over nice or another style of potatoes. That’s the beauty of crock pots: you can personalize every recipe!

Chicken Fajitas

IMG_3093
Cook Time: low 6-8 hours, or high 3-4 hours
Yield: about 9 fajitas

Ingredients

  • 1 pound of boneless, skinless chicken breast
  • 1 can of salsa (I used mild since my mom doesn’t like spicy food, but the choice is yours)
  • 1 red and green bell pepper, julienned
  • 1 large yellow onion, sliced
  • Fajita seasoning
  • about 1/2 a cup of chicken broth
  • Flour tortillas
  • Optional for serving: sour cream, cilantro, salsa, guacamole, cheese

Instructions

  1. Pour half of the salsa on to the bottom of the crock pot and spread evenly.
  2. Top with half of the peppers and half of the onions, then the chicken breasts.
  3. Evenly sprinkle half of the fajita seasoning over chicken breasts then flip chicken and sprinkle in remainder.
  4. I poured a little chicken broth, probably a little less than half a cup, over the mixture at this point, since the salsa doesn’t have a lot of liquid. This kept it from drying out over the long cooking period and added some more flavor.
  5. Top with remaining salsa, then the remaining peppers and onions.
  6. Cook high three to four hours or low six to eight hours. I prefer cooking mine lower and longer to make the chicken juicy and veggies more tender. I also mixed it around now and then, so the veggies towards the top got immersed in the broth at the bottom and they evenly cooked.
  7.  Cut the chicken into strips or shred it.
  8. Ladle out most of the liquid in slow cooker and discard or set aside. This was actually good enough to eat like a soup on it’s own, so I had a bowl for lunch the next day!
  9. Serve warm in warmed fajita tortillas with your favorite garnishes!

Our family’s all time favorite fajita seasoning is Lantana of Texas Fajitas Seasoning with Tenderizer. It tastes great on any type of meat, and I love putting it on steaks. You can only order it on Lantana of Texas’s website, and for $32.95, you get six 6 oz containers of the seasoning that lasts you forever. We ordered our last batch years ago and are just now getting to our last bottle. It’s totally worth the investment.

Enjoy!

Cheers,  Josie

Advertisements

Turning Mistakes Into Meals: Twice Baked Loaded Potato Chicken Casserole

Not every recipe I try works out; some are pretty disastrous and can’t be salvaged, but hey, I tried my best. But, even some mistakes can be turned into another awesome meal that even my picky little sister, Lily, will eat.

IMG_2848

I tried to make oven roasted potatoes that were cooked in a little bit of chicken broth and butter on top, but they were just not cooking through. After four hours in the oven, I was finally fed up and pulled them out. I didn’t want to waste all the potatoes, so I tossed them in some tupperware and put them in the fridge. I guess they kept cooking from all the heat in the enclosed space, because when I took them out for dinner the next day, they tasted amazing and were cooked through.

I was making dinner for just Lily and myself, so I knew I was limited in my options since Lily only lives off of bacon and chicken. I decided to wing it and put a little of everything she liked in there. So while I can’t give y’all a specific recipe since this was literally me dumping things into a bowl, praying it worked, and praying Lily would eat it, I can tell you what I did generally to make this awesome makeshift casserole. That’s the beauty of it: you can make it whatever you want after starting with the basics!

Twice Baked Loaded Potato Chicken Casserole

I turned the potatoes into mashed potatoes, and since they already had a great flavor from the chicken broth, I didn’t have to add much to them. I tossed in a dollop of sour cream and a spoonful of ranch for some more flavor. Since my potatoes were a bit dry from being in the oven so long, I added milk and a little butter until they were a smoother consistency. Also, add your favorite seasonings; I used sea salt, coarse ground black pepper, and garlic powder. This was all to taste, so you can change it up all you like.

  1. Now that you have the potatoes, cut up some cooked chicken breast (I used about 1 and a half) into chunks and dice six strips of crispy bacon
  2. Layer the bottom of the dish with a little olive oil and the chicken breast chunks
  3. Mix half of the bacon and about a 1/4 cup of cheddar cheese (more if you really like cheese) straight into your mashed potatoes
  4. Layer the mixture over the chicken and top it with as much cheddar cheese as your heart desires and then add the rest of the diced bacon
  5. Cook at 350 degrees for 15 minutes or until the cheese has melted and everything is heated through
  6. Serve with sour cream and fresh green onions

Send me some of y’all’s variations and let me know what you think. Enjoy!

Cheers, Josie