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5 Mouth-Watering Slow Cooker Chicken Recipes

04/06/2015 10:17 am ET | Updated Apr 06, 2015

These tasty, low-maintenance dinners turn potentially boring poultry into juicy, fresh-tasting meals you'll make again and again.

By Lynn Andriani

  • A Very French Comfort Food
    Joe Gough/iStock/Thinkstock
    Poulet à l'estragon (tarragon chicken) is standard on bistro menus in France; it's one of those dishes that combines basic ingredients you may never have considered putting together -- yet makes total sense. Here, it's sweet, anise-like tarragon, cream and falling-off-the-bone chicken; the delicate herb stands up surprisingly well to the other robust flavors. After six hours in the slow cooker, you'll have the most tender meat, a rich sauce -- and will have barely had to do a thing.

    Get the recipe: Tarragon Chicken
  • The Light Spin On A Classic
    nicolebranan/iStock/Getty Images Plus
    If you've got a slow cooker, you've probably made chili in it, realizing, as we have, that it seems there's no limit to how long the meat and spices can spend simmering away, melding together in perfect harmony. Instead of beef, though, this recipe has you use boneless, skinless chicken breasts or thighs, cut into half-inch cubes. The poultry is surprisingly perfect with corn, green chilies, salsa, beans and cilantro; it's a milder meat than beef and lets the bright taste of all those other ingredients shine.

    Get the recipe: Slow-Cooker Cilantro Cumin Chicken Chili
  • The Laid-Back, Lemon-Infused Meal
    Steve Brown Photography/Photolibrary/Getty Images
    It doesn't get much easier than this Provençal chicken dinner: Scatter chopped onions in the bottom of the slow cooker, top with chicken thighs, place a lemon slice on each and toss in pitted, green olives, a dash of white-wine vinegar, some dried herbs and chicken stock. In a few hours, you'll have a simple yet hearty dinner that goes well with nearly any side.

    Get the recipe: Slow-Cooker Provençal Lemon and Olive Chicken
  • The Italian Salad-Turned-Main
    Erin Clarke
    Balsamic vinegar is fantastic with tomatoes, mozzarella and basil, but in colder months we love this hot version of caprese. It's more substantial, too, since it puts chicken in the starring role. A slow cooker's low, slow heat helps mellow out the sometimes sharp-tasting balsamic, and makes a deeply flavored, thick sauce, keeping even breast meat, which often dries out in the Crock-Pot, supermoist.

    Get the recipe: Slow-Cooker Balsamic Chicken Caprese
  • The Takeout Tradition Anyone Can Make
    Thinkstock
    Orange Chicken is a classic Chinese-American dish, citrusy and sweet, and especially good served over rice that soaks up all the juices (and balances out the sugary flavor). This ridiculously easy recipe uses frozen orange-juice concentrate; just a half-can is enough for a pound and a half of chicken. And while it's certainly satisfying if you just follow the recipe to a T, you can also add grated garlic, ginger or red-pepper flakes to taste, or garnish with sliced scallions for a pleasantly contrasting kick.

    Get the recipe: Slow-Cooker Orange Chicken

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