So you have the slow cooker but the question ‘how do I cook with a slow cooker or crock pot?’ has likely crossed your mind. A good place to start is your local library, they are bound to have books on slow cooker and crock pot cooking.
I love cooking but am a lazy cook; I absolutely LOVE my slow cooker.
It is really easy, and leaves one pot to wash up. Bonus! I love this super easy slow cooker roast chicken. Learn how to make it yourself. You get two meals in one from this!
1 small chicken, preferably organic or pasture-raised
A 3.5 quart crock pot or slow cooker
1 large carrot (or two small carrots)
1 large onion
One lemon or orange – depending on your taste or what you have in the fridge. (You need this step to provide moisture!)
Sea salt and Pepper
A tablespoon of apple cider vinegar – you’ll use this in the second part of this recipe.
Peel the carrots and onion. Chop them into largish chunks. Place in the bottom of the slow cooker.
Unwrap the chicken. Remove the neck and innards.
Generously add salt and pepper and mixed herbs – if feeling fancy!
Place the chicken in the slow cooker.
Halve the lemon (or orange) and squeeze the juice over the chicken.
Squeeze the other half of the orange or lemon around the chicken and place both halves into the slow cooker.
You need this juice to provide flavour and moisture to the cooking process.
Plug the slow cooker into the wall. You’d be surprised how easy it is to do all the prep and then return a few hours later to be disappointed. Plug it in, trust me on this one! 😉
Place the lid on the slow cooker and set to high (II on some slow cookers) for ONE hour.
Resist the temptation to lift the lid. DO NOT lift the lid but you’ll see it is cooking by the water droplets forming on the lid (see my picture). The slow cooker will also feel hot.
Turn down to Low or (I) for another six or seven hours.
Use an oven thermometer to make sure that the leg is 160F, or 74c i.e. safe and cooked. For more tips on food safety visit
Turn the oven on to 400F or 200c. Put the chicken in a roasting dish and cook for 10 to 15 minutes until the skin is browning up nicely.
DO not throw away the juices around the chicken. Save them for stock! (recipe coming up)
Place chicken on a carving board.
Pull away the meat from the chicken, it will fall off the bone. Serve with a salad or potatoes.
Retain the bones and put back in the slow cooker.
To make a rich and hearty chicken stock:
Add a bit of filtered water, to cover the bones fully. Add a dash of apple cider vinegar (buy it here) and some parsley stalks (only if you have them).
Let the bones and the juices to cook on Low (I) overnight or for at least eight hours. Set a reminder on your phone, or kitchen timer so you don’t forget!
(I have removed the bones in this picture).
Final stock preparation:
Allow to cool properly (by putting in a sink of ice or ice-cold water) before putting in the fridge.
Use this nutrient rich stock to form the base for soups and sauces.
Stock is such a nourishing winter food and is beautifully inexpensive too.
I use bone stocks in recipes where I need flavour and nourishment; spaghetti bolognese, soups, stews and vegetable chili for example.
Want a full chicken stock recipe?
Learn how to make stock from scratch with this chicken stock recipe.
Want more recipes and good food tips?
For more recipes and other handy tips, read The Radiant Woman’s Handbook
Learn more about how slow cookers are cheaper to use than an oven with this Telegraph article.
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