Crockpot Chicken with Apples is the epitome of easy, delicious, and healthy. You could almost make it in your sleep, and it’s the perfect recipe for a busy weeknight meal.
You already know I love my crockpot, and that I’m a big fan of pulled chicken. Add apples to the mix and you’ve hit the trifecta! These three ingredients all slow cooker together for 4 hours and it’s one of the best meals you’ll ever have!
- Level: Easy
- Total: 4 hr 15 min
2 cups sliced onions
2 apples, peeled, cored and sliced
2 pounds cut up chicken pieces (with bone), with or without skin
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary leaves
1 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth
1/2 cup cream of celery soup
2 cups cooked rice (white or brown)
- Arrange onion and apple slices in bottom of slow cooker. Place chicken pieces on top and season all over with salt and black pepper. Sprinkle rosemary over chicken.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together chicken broth and soup. Pour mixture over chicken.
- Cover and cook on LOW for 6 to 8 hours or on HIGH for 3 to 4 hours.
- Serve chicken, sauce, apples, and onions over rice.
Crock Pot Chicken and Apples
Cook:6 hrs 10 mins
Total:6 hrs 30 mins
|Nutrition Facts (per serving)|
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)SAVE RECIPE
Try this easy and delicious low-fat, low-sodium recipe for crock pot chicken and apples. The flavor is slightly spicy because of the curry powder so, if you’re serving this to kids unfamiliar with this spice, you can reduce the amount or even omit it and the dish will be much milder.
This combination of apples, onions, curry powder, and chicken is reminiscent of and inspired by Indian chicken Mughlai without the addition of milk or cream.
- 1 cup apple cider
- 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1 tablespoon curry powder
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- Salt, to taste
- Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 3 Granny Smith apples, cored and thickly sliced
- 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 1/3 cup chicken broth
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
Steps to Make It
- Gather the ingredients.
- In a small shallow bowl, combine the apple cider, nutmeg, and curry powder and set aside.
- In a small microwave-safe dish, combine the butter, onion, and garlic. Microwave on high for 1 to 2 minutes or until the onion is softened. Place this mixture in the bottom of a 3- to 4-quart slow cooker.
- Dip each chicken breast into the reserved apple-cider mixture to coat and then place them in the crock pot over the onion mixture. Pour any remaining apple-cider mixture over the chicken. Add salt and pepper to taste.
- Cover the slow cooker and cook on low for 5 to 6 hours or until the chicken is almost cooked. Add the sliced apples and cook for 40 to 50 minutes longer on low or until the apples are tender and the chicken is thoroughly cooked to 165 F as measured by a reliable meat thermometer.
- Remove the chicken and apples to a serving plate and cover with aluminum foil to keep warm.
- To make the sauce, whisk together the vinegar, broth, and cornstarch in a small bowl until well mixed and lump free and stir into the liquid in the crock pot. Cover and cook on high heat, stirring occasionally, until sauce is thickened and bubbly, about 10 to 15 minutes. Pass the sauce separately at the table.
- If you have one of the newer crock pots with warm, low, and high settings, they seem to cook faster so check the chicken after 4 hours on low. It should be almost done, then add the apples as directed in the recipe but cook them for 30 to 40 minutes or until tender.
- If the sauce doesn’t get thick enough after the first 10 to 15 minutes of cooking, just add more cornstarch mixed with chicken broth or apple-cider vinegar and cook for an additional 10 to 15 minutes on high.
- Crock pot chicken and apples is delicious served over hot cooked rice, couscous, or pasta for a nice winter or anytime meal.
- For a complete dinner, all you need is a crisp green salad, some dinner rolls, and a glass of white wine.
If you like the juiciness of chicken thighs, you can use them instead of the breasts in this recipe. Use 12 boneless, skinless chicken thighs and increase the cooking time to about 6 to 8 hours since dark meat takes longer to cook than white meat. Otherwise, the recipe is the same.
Crock Pot Apple Balsamic Chicken
When you want a dish that you can set and forget, the slow cooker is your best friend. This Crock Pot Apple Balsamic Chicken recipe is simple, tasty, and sure to wow.
Chicken Recipes in the Crock Pot
Everyone is saying “’tis the season for slow cookers.” But is there really not a season for them? In the warmer months, using a crock pot can keep your kitchen cool not having to turn on the stove or oven. Somehow, winter months became the season of the slow cooker.
Whether you are trying to keep the kitchen cool or simply don’t want to make it a big production of dinner, this one device makes your time in the kitchen a breeze. Making chicken recipes in the slow cooker is one of the most popular.
It keeps the meat tender and juicy by essentially braising it in liquid at a low and slow temperature. All the folks that are afraid if undercooking chicken are flocking, seriously. This recipe comes out so tender that you won’t need knife and might even struggle to get breasts out of the pot on and on to a plate without breaking.
More Flavor in the Slow Cooker
The only downfall to slow cooker cooking is that sauces don’t have the chance to reduce or thicken. It keeps the steam tightly held inside, which aids in cooking, but doesn’t allow more complex flavors to develop either.
So your options are to reduce the sauce manually at the end. But this defeats the purpose of using a slow cooker and not making a mess or heating other items in the kitchen.
Thickening the sauce using cornstarch, arrowroot or other flours.
Correcting the seasoning, which just means to taste it and see if it needs more pepper or salt. Many times these flavors can become muted in the slow cooker and also after sitting in the fridge (leftovers).
This recipe is a little different than most crock pot balsamic chicken recipes because it also uses apple jelly. Yep, you read that right. Other incorporate brown sugar or white sugar, but using a jelly impart flavor and provides sweetness.
See my notes on how this mix of flavors compliments and creates an easy and delicious flavor combo.
- Apple Jelly– The sugars and texture combine to make a sweet sauce with apple undertones. You can use other types of fruit jelly, like peach or apricot, but I do suggest using a jelly opposed to a jam, which doesn’t contain gelatin which helps give the sauce body.
- Balsamic Vinegar– In many recipes you can swap vinegars easy, but for this one you really do need to use a balsamic vinegar. It is the only variety that will reduce and become an acidic sweet sauce instead of just continue to build as a vinegar. Acid helps to balance the sweetness from jelly.
- Apple Juice- This aids in making them into a sauce and gives more flavor than just water. In a pinch use water or even chicken broth.
- Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts- While you know I love chicken thighs, chicken breasts stay tender and moist with even cooking because of the slow cooker. You can swap in thighs or legs if you wish.
- Chicken Bouillon- This adds the robust flavor of chicken without adding more liquid. Since it won’t burn off, I tend to be leary about adding more to the pot. I highly recommend a low sodium variety. This can can be swapped out for vegetable bouillon as well.
- Dry Seasonings: garlic powder, coarse salt, thyme, smoked paprika (or sweet) & pepper.
- Butter & Cornstarch- Butter creates a rich and velvety sauce texture, but the cream also helps to thicken along with cornstarch. Feel free to use arrowroot or other thickening agents.
- Chopped Parsley- This is only to add color and make it look pretty, it really doesn’t provide much in the way of flavor, so feel free to omit.
I am a firm believer that crock pot recipes should be easy and not require a ton of prep before throwing it all in the pot. You you really want to add more flavor and sophistication to this dish, be my guest to brown the chicken in a hot skillet before adding. I assure the sauce has enough flavor to cover up the last of browning.
- Whisk together the everything except the chicken breasts best you can. It might be a little lumpy, but that is fine, which it starts cooking it will melt down.
- Add the chicken and toss to coat with sauce.
- Set the slow cooker to high for 3 hours, cover and cook. Depending on the size of your chicken breasts, cooking time might vary from 2 1/2 hours to 4 hours. Check them for an internal temperature of 160°F and remember they will continue to cook a bit while the sauce thickens.
- Melt the butter and then whisk with the cornstarch. Stir into slow cooker mixture to thicken the sauce and continue to heat over low.
Instant Pot Instructions
This recipe was created long before the Instant Pot, but you can use the slow cooker function on your IP or utilize the electric pressure cooker option.
- Make the sauce and add chicken just as you would for the slow cooker balsamic chicken.
- Set to manual pressure on high for 8 minutes.
- Quick release and vent.
- Add butter and flour mixture and reduce heat to “keep warm”. Adding pressure will make the chicken super tender so don’t be surprised if you end up with shredded chicken.
What To Serve it With:
If you want to get some veggies in the meal and don’t feel like dirtying another pot, throw in baby carrots or pearl onions in the very beginning. After adding the thickener, also drop in frozen broccoli and cauliflower florets or sweet peas. Heat for 15-20 minutes or until they thaw.