I looooove making whole chicken and I really enjoy making it in the slow cooker. My home fills with the delicious smell of herbs and for dinner we have a perfectly tender chicken to cut into. Yeap, whole chicken in the slow cooker is easy and so worth the wait.
A crockpot just makes everything sooooo easy. Add your ingredients to the crockpot and it does all of the work and only makes one dish. It’s a great tool to have in your kitchen. When your crockpot whole chicken is finished cooking to temperature you can make a homemade chicken gravy with the drippings. The mini chefs love using the whisk to make the gravy.
The good thing about this recipe is it’s highly versatile. Season it how you’d like, remove the skin for a leaner meal, skip the browning step if you’re short on time – yeap, there are lots of ways to make this recipe your version of ‘perfection.’
Slow Cooker Whole Chicken Tools
KITCHEN TOOLS, UTENSILS & APPLIANCES NEEDED
This post contains affiliate links. For more information, check out my disclosure.
Here are some of the items you will need to make this recipe.
Ready to make Slow Cooker Whole Chicken? I’ll show you how….
How to Make Slow Cooker Whole Chicken Step by Step
and add the chicken on the trivet.
Elevate Your Whole Chicken in the Slow Cooker
The key to making Slow Cooker Whole Chicken turn out more like a traditional roasted chicken is to elevate it off the bottom of the cooker. This will provide continuous air flow to mimic a rotisserie-style cooking process, and will help your whole chicken stay in one piece.
There are a few different ways you can create a base to cook your whole chicken on. Try using the trivet that came with your Instant Pot (if you have one) or another small wire rack. You can also make a stand out of 3-4 crumpled balls of aluminum foil, or simply cut large, 1-inch high chunks of onion or potato to use as a way to raise the chicken up so that it stays out of the liquid.
How Can I Get My Slow Cooker Whole Chicken Skin to be Crispy?
I loooooove crispy chicken skin as much as anybody but there’s an extra step once your Slow Cooker Whole Chicken is finished cooking. Once your whole chicken is cooked to perfection in the slow cooker, simply place the chicken in your broiler for 5-10 mins for crispy skin before serving.
How To Make Homemade Chicken Gravy
Trust me, you’re going to want to make a delicious homemade gravy once your crockpot whole chicken is cooked through. It’s so easy to make homemade chicken gravy with your drippings and worth the little bit of effort with whisking.
- Remove chicken from slow cooker and turn onto high. If required, add broth to create about 2 cups of liquid.
- In a small bowl, combine 4 tbsp cornstarch with 4 tbsp water to create a slurry.
- Whisk about 2/3 of the cornstarch into the drippings/broth and let cook on high. Depending on the amount of liquid you may need to add more of the cornstarch slurry to reach desired consistency. Let cook at least 5 mins before serving.
- Taste and season with salt & pepper.
Why Make Whole Chicken in the Slow Cooker
Making Slow Cooker Whole Chicken is a great way to make a tender chicken in 4 hrs. Using a slow cooker won’t heat up your home like the oven can and the spices you use to season your chicken will develop rich flavours with slow cooking. It’s perfectly safe to make a whole chicken in the slow cooker as long as your chicken reaches 74C(165F).
Also, whole chicken is great to make in the slow cooker for a party and you’re going to be low on oven space. Everyone is always fighting for their 40 mins in the oven to get their dips and sides ready to be eaten and you’ll be able to just show up, plug in and go mingle with your friends.
How to Season Slow Cooker Whole Chicken
This recipe is so versatile and you can add any flavour profile to your crockpot whole chicken. For this recipe I have used paprika, minced garlic, ground coriander, Herbes de Provence, ground nutmeg, salt and pepper. Slow cooker whole chicken will work well with any flavours, like Mexican spices for chicken tacos or Indian spices for kabobs.
Benefits of Slow Cooking
I love every meal that has come out of my slow cooker. Using a crockpot isn’t beneficial to every cooking situation but it’s an incredibly useful kitchen tool to own. Here’s why:
- Tougher meats like chuck and less lean meats are tenderized during the longer cooking process.
- More oven space. If you can create a dish in your crockpot, you’ll free up much needed oven space during holiday parties. A slow cooker also travels well! No need to fight over oven space at your potluck if you use a slow cooker.
- Development of flavour. You’ll develop more flavours in your ingredients during the longer cooking time. Perfect for soups, stews and casseroles.
- Slow cookers use less energy and won’t heat up your home like an oven will. My slow cooker gets a lot of use in the summer when I just don’t want to turn the oven on.
- Less dishes. You know I have no desire to scrub a bunch of pots and pans. Most crockpot meals are set it and forget it till supper time.
Slow Cooker Whole Chicken Tips
- Cook at a high temperature to ensure your chicken is cooked all the way through. You don’t want undercooked chicken ever. You want your chicken to reach an internal temperature of 74C (165F).
- If you want a crispy skin on your whole chicken use your broiler once the chicken is cooked in your crockpot for 5-10 mins.
- If you want to make homemade gravy, check out the ‘How to Make Homemade Chicken Gravy’ section above with step by step instructions.
How to Make Whole Chicken in the Instant Pot
If you’re short on time you can pull out your Instant Pot and have your whole chicken cooked to perfection in 45 mins. Check out my post ‘The Easiest Instant Pot Whole Chicken Recipe + Tutorial.’
How to Make Whole Chicken in the Oven
If you want to make a whole chicken in the oven, check out my Nutmeg Orange Chicken recipe.
How to Make Whole Chicken on the Grill
For grilled whole chicken, check out my Grilled Pomegranate Harissa Chicken recipe post.
Chicken Wings Recipe
And whilst you are at it you can also check out my Instant Pot Chicken Wings recipes.
Can Slow Cooker Whole Chicken Be Frozen?
I did some research on how to go about freezing a whole slow cooked chicken. Some people do it all the time. Others don’t recommend it, as they say the process of freezing cooked bones can make the meat bitter and gritty.
If you do decide to freeze your Slow Cooker Whole Chicken in its entirety, it is very important to completely thaw it in the fridge (minimum of 4 hrs) before reheating and serving.
You can also freeze Slow Cooker Whole Chicken by removing the meat from the bones and then freezing. Whatever method you choose, follow these steps below to make freezing and thawing super easy.
How To Freeze Slow Cooker Whole Chicken
- Let the chicken cool down completely.
- Carefully wrap the whole chicken in a layer plastic wrap and then cover completely with aluminum foil. Or, remove the meat from the bones and then transfer into these very handy Ziploc freezer bags.
- Squeeze out all the extra air and seal the bags. Label the bags and then lay them flat in the freezer.
- Store the chicken in the freezer for up to 3 months.
How to Thaw Slow Cooker Whole Chicken
- Remove the chicken from the freezer the night before it is needed and let it fully thaw in the fridge.
- If meat has been removed from the bones, transfer the thawed chicken into a bowl and reheat in a microwave.
- Or, transfer the thawed whole chicken onto a baking sheet and reheat in the oven.
What to Serve with Slow Cooker Whole Chicken
Weight Watchers Points in Crockpot Whole Chicken
There are 7 Freestyle points in each serving of this slow cooker whole chicken.
Slow Cooker Whole Chicken Recipe Video
Thank you for reading my Slow Cooker Whole Chicken recipe post. And please come visit again as I continue dreaming up recipes, traditional African recipes, African fusion recipes, Sierra Leone recipes, travel plans and much more for you. Thanks for supporting Recipes from a Pantry, UK food blog.
Get The Slow Cooker Whole Chicken Recipe
Don't forget to tag #recipesfromapantry on Instagram or Twitter if you try Slow Cooker Whole Chicken! It is really, really awesome for me when you make one of my recipes and I'd love to see it. You can also share it on my Facebook page. Please pin this recipe to Pinterest too! Thank you for reading Recipes from a Pantry.
Slow Cooker Whole Chicken
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1 tsp minced garlic
- 1 tsp ground coriander
- 1 tsp mixed herbs (Herbes de Provence)
- 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
- Ground black pepper
- 2 1/5 tbsp oil
- 3.85 lb (1.75 kg) whole chicken giblets removed, washed and patted dry
- In a small bowl mix together the paprika, garlic, coriander, herbs, nutmeg, salt, pepper and the olive oil into a paste.
- Put the chicken in a bowl and rub the paste all over including in the cavity.
- Cook on high for 3.5-4 hrs.
- Remove the chicken from the Crockpot and set aside on a plate.
- Scrape any bits stuck to the bottom of the pot from frying with a silicon or wooden spoon.
- Let the chicken rest for 10 mins before serving.
- Make sure you check the internal temperature of the chicken using a thermometer (guidelines state meat is done when the internal temperature reaches at least 74C (165 F)). Continue cooking if internal temperature is less than 74C (165F).
- Brown chicken under broiler grill for about 5-10 mins for crispy skin
- Cook at a high temperature to ensure your chicken is cooked all the way through.
- You want your chicken to reach an internal temperature of 74C (165F).
- If you want a crispy skin on your whole chicken use your broiler once the chicken is cooked in your Crockpot for 5-10 mins.
- Check out the ‘How to Make Homemade Chicken Gravy’ section above with step by step instructions to compliment your whole chicken.