I have really come to love my slow cooker over the years. Crock Pot cooking is one of my favorite ways to make easy dinners, especially recipes that make multiple meals. I have said it before and I will say it again – a meal made in a slow cooker is just about the closest I may ever come to a personal chef. I load it up in the morning and by dinnertime the house is filled with incredible aromas and all I have to do is set the table and serve. It is amazing.
I have shared many plant-based slow cooker recipes here on Tasty Yummies, over the years. Like this Butternut Squash and Chickpea Coconut Curry or this Chipotle Black Bean and Quinoa Crock-Pot Stew, which is a reader favorite. I also have a simple recipe for Slow-Cooked Black Beans, that are great for vegan tacos or it can just be pureed into an amazing soup. Speaking of soup, this comforting Slow Cooker Split Pea Soup can be made with or without ham, to be vegan. Or for a really different Crock Pot experience, try my Creamy Crock-Pot Pumpkin Risotto recipe.
Since I have shared so many plant-based Crock Pot recipes, I thought it was time to share a meat-based recipe since, I know many of you are like me and do eat meat from time-to-time. Plus, when I asked on my Facebook page, a good majority of you were lookin’ for a “meaty” recipe. I had tons of ideas I was working on, but I had a beautiful locally-raised whole organic chicken that I thought would be perfect to create something different with. I thought about making my Chicken and White Bean Chili again with the whole chicken, but then I saw the beautiful tomatillos at the market and came up with the idea for this Slow Cooker Chicken Chile Verde.
This post is extra special – because it’s actually a two-part recipe. Besides the amazing chile verde, first – I have a super simple salsa verde/sauce that can just be used as-is, a salsa perfect for dipping your favorite corn tortilla chips into, or even better, served warm in this amazing chile verde or it’d also be great as a topping for homemade veggie enchiladas. So many possibilities. This salsa verde is just loaded with amazing fresh flavors, so bright and unique. You could certainly use the tomatillos raw if you wish, but I have found that roasting the tomatillos first really brings out their incredibly bright flavor. I have a feeling I will be making homemade salsa verde way more often now. It was so easy.
This Chicken Chile Verde is just amazing as-is, served hot in a bowl as a stew. Top it with some fresh cilantro and green onions, a dollop of cultured sour cream and you are good to go. It would also be incredible served over rice with a side of beans. Or maybe inside your favorite flour or corn tortillas for a burrito, tacos or enchiladas. Oh and guys, one word… NACHOS!! We used some of the leftovers and spooned it over tortilla chips with some melted cheese over them, I added some chopped tomatoes, an avocado, green onions and cilantro and it made the most amazing nachos ever. It was decadent and amazing, to say the least. My husband may never eat another dinner at our house again, now that he knows that nachos are possible.
To me, no matter how you eat this chicken chile verde – this is comfort food at it’s finest. Plus, any recipe that produces multiple meals, that is one you can be sure will be made time and time again in our house. Oh and in the event you don’t want to eat leftovers throughout the week, this would also freeze very nicely.
[print_this]Slow Cooker Chicken Chile Verde – Gluten-free, Paleo-friendly
makes 6-8 servings – this is the slow cooker that I use
Tomatillo Salsa Verde Recipe
makes about 3 cups
- 1 1/2 lbs fresh tomatillos
- 6 whole garlic cloves, peeled
- 1/2 onion, chopped
- 1 cup fresh cilantro
- 2 jalapeños, stems removed and deseeded (for extra heat use serranos instead)
- juice and zest from 1 lime
- 1 tablespoon cumin powder
- 2 teaspoons honey
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
Preheat your broiler to high.
Remove the papery husks from the tomatillos and rinse them well. Cut the tomatillos in half and place cut side down on a baking sheet. Add the garlic cloves. Place the pan under the broiler for about 5-7 minutes, to lightly blacken the skin on the tomatillos. (You can also roast them in a 450ºF oven for about 10 minutes). Allow to cool for a couple minutes.
Put the tomatillos, garlic, onion, cilantro, jalapeños, lime juice and zest, cumin, honey and salt into a high speed blender or food processor and blend until all ingredients are finely chopped and mixed. Store in refrigerator.
Slow Cooker Chicken Chile Verde – Gluten-free, Paleo-friendly
- approx 3 cups salsa verde (see above or use your favorite store bought)
- 2 cups water, chicken broth or vegetable broth ( I used 1 cup of vegetable broth and 1 cup water)
- 4-5lb organic pasture-raised whole chicken*
- 1/2 large onion, diced
- 1 red bell pepper, diced
- 1 dried bay leaf
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1/2 cup fresh cilantro
- salt and pepper, to taste
extras for serving: limes, fresh cilantro, green onions, sour cream, corn tortillas or tortilla chips, rice, beans hot sauce
Place the chicken on a work surface or cutting board and pat it dry with paper towels. Cut the chicken into 6 parts – 2 legs, 2 breasts and 2 wings, excluding the back**. Cut off and discard as much of the skin as you can and any extra fat.
Add the salsa verde and two cups of liquid (water, broth or combo of the two) to the slow cooker. Place the chicken parts in and add the onion, bell pepper, bay leaf, ground coriander and fresh cilantro. Give it all a stir. Cook on high for 3-4 hours or on low for 6-8 hours or until the chicken is cooked (at least 165 degrees in center of meat). Remove the chicken from the crock pot, remove the meat from the bones, shred it with two forks, discard the bones and add the meat back to the crock pot just before serving.
Serve it as-is ladled into a bowl as a stew, topped with fresh cilantro and green onions, a squeeze of lime and maybe a dollop of sour cream and some crispy corn tortillas. It would also be delicious served over rice, or a salad or in lettuce wraps. It’s also a super great filling for tacos, burritos or enchiladas or overtop a big ‘ol plate of nachos!
* you could also choose 2lbs of bone-in or boneless chicken thighs or chicken breasts.
** save the neck and back whenever you cut up a whole chicken. They are great for stock. [/print_this]
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