I made my first whole chicken in a Crock Pot a few months ago and I was so excited. After carefully reading the directions and even checking out all rave reviews at how incredible the chicken was I couldn’t wait to get started. I followed everything exactly and then when dinner came around I pulled the chicken out of the Crock Pot and served it up. It seemed tender and was even falling apart a little, it looked delicious, BUT then we started eating. It was the driest chicken I have ever tried to eat in my life. I couldn’t even swallow it.
Needless to say, I wasn’t so excited to try this recipe, but I just couldn’t give up. I didn’t want to feel defeated by a stupid chicken. This recipe was AMAZING! The chicken was flavorful and juicy. Moist and not at all dry. It was perfect chicken.
So here are a few tips to make a great whole chicken in a Crock Pot:
1. Take four large sheets of tin foil and scrunch them up into balls. Place in the bottom of your Crock Pot like this:
As the chicken cooks it will fill the bottom of the Crock Pot with drippings and having the chicken propped up on the tin foil will result in a roasted chicken instead of a boiled chicken. You can also fill the bottom of your slow cooker with carrots, onions, and celery, but they will get really soggy, if you don’t mind then you can use them.
2. DO NOT over cook the chicken. Most recipes say to cook the chicken for 8 hours on low. My chicken was done after 5 hours on low. Each chicken will differ a little because of size and also because each slow cooker is different. So make sure you have a meat thermometer to check to make sure your chicken is cooked all the way through. I’m sure my first chicken I made would have tasted a lot better if I had cooked it for half the time.
3. When the chicken is done in the Crock Pot transfer it to a baking dish and broil it to crisp it up a little. You don’t really have to do this, but it makes the texture a little better and it looks a little prettier too.
Really those are my only tips. This chicken is actually really easy. So don’t be afraid, give it a try! Now on to the directions.
Crock Pot Chicken
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 2 teaspoons paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon thyme
- 1 teaspoon rubbed sage
- 1/2 teaspoon white pepper (black is fine too, if you don’t have white)
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 orange, quartered
1. Mix the first 8 ingredients in a small bowl to make a rub for the chicken, set aside
2. Remove chicken from packaging and remove neck and pouch with organs. Rinse chicken with water and pat dry with paper towels.
3. Put the garlic and orange quarters inside the chicken. Sprinkle the rub all over the outside and inside the chicken.
4. Place chicken on top of the tin foil in the Crock Pot. Cover and cook chicken on low for 4-6 hours. Cook until the internal temperature of the leg is at 160 degrees F.
5. Remove chicken and place in a 9×13 baking dish. Place baking dish in the oven under the broiler for about 5-6 minutes.
6. When cooking a chicken all the juices will go to the middle of the chicken, so after you remove the chicken from the broiler you want to allow it to rest for 5-10 minutes so those juices can redistribute to the whole chicken, making it moist and juicy. Yum!
This recipe is part of our “31 days of slow cooker recipes” series. If you want to know what you’ve missed check out the recipes below.
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