Slow Cooker Fiesta Chicken

Melt in your mouth chicken packed with loads of delicious flavours; this Slow Cooker Fiesta Chicken is quickly becoming a new favourite!  

My sister has been trying to convince me to get a slow cooker for a long time. I was reluctant because in my head I thought it was cheating and taking out some of the fun of cooking. Obviously I was wrong! She bought me one for my birthday after finally giving in and saying I would give one a go – and now I love it!

The first thing I attempted to make were cinnamon rolls. They really didn’t turn out well at all! However this wasn’t the slow cooker’s fault but mine as the part of the recipe that specifically warned me to be very precise, I wasn’t. I decided to leave the desserts alone for a while and focus on savoury dishes.

I’d seen a few recipes using chicken and Mexican flavours so used them to create my own interpretation which I decided to call Fiesta Chicken! My main inspiration came from one of my favourite bloggers over at Skinny Taste. I tweaked her Crock Pot Santa Fe Chicken recipe.

This recipe is really flexible. Add more of what you want, less or none of what you don’t and make it your own. I happened to have some chicken thighs and a couple of breasts in the fridge so I decided to chuck them both in. I love chicken thighs as they have so much flavour but until recently I have always tended to buy breasts. Since I’ve got a chest freezer I now go a little crazy and buy thighs in bulk and have a mass de-boning session. Last week I de-boned approximately 80 thighs ready for BBQ’s. They are definitely my favourite cut of chicken but use whichever you fancy!

I used a combination of chilli powders that I buy from the Cool Chile Co. They have a store in Borough Market but you can also order from their website and they have great service (I just genuinely like their products, they aren’t paying me to mention them). Don’t let not having different chilli powders put you off making this dish. Use whatever you have – chilli powders, cayenne pepper, paprika etc. and add more if you like a bit of heat. The quantities in the recipe below are more to add flavour than heat, so adjust as you wish. This also depends on the heat rating of the chille powder you decide to use, for example chipotle chilli powder is hotter than a guajillo chilli. I would always veer on the side of caution and then give it a little try when you add the shredded chicken back in. You can always add some more chilli at this stage if it needs a bit more of a kick.

I added a tin of flame roasted mild green chillies which I bought from Tesco maybe a year ago. I’d seen a few American recipes where they included tinned tomatoes with mild green chillies, so when I saw the tin of chillies in the World Food’s aisle I bought them. This recipe was finally a reason to use them! You’ll notice I haven’t included them in the recipe though as since making this dish, I haven’t been able to find them anywhere. I’ve even searched online for them and it seems you need to order them from America which isn’t the cheapest option, so I decided it was better to miss them out, however sad this made me feel.

I was so impressed with how tasty this recipe was and it was such minimal effort. I did find that there was too much liquid when I made it so I have reduced the amount slightly. That is the only thing I have found with slow cookers, because you are cooking with the lid on, they keep all of their liquid and it doesn’t evaporate. If you want to try and thicken the dish without using cornflour (or as well as) just take the lid off for the last 30 mins cooking to help some of the water evaporate.

Serves 6 using a 3.5L slow cooker

approx 500g chicken
2 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
1 ½ tbsp Mexican oregano
3 tsp chilli powder (I used a mixture of ancho, guajillo and chipotle)
2 garlic cloves, crushed
2 x 400g tins tomatoes
400g tin of black beans, drained and rinsed
340g tin sweetcorn, drained
2 peppers, sliced
300g chicken stock
3 spring onions, sliced
1 tbsp cornflour (if needed to thicken)

  1. Sprinkle the chicken with 1 tsp salt, ½ tsp pepper, oregano and the chilli powders

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  1. Add the tomatoes, black beans, sweetcorn, pepper, stock and spring onions to the slow cooker and stir to mix
  2. Lie the chicken on top of the ingredients and put the lid on the slow cooker

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  1. Cook for 10 hours on low or 6 hours on high
  2. 30 mins before serving, remove the chicken onto a board and shred using two forks. Return to the slow cooker and stir through

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  1. If there is too much liquid, in a glass mix the cornflour with just enough water to make a liquid and add this to the slow cooker and continue cooking for the 30 minutes
  2. Serve with rice sprinkled with grated cheese and spring onions  

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21 thoughts on “Slow Cooker Fiesta Chicken

  1. Elaine

    I shall have to try this as it looks and sounds so tasty. Where do you get Mwxican oregano or do you just use normal oregano?

    1. Cat Post author

      Hi 🙂

      I got mine from a stall in borough market but you can definitely just use normal oregano x

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  3. Michelle Frank | Flipped-Out Food

    Oh, my: I have taken tinned chiles for granted! It never occurred to me that they might be hard to find elsewhere. Of course, I love to roast my own and save them in the freezer—but the tinned variety comes in very handy in the dead of winter after I’ve used up my frozen stash. I’m like you: I buy chicken thighs in bulk when they go on sale, and then have an epic de-boning party with the hubster! I love this idea for slow-cooker chicken: lots of great flavors going on!

    1. Cat Post author

      You will not believe how jealous I am of you! It’s a real struggle to buy fresh chiles here too. In our supermarkets you can either buy a generic chili or if you’re lucky a bird’s eye chili! Glad I’m not the only one who has a massive de-boning session! I had this for dinner last night and I still really enjoy it! x

  4. Eb Gargano | Easy Peasy Foodie

    Oooh yum, lovely flavours!! I am totally with you on the chicken thighs thing…I love them so much more than chicken breast – more flavour, better texture and cheaper!! I love them bone in and skin on for roasting in the oven and bone out, skin off for stews, curries etc. Though I must say I normally buy the already deboned ones – I’m impressed at your dedication to deboning!! 😀 Eb x

  5. Lucy

    What a load of lovely flavours Cat, and it is so colourful too! I find chicken thighs much more flavourful and not as dry as well, am another who is impressed by your dedication to bone your own too, I hate doing that! Thanks a lot for joining in with the Slow Cooked Challenge.

    1. Cat Post author

      Haha not sure if it is dedication or stupidity! I’ve been meaning to join the Slow Cooked Challenge for a while so glad I finally remembered to! x

    1. Cat Post author

      Well that’s something I didn’t know! That’s great, leave the cornflour out and its totally diet food! x

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  7. Lou | Crumbs and Corkscrews

    This looks fabulous. I love my slow cooker and always looking for different ideas so will definitely give this a try. The only thing that I’ve tried in it that I didn’t like was lasagne, it went a bit mushy but stroganoff is great!

  8. Jessica

    Omg this looks so good! I’m a total slow-cooker convert too. It took me a while but now I can also see what everyone else has been talking about! Thanks for linking up to my World Food linky! x

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