Slow Cooker Chicken Cacciatore

Here’s the latest dinner recipe we’re crazy about at my house:  Slow Cooker Chicken Cacciatore

Slow Cooker Chicken Cacciatore recipe - by RecipeGirl.com

This slow cooker recipe makes a hearty chicken marinara sauce that is perfect for topping pasta, spaghetti squash or zucchini noodles.  Scroll all the way to the end of this post to print out the recipe.  Nutritional information and Weight Watchers points are included on this one.  If you’re hoping to use zero points for this meal, you will need to put it on top of zoodles or spaghetti squash… or eat it on its own.

Skinnytaste Fast and Slow

Today’s recipe comes from my friend Gina’s new cookbook:  Skinnytaste Fast and Slow: Knockout Quick-Fix and Slow Cooker Recipes by Gina Holmolka: Clarkson/Potter, 2016.  I was SO EXCITED to get this book in the mail the other day.  Gina put her heart and soul into this second book of hers, and every recipe conveys that.  140 recipes are included in the book– all either slow cooker or quick oven/stovetop recipes.  Here are some more recipes I’ve bookmarked to make later:  Banana-Almond Smoothie Bowl, Breakfast Banana Split, Slow Cooker Creamy Tomato Soup, Slow Cooker Chicken Taco Chili, Drunken Seafood Stew, Slow Cooker Hamburger Stroganoff, Cauliflower-Potato Tacos, Slow Cooker Stuffed Turkey Tenderloins with Gravy, Greek Chicken Sheet Pan Dinner, Fork and Knife Cheeseburgers, Slow Cooker Brisket with Onions, Baked Fish and Chips, Salad Pizza… oh my gosh… I could go on and on!  It’s really a great cookbook.  There is nutritional information included for every recipe.

Slow Cooker Chicken Cacciatore recipe - by RecipeGirl.com

Gina’s original recipe calls for bone-in skinless chicken thighs (bone-in means the chicken will stay nice and tender).  I had trouble finding bone-in thighs, so I used full chicken legs (drumstick + thigh) instead.  If you want this to be ZERO points, you will use chicken breast instead (see recipe below).

Slow Cooker Chicken Cacciatore recipe - by RecipeGirl.com

All kinds of goodies go into this one- onions, bell pepper, mushroom, tomato and spices.

Slow Cooker Chicken Cacciatore recipe - by RecipeGirl.com

4 hours later, dinner looks like this.  The chicken is taken out, pulled apart, bones discarded and meat put back in.

slow-cooker-chicken-cacciatore-recipe

We loved this dish!  My son ate his chicken cacciatore over thick fettuccine noodles.  My husband and I (forever watching our waistlines) enjoyed ours over roasted spaghetti squash.  Both were delicious!

Check out another recipe from this book on RecipeBoy.com today >> Slow Cooker Mashed Potatoes!

Slow Cooker Chicken Cacciatore

Yield: 8 servings

Prep Time:30 minutes

Cook Time:4 to 5 hours

Ingredients:
  • 8 bone-in, skinless chicken thighs (about 5-ounces each), fat trimmed- in the photos for this recipe, you'll notice that I actually used 5 full chicken legs (drumstick and thigh) instead  -- NOTE: if you're preparing this recipe as ZERO points, you will need to use boneless, skinless chicken breast instead- 1 1/2 to 2 pounds
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • cooking spray
  • 5 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1/2 large onion, chopped
  • 1 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes
  • 1/2 medium red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1/2 medium green bell pepper, chopped
  • 4 ounce sliced shiitake mushrooms
  • 1 sprig of fresh thyme
  • 1 sprig of fresh oregano
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley (I omitted this)
  • freshly grated Parmesan cheese, for serving (optional)
Directions:
  1. Season the chicken with salt and pepper to taste.  Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat.  Coat with cooking spray, add the chicken, and cook until browned- 2 to 3 minutes per side.  Transfer to your slow cooker.  If you're using chicken breast, you can skip this step and put the chicken directly into the slow cooker (with salt and pepper).  I recommend 6 hours in the slow cooker on low (2 to 3 hours high), if using breasts.
  2. Reduce the heat under the skillet to medium and coat with more cooking spray.  Add the garlic and onion and cook, stirring, until soft- 3 to 4 minutes.  Transfer to the slow cooker and add the tomatoes, bell peppers, mushrooms, thyme, oregano and bay leaf.  Stir to combine.
  3. Cover and cook on high for 4 hours or on low for 8 hours.
  4. Discard the bay leaf and transfer the chicken to a large plate.  Pull the chicken meat from the bones (discard the bones), shred the meat, and return it to the sauce.  Stir in the parsley (if using).  If desired, serve topped with Parmesan cheese.
Tips:
  • If you are preparing this recipe as gluten-free, just be sure to use a brand of tomatoes that is known to be GF.
Nutrition:
  • Nutritional information per serving: Calories: 220, Fat: 6g, Sat Fat: 1.5g, Cholesterol: 123mg, Sodium: 319mg, Carbohydrates: 10g, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 6g, Protein: 31g
  • Weight Watchers POINTS:  Freestyle SmartPoints: 0 (but only if you use chicken breast instead of thighs), Original SmartPoints: 3, PointsPlus: 5, Old Program: 5
SOURCE:  RecipeGirl.com (shared with permission from Skinnytaste Fast and Slow: Knockout Quick-Fix and Slow Cooker Recipes by Gina Holmolka: Clarkson/Potter, 2016)

Here are a few more slow cooker recipes you might enjoy:

Disclosure:  There are Amazon affiliate links included within this post.

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Comments

  • Ellen wrote:

    If using chicken breast are we cooking for 6 hours on LOW or HIGH? Thanks!

    • Lori Lange wrote:

      Six hours on low, 2 to 3 hours on high– if using breasts

  • Mjbsmiley wrote:

    Hello, I am excited to try this recipe! One question: the “tips” section notes broth but I don’t see it in the ingredient list. Does this need chicken broth to thin it at the end?

    Thanks!

    • Lori Lange wrote:

      sorry about that- no broth is needed in the recipe. I will remove that!

  • Alicia wrote:

    Would this work in an instant pot?

    • Lori Lange wrote:

      Probably, but I’m not familiar with how to convert slow cooker recipes to Instant Pot. Sorry!

  • Shala wrote:

    It’s very misleading to claim that a recipe using dark chicken meat and laid upon a bed of pasta is Zero smart points. Even if you replace the dark meat with breast it’s still not even close. You shouldn’t tag this as such.

    • Lori Lange wrote:

      sorry, it does say in the nutritional info: “Weight Watchers POINTS: Freestyle SmartPoints: 0 (but only if you use chicken breast instead of thighs)” but you’re right… I need to add it into the wording of the recipe, so it’s not confusing. The recipe is for the chicken only– what you decide to put it on is extra points (or none, if you use squash).

  • Kelly wrote:

    Just want to point out this us not a zero point recipe in freeestyle as it was written or as you suggest substituting whole chicken legs, only boneless skinless chicken breast is zero points. 

    • Lori Lange wrote:

      Right- in the recipe card you will see that it states zero points if you use chicken breasts.

  • Crystal wrote:

    There are 8 servings, how much would you say a serving size is? Thanks! Got it in the Crock Pot now, can’t wait to try it!

    • Lori Lange wrote:

      Hi Crystal, I should probably figure that out– would make it easier for everyone. But I’m not sure.

  • Jennifer wrote:

    If I use chicken breasts, how much do you recommend I use for this recipe?
    Thanks!

    • Lori Lange wrote:

      I’d say 1 1/2 pounds would be good.

  • Kelly wrote:

    This looks incredible, Lori! I just got Gina’s new book too and have been wanting to try every recipe! This is definitely on our list next! 🙂

  • Skinnytaste Gina wrote:

    Looks amazing Lori!! We love this dish, it’s comfort food for sure! Thank you for sharing!

    • Lori Lange wrote:

      You’re welcome!

  • Joellen Finnie wrote:

    Looks great

  • Stephanie Schiltz wrote:

    I purchased this cb several days ago. Can’t wait to try this recipe. I have all ingredients on hand. I really love my slow cooker but have found that it cookers faster than many recipe’s indicate.
    , so I stick with low settings. Thanks for the recipe!