Whether you want a healthy comforting weeknight dinner or a delicious stew to enjoy on the weekend a warming bowl of slow-cooked chicken stew with stout fits the bill with two of America's favorites- chicken and beer.
More Slow-Cooker Recipes: Barbecued Pulled Chicken & Easy Crock Pot Meals
This recipe for Slow-Cooker Stout & Chicken Stew has a lot of flavor and it's healthy too. It features lean chicken thighs and just a little bit of bacon, browned before going into the crock pot, a pound of baby carrots, half a pound of mushrooms and a savory layer of onion and garlic; near the end of cooking, peas are added for color and the final comfort-food touch. You can make it on a stay-close-to-home day, setting the slow cooker to High for 4 hours, or set your slow cooker to Low and come home after 7 or 8 hours to this hearty, substantial, savory, stout stew.
Here's the recipe:
Slow-Cooker Stout & Chicken Stew
Makes: 8 servings, about 1 1/3 cups each
Active time: 45 minutes | Total: Slow-cooker time: 4-8 hours
To make ahead: Trim chicken, chop bacon; prep onion and garlic; defrost peas. Refrigerate in separate containers. Equipment: 5- to 6-quart slow cooker
Chicken thighs can take plenty of cooking without getting tough or drying out, which makes them perfect for the slow cooker. Here we braise them in Guinness stout along with hearty vegetables, with just the right amount of bacon for added savoriness.
6 tablespoons plus 1/2 cup all-purpose flour, divided
1 teaspoon salt, divided, plus more to taste
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper, plus more to taste
2 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs, trimmed
4 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
3 pieces bacon, chopped
1 2/3 cups Guinness beer or other stout (14-ounce can)
1 pound whole baby carrots or large carrots cut into 1-inch pieces
1 8-ounce package cremini or button mushrooms, halved if large
2 cups chopped onion
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 teaspoons dried thyme
1 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth
2 cups frozen baby peas, thawed
1. Combine 6 tablespoons flour with 1/2 teaspoon each salt and pepper in a shallow bowl. Dredge chicken thighs in the mixture to coat completely; transfer to a plate.
2. Heat 2 teaspoons oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add half the chicken and cook until well browned, 2 to 4 minutes per side; transfer to a 5- to 6-quart slow cooker. Reduce heat to medium and repeat with the remaining 2 teaspoons oil and chicken thighs. Arrange the chicken in an even layer in the slow cooker.
3. Add bacon to the pan and cook, stirring often, for 2 minutes. Sprinkle the remaining 1/2 cup flour over the bacon and cook, stirring constantly, for 2 minutes more. Add stout and use a wooden spoon to scrape up any browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Pour the mixture over the chicken. Add carrots, mushrooms, onion, garlic and thyme, spreading in an even layer over the chicken. Pour broth over the top.
4. Cover and cook until the chicken is falling-apart tender, 4 hours on High or 7 to 8 hours on Low.
5. Stir in peas, cover and cook until the peas are heated through, 5 to 10 minutes more. Season with the remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt and pepper.
Per serving: 366 calories; 13 g fat ( 3 g sat , 6 g mono ); 88 mg cholesterol; 28 g carbohydrates; 0 g added sugars; 30 g protein; 4 g fiber; 566 mg sodium; 650 mg potassium.
Nutrition Bonus: Vitamin A (200% daily value), Folate & Zinc (23% dv), Vitamin C (22% dv), Potassium (19% dv), Iron (17% dv).
What are you making in your slow cooker for dinner this week?
By Wendy Ruopp
Wendy Ruopp has been the managing editor of EatingWell for most of her adult life. Although she writes about food for the Weeknights column of EatingWell Magazine, her husband does the cooking at home.
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