Slow Cooker Thai Chicken
In my dreams, I’m a cool, flirty free spirit—the kind of woman who keeps men guessing, is adept at salsa dancing, and can pull off a hat. In reality, I’m much more Slow Cooker Thai Chicken.
Slow Cooker Thai Chicken is wholesome. It’s filled with bright, good-for-you veggies like butternut squash, green peas and bell peppers. As a former Girl Scout and current wearer of plaid flannel, I’m almost as wholesome as they come.
Slow Cooker Thai Chicken is predictable. You set it to be ready 8 hours from now, and when the timer beeps, your fragrant, all-in-one meal is ready and waiting. I order the same truffle grilled cheese sandwich every Monday night at Ben and my favorite neighborhood bar, to the extent that I feel the server only asks me what I’d like for dinner for the sake of conversation.
Slow Cooker Thai Chicken, however, is not to be underestimated. It is bursting with layers of flavor, lightly creamy, and healthy too. Despite my sub-5’4’’ height and pre-teen looks, whiskey is my liquor of choice, I’ll rock a leather jacket, and I flip a killer burger. Give Slow Cooker Thai Chicken and The Law Student’s Wife a chance: we’ll surprise you.
I’m a sucker for Thai food, because I love its freshness and complex layers of spice. At least once a month, I try a new twist on a slow cooker Thai dish, and every one up until now has disappointed me. Either there was too much sauce, or the chicken dried out, or worst of all, the dish totally lacked in flavor. As a woman whose husband married her for her Chicken Stir Fry with Thai Peanut Sauce, a lackluster Thai chicken slow cooker meal was unacceptable. Today’s recipe for Slow Cooker Thai Chicken is my slow cooker Thai redemption.
Light coconut milk, red curry paste, and a dollop of peanut butter form the base of our healthy, flavorful sauce. To this holy trinity, we add fish sauce, which (this is important) does NOT make our dish taste like fish. Rather, it gives the Slow Cooker Thai Chicken savoriness, depth, and for lack of a more eloquent explanation, makes it taste more Thai. Brown sugar, a heap of ginger, crushed red pepper, and a dash of lime arrive on scene, and we have a 3-minute sauce that bathes our chicken and veggies in thriller Thai flavor.
Whether you are looking for fresh, healthy meals to better your diet in 2014, make-ahead dinner ideas, or just want to shovel your fork into a big plate of tasty goodness, Slow Cooker Thai Chicken is the dish for you. Fire up the crock pot friends!
Looking for more healthy recipe ideas? Don’t miss these 10 Healthy Recipes for 2014.
Slow Cooker Thai Chicken
Yield: Serves 6
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 4 hours
Total Time: 4 hours, 30 minutes
- 2, 14-ounce cans light coconut milk
- 1 cup low-sodium chicken stock
- 1/4 cup peanut butter (creamy or crunchy)
- 3 tablespoons red curry paste
- 2 tablespoons fish sauce
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar (light or dark)
- 2 tablespoons minced fresh ginger
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces
- 3 cups peeled and 1/2-inch cubed butternut squash pieces (about 1 pound)
- 2 red bell peppers, cored and sliced (fresh or frozen and thawed, about 8 ounces total)
- 2 green bell peppers, cored and sliced (fresh or frozen and thawed, about 8 ounces total)
- 1 large onion, thinly sliced (about 3 cups)
- 2 cups frozen peas, thawed
- 2 tablespoons lime juice (about 1 lime)
- Chopped fresh cilantro, for serving
- Prepared brown rice, for serving
- In a 5-quart or larger slow cooker, stir together the coconut milk, chicken stock, peanut butter, curry paste, fish sauce, brown sugar, ginger, garlic, and red pepper flakes. Place the chicken breast, squash, red bell pepper, green bell pepper, and onion in the slow cooker and stir gently to coat with sauce. Cover and cook on high for 4 hours or on low for 8 hours.
- Thirty minutes before you are ready to serve, add the peas. Immediately before serving, stir in lime juice. Serve garnished with cilantro, atop brown rice.