This Slow Cooker Balsamic Chicken is one of the easiest slow cooker dishes we have. There is no pre-cooking involved, you just put onions, chicken and a fresh tomato, herb and balsamic mix in to the slow cooker and let it cook for 3 hours. Serve with spaghetti, rice or with a fresh green salad for a delicious and light meal.
The flavours in this dish are so simple, with just a few ingredients, but super tasty. Chopped fresh tomatoes, fresh basil and garlic are mixed with some good quality balsamic vinegar and then poured over sliced onion and chicken breasts to make an easy meal that can be served so many different ways. Tomato and balsamic are a classic summer combination and this is a delicious way to enjoy it.
If you are looking for some other summer slow cooker recipes to try, then why not try our Slow Cooker Beef Barbacoa, Slow Cooker Honey Garlic Chicken, Slow Cooker Chicken Fajitas or Slow Cooker Pulled Pork.
Why should you try it?
- No prep - There is no need to brown the chicken first. You just dump it all in and turn it on.
- A delicious way to enjoy chicken - We love using chicken breasts because they are protein packed and versatile. However, we can get a little bored with eating them the same way all the time. This is an easy and delicious way to use them.
- A great way to use up lots of tomatoes - Growing lots of tomatoes? This uses lots of fresh tomatoes and makes sure that nothing goes to waste.
- Perfect for using the slow cooker in the summer - Nobody wants to turn their oven on on a hot summers day. The slow cooker doesn't heat up the kitchen like the oven does.
- Chicken - Skinless and boneless chicken breasts are what make this a lean and protein packed meal. You could swap them for chicken thighs if you prefer.
- Oil - We used olive oil, as we find this has a nicer flavour.
- Balsamic vinegar - This is the star of the dish, so try to buy the best quality you can as you will really taste the difference. Cheap balsamic tends to be really runny too, which makes for a watery finished dish.
- Garlic - This balsamic chicken is garlic heavy, and that's just how like it. If you aren't a huge garlic fan, then feel free to reduce the amount used.
- Onion - We used red onion, however you could swap it for a brown onion, or even shallots.
- Tomato - The key to having a really delicious dish is to use fresh and ripe tomatoes.
- Basil - Fresh basil is always best in this dish.
A full ingredients list with measurements is in the recipe card below.
How to cook Slow Cooker Balsamic Chicken - step by step
One: Put the sliced onion at the bottom of the slow cooker. Put the chicken breasts on top with the olive oil, salt and pepper.
Two: Add the tomatoes, garlic and fresh basil.
Three: Pour the balsamic vinegar on top.
Four: Cook on high for 6 hours or low for 3 hours.
Five: Serve on spaghetti and with a salad.
This is a light and lean slow cooker dish, and using chicken breasts mean that it is protein packed too. However, the fresh tomatoes have lots of nutritional benefits too.
Tomatoes, which are mainly a carbohydrate with some fibre, are packed full of vitamins, including beta-carotene (which becomes vitamin A when consumed), vitamins C and E, and some B vitamins and vitamin K. They also contain some calcium and magnesium.
Tomatoes are also a good source of potassium, which has been shown to be associated with lower risk of stroke and heart disease. Tomatoes also contain a compound called lycopene, which gives them their red colour, which research shows has the potential for reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease.
What to serve with Slow Cooker Balsamic Chicken
We served ours on top of spaghetti with a green salad on the side, but you could have so many different things with it. For a low carb option, serve it with courgette (zucchini) spaghetti or for more of a comforting dish then mashed potato is the way to go. You can serve it with spaghetti squash, udon noodles, couscous and of course just a big pile of vegetables or on a green salad.
We also like to crumble some feta on top just before serving, because the creaminess goes really well with the sweetness of the balsamic.
The key to an epic green salad is to use a variety of greens, like romaine, spinach, kale and rocket. You want leafy greens, but crunch too. Then you need the perfect dressing. Why not try our Lemon Vinaigrette, Honey and Mustard Dressing or Tomato and Basil Vinaigrette.
Store: You can keep leftovers in an air tight container in the fridge for 2-3 days.
Freeze: This recipe serves 4, but you can easily double the batch and then freeze the leftovers (with rice) in individual portions. Just make sure it cools fully before freezing. It will keep in the freezer for up to 3 months.
Defrost: Defrost it in the fridge overnight.
Reheat: To reheat, add it to a pan and heat on low, stirring often, until it is piping hot. You can also reheat it in the microwave.
We used chicken breasts in this dish, so it makes it a lean and protein packed meal. There are very few ingredients, and the focus is on fresh ingredients like tomatoes and basil and the sauce is made mainly of balsamic vinegar. This dish is low in fat and there is less than 250 calories per portion (without sides).
Yes, you could make this slow cooker balsamic chicken with boneless and skinless chicken thighs instead of chicken breast. It would change the nutritional information, but the chicken would be much juicier.
If you don't have a slow cooker, then this can be cooked in the oven. You can put everything on a pan with some extra vegetables like par-boil potatoes, peppers, mushrooms and asparagus and put in a preheated oven at 200°C/400°F/Gas 6 for 25-30 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through.
You can keep this in the fridge for 2-3 days, but it also freezes well. Just make sure it is completely cooled before freezing and then fully defrosted before reheating.
If you don't want to freeze this, but you have some leftovers to use, then chop the chicken up and either mix it with a green salad or put in to a wrap or sandwich with a slice of your favourite cheese.
By looking at the ingredients, it doesn't look like there is much of a sauce to this. But that is the beauty of this dish - its simplicity. There are no thick and heavy sauces, just the juices from the chicken and tomatoes, mixed with the balsamic, garlic and basil.
There is a fair amount of liquid in the slow cooker bowl once it is cooked, but I find that once it is all mixed in to the spaghetti and the chicken on top it is just the right amount. You can always use less of the liquid if you find it too much. I wouldn't recommend using a tin of tomatoes, as they are too juicy, so fresh is best.
As long as you make sure that there is no cross contamination, this is gluten free.
There really is no rule here, just make sure that the beef joint you are using can fit in your slow cooker. We use a Crock Pot DuraCeramic Slow Cooker and we love it. What I love most about it is that you can put the bowl insert on the hob too. You can also sear the meat in it first. I also love that it has a clear lid, as I am so impatient that I want to keep looking and seeing what it is doing. If you don't have a clear lid, then lifting it to see will release lots of the heat and add to the cooking time.
The best way to ensure that it is cooked through is to use a meat thermometer. Chicken is cooked when it has an internal temperature of 75°C/167°F.
• We serve the chicken breasts up whole, but you could shred or slice them before serving and that would soak up a lot of the liquid too.
• We used skinless and boneless chicken breasts to make this dish, but you can use thighs or legs instead, but cooking times will vary.
• Either serve with with spaghetti, mashed potato, rice or on top of a green salad.
• Add a pinch of red chilli flakes if you want to add some spice to this.
More chicken recipes
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Slow Cooker Balsamic Chicken
- 500 g chicken breasts
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 pinch sea salt and black pepper
- 1 medium red onion thinly sliced
- 6 tomatoes diced
- 2 garlic cloves crushed
- 8 basil leaves diced
- 60 ml balsamic vinegar
- Put the sliced onion at the bottom of the slow cooker and then put the chicken breasts on top and then add the olive oil and season with the salt and pepper.500 g chicken breasts, 1 tablespoon olive oil, 1 medium red onion, 1 pinch sea salt and black pepper
- Add the tomatoes, garlic and basil and then pour the balsamic vinegar on top.6 tomatoes, 2 garlic cloves, 8 basil leaves, 60 ml balsamic vinegar
- Cook on low for 6 hours or high for 3 hours.
- We serve the chicken breasts up whole, but you could shred them before serving and that would soak up a lot of the liquid too.
- We used skinless and boneless chicken breasts to make this dish, but you can use thighs or legs instead, but cooking times will vary.
- Either serve with with spaghetti, mashed potato, rice or on top of a green salad.