Lately, I’ve been trying to experiment with a different slow cooker recipe every Sunday to make the day feel a little more lazy, yet at the same time a bit luxurious–there’s just nothing like a warm home full of simmering smells to bring all sorts of happy into the weekend. (Plus, I don’t know about you, but I basically feel like a rock star every time I think about dinner more than about 45 minutes before I’m wanting to eat it, so slow cooker recipes are awesome for that.)
I thought the juicy texture and sweet (but not too sweet) flavor of this apricot chicken was perfect for a snowy Sunday afternoon, and it was an added bonus that the chicken only took five (!) ingredients to make, which helped cut down on active prep time.
6 ounces of dried apricots (or about 15-20 dried apricots total)
2 lbs. chicken (I usually use three full chicken breasts that are each cut in half, or you can use 6-8 boneless chicken thighs)
Salt and pepper
2 tbs. unsalted butter (can be cut out if the oil is doubled)
2 tbs. vegetable oil (can be cut out if the butter is doubled)
1 onion, sliced
1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
Rinse apricots and scatter them in slow cooker (I like to cut them in fourths to make the presentation a little prettier, but you don’t have to). Pat chicken dry; season with salt and pepper. Melt butter with oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Cook thighs until golden brown, 3 to 5 minutes per side. (Brown in batches to avoid crowding skillet). Arrange over apricots.
Add onion to the remaining oil in the skillet and cook, stirring, until just soft, 2 to 4 minutes. Add broth to skillet, turn heat to high. Bring to a boil, stirring to loosen brown bits on bottom of skillet. Pour contents of skillet over apricots and chicken. Cover and cook on low for 3-4 hours (or until a meat thermometer stuck in the center of the chicken registers 165 degrees Fahrenheit).
Carefully transfer chicken to a serving dish (they tend to fall apart easily); cover with foil to keep warm. Pour remaining contents into a saucepan. Boil, stirring often, until reduced and thickened, about 10 minutes. Pour over chicken.
Serve over rice (optional).
Great paired with: steamed vegetables, a green salad, and dinner rolls (or breadsticks, as shown here!)