Whether you’re a time-starved cook, a meal prep enthusiast, or just a lover of succulent, easy-to-make dishes, cooking frozen chicken in a Crock-Pot is a game-changer. This method takes the guesswork out of mealtime, allowing you to cook chicken breasts from frozen with incredible results. So, let’s answer the pressing question: “How long to cook frozen chicken in Crock Pot?”
Making Chicken in the Crock-Pot: The Basics
Using a Crock-Pot, also known as a slow cooker, to prepare your frozen chicken is a hands-off method that guarantees perfectly cooked chicken every time. The secret lies in understanding the ideal cook time and setting the correct heat level.
Whether you’re cooking boneless and skinless chicken breasts or a whole chicken, a crucial factor is ensuring the chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165 degrees F, the safe temperature for poultry as recommended by the Foodtastic Mom. Don’t worry, we’ll guide you through the process of checking the temperature with a digital meat thermometer, a kitchen tool as important as your 6-quart Crock-Pot.
How Long to Cook Frozen Chicken in Crock Pot?
Cook time for frozen chicken in the Crock-Pot depends on whether you choose to cook on low heat or high heat. If you’re not in a hurry, cooking on low heat is the way to go. This slow and steady method takes about 6-8 hours for chicken breasts, rendering them tender and juicy.
On the other hand, if you need a faster cooking time, the high heat setting will cook your frozen chicken breasts in roughly 4-5 hours. While quicker, this method may produce slightly less tender results. No matter the setting you choose, remember to always check the chicken’s internal temperature before serving.
Preparing Your Frozen Chicken for the Crock Pot
To start, place your frozen chicken breasts in the Crock-Pot. While it’s not necessary to thaw the chicken first, do make sure the chicken is separated. If the breasts are stuck together, run them under cold water until they can be pulled apart.
Once the chicken is in the Crock-Pot, it’s time to add flavor. Season the chicken breasts generously with salt and pepper, and add a sprinkle of poultry seasoning for an extra kick. To keep the chicken moist, it’s important to include a cooking liquid. This can be as simple as water or chicken broth, or as complex as a homemade marinade.
A Frozen Chicken Recipe You’ll Add to Your Favorite List
Here’s a delicious and simple recipe using frozen chicken breasts: the Southwestern Chicken and Dumplings. This one-pot meal is a time saver and a crowd-pleaser.
1. Start by placing your frozen chicken breasts in the Crock-Pot and seasoning them with salt, pepper, and poultry seasoning.
2. Add in a can of cream of chicken soup, a can of diced tomatoes with green chilies, a can of corn, and a can of black beans (drained and rinsed).
3. Pour in a box of chicken broth and set your Crock-Pot to low heat for 7-8 hours or high heat for 4-5 hours.
4. About an hour before the cooking time is up, remove the chicken from the Crock-Pot, shred it, and then return it to the pot.
5. Add a can of refrigerated biscuits (each biscuit torn into pieces), and let them cook in the soup until they are done.
Serve this warming dish with a sprinkle of cheese and a dollop of sour cream. You won’t be able to resist making it over and over!
Ensuring Safe Cook Times and Temperatures
With the help of a digital meat thermometer, you can ensure your chicken is cooked safely. Insert the thermometer into the thickest part of the chicken, without touching bone. Once it reads 165 degrees F, your chicken is done. If it reads lower, continue cooking and check again in 15-30 minutes.
Meal Prep and Storage
Slow cooked chicken is perfect for meal prep. You can easily make a large batch of shredded chicken in the Crock-Pot and use it in various recipes throughout the week. Chicken Spinach Artichoke Lasagna, Chicken Taco Soup, King Ranch Chicken, Chicken Divan, and Chicken and Rice Casserole are just a few examples of dishes that can be made using cooked chicken.
To store cooked chicken, let it cool completely, then place it in a freezer-safe bag and freeze. It can last up to a month in the freezer, offering a convenient option for quick meals.
Making the Most Out of Your Crock Pot Chicken
Cooking frozen chicken in a Crock-Pot offers versatility. From a hearty Buffalo Chicken Mac and Cheese to lighter Air Fryer Chicken Chimichangas, there are countless recipes you can explore. Also, the cooked chicken can be shredded for a quick and easy Creamy Crack Chicken Soup or chopped for a Chicken Divan casserole.
Waste Not, Want Not
Another advantage of making chicken in a Crock-Pot is the minimal waste. If you’re cooking a whole chicken, the bones and scraps can be saved to make chicken stock, reducing waste and maximizing your food dollars. This is a great alternative to buying a Costco rotisserie chicken and throwing away the bones.
Enhancing Your Cooking Experience with Helpful Tools
To enhance your cooking experience, consider investing in some handy tools. A 6-quart Crock-Pot is perfect for cooking chicken, especially for larger families or meal prep. Another essential is a digital meat thermometer, which you can easily find on Amazon.
Also, participating in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program is an excellent way to earn advertising fees by linking to products like Crock-Pots and digital meat thermometers.
In conclusion, mastering how to cook frozen chicken in the Crock-Pot opens up a world of mealtime possibilities. With minimal prep time, hands-off cooking, and the promise of a mouthwatering meal at the end, you’ll find yourself reaching for the frozen chicken and Crock-Pot more often than not. So go ahead, make your cooking life easier and tastier. It’s time to bring out the Crock-Pot and start slow-cooking!
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I cook frozen chicken in the Crock-Pot?
Absolutely! In fact, it’s an excellent way to save time and produce delicious, tender chicken.
How long does it take to cook frozen chicken in the Crock-Pot?
Cooking frozen chicken on low heat in the Crock-Pot typically takes 6-8 hours, while cooking on high heat should take about 4-5 hours. Always check the internal temperature of the chicken to ensure it has reached 165 degrees F.
How do I check the temperature of my chicken?
To check the temperature of your chicken, insert a digital meat thermometer into the thickest part of the meat, without touching the bone. The chicken is done when it reaches 165 degrees F.
How can I use leftover cooked chicken?
Leftover cooked chicken is incredibly versatile. Use it in recipes like Chicken Taco Soup, Chicken Spinach Artichoke Lasagna, or Buffalo Chicken Mac and Cheese. It’s also great in salads, sandwiches, or as a pizza topping.
What should I do with the waste from my rotisserie chicken?
Instead of discarding the bones and scraps from a rotisserie chicken, save them to make chicken stock. This reduces waste and offers you a homemade stock for future recipes.
How long does raw chicken take in a slow cooker?
Raw chicken typically takes about 4-6 hours on low or 2-3 hours on high in a slow cooker to ensure it’s fully cooked and safe to eat.
Can you put frozen chicken in the Crock-Pot for 4 hours?
Yes, you can put frozen chicken in the Crock-Pot. However, it’s recommended to cook it on high for at least 4 hours to ensure thorough cooking and safety.
I’m Calvin Lamb, an LA-based culinary enthusiast with a decade’s experience in five-star kitchens. My innovative dishes, inspired by seasonal flavors and sustainable practices, blend classic and modern cuisine. Besides crafting unique culinary experiences, I relish exploring new eateries and devising fresh recipes.