About a year ago, I started implementing a simple Sunday morning ritual that has absolutely simplified my hectic life. It began with my desire to get my nutrition in order. For years, I’ve been pushing myself hard at the gym and on the pavement, but you probably wouldn’t guess it by looking at me. My son was two and a half, and I was still struggling to lose the last 10 pounds of “baby” weight. I’d see fit women running in sports bras with visible abs and think, “all they eat is chicken breast and broccoli, and I could never do that.” We all know that chicken breast is probably the number one staple for dieting women everywhere who aren’t vegetarian. Truthfully, I’d tried meal prepping on Sundays to stay fit, but I would end up tossing most of the chicken by the end of the week because I just don’t like leftover chicken, especially reheated.
Then one day, about a year ago, I recommitted to my nutrition and decided to give chicken breast another try. Only this time, instead of baking or grilling boneless skinless chicken breast, I threw it in my slow cooker. And that was it—no other ingredients. No liquid. After 4 hours, I shredded the cooked chicken with a fork and let it sit with the cooker on the warm setting for another hour. The result was a deliciously tender, protein-packed base for whatever I’m craving for a weeknight dinner.
Throw the cold chicken into a salad for a quick, high protein lunch. Slide it into a coconut curry sauce and serve it over some rice for a quick weeknight dinner. Throw it into a sauce with a jar of salsa to heat up for Taco Tuesday. It couldn’t be simpler or more versatile.
Here are some of favorite uses my Meal Prep Slow Cooker Chicken:
- Chicken lettuce wraps with peanut sauce
- Cobb Salad
- Caesar Salad
- BBQ Chicken Sliders
- Pad Thai
- Curry Chicken
- Low Fat Chicken Salad
- Lemon Chicken on Whole Wheat Pasta
You can use any slower cooker for this recipe, but I use my Instant Pot Duo on the Slow Cooker setting on regular heat. I throw in 2-3 lbs of boneless skinless chicken every Sunday morning as soon as I finish my coffee. It’s ready by lunchtime, and I don’t have to decide what I’m going to cook for the week to stick to my macro plan.
Over time, I’ve discovered there are a few spice blends that can be used to elevate the flavor without sacrificing the versatility. Here’s what I used this week:
- 2lbs boneless skinless chicken tenders
- 1 tbsp garlic powder
- 2 tsp Kosher salt*
- ½ tsp ground white pepper
Place chicken in a slow cooker. Mix together seasonings and sprinkle over chicken. Secure lid on the slow cooker and set timer for 4 hours. After four hours, use two forks to shred the cooked chicken. Allow the shredded chicken to sit in the natural juices on warm for another 30-60 minutes. Serve immediately or transfer to a container with a lid and refrigerate.
*If you do opt to season your chicken before cooking, be careful not to over-salt it. You’ll likely be salting whatever sauces you mix it into later, so it’s better to under season now and adjust later.
Yummy right! What are some of your favorite easy chicken recipes? Share below! Enjoy.