How to cook frozen boneless, skinless chicken breasts is a slow cooker

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OK, so I had a relative pass away, and ended up with a freezer full of boneless skinless chicken breasts.

I've baked a few, they're ok, although quite bland.

I've got this Crock Pot I've been meaning to use for the past couple of years. I was thinking it would be really cool to be able to just throw some of those chicken breasts in there, maybe with some rice and chicken stock, chopped up peppers and onions, etc. and have dinner ready when I come home from work.

Would that work out? If so, what else should I toss in tere?

Thanks.
 

Zereh

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Here's what I would do! Chicken Tortilla Soup

Dump all of this into a blender, whirl until it's smooth and pour into the crockpot:
Entire can of Rotel style tomatoes with diced green chilies
A white onion that you've cut into quarters
Two or three cloves of garlic
1 serrano or jalapeno pepper with the top cut off
a large handful of cilantro leaves (remove as many stems as you can)

Add a large carton of chicken or vegetable broth to the crockpot as well. Put in several of your frozen chicken breasts and set the temp to low for an all day or overnight cooking session.

Shred the chicken with a couple of forks.

Cut white corn tortillas into wedges (8ths or 16ths). Fry them quickly in hot oil (about an inch deep in your skillet) until they are very lightly browned and crisp. Drain on paper towels and sprinkle lightly with salt while they're still hot. (Of course you can buy chips but they're not nearly as good!)

Ladle soup into a big bowl over your crunchy tortilla chips. Our favorite ways to top it are with cojita or shredded cheese and diced avocado. Add a squeeze of fresh lime juice, too.


This is equally delicious (and healthier :glare:) when served over rice. I've always cooked the rice separately though and just put it into the bottom of the soup bowls and then added the rest over it. You'll have to get advice from someone else on how to successfully cook rice in the crockpot; I only know that you shouldn't leave it in there all day or it would be mush.

You can also add diced potatoes to the crockpot and then not bother with either the tortillas or the rice later. Which of course means it isn't tortilla soup, per se, but still great to eat.
 

Selkie

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CraigC

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I prefer to marinade or brine them and grill them. Breasts are tricky as they are really lean and can dry out if over cooked. Personally, if I were going to use a slow cooker, I'd use bone in, dark meat. Much less likely to dry out over long cooking times.

Craig
 

BigAL

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I agree w/Craig. I also like to brine and smoke or grill, but it is even better wrapped in bacon, also can protect the meat.

In your crock pot, what about putting everything in like you would a chicken soup without all the stock? Make some egg noodles and just plate up ontop of the noodles for a somewhat broken down chicken soup.
 

jennyema

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Don't put boneless skinless chicken breasts in a slow cooker.

There isn't a more inappropriate way to cook them. The key to properly cooking them is to cook them until done and no more.

They will cook through in a matter of minutes and every second you continue to cook them they dry out, get tough and lose taste. Cooking them for hours in a slow cooker guarantees a dry product. It's just science. The liquid in the chicken is transferred to the cooking liquid -- just like making broth.

Because you usually cook things in a crock pot with liquid some people don't notice how dry the chicken has become; but it's dry and tasteless for sure. Some people cook them so long that they disintegrate and confuse that with tenderness.

There are many other ways to cook them. Brine them and grill or ovenfry. Make ovenfried breasts into chicken parm. Piccata, Francese, stir fries of every stripe. Tacos, enchiladas, pizza.

Lightly poach and use for salad, summer rolls, casseroles.
 
Last edited:

jabbur

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Newport News, VA
I have several ways to cook them.
1. Mix one can cream of mushroom soup with 1 cup sour cream. Place frozen breasts in a baking dish, cover with shredded Swiss cheese, spoon mushroom soup over the whole thing. cover with foil. Bake 350° for 1 hour.

2. Combine equal parts seasoned bread crumbs and grated Parmesan cheese. Dip the breasts in milk, then bread with the crumbs. Place in baking dish. Melt a stick of butter or margarine and pour some over each breast. Bake 350° for about an hour.

3. Place breasts in baking dish and cover with your favorite BBQ sauce. Bake 350° for about an hour. I usually cover this one with foil for the first half hour then remove the foil for the remainder.
 

jacky77

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Mar 6, 2011
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California
i pretty much make chicken breasts on a weekly basis...My SO is a chicken man, we buy them in bulk and freeze em.

1. Defrost them, dip in egg and a splash of Louisiana hot sauce, put some salt, pepper, paprika and bread crumbs in a bowl and bread those chicken breasts-i'm a fan of double dipping so go ahead and redip in the egg and dip in the breading and place in a fryer or a pan with oil that covers maybe half of the chicken. fry until cooked.

2.Season and marinate and bake in the oven.

3. slice and fry them up, add some rice or egg noodles, teriyaki sauce etc...

4. BBQ

5. slice a chicken breast in two halves, season with your favorite seasonings on the outside and make a chicken and bacon and cheese sandwich. lol. bake until cooked.

the ideas are pretty endless....
 

Claire

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Chicken tacos, burritos, fajitas. My husband's favorite is chicken fingers, cut into strips, season, bread, spray with oil, hot oven (I haven't done it for awhile but i think it was 450 for about 15 min).

When I'm cooking something else out and have more coals that the meal (almost always) I take them directly from the freezer, season, and wrap in heavy duty foil. (at least 4, sometimes a whole bag) When I take the evening's dinner off, I toss on the packet and close the grill lid. When we're done with dinner & cleanup, I put them on the counter to continue cooking for awhile, then refridgerate. This works so well for cold summer meals -- salads, sandwiches, etc. I've never timed it, and never had them come out over or under done. I do it just about every time we cook out, and since I have no kitchen a/c, having them on hand is a real blessing.
 

Lean Pocket

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Don't put boneless skinless chicken breasts in a slow cooker.

There isn't a more inappropriate way to cook them. The key to properly cooking them is to cook them until done and no more.

They will cook through in a matter of minutes and every second you continue to cook them they dry out, get tough and lose taste. Cooking them for hours in a slow cooker guarantees a dry product. It's just science. The liquid in the chicken is transferred to the cooking liquid -- just like making broth.

Because you usually cook things in a crock pot with liquid some people don't notice how dry the chicken has become; but it's dry and tasteless for sure. Some people cook them so long that they disintegrate and confuse that with tenderness.

There are many other ways to cook them. Brine them and grill or ovenfry. Make ovenfried breasts into chicken parm. Piccata, Francese, stir fries of every stripe. Tacos, enchiladas, pizza.

Lightly poach and use for salad, summer rolls, casseroles.

I disagree, i always use frozen boneless chicken breasts in a slow cooker. I place them on low heat, and put spices and bbq sauce in there. A little water and the chicken falls apart. I make shredded bbq chicken sandwiches. Soooo tender and yummy, its also good reheated!
 

n2cookin

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Joined
Mar 29, 2008
Messages
122
Location
Nashville, TN
We like to make balsamic chicken. It makes a nice glaze and chicken breasts that are moist and delicious.
2-4 chicken breasts, 1/3 cup balsamic vinegar, 1/2 cup chicken broth, 2 tablespoons sugar, 1 clove garlic minced and 1 teaspoon italian herb seasoning. You marinade the chicken with all the above ingredients for at least 20 minutes or more if you have time. In a skillet with some olive oil cook the chicken (saving the marinade) until no longer pink inside. Then add in the marinade bring to a boil and cook to reduce the marinade into a nice sauce. Serve the chicken with the sauce spooned over the chicken.
 
Joined
Dec 21, 2008
Messages
86
Location
Tulsa, OK
Here's what I would do! Chicken Tortilla Soup

Dump all of this into a blender, whirl until it's smooth and pour into the crockpot:
Entire can of Rotel style tomatoes with diced green chilies
A white onion that you've cut into quarters
Two or three cloves of garlic
1 serrano or jalapeno pepper with the top cut off
a large handful of cilantro leaves (remove as many stems as you can)

Add a large carton of chicken or vegetable broth to the crockpot as well. Put in several of your frozen chicken breasts and set the temp to low for an all day or overnight cooking session.

Shred the chicken with a couple of forks.

Cut white corn tortillas into wedges (8ths or 16ths). Fry them quickly in hot oil (about an inch deep in your skillet) until they are very lightly browned and crisp. Drain on paper towels and sprinkle lightly with salt while they're still hot. (Of course you can buy chips but they're not nearly as good!)

Ladle soup into a big bowl over your crunchy tortilla chips. Our favorite ways to top it are with cojita or shredded cheese and diced avocado. Add a squeeze of fresh lime juice, too.


This is equally delicious (and healthier :glare:) when served over rice. I've always cooked the rice separately though and just put it into the bottom of the soup bowls and then added the rest over it. You'll have to get advice from someone else on how to successfully cook rice in the crockpot; I only know that you shouldn't leave it in there all day or it would be mush.

You can also add diced potatoes to the crockpot and then not bother with either the tortillas or the rice later. Which of course means it isn't tortilla soup, per se, but still great to eat.

That's really interesting, I'll definitely give it a try.

If I want it to be less hot, do you think I could substitute canned tomatos without the chiles and not put the pepper in?
 
Joined
Dec 21, 2008
Messages
86
Location
Tulsa, OK
I agree w/Craig. I also like to brine and smoke or grill, but it is even better wrapped in bacon, also can protect the meat.

In your crock pot, what about putting everything in like you would a chicken soup without all the stock? Make some egg noodles and just plate up ontop of the noodles for a somewhat broken down chicken soup.

When you say "without all that stock", do you mean no stock at all?
 

Zereh

Head Chef
Joined
Aug 14, 2004
Messages
1,501
Location
Bellevue, WA
If I want it to be less hot, do you think I could substitute canned tomatos without the chiles and not put the pepper in?

Look for "mild" Rotel tomatoes; they have a nice little zing of flavor to them but hardly any heat.

And yeah, you can easily just omit the chillies. =) I forget that not everyone likes it fiery like we do!
 

Paulineh

Assistant Cook
Joined
Apr 25, 2011
Messages
4
Location
Australia
I like to keep it simple and cut them into pieces, brown them, add them to the slow cooker/crock pot and pour over a sauce and let them cook on low for 3 hours. There are different marinades around. I have a few recipes myself but you can use a jar of your favorite sauce from the supermarket shelf or in the refrigerated section. Use one that doesn't have cream and it will freeze well too.
 

jennyema

Chef Extraordinaire
Joined
Mar 1, 2002
Messages
10,520
Location
Boston and Cape Cod
I disagree, i always use frozen boneless chicken breasts in a slow cooker. I place them on low heat, and put spices and bbq sauce in there. A little water and the chicken falls apart. I make shredded bbq chicken sandwiches. Soooo tender and yummy, its also good reheated!


It's simple food science. The chicken has no fat or connective tissue to cook out.

They'll be done in less than an hour and every second you continue to cook them, they dry out. Chicken breasts that fall apart have disintegrated because they have been drastically overcooked.

If you like that, that's fine. And if you serve with a sauce, that helps mask the fact that all the moisture inside the chicken has been forced out.

Still, from a food science perspective, a crockpot is a really bad way to cook boneless skinless chicken breasts.
 

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