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frozen chicken thighs crock pot

frozen chicken thighs crock pot

frozen chicken thighs crock pot

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Chicken as food

Chicken is the most common type of poultry in the world.[1] Owing to the relative ease and low cost of raising chickens—in comparison to mammals such as cattle or hogs—chicken meat (commonly called just “chicken”) and chicken eggs have become prevalent in numerous cuisines.

Chicken can be prepared in a vast range of ways, including baking, grilling, barbecuing, frying, and boiling. Since the latter half of the 20th century, prepared chicken has become a staple of fast food. Chicken is sometimes cited as being more healthful than red meat, with lower concentrations of cholesterol and saturated fat.[2]

The poultry farming industry that accounts for chicken production takes on a range of forms across different parts of the world. In developed countries, chickens are typically subject to intensive farming methods while less-developed areas raise chickens using more traditional farming techniques. The United Nations estimates there to be 19 billion chickens on Earth today, making them outnumber humans more than two to one.[3]

Crockpot Chicken Thighs

Can I Cook Frozen Chicken Thighs in the crockpot?

Per the USDA, it’s not recommended to put the frozen chicken into the crockpot, but rather thaw chicken first.

This baked chicken post reviews quick ways to properly defrost chicken thighs.

That said, I have cooked frozen chicken thighs in my crockpot often. Make sure to cook them in a single layer. This ensures they simmer in their own juices all day providing delicious flavor, helps keep the chicken moist, and brings the chicken thighs up temperature more quickly.


  • 8 bone in chicken thighs check for gluten free
  • 6 oz. beer use gluten-free
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 tsp. onion powder
  • 1 tsp. paprika
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. pepper


  • Place the chicken into the crockpot. Place the chicken thighs into the crockpot, pour the beer in, sprinkle spices on top.
    8 bone in chicken thighs,6 oz. beer,1 tsp. garlic powder,1 tsp. onion powder,1 tsp. paprika,1 tsp. salt,1/2 tsp. pepper
  • Cook. For thawed chicken, cook on low for 4-6 hours or high for 2-4 hours.
frozen chicken thighs crock pot
frozen chicken thighs crock pot

For Frozen Chicken Thighs in the Crock Pot

  • Cook for 8-10 hours on low or 4-6 hours on high.


Broil for crispy skin

To get crispy skin, simply place the chicken thighs onto a baking pan and broil for 2-3 minutes!


Use any spices your family enjoys to create a whole new meal.

What Can I Use Besides Beer?

If you’re just not into beer and want an alternative, try the following:

  • Skip the beer altogether and let the chicken simmer in its own juices
  • Replace beer with chicken broth
  • Replace beer with a gluten-free beer like Lakefront New Grist for a gluten-free recipe

How long to cook on high?

Cook chicken thighs on high for  2 to 3 hours.

How long to cook in the slow cooker on Low?

Cook chicken thighs 4 to 5 hours on low.

How To Make Crispy Bone-In Chicken Thighs In The Crock Pot

After the chicken thighs are cooked, simply place them onto a baking sheet and broil them for 3-4 minutes or until the skin starts to brown up and get crispy.

I’m celiac, can I use something other than beer?

You could use a gluten-free beer. I have done that in the past with good results. You could also use chicken broth.

Do you broil the chicken before or after the slow cooker??

Broiling helps crisp the skin after cooking in the slow cooker.



    • 6 boneless skinless chicken thighs
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 teaspoons minced garlic
  • 1/2 cup ketchup
  • 1/3 cup low sodium soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon sesame seeds and chopped cilantro for garnish
  • 2 tablespoons green onions sliced


    • Heat the oil in a pan over high heat. Season the chicken thighs generously with salt and pepper on both sides.
  • Cook the chicken for 4-5 minutes on each side until deep golden brown.
  • Add the chicken to the slow cooker.
  • NOTE: you can skip the browning process if you prefer and simply season the thighs with salt and pepper then add them to the slow cooker.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together the garlic, ketchup, soy sauce, honey and sesame oil. Pour the sauce over the chicken thighs.
  • Cover the slow cooker and cook on LOW for 6 hours or HIGH for 3 hours.
  • In a small bowl, mix the cornstarch with 1/4 cup cold water. Add the cornstarch mixture to the slow cooker.
  • Cook for 1 more hour or until sauce has just thickened. Sprinkle with sesame seeds and green onions, then serve.


Calories: 279kcal | Carbohydrates: 20g | Protein: 25g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 75mg | Sodium: 708mg | Potassium: 518mg | Sugar: 16g | Vitamin A: 105IU | Vitamin C: 0.8mg | Calcium: 14mg | Iron: 1mg
frozen chicken thighs crock pot
frozen chicken thighs crock pot


You can overcook chicken in a slow cooker. Overcooked chicken will be dry and may be tough. Take care to watch the time on your slow cooker chicken to make sure it stays tender and juicy. If you are worried about overcooking chicken, use a chicken thigh recipe (like this one) instead of a chicken breast recipe. The extra fat in chicken thighs helps protect them from drying out.


I don’t recommend putting frozen chicken in a slow cooker. You should always thaw chicken before slow cooking it. Frozen chicken in the slow cooker can cause problems. The main problem is the risk of bacterial growth. Frozen chicken takes longer to heat up in a slow cooker than thawed chicken meaning the frozen chicken may allow bacteria to grow while it slowly heats. Another problem can occur with frozen chicken in a slow cooker if there is not enough liquid. The frozen chicken touching the cooker may get overcooked before the interior of the chicken has finished cooking because the frozen interior takes longer to cook. You will be safer and you may get better tasting food if you thaw your chicken before placing it in a slow cooker.


This honey garlic sauce is one of my personal favorites and it garners me a lot of compliments. You can add some other flavors to this great sauce for a little variety.

  • Honey Ginger: Use 2 teaspoons of fresh minced ginger instead of the garlic.
  • Honey Lime: Add 1 tablespoon of lime juice to the sauce.
  • Sweet and Spicy: Add sriracha to the sauce to taste.
  • Orange Chicken: Add 2 tablespoons of orange juice and 1/2 teaspoon of orange zest to the sauce.


  • Instead of using boneless chicken thighs, you can use bone-in chicken thighs or boneless skinless chicken breasts. Feel free to use whichever cut of chicken you prefer or have available.
  • I like to brown the chicken thighs before placing them in the slow cooker to bring out the flavor of the chicken and to give the meat some texture. If you don’t have time to brown the chicken, you can skip that step and simply place the raw thighs in the crock pot with the sauce.
  • The honey garlic sauce can be made up to 3 days in advance.
  • This chicken stays fresh in the fridge for up to 4 days. You can enjoy these thighs as leftovers and they are a great candidate for meal prep.

Crock Pot Honey Garlic Chicken Recipe


  • 6 boneless , skinless chicken thighs*
  • 4 garlic cloves , minced
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 1/2 cup low sodium ketchup
  • 1/2 cup low sodium soy sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 2 tablespoons fresh parsley
  • 1/2 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds


  • Arrange chicken thighs on the bottom of your slow cooker; set aside. (please look at the notes section)
  • In a mixing bowl, combine garlic, honey, ketchup, soy sauce, oregano and parsley; whisk until thoroughly combined.
  • Pour the sauce over the chicken thighs. Close with a lid and cook for 4 to 5 hours on LOW, or 3 to 4 hours on HIGH.** (please look at the notes section)
  • Remove lid and transfer chicken to a serving plate.
  • Spoon the sauce over the chicken and sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds. Serve.


*Use enough chicken thighs (bone-in or boneless, skin-on or without) to cover the bottom of your slow cooker. You can also use chicken breasts.

frozen chicken thighs crock pot
frozen chicken thighs crock pot

**All crock pots cook at different times and temperatures. Some readers suggest to only cook the chicken for 3 hours, while others said it took 4 hours in their crock pot. More importantly, 165 degrees Fahrenheit is the safe internal temperature for both the white meat of the chicken and dark meat.

  • If you would like to thicken the sauce, 30 minutes before the chicken is done, whisk a cornstarch slurry into the sauce; cover and continue to cook.

How to make a Cornstarch Slurry

  • Use 1 tablespoon cornstarch mixed with 1 tablespoon cold water; mix it together until mixture forms a paste.
  • 30 minutes before the chicken is done cooking, whisk the cornstarch slurry into the sauce inside the slow cooker; cover and continue to cook for 30 minutes.

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