Cooking frozen chicken in your Crockpot is one of the best ways to get moist, shredded chicken without the hassle. It’s a great way to make sure you always have dinner on the table, no matter how busy life gets.
Make your own shredded or rotisserie chicken ingredient that’s called for in some of your favorite recipes. Especially when you can get it at the local supermarket
But…how long do you need to cook frozen chicken in the crock pot? And what are some tips for making sure it comes out perfectly?
In this article, we’ll walk through everything you need to know about cooking frozen meat in your slow cooker!
Cook your frozen chicken in the Crockpot for 6 hours over low heat and 4 hours on high heat.
How Long Does it Take Frozen Chicken to Cook in the Crockpot?
It depends on the size of your chicken pieces, but in general, it takes 1 hour per pound of chicken to cook. If you’re using a 6-quart slow cooker and want to cook 2 pounds of frozen boneless skinless chicken breasts (the average size), plan on 6-8 hours on low or 3-4 hours on high.
Be advised that the USDA doesn’t advise placing frozen meat in a Crockpot, especially chicken. The amount of time it takes for the chicken to thaw increases the chances of allowing bacteria to multiply. They advise that you properly thaw your chicken first.
Even with this information, we cook frozen chicken all the time, just make sure the inside of your chicken registers at least 165 degrees F before eating. This ensures that it has been cooked to proper safety standards and that any bacteria has been killed off. It’s better if all your chicken registers well above this temperature when cooking in a Crockpot.
If you have a large Crockpot and want to try a whole frozen chicken you’re looking at 7-8 hours of cooking time on low heat.
What’s the Benefit of Cooking Frozen Chicken in a CrockPot?
The first benefit of cooking frozen chicken in a crock pot is that it saves you time. If you’re looking for an easy way to make chicken, this may be your best option. All you have to do is dump the raw meat into the slow cooker and turn it on, then come back when dinner is ready!
The second benefit is saving money on groceries by purchasing cheaper cuts of meat–like thighs or drumsticks–and then cooking them low-and-slow until they become tender enough for even picky eaters like me (I hate eating anything with bones).
The third major benefit is being able to cook chicken without having any special equipment other than a standard kitchen appliance: your trusty Crock Pot! The Crockpoty provides more even cooking as it heats your food from the bottom and the sides. Your oven only heats from the bottom. Not only is this a more even distribution of heat, but speeds up the process.
Fourth, cooking in a Crockpot locks in the natural moisture and the resulting tenderness.
Tips When Cooking Frozen Chicken in the Crockpot
- Make sure that you have enough liquid in your crockpot. If not, add some water or broth.
- Don’t overfill the crockpot with frozen chicken. This will cause uneven heating and can leave raw spots. Be sure that there is at least 1 inch between the top of the food and the lid of your slow cooker when cooking frozen chicken in a Crock-Pot on high heat (or 2 inches if cooking on low).
- Low and slow is better if you have the time. You’re going to be happier with the results.
- If it’s hard to shred and you feel any tough resistance, then your chicken isn’t done. Chicken that has reached above 165 degrees F throughout is easy to shred.
- Your Crockpot chicken, if stored properly, will last you about 4 days after cooking. If you keep it in bags and put them in the freezer you’re looking at 3-4 months.
- If you’re cooking a whole chicken and want that nice brown skin, then shove it in the oven when it’s done for 4 minutes under a high broil.
- Rinse your frozen chicken under cold running water for a few minutes before putting it in your Crockpot. Remove any chunks of ice and then pat dry with a paper towel.
- Make sure to season the chicken before you place it in the Crockpot.
- High heat can cause overcooking when it comes to frozen chicken. Then you’ll have some hard and dry meat to try and make something out of.
- Like with most meat, let the chicken rest a few minutes before serving it.
- Shred your chicken with two forks or with a handheld mixer on low speed.
- Need some spice ideas? Put your chicken in the crockpot and cover it with salsa. You have your flavor and your fluid all in one shot. Then shred it and make some chicken tacos!
- If you want less mess then try one of the pot liners designed for Crockpots. When you’re done, it’s lift and toss with the mess.
- It’s best to plan on shredding the chicken for the meal. The length of time needed to safely cook frozen chicken in your crock pot will make it super tender and not really sliceable.
- Think about layering the darker meats on top of other ingredients like potatoes and veggies. They will dry out less quickly and the juices from your chicken will flavor the ingredients underneath.
There are many benefits to cooking frozen chicken in the Crockpot. It’s convenient, it’s easy and it doesn’t require any special equipment!
You can use your slow cooker to cook frozen chicken breasts or thighs, as well as other cuts like legs or wings. The best part is that you don’t have to make sure they’re thawed first. We’ve all forgotten to get the chicken out of the freezer on time or another (or more!). Just ensure you cook it thoroughly and it reaches an internal temperature of 165 degrees F.