A simple dump and leave slow cooker dish that is bursting with flavour. Slow Cooker Honey Garlic Chicken is a rich and sticky honey and garlic sauce poured over juicy chicken thighs and cooked low and slow until you get fall apart, melt in your mouth chicken.
Less than 5 minutes prep time goes in to this Slow Cooker Honey Garlic Chicken and it's a delicious way to make chicken a bit more exciting and the rest of the ingredients you probably already have in your cupboard. This sticky, sweet and garlic packed sauce will set your taste buds alight.
When you feel like ordering a takeout for the 3rd time this week, make this instead. It's a healthier alternative to takeout. Speaking of which, have you tried our 10 Minute Sticky Ginger Beef, Healthy Chicken Tikka Masala or BBQ Chicken Pizza?
Why you will love it
- Just 5 minutes prep time
- Healthier than ordering a takeaway
- An amazing sticky sauce
- It freezes well
- Chicken - We used boneless and skinless chicken thighs as the make the dish really juicy. You could swap it for chicken breasts, which are leaner and they would still shred well.
- Soy sauce - If you want a really thick and rich sauce, then use dark soy sauce. However it would still work with light soy sauce, you just won't have the same intense flavour.
- Honey - This is where all the sweetness comes from and helps to make the sauce nice and sticky, whilst balancing out the saltiness of the soy sauce. Try to use the best quality honey that you can, as you will be able to taste the difference. You can adjust this to suit your own tastes, if you don't like sweet things. You can also swap it for brown sugar if you don't have any honey.
- Oil - We added a little bit of sesame oil, as it really boosts the Asian flavour and a little nuttiness. However you could leave it out, and this would reduce the calories a little.
- Tomato puree (paste) - This helps to thicken up the sauce and give it a nice burst of tomato flavour. You could use tomato ketchup instead, but we find that it makes the finished dish too sweet and with a bit of an artificial taste.
- Garlic - This recipe is very garlic heavy, but we like it that way. It is honey garlic chicken after all. If you don't love garlic as much as we do, then you can reduce it.
- Ginger - This gives a real kick of flavour to the dish. We have used fresh, however you can use frozen (the same as with garlic) for a little time saving hack.
A full ingredients list with measurements is in the recipe card below.
Step by step
One: In a bowl, mix together the soy sauce, honey, oil, tomato puree, garlic and ginger.
Two: Put the chicken thighs in the slow cooker.
Three: Pour the sauce on top.
Four: Cook on low for 6-7 hours or high for 4 hours.
Five: Use two forks to shred the chicken and mix with the sauce.
What to serve it with
We love this slow cooker honey and garlic chicken with a side of our Cilantro (coriander) and lime rice. However, if you want to serve it with some potatoes then our Easy Roast Potatoes or Garlic Potato Wedges go well.
No, you don't have to cook the chicken before it goes in the slow cooker. This is more important when cooking beef, like with our Slow Cooker Roast Beef or Slow Cooker Beef Curry, because it it really does add some extra flavour. But there is no need to with chicken, which makes it much quicker to prepare.
You can use chicken breasts and then shred them in the same way, however we find skinless and boneless chicken thighs to be much juicer. Chicken breasts are leaner however.
We like the sauce as it is in this recipe, however if you would prefer a thicker sauce then you can add a cornflour slurry to it to thicken it up. Do this by taking a ladle of the sauce out and adding it to a bowl with 1 tablespoon of cornstarch and whisking. Then slowly stir that in to the slow cooker to thicken it up.
You can cook this recipe on low for 6-7 hours or high for 4 hours. If you have the time, we always recommend cooking chicken in the slow cooker on low, rather than high. It is perfectly fine on high, but it is much juicier on low. On high is can sometimes be a little dry and we have always had better results when cooking it on low.
Leftovers will keep in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days.
Yes, this is a great freezer meal, which is why we like to batch cook it. Wait until it has fully cooled and then store in freezable containers and it will keep in the freezer for up to 3 months. You can also freeze this uncooked. Put the sauce ingredients and chicken in a large freezer bag and store for up to 3 months. Then just make sure it is fully defrosted and then it can go in to slow cooker ready to cook.
To reheat, make sure it is fully defrosted and them add it to a large pan with a splash of water and heat through. You can also reheat it in the microwave.
Yes, this is also a great Instant Pot meal. Put the chicken and sauce ingredients in the Instant Pot and cook on HIGH pressure for 15 minutes. Allow the steam to naturally release and then remove the chicken and shred. If you want to thicken the sauce, then make a cornstarch slurry and add it back to the pot with the rest of the sauce (not the chicken) and cook on SAUTE for 5 minutes whilst whisking constantly. Then add the shredded chicken back and mix with the sauce.
No, because we have used soy sauce, it is not gluten free. You can swap it for gluten free tamari though.
• If you like a kick of heat in your meals, then you can add a generous splash of your favourite chilli sauce to the sauce mixture, or even a sprinkling of red chilli flakes. We like sweet chilli sauce, because the sweetness really adds to the recipe. Sriracha works well too. You could just drizzle some on before serving if you prefer.
• You don't have to shred the chicken. It pretty much falls apart when you scoop it out of the slow cooker, so you could serve it like that with the sauce poured on top of it.
• We have served the dish topped with some slices of spring onion for crunch and some fresh coriander to lighten it all up a little. You could add a sprinkle of sesame seeds too or even some crushed peanuts for some extra crunch.
More slow cooker recipes
If you’ve tried these Honey Garlic Chicken Thighs, let us know how you got on in the comments below.
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Slow Cooker Honey Garlic Chicken
- 6 chicken thighs - boneless and skinless
- 100 ml Soy sauce
- 5 tablespoon Honey
- 1 tablespoon Sesame oil
- 3 tablespoon Tomato puree - paste
- 5 Garlic clove - crushed
- 1 tablespoon Fresh ginger - diced
- Spring onions (scallions) and fresh coriander (cilantro) for serving - optional
- In a bowl, mix together the soy sauce, honey, oil, tomato puree, garlic and ginger.
- Put the chicken thighs in the slow cooker.
- Pour the sauce on top.
- Cook on low for 6-7 hours or high for 4 hours.
- Use two forks to shred the chicken and mix with the sauce.
- If you like a kick of heat in your meals, then you can add a generous splash of your favourite chilli sauce to the sauce mixture, or even a sprinkling of red chilli flakes. We like sweet chilli sauce, because the sweetness really adds to the recipe. Sriracha works well as w. You could just drizzle some on before serving if you prefer.
- You don't have to shred the chicken. It pretty much falls apart when you scoop it out of the slow cooker, so you could serve it like that with the sauce poured on top of it.
- We have served the dish topped with some slices of spring onion for crunch and some fresh coriander to lighten it all up a little. You could add a sprinkle of sesame seeds too or even some crushed peanuts for some extra crunch.