Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Crock Pot Shredded Chicken



Y'all.... When I said I was gonna kick The Barnyard Bistro back off in 2018, I had NO idea how much traveling I would be doing this year! I just completed the 18th week on the road promoting "Anyone Else" (my duet with Lance Carpenter). We've been out 4-5 days a week and my weekends are spent taking Hensley to the park and zoo and filling up my mommy soul with my little love. Needless to say there hasn't been much experimental cooking or blogging time lately. For those of you feeling sorry for Hensley and Drew, I do still manage to cook a weeks worth of meals on Sunday before I hit the road every Monday.  This is the only way I can ensure they aren't surviving on oatmeal, scrambled eggs and hot sauce.
Side Bar: Do your husbands prepare food like a broke college kid? Mine does. He eats everything cold, mixed together and mismatched with half a bottle of hot sauce. Thanks to Drew, my 2 year old is obsessed with hot sauce and requires it on almost everything. I do think it's cute that she likes hot sauce. But as someone who enjoys creating a cohesive meal, it pains me to see him eat his cold hibachi/enchilada/lasagna mashups. I can’t be alone....right?
And we’re back:
I almost always make them either a crock pot full of beans or a big batch of  rice, farro or some other grain, a bunch of roasted or sautéed vegetables like Brussels sprouts or broccoli and cauliflower and then a crock pot full of chicken or pork to get them through the week. This recipe for crock-pot chicken is one of my favorites. You can use it for anything. I usually just keep shredded meat in the fridge and we use it for tacos or enchiladas one night, a bbq sandwich the next, on top of a salad or just as a snack. It doesn't hurt that it's impossible to mess up and takes like, negative time to prepare. Oh! And you can freeze part of it and pull it out whenever you need a quick dinner.
Let me know what you think.

10 Chicken Thighs, Boneless & Skinless
1 Jar Fire Roasted Salsa (I like Arriba brand)
1 Lg. Onion, sliced
1 Tbsp Salt
1 Tbsp Paprika
2 tsp Cumin
2 tsp Garlic Powder
1 tsp Chili Powder
1 tsp Black Pepper 

These instructions couldn't be more simple: Throw it all in a Crock Pot, cover and cook on high for 8-10 hours. 


You want it to cook until it starts to burn around the edges and has almost no liquid left. This is when all the flavors really develop. I leave mine overnight (it turns off after 8 hours automatically) and then restart it in the am for an additional 2 hours. I check on it about every 30 minutes those last couple hours to make sure it isn't just dry and burning.  You can pull it at about 5-6 hours and it will shred and be perfectly fine for whatever you choose to use it for. However, the full 10 hours gives it an insanely rich flavor you can only get by cooking all the liquid out and concentrating those flavors. Think of it as a "reduction."

Variations:
This is a dish that you can really make your own. Try salsa verde instead of tomato salsa. You can also use only chicken breast or do half thighs and half breasts-to to make it a bit leaner but the thighs-give it so much more flavor so I highly recommend at least a few thighs in there.