With these chicken recipes, 30 minutes or less of prep earlier in the day can earn you delicious depth of flavor at dinnertime. Whether you want a warm, veggie-packed soup or a spicy and zesty rice or noodle dish, these slow-cooker meals are here to make the most out of your poultry without any unnecessary extra effort. Recipes like our Slow-Cooker Chicken & Pinto Bean Enchilada Casserole and Slow-Cooker Vegetable & Chicken Meatball Soup are easy to make and will have you looking forward to dinner.
Slow-Cooker Chicken & Pinto Bean Enchilada Casserole
This slow-cooker meal is comfort food at its best: the layers of tortillas, cheese and sauce meld together into a cozy casserole inspired by the flavors in enchiladas. The top tortilla layer gets beautifully crispy in the slow cooker. We use pinto beans, but you could easily swap in black beans.
Slow-Cooker Vegetable & Chicken Meatball Soup
Don't skip cooking the onions for the meatballs. This step softens the onions so they more easily add their sweet flavor to the meatball mixture. Best part? This slow-cooker meatball soup only requires 25 minutes of hands-on time.
Slow-Cooker Chicken & Brown Rice with Roasted Corn & Black Beans
With plenty of spice from ground cumin, cayenne and paprika and the bit of char that frozen roasted sweet corn brings to the dish, you won't miss the browning step in this easy load-and-go recipe. If frozen roasted corn isn't available, substitute regular.
Sweet-and-Sour Chicken Bowls
Bone-in chicken thighs are pan-seared before being basted with sticky-sweet sauce and slow-cooked to fork-tender perfection. Sear the chicken thighs in batches to avoid overcrowding the pan and hindering browning. Though we swoon over the superiorly moist meat, the real magic lies within the sauce, which masters the balance of savory and sweet. For a burst of freshness, we add a simple cabbage slaw that rounds out the meal with a satisfying crunch. To get an extra dose of veggies, pair it with sugar snap or snow peas.
Salsa Verde Slow-Cooker Chicken
Chicken breasts are transformed when they get slow cooked in salsa verde. Shredding the chicken and returning it to the sauce ensures the end result is juicy and delicious. Serve the shredded meat over brown rice or use as a filling for tacos or enchiladas.
Slow-Cooker Spicy Red Pepper Chicken
This chicken has all the flavors of piri piri chicken, a Portuguese dish that usually marinates in a seasoned bell pepper sauce for hours before being grilled. Our take braises in a slow cooker first, then hits the broiler to get a little char.
Slow-Cooker Chicken with Rosemary & Mushrooms over Linguine
The classic pairing of shallots and mushrooms gives this easy slow-cooker chicken recipe a timeless quality that's sure to please everyone at your table. Swirling the stock and flour together at the beginning is a pro tip for creating a thick sauce that moistens the final dish and helps all the ingredients come together.
Slow-Cooker Chicken & Rice Bowls
A bowl of tender shredded chicken, hot cooked rice and slightly spicy black beans served with fresh toppings is a meal that will satisfy anytime. Make this slow-cooker chicken dish on the weekend and reheat throughout the week for easy at-work lunches or dinner at the end of a long day. For a variation, swap the brown rice for a grain medley.
Slow-Cooker Chicken Soup with Zucchini & Hominy
This excellent chicken soup--packed with hearty, nutritious ingredients--is easy to make and may become your new standby. It makes enough to freeze a portion for easy lunches or when you need to deliver food to someone in a pinch.
Slow-Cooker Chicken & Vegetable Noodle Soup
This slow-cooker chicken noodle soup fits nicely into the Mediterranean diet thanks to plenty of vegetables, lean chicken breast and whole-wheat pasta. Pair it with a salad and toasted whole-grain bread for an easy, healthy dinner.
Slow-Cooker Chicken Cacciatore with Polenta
This rustic stew cooks all day in the slow cooker so you can come home to a comforting, hot dinner. Not a fan of polenta? Try this healthy chicken dinner over pasta instead.
Slow-Cooker Chicken, Spinach & White Bean Stew
Warm up to a comforting bowl of chicken stew scented with thyme, oregano and smoked paprika. Adding spinach and white beans provides a hearty dose of fiber that will keep you satisfied until the next meal.
Slow-Cooker Lemon-Pepper Chicken Thighs with Broccolini
What if you could have tender, slow-cooker chicken thighs and crisp Broccolini to feed four with 10 minutes of hands-on time and eight common ingredients? Now, you can, and here's the recipe to prove it. Garnish with fresh oregano leaves and additional kosher salt and black pepper, if desired.
Slow-Cooker Chicken & White Bean Stew
This load-and-go slow-cooker chicken recipe is perfect for a busy weeknight dinner. Serve this Tuscan-inspired dish with crusty bread, a glass of Chianti and a salad.
Slow-Cooker Chicken Marsala
This slow-cooker chicken Marsala recipe gets its full flavor from plenty of mushrooms and fragrant shallots. Whole-wheat pasta soaks up the rich sauce. Round it out with a simple green salad for a comforting healthy dinner.
Slow-Cooker Buffalo Chicken Chili
If you like Buffalo wings, you'll love the flavors in this warm, hearty chili that comes together easily in the slow cooker. Sour cream helps cut the heat, but you could also use plain strained yogurt.
Slow-Cooker Peanut-Achiote Chicken & Vegetables
This satisfying dish has a depth of flavor that belies its short ingredient list. Sazón seasoning typically includes coriander, cumin and oregano—look for one that also has achiote (annatto). The ground seeds of the evergreen Bixa orellana shrub, achiote gives the dish a bright orange hue. These blends, along with jarred sofrito, can be found with other Latin ingredients at most grocery stores.
Slow-Cooker Sichuan Chicken with Scallions & Baby Bok Choy
Sichuan peppercorns give this brothy slow-cooker chicken dish a distinctive lemony, mouth-numbing flavor. Unrelated to peppercorns, they're the dried berries of the prickly ash tree. Look for them in specialty markets and online. If you've never had them before, try one first and add more or less to taste. Serve with sesame baby bok choy (which takes just a few minutes to prep) and Chinese noodles for an easy, healthy dinner that'll get you out of your same-old-chicken-dish rut.
Slow-Cooker Chicken & Honey-Glazed Root Vegetables
This beautiful slow-cooker chicken dish should be a standby for day-of decisions to host dinner. In the spring, substitute baby white turnips and baby carrots for the regular varieties. To reduce prep time, cut the vegetables the night before; refrigerate. Place in the slow cooker with the browned chicken the next day.
Slow-Cooker Chicken Pot Pie
We took all the flavors of classic pot pie and made it super-easy to pull together in the crock pot. Look for ready-to-bake biscuits with minimal ingredients to keep it healthy. Biscuits tend to be high in sodium, so we advise only half a biscuit per serving if you're watching your salt intake.
Read the original article on Eating Well.