Get ready, because this slow cooker cranberry chicken recipe combines tender and juicy shredded chicken breast with a sweet and tangy cranberry sauce to make your new favorite easy weeknight dinner.
Looking for a quick and easy slow cooker meal your whole family is guaranteed to enjoy? Well, let me introduce you to my slow cooker cranberry chicken. Sweet and savory, this is a definite crowd-pleaser.
All you have to do is place the chicken breasts and sauce ingredients in a crockpot and let it simmer for up to eight hours. Yes, the only prep required is chopping an onion – how good is that? When it’s time, simply shred the chicken breasts and serve your meal with vegetables and dinner rolls or cornbread to soak up that irresistible cranberry sauce.
While cranberry is the sauce’s main ingredient, it’s also enhanced thanks to the delicious combined flavors of orange zest, brown sugar, barbecue sauce, and balsamic vinegar. Plus, by using canned cranberry sauce, you can enjoy this recipe year-round. Cranberries are definitely a fruit that shouldn’t just be enjoyed during the holidays.
Speaking of cranberries, here are some more of my favorite cranberry recipes: cranberry orange meatballs, pumpkin cranberry nut bread, cranberry pecan lace cookies, and cranberry cheesecake bars.
- 3lbs boneless skinless chicken breasts, whole
- 14oz can of whole berry cranberry sauce
- 1 small yellow onion, chopped
- Zest from one orange
- ½ cup light brown sugar
- ¼ cup barbecue sauce
- 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
Grease the bottom of a 6-quart slow cooker.
Place chicken breasts on the bottom of the slow cooker.
Pour all remaining ingredients and sauce over chicken breasts in the slow cooker.
Toss gently to combine well.
Cook on low for 6-8 hours or on high for 4-6 hours, stirring occasionally.
When cooking time is 30 minutes away from being complete, shred the chicken breasts with two forks inside the crockpot. When done, return the lid and continue to cook the chicken pieces for the remaining time.
Once the cooking time is complete, remove from the slow cooker and allow the dish to cool for 5-10 minutes before serving.
This dish pairs wonderfully with mashed potatoes, green beans and dinner rolls.
Store your slow cooker cranberry chicken leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to four days or in the freezer for up to three months. When it’s time to reheat, simply warm up the leftovers in the microwave.
- If you prefer dark meat, you can substitute the breasts for boneless and skinless chicken thighs.
- You can substitute the brown sugar, barbecue sauce, and balsamic vinegar for 1 cup of French dressing.
- Instead of onion, some recipes use a packet of dry onion soup mix to enhance the dish’s flavor. Pick your poison!
- In this , you can substitute the can of whole berry cranberry sauce for 12oz of fresh cranberries. However, keep in mind that fresh cranberries are sold seasonally.
- I used Sweet Baby Ray’s barbecue sauce for this recipe.
- To make this a one-pot meal, you can also add celery, carrots, and potatoes to the crockpot.
How do you know when chicken breasts are done cooking?
For this , when it comes time to shred the chicken, the strips should easily fall away and reveal white meat inside. If it’s still tough or pink, your chicken breast hasn’t finished cooking.
What do you serve with this slow cooker cranberry chicken recipe?
I love serving my cranberry chicken on a bed of mashed potatoes with green beans and dinner rolls. However, you could also serve this meal over brown rice, quinoa, and noodles with a side salad. Another option is buttermilk biscuits or cornbread instead of dinner rolls to soak up the sauce.
Check out these other easy crockpot chicken dinner ideas:
AMAZING & EASY Crock Pot Chicken Lettuce Wraps
Crock Pot Cashew Chicken Recipe
Cheesy Chicken And Rice Crock Pot Version
Crock Pot Chicken Tetrazzini Recipe
Crock Pot Chicken and Potatoes, Rotisserie Style
- 3 lbs boneless skinless chicken breasts, whole
- 1 14oz can of whole berry cranberry sauce
- 1 small yellow onion, chopped
- 1 zest from one orange
- 1/2 cup light brown sugar
- 1/4 cup barbecue sauce
- 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- Grease the bottom of a 6-quart slow cooker. Place chicken breasts on the bottom of the slow cooker.3 lbs boneless skinless chicken breasts, whole
- Top chicken with all remaining ingredients and toss gently to combine well.1 14oz can of whole berry cranberry sauce, 1 small yellow onion, chopped, 1 zest from one orange, 1/2 cup light brown sugar, 1/4 cup barbecue sauce, 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- Cook on low for 6-8 hours or on high for 4-6 hours, stirring occasionally.
- When cooking time is 30 minutes away from being complete, shred the chicken breasts with two forks inside the crockpot. When done, return the lid and continue to cook for the remaining time.
- When cooking time is complete, remove from the slow cooker and allow the dish to cool for 5-10 minutes before serving.