There is rarely a week that goes by when I don’t cook a whole chicken either by roasting it or cooking it in the slow cooker. Both ways I get a quick and easy meal, plus a carcass that is used to make stock for another day.
Cooking a whole chicken in the slow cooker not only saves on cleaning the oven, but the final result is so moist and tender. There isn’t a danger of the bird drying up and being overdone. Also, following my method, the root vegetables can be done along with the chicken which means only a few greens and some gravy (or relish or chutney) needs to be added to complete the meal.
So, here’s the steps to follow.
Step 1 – Prepare Vegetables
Cut up your root vegetables into 1cm thick slices. Potatoes, sweet potatoes, carrots and parsnips are all good. Usually I stick with one or two so there are a couple of pieces for everyone.
Place the slices over the bottom of the slow cooker to make a ‘bed’ for the chicken.
Some cloves of garlic can also be scattered around for extra flavour.
Step 2 – Prepare Chicken
Remove the bird from any packaging, rinse the cavity and pat dry with paper towel.
Stuff the bird with a whole peeled onion or a whole lemon. Either will help to add extra flavour.
Place chicken breast side up on bench and season with salt and pepper.
Step 3 – Cook
Place chicken into slow cooker, breast side down on top of vegetable bed – this gets all the juices flowing down through the chicken as it cooks, keeping the breast (which can be the driest part of the bird) nice and moist. Now season the other side of the chicken with salt and pepper.
Cook on LOW for 1.5 – 2.5 hours per 500g, or HIGH for 1 – 1.5 hours per 500g.
Here’s the finished product.
Step 4 – Serve
Remove chicken from slow cooker carefully. It can easily fall apart so insert a fork into the cavity and use some tongs to lift it out.
Remove vegetables from slow cooker and drain on paper towel.
Here’s the chicken ready to carve.
As you can see, it doesn’t have the golden, crispy skin of an oven roasted chicken. If this is important, you can place it in the oven for the last half an hour or so to crisp up the skin.
Carve up the chicken and serve with slow cooked vegetables and some greens. Enjoy!
If you have any questions or comments about cooking a whole chicken in the slow cooker, please leave them below. Plus, don’t forget to share the recipe with your friends (click the buttons below)!