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Before my commitment to real food, I had never cooked a whole chicken!  I was strictly a boneless, skinless breast girl.  The idea of a whole chicken scared me!  I had no idea what to do with it!

Now, I cook whole chickens at least once, if not more, a week!!!  My how times change!

I buy my poultry from a local farm, Wallace Farms, that has a monthly pick up in my area.  My freezer in my garage is usually stuffed with all kinds of pastured meats, especially whole chickens.

Why do I choose pasture raised chicken?  Why not just pick any old bird at the grocery?

You know the saying ‘You are what your eat”?  Well, there’s another version of that…”You are what you eat eats.”  You get the benefits or risks…depending what the animal eats.

Conventional chickens are raised in factory farm conditions…crowded together, beaks clipped, fed grain which is usually genetically modified, sometimes laced with arsenic and pumped full of antibiotics.  The meat is often washed in chlorinated water or irradiated to get rid of bacteria.

Pastured chickens, however, spend their time outdoors…where they should be, scratching at the grass, eating bugs and grass.  They are fed often fed grain (hopefully organic, soy free) to supplement their diet.

There are lots of health benefits to eating pastured chickens:

  • higher in Omega 3 fatty acids
  • less fat than conventional chickens
  • less saturated fat than conventional chickens
  • Higher in Vitamin A, Vitamin E, Vitamin B12 and Folic Acid
  • And it tastes delicious!  Like CHICKEN

Curious about where to find pastured chicken?  Click here.  If you don’t have access to pastured chicken, I’d go for organic, vegetarian fed chicken.  At least you can avoid the hormones and antibiotics and GMO feed, synthetic pesticides and sewage sludge (yes that is right) this way.  And, while chickens are NOT vegetarians, conventional chickens are often fed animal by products.  Yuck.  I do think it is important to buy the best quality animal proteins you can find.  It’s worth the effort and the expense!

Here’s a great guide to buying chickens and deciphering the confusing labels!

Anyway, now to the RECIPE!!!  My favorite (and easiest) way of cooking my chicken is to do a Rotisserie-rubbed crockpot style chicken.

I love the versatality of this crockpot chicken recipe.  I usually make one each week for dinner, served with roasted vegetables and a salad.  I also often make the chicken a second time, and shred all the meat to have on hand for chicken salads, fajitas, soups…you name it!

And don’t forget to save the bones in your freezer to make nourishing bone broth (a post on that will be coming up!!).

First, I mix up my seasonings.  I like to make a big batch to have on hand for later!

Then, I coat the bird with melted butter (sometimes I skip this step if I am in a hurry).  And I rub about 2-3 tbsp of the spice rub all over the bird, inside and out.

I set the bird in the crockpot on top of (optional) chopped celery, carrots and onions.  I DO NOT add any liquid to the crockpot.

I set the pot on low and cook for 8-10 hours (or on high for 4-6 hours).  And voila…dinner is served!  This time I paired it with sauteed asparagus, roasted cabbage and a quinoa pilaf.

The Best Crockpot Chicken Ever - www.ohlardy.com

And, if you don’t want to make your own spice rub, check out these amazing, organic pre-made spice rubs!

EASY CROCKPOT CHICKEN RECIPE

Ingredients:

  • 1 whole chicken (4 lbs or so), pastured or organic
  • 2 tbsp melted butter or ghee or olive oil
  • Spice Rub:
  • 2 organic bay leaves (where to buy)
  • 1-2 onions, chopped roughly
  • 2-3 carrots, chopped roughly
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped roughly

Method

  1. Place chopped onions, carrots, celery in bottom of crockpot.
  2. Add bay leaf
  3. Rinse and pat dry chicken.  Remove gizzards (if any) from cavity and save in freezer bag for stock.
  4. Rub chicken inside and out with melted butter or oil (optional)
  5. Rub chicken inside and out with spice rub
  6. Place chicken on top of veggies in crockpot.
  7. Cover and cook on low for 8-10 hours or high 4-6 hours.
Here’s how to make Spice Rub in bulk in an pint size jar:
  • 6 tbsp Celtic salt
  • 9 tbsp paprika
  • 1 tsp cayenne
  • 6 tbsp onion powder
  • 3 tbsp thyme
  • 1 tbsp + 1 tsp black pepper
  • 3 tbsp garlic powder
Shake it up and you have a spice rub ready to go!
Little tidbit…..Since I buy my spices in bulk, I find it easier to store in mason jars like this:

Pin it For Later–>The Best Crockpot Chicken Ever - www.ohlardy.com

Sources:

  • http://www.localharvest.org/organic-chicken.jsp
  • http://www.eatwild.com/healthbenefits.htm
  • http://greenliving.nationalgeographic.com/nutritional-differences-between-pasturefed-chickens-vs-non-2413.html
  • http://www.pureharvestfarm.com/about_pastured_chicken.php
  • http://www.marksdailyapple.com/chicken-labels/#axzz2KtiGtUKP
  • http://www.rps.psu.edu/0305/poultry.html

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28 thoughts on “Easy Crockpot Chicken Recipe

  1. I have been following you for a while, I had no idea we were in the same area! We live in Clive and order from Wallace Farms as well. What kind of milk do you use? I haven’t been able to find any raw milk, so we have been using either Picket Fence or Kalona.
    Thanks for the recipe, I am looking forward to making this.

    • Hi! Glad you are following Oh Lardy! We don’t drink a ton of milk but if I am buying at the store, I buy Kalona or Traders Point. In a pinch, Organic Valley. I don’t know of PIcket Fence. Where do you get that?
      I do purchase raw milk once a month from a farmer (I try to buy a bunch and freeze). If you send us an email, I could give you that information.

      • I didn’t know you could freeze milk. Picket Fence Creamery is in Woodward, but they carry it at Whole Foods and all the Hy-Vee’s in the area. I will send you my e-mail. I don’t actually drink any milk, but my kids do and I use a lot to make yogurt and kefir.

          • I did just read on a raw milk site that if you defrost slowly in the fridge, the cream won’t clump. I always defrost on my counter because I am impatient! Will need to try the fridge method!

  2. Hello! I recently discovered your site and love everything about it. This crockpot chicken recipe looks wonderful!

    Question: where do you get mason jars with that type of lid? I’ve only seen them with “regular” canning type lids.

  3. I made this today and it was INSANELY delish! My daughter was sucking on the bones it was so good! Thank you for the recipe. Now, I want to make bone broth w/ all the stuff left. Should I just bag it all and make it another time or can I do it immediately? It’s all still sitting in the crock ;) I’d love some insight on how to do it correctly. Thanks so much!

    • I have a broth post going up next week. Two options, you can either toss the bones and cartilage back into the crock pot with all the drippings, cooked veggies, etc. Add some fresh onions, celery, bay leaf (if you want) and a tbsp of apple cider vinegar. Fill with filtered water. Cook for 24 hours on low.

      If I am too late and you have tossed the juices, want to make broth later, etc….no problem. I save bones all the time in the freezer. Then when I am ready, I toss them in the crockpot with fresh onions, etc as above. Making it the first way with this recipe gives the broth great flavor from all of those spices!!!! Good luck!

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  5. I notice that in the photo the chicken is breast-side down. Is that how you cook it? Usually it Is cooked breast-side up.

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  8. I love this recipe, the chicken turn out so good!!! The spice rub is amazing, I definitely come be using in a lot of dishes. Thank you for sharing.

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  11. Late Saturday night, I was searching Pinterest for a good chicken recipe for the slow cooker. I found yours and was at Kroger at 12:45 AM, buying celery and onion. This was so simple and delicious! My family loved it as well. I put a few pieces of celery, onion and garlic inside the bird. Thanks so much for sharing this!

  12. Sounds delish! I am looking forward to trying it. I like the crispy skin of an oven baked chicken but love the idea of a crockpot chicken. Does the butter crisp up the skin at all? Thanks.

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