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Saturday, October 12, 2013

Slow Cooker Lemon Chicken

If you follow me on Pinterest, you might have come to the conclusion that recently I've become obsessed with slow cooker recipes. There's so many recipes on Pinterest for slow cookers, but until my birthday I didn't have one. So now that I have one, I must admit I'm obsessed.

Mr. Mochi got me a very colorful Crock-Pot for my birthday, and I must say he did a great job. Everyone who has seen the slow cooker says that it is definitely a perfect fit to my tastes. I love bright colors and it goes well with my kitchen.

After unwrapping, I immediately demanded that my mother hand over her recipe for lemon chicken. She even surprised me and picked me up some chicken thighs from Sprouts to get me started.

I'm not a huge meat fan. In fact, I've never even cooked chicken in this apartment we've been in for going on 3 years. I'm the type that likes popcorn chicken because there's little to no chicken in it. Crazy, I know. If Mr. Mochi is craving chicken, he is in charge of picking up a rotisserie chicken from the market or heading out to eat for wings.

I love it! The only crock-pot with orange hehe!
But this chicken is delicious. The chicken is slow cooked until it is almost shred-able, and the sauce is made for spooning over rice. It tastes like cheap take-out Chinese. And I mean that in the best way possible. Definitely not authentic, but has that comfortable sticky sweet-and-sour combination that is so crave-able!

This recipe is a little more work than some slow cooker recipes, where you literally just dump ingredients in a slow cooker, but the little bit of extra prep really makes the chicken better.

Slow Cooker Lemon Chicken

2 lbs boneless skinless chicken thighs (approximately 10-12 thighs)
2 tbs oil (olive, canola, or your favorite oil for pan frying)
flour for dredging the chicken
1 12 ounce can of frozen lemonade concentrate
1/2 cup vinegar
1/2 cup ketchup
2 tbs Worcestershire sauce
1 8 ounce can of sliced water chestnuts, drained
2 tbs cornstarch
1/4 cup water

To serve:
Cooked white or brown rice
Sliced green onions

Heat oil in a large skillet over high heat until shimmering. Dredge the half chicken in flour and cook both sides in the skillet. Don't cook all the way through, just enough to get the outside golden, around 5 minutes. Place the browned thighs in the slow cooker insert and repeat with the second batch of chicken unless you've got a huge ass skillet.

After all the chicken has been browned and placed in the slow cooker insert, place the lemonade, vinegar, ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, and drained water chestnuts on top of the chicken.

Cook on low for 6-8 hours, or high for 3-4. Depending on how hot your slow cooker runs, and how big it is, you might need to adjust this (Mine is a pretty average 5 quarts).

I've gone over the time and never had a problem with the sauce scorching or anything bad, just chicken that kind of fell apart and shredded itself. I've even seen recipes that say to cook on low for just 3 hours, so the time seems very variable depending on if you want you chicken to stay in pieces or fall apart.

After the chicken is done cooking, whisk together the cornstarch and water to make a slurry. Pour into the crockpot and stir to thicken the sauce. Serve over rice and garnish with green onions.

I've seen variations that do not brown the chicken first. If you like this recipe, it's worth trying to see if you like it without the browning. It will definitely save time, but I've always had the chicken this way and I'm pretty lazy so I can vouch it really isn't that much work to brown it first. Another variation I recommend considering is swapping the thighs for chicken breasts.
See Also:
Cha Ye Dan
Strawberry Bing Tanghulu

1 comment:

  1. I don't like chicken very much either. But I do love using my crockpot. My husband loves lemon so I'll be making this dish soon.