• Best Ever Whole Chicken In a Crockpot

    Have you heard of the blog 100 Days of Real Food?  If you haven’t, go check it out right now.  I’ll wait.  No really.  It’s a fantastic introduction to eating whole foods and commonsense nutrition.  Also, some great recipes!  Here’s one I tried recently, and it was seriously fantastic, as well as super easy.  I generally buy whole chickens from a couple of local farmers to make sure I get the freshest and healthiest meat for my family.  I’m also terribly lazy and I really don’t like touching raw meat, so I almost never dissect my poultry into parts.  Usually I roast my birds in the oven, but it’s always a challenge keeping the meat moist.  Plus, you actually have to stay in the house and keep an eye on your bird while the oven is on.  The lazy cook’s solution?  The good ol’ crockpot of course.  If you are extra lazy like me, leave the liver inside the cavity of the bird–it will cook up so soft and delicious you can spread it on some rustic bread like butter and take advantage of the nutritional powerhouse of organ meats.  Feel free to play around with the spices and herbs in this rub–I made a few substitutions myself and it still came out moist and full of flavor.  Here’s the recipe as is, with my suggestions for easy substitutions in paranthesis:

    • 2 teaspoons paprika (or smoked paprika)
    • 1 teaspoon salt (sea salt)
    • 1 teaspoon onion powder
    • 1 teaspoon thyme (tarragon and/or sage)
    • ½ teaspoon garlic powder (2-3 finely minced fresh garlic cloves)
    • ¼ teaspoon cayenne (red) pepper (ground red chili powder will have a little less “heat”)
    • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
    • 1 onion, cut in large chunks
    • 1 large whole chicken
    • (optional: 2 T melted coconut oil or butter)

    Combine the dried spices and herbs in a small bowl and mix well.  You can make this into a paste by mixing with melted coconut oil or butter.  Place the chunks of onion in the bottom of your slow cooker.  Slather the dry (or wet) rub all over your chicken, including under the skin on the breast, and inside the cavity.  Place the whole chicken on top of the chopped onion, cover and turn crockpot on High.  A 3-4 lb chicken will take 4-5 hours.  My chicken was closer to 6 lbs and took nearly 7 hours, so plan accordingly.  Another lazy cook tip: once your carcass is picked clean, leave it in the crockpot and make your own stock!

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