Looking for cold weather comfort food without the faff? This Slow Cooker Chicken Casserole recipe is so quick to prepare. The stew is packed with vegetables and in a delicious creamy sauce with crispy bacon bits. Cosiness in a bowl!
Autumn is most definitely here in the UK and you know what? I am so happy about it!
It’s a reason for wooly jumpers, open fires and of course, cosy food.
You have LOVED my Slow Cooker Chicken Curry recipe as it’s so simple to prepare, I decided it was about time to come up with a Chicken Stew version. Perfect for autumn and winter evenings.
You’ll love this Slow Cooker Chicken Casserole because..✅ It’s packed with vegetables and a light, but creamy sauce.✅ Hardly any preparation, no need to brown the chicken.✅ Freezes brilliantly, cook once, eat twice!
How do you make a Slow Cooker Chicken Casserole?
Basically, pop all of the ingredients in, pour over some stock and herbs and GO!
I’ve added a couple of other steps (browning some bacon lardons and adding creme fraiche at the end) because after testing this approximately 100 times (!) I really think they make a difference and are worth the added tiny bit of effort.
You’re welcome to leave those steps out, but.. Hello CRISPY BACON BITS!
SHOULD YOU BROWN CHICKEN BEFORE COOKING IN THE SLOW COOKER?
If you want to get scientific, the reason we brown meat before slow cooking, is because it causes a Maillard reaction. The process of frying, heating it very hot until it browns, changes the flavour compounds in the meat, basically adding a depth of flavour.
Does it add something to most slow cooked dishes? Yes. Is it vital in this dish, which is packed with other flavour? No.
My opinion is that it’s much more important in red meat dishes and even then, sometimes speed and ease are more important.
Ingredients for the Slow Cooker Chicken Casserole
Chicken Thighs – These should be boneless and skinless. You could use chicken breast in this recipe, but it won’t be as tender or shred when cooked in the same way.
Bacon Lardons – These are optional (as you need to fry them before adding, so it is another step in your prep) BUT using smoked bacon pieces adds SO much flavour and a little extra texture too.
Onions – Fresh or pre prepared from the freezer is fine. (Always after a shortcut!)
Carrots – I used mini Chantenay carrots, because no peeling, they look super cute and I like saying the word CHANTENAY! You can use regular, peeled carrots if you prefer, just cut into big chunks.
Celery – Even if you hate celery raw, it’s a really good idea to use it here as it adds lots of depth of flavour to the sauce. Chop quite small.
Stock – I like Marigold Vegetable Stock powder.
Mustard – Wholegrain works well as it adds an extra texture and makes the sauce look pretty. A little Dijon/French mustard is fine if you don’t have wholegrain. Please do add this, as it really enhances the flavour.
Dried Thyme – Make sure this isn’t from a pack that’s been open at the back of the cupboard for years as it really loses it’s flavour!
Fancy some other delicious slow cooker dishes?
- Super Simple Slow Cooker Chicken Curry – This is one of the most loved recipes on this site, over 60 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ reviews!
- Slow Cooker Pulled Pork with Honey and Chipotle – 5 Ingredients and TOTALLY delicious.
- Slow Cooker ‘Roast’ Gammon Ham – Such an easy and yummy Sunday roast joint.
- Slow Cooker ‘Roast’ Beef Joint – Another super simple and delicious roast joint, complete with gravy.
Hope you enjoy this recipe as much as we do. I’d love to know how you got on and what you thought of it if you make this Slow Cooker Chicken Casserole recipe. Please rate the recipe using the ⭐️ by the recipe.
Also, if you’d like to show me a photo by tagging me on Instagram (@tamingtwins) I LOVE to see your creations.
Slow Cooker Chicken Casserole with Bacon
- 1 kg Chicken thighs Boneless and skinless
- 50 g Plain flour
- 2 Onions Large, peeled and chopped
- 3 Sticks Celery Trimmed and chopped into small pieces
- 500 g Carrots See note 1 below.
- 200 g Smoked bacon lardons See note 2 below.
- 300 ml Chicken stock
- 2 tbsp Wholegrain mustard
- 2 tsp Dried thyme See note 3 below.
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 4 tbsp Creme fraiche
- 3 tbsp Chopped fresh flat leaf parsley
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Fry your bacon lardons either in a small frying pan, or in the bottom of your slow cooker pan if it can be used on the hob. Let them go crispy and golden brown.
- Meanwhile, put your chicken thighs in a large bowl and coat thoroughly in the flour.
- When the bacon has finished cooking, put the onions, celery, carrots and bacon pieces into your slow cooker (or leave the bacon pieces in that pan if they've been cooking in there).
- Sit the flour rolled chicken pieces on top of the vegetables in the slow cooker.
- Mix the stock, mustard, thyme and salt and pepper and pour into the slow cooker, around the side of the chicken.
- Put the lid on and cook on HIGH for 4 hours or LOW for at least 6 hours.
- When you're ready to serve, add the creme fraiche and the chopped parsley. Check for seasoning and add more salt and pepper if needed.
Amy Lambert says
Brilliantly easy – a real crowd pleaser!
Nic Beavis says
Made this today…a very rare thumbs up from everyone in my family 😀 will definitely be making it again.
Lauren Fleming says
I made this over the weekend and it was a massive hit in our lunchtime. Even with a fussy almost 3 year old made yummy noises whilst eating it. We served with mashed potatoes, lovely on a cold day!
This wax really delicious. But i think there might be a mistake in the recipe? Should it be teaspoons dried thyme and not tablespoons? I halved the recipe and used one teaspoon of dried thyme, and was yummy. Will definitely make again. Thanks for the recipe!
Kelly rushby says
So super tasty and easy! Full of flavour. I’m obsessed with all your recipes! This was just comfort in a bowl with lovely buttery mash. Like a warm hug 🤗
Fantastic recipe so easy to prep. Not sure if it’s a typo but put in 2 teaspoons of thyme in not tablespoons and tasted great. Thank you I am sure this will be a family favourite.
Bonnie Phillips says
This recipe is delicious (so I’ve been told)
I’m a vegetarian but love to cook up delicious meaty things for my husband and twin boys. The little ones absolutely adore this and it’s all so melt in the mouth they devour it! One of husband’s favourites as well! I make extra and keep it to have with pasta for the little ones
Made this the other night, wow it was amazing!
Gorgeous homely comfort food! Perfect with mash but would be lovely with rice too!
Anna Field says
Gorgeous and simple, will definitely become a family fave
rebecca pears says
Another winner! Freezes well too 🙂
Did you freeze after adding creme fresh or leave that out??
Sarah Barnes says
I froze with it as it’s only a very small amount. Either would be fine.
Absolutely loved this! For someone that’s not great in the kitchen, it was so easy and turned out great! Looking forward to working my way through the rest of your recipes! Thank you!
Made this and was amazed at how the cream Fraiche and Parsley transformed the dish at the end we had it with mash , cabbage and Brocolli. Lovely and easy and super tasty. I added an extra stock pot and used 500 MLS of water not the 300 as stated. Will definitely make again.
Just bought all the ingredients but they didn’t have any thighs in the shop – will it still work with chicken breast?
Sarah Barnes says
Yes, you may just need to reduce the cooking time as chicken breast can go very dry if over cooked. Enjoy!
Geoff Chapman says
Made this for tea yesterday, it was brilliant! Reduced the recipe down to feed just two people and replaced the creme fraishe with a splash of double cream for more luxury! Yum! Going to try the Slow cook Curry next.
Chris galloway says
I made this today and it was a winner with all the family, thankyou
Would djon mustard work too? Thanks
Really easy recipe with great results. Quick to prepare and super tasty. I added a few new potatoes too. Both my 5 and 7 year old gave two thumbs up. Which is unheard of!
Cath Higham says
This was such a hit tonight! Served with mash & leafy green cabbage. Thank you so much for another inspiring dish. Will definitely make again . Sorry forgot to take a pic in our hurry to dish up & eat! X
Lucy Haggis says
Loved this recipe. Am a slow cooker novice and still don’t trust it will all be cooked in 4 hours but it was delicious! I would halve the thyme next time but that is just personal preference
Jamie Strudwick says
What size slow cooker is this to fit?
Not sure if it will be too much to fit in my small one.
Jennifer Turner says
It fitted my 3.5 litre slow cooker
Brilliant recipe! Really warming hit-the-spot dish. Served our with rice – will make again!
Hannah O'Sullivan says
Love it! Easy peasy – especially if using frozen onion and thyme. Kids love it. With rice or mash. Thanks Sarah!
Loved this, easy and delicious. Had it with mash and on a jacket potato. was nice to have something in the freezer that was tasty and ready to go. Thank you
Absolutely Delicious! I put in just under 1 tablespoon of dried thyme and felt that was enough. Very tasty and went down very well with my family.
Really delicious and I love this recipe – so quick and easy. As other have said, I assume that the Thyme amount should have been teaspoons and not tablespoons. I think the only change I made in the end was that I topped up the stock from 300ml to about 500ml using a small glass of white wine which all simmered on the hob for a couple of minutes to burn off the alcohol. The sauce was still thick and rich at the end. Good with mash, jackets and/or any veg you have lying around. A winter delight!
What a fantastic casserole! I can honestly say this is the best meal I’ve cooked!! As said before though, I added 2 teaspoons, not tablespoons of thyme. Thank you Taming Twins 😊
Sarah Barnes says
So happy you like it Laura! x
Alison Macdonald says
Made this a few weeks ago and was a big hit so making again today! Definitely agree that the creme fraiche transforms it at the end! I add in some fried leeks and button mushrooms and serve with jacket potatoes and any green veg!
Another fabulous meal! I used 2 tablespoons of dried thyme as stated in the notes section & it was incredibly tasty. Thank you so much for another brilliant recipe.
This is absolutely delicious. It has been a lifesaver during our house extension whilst relying on our sloe cooker. So simple but so delicious. Even my fussier eater has loved it. We also prefer 2 x TABLESPOONS of thyme as it really adds more flavour. Thanks for sharing this lovely, easy to make meal.
I never comment on recipes but have to say… This was incredibly tasty. I went for the two TABLESPOONS of thyme. I added extra stock/mustard too to make extra liquid for that crusty bread dipping. Need to check out other Tamingtwins recipes now!
Sarah Barnes says
So pleased it was a win for you Steve!
Delicious- the whole family loved it. Will definitely be making this again. (Along with your chicken curry which is a staple in our house now!)
I’ve just made this it’s currently in my slow cooker. Thought it was odd not to brown the chicken & onions first in the recipe….
We’ll see how it turns out
I loved this! I was a little sneaky and briefly fried the onion and sealed the chicken while I fried the bacon because it didn’t take any extra time or add to any washing up. I followed the ingredients except I only had 600g of chicken thigh and I did add a little extra water. I regretted that because it would have been nicer thicker. It was still lovely though. I served it with roast potatoes and broccoli, and had enough for five large portions.
Yvonne Dale says
Hi there, I was thinking the same…. How did it turn out without pre browning the onions and chicken?
What could I use instead of creme? I’m cooking for folks who are lactose sensitive.
Sarah Barnes says
Just use a milk alternative, like Oat milk 🙂
Another quick question- why did you coat chicken with flour? If I can’t use the creme should I also skip the flour?
Sarah Barnes says
You coat the meat to make a gravy sauce, if you don’t do this it won’t thicken.
This is now the family favourite dinner. My 3 year old and husband love it! I made it in the Instant Pot, pressure cooked for 13 mins (diced chicken breast). I added some dumplings in at the end too which were lovely with it. Thanks for the great recipe!
Jon Bridges says
Winner winner was this chicken dinner.
Great recipe, easy to follow, and I used your recommendation of two tablespoons of thyme, perfect. Thank you.
Wow, I’m really happy with how this recipe turned out – you almost want to lick the plate at then end. I used 1.5 tablespoons of thyme and didn’t think it was too much. I added some white wine and I browned my mushrooms in some butter and added then right before serving. I didn’t have creme fraiche but would love to try it with this also. Thanks for a delicious dinner recipe! I will definitely make this again
So so good!! And very handy to pop into the slow cooker and come back to a delicious, comforting dinner! I’ve shared this recipe with so many, who love it also!
I’ve made this several times, always a favourite in our house!
Just tryed this recipe for the first time we love it the flavours everything just delicious 😋 we are definitely going to this recipe again
Made this for the first time today and now this will be added to our go to dishes. It was absolutely beautiful and so tasty! My family cleared their plates, even my 5 year old.
We had it with creamy mash (used some of the creme fraichè in) and homemade yorkshires. It was the perfect comfort food. Thank you for this amazing recipe.
Louise phelan says
Hi, want to make this dish but here in Australia it is quite difficult to find Creme fraiche .. what could I put in as alternative . … Philadelphia or a Greek yogurt ??
Sarah Barnes says
A splash of thick cream or just leave it out Louise! Enjoy 🙂
A really good tasty and hearty recipe! Had it with mustard mash:)
I have a 3.7ltr slow cooker, so just about managed to fit it in. What I did was at the end of the high cook time, I opened the lid and broke it up and mushed it down in to the liquid, and I also took the bones out. Then I put the lid back on and let it cook for another 30mins-1hr. Just to be on the safe side! I always get a bit weird about cooking chicken thighs as they are a darker meat anyway (hello yes I am on the spectrum and have issues surrounding if food is cooked properly!)
I also used the 2 tablespoons of thyme recommended, because personally I agree with what the author said. You really do have to up the flavours with slow cookers, otherwise it all gets lost and becomes bland. The flavour of the casserole came out just right, so if anyone is worried about 2 tablespoons of thyme being far too strong- trust me, it’s not.
And also what the author said- get new thyme if yours is old! I would say this with mustard as well. I used a colman’s mustard for the mash, and because it was slightly past its sell by, it really lost its potency. Luckily, I didn’t have wholegrain mustard, so bought a new one of those, so casserole was fine.
I’ve seen people say they make this for their families, babies, young children. Do make sure that all the bones have been removed before serving. I came across a few small ones whilst eating that I missed out on when I was removing them.
Sarah Barnes says
Hi Amaryllis, thanks for your lovely and helpful comment. I actually recommend using skinless and boneless thighs in the recipe for the reasons you mentioned. So glad you enjoyed it 🙂
Wow this was lovely, me and my partner have COVID and wanted something wholesome. Great minimum prep so did this morning and slept the day and ready for tea.
Love your recipes
Cooked this tonight such easy prep, I used half of philadelphia instead of crème fraiche and this recipe is up there and was so tasty and amazing my partner loved it so much and he is fussy 🙂
Can’t wait to try out more of your recipes
Made this for my bottomless pit of a 17 year old son, and he LOVED it- served it with instant mash with dried crispy onion bits (a comfort meal all on its own!) and broccoli- I also used 2 packs of Sainsburys BGTY bacon pieces instead of a pack of lardons as this boy loves his bacon, but it wasn’t too much. I also used chicken breast but took them out and shredded them before mixing them in. A great recipe!
Lovely wholesome recipe. Have made this twice now, served with mashed potato and gnocchi.
Adding the gnocchi in for the last hour of the cook. Delicious.
This was a real treat and so delicious, thank you very much. I will definitely make it again. [I served mine with homemade garlic croutons ~ they seemed to work well and were lighter than potatoes]
john boy says
top drawer, everyone loved it
Ali McConnell says
Just perfect autumn/winter comfort food. Absolutely delicious! I will most definitely be making this again. Simple and extremely tasty!
This was absolutely delicious to come
home too after a long day at work
It was amazing and my husband and son loved it too
Have got a family lunch coming up and will be so happy to serve this and know they will enjoy it
Thank you so much for this recipe will become one of my “make agains”
Delicious, we all really enjoyed it & will definitely make again. Used Djon mustard, 2 chicken stock pots, double cream & some chopped up spinach. Thanks 😁
Delicious, will definitely cook this again, used two tablespoons of thyme as per recommendation. Plenty left to freeze for another meal. Served on a bed of mash.
Made this today and my extremely 3 fussy eaters demolished each plate! I thought that day will never come Thank you for super yummy and easy recipe! Amazing!
Victoria Lea says
I have skin on chicken thighs. Shall I just remove it or cook it with skin on?
Emilia Hicks says
I had some lonely frozen chicken breasts in the freezer (only about 400g) so decided to give the recipe a go (even though recipe is thigh). I halved the other ingredients and put the breasts in whole, on the top. I put it on high for about 4.5hrs I think and the chicken shredded amazingly!
The bacon lardons are a game changer for sure! I might use low salt chicken stock though as it was a wee bit salty.
A hit with all the family, we love the crispy bacon bits that give it extra flavour!!