This Slow Cooker Whole Chicken gives you flavorful and juicy rotisserie chicken with minimal prep and a few pantry staples. Great for meal prep, easy lunches and dinners/
Suitable for Paleo, Keto, Low Carb and Gluten-Free diets. Weight Watchers points also included.
I looooove making whole chicken and I really enjoy making it in the slow cooker. My home fills with the delicious smell of herbs, and for dinner we have a perfectly tender chicken to cut into. Yeap, whole chicken in the slow cooker is easy and so worth the wait.
A crockpot just makes everything sooooo easy. Add your ingredients to the crockpot and it does all of the work and only makes one dish. It’s a great tool to have in your kitchen.
When your crockpot whole chicken is finished cooking to temperature you can make a homemade chicken gravy with the cooking juices. The mini chefs love using the whisk to make the gravy.
It is better than store bought rotisserie chicken and you know exactly what is in your food. Just like with this Air Fryer Whole Chicken.
The good thing about this absolutely delicious whole chicken in crock pot recipe is it’s highly versatile. Season it how you’d like, remove the skin for a leaner meal, skip the browning step if you’re short on time – yeap, there are lots of ways to make this recipe your version of ‘perfection.’
Why Make Whole Chicken in the Slow Cooker
Crockpot Whole Chicken is a great way to make a tender chicken in 4 hours. This method won’t heat up your home like the oven can, and the spices you use to season your chicken will develop rich flavors with slow cooking.
It’s perfectly safe to make, as long as the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees F / 74 degrees C which you can check using a meat thermometer.
Also, this is great to make for a party and you’re going to be low on oven space. Everyone is always fighting for their 40 minutes in the oven to get their dips and sides ready to be eaten and you’ll be able to just show up, plug in and go mingle with your friends.
Want to make your meal prep even easier? Then check out this collection of awesome Dump and Start Crockpot Recipes for all sorts of stress-free dinner ideas.
Why Make This Recipe
- Frugal – Made with budget-friendly ingredients, a little chicken goes a long way with this recipe.
- Easy – Just a few minutes of hands-on prep time and hands off cook time to whip this up.
- Feeds a Crowd – just the thing for potlucks, game day gatherings, parties, and family feasts. Especially with some Crockpot Mashed Potatoes or really easy Smothered Potatoes.
- Versatile – This recipe is so versatile, and you can add any flavor profile to your meat.
- Meal plan friendly – it is a great recipe for meal prep as you can eat it all week long.
- Dump and Start – Simply toss it into the crockpot, start it, and walk away. Dinner will be ready when you are!
- Herb and Spices – this uses a mixture Italian Seasoning, ground nutmeg, ground coriander, paprika, minced garlic, salt and black pepper.
- Oil – just use your favorite olive oil or rapeseed oil.
- Chicken – this recipe calls for a whole chicken, with the giblets removed, washed and patted dry.
Ready to make Whole Chicken in Slow Cooker? Gather up those ingredients and I’ll show you….
How To Cook A Whole Chicken In A Crock Pot
Get the complete ingredients list and instructions from the recipe card below.
- In a small bowl mix together the paprika, garlic, coriander, herbs, nutmeg, salt, pepper and the olive oil into a paste.
- Pat chicken dry with paper towels, place in a bowl and rub the spice mixture paste all over including in the cavity.
- Place the seasoned chicken inside the slow cooker breast side up and cook on high for 3.5 – 4 hrs.
- Remove the chicken from the Crockpot and set on a plate.
- Scrape any bits stuck to the bottom of the pot from frying with a silicon or wooden spoon.
- Let the chicken rest for 10 mins before serving.
- For crispy skin, brown your chicken under the broiler for about 5 – 10 mins.
Chef’s Tip: It is important to make sure you check the internal temperature of the chicken using a meat thermometer. Guidelines state that the meat is done when the internal temperature reaches at least 165 degrees F / 74 degrees C. So, it is important to continue cooking if the internal temperature is less than 165 degrees F / 74 degrees C.
Make it in the Instant Pot
If you’re short on time you can pull out your Instant Pot and have your whole chicken cooked to perfection in 45 mins. Check out my post The easiest Instant Pot Whole Chicken Recipe.
Make It In The Oven
If you want to make this in the oven, check out my Nutmeg Orange Chicken recipe.
Make It on the Grill
For grilled whole chicken, check out my Grilled Whole Chicken recipe post.
Crockpot Whole Chicken Recipe Tips
- Cook at a high temperature to ensure your chicken is cooked all the way through. You want your meat to reach an inner temperature of 165 degrees F / 74 degrees C on an instant read thermometer.
- If you want a crispy skin then crisp the chicken under your broiler once cooked for 5-10 minutes.
- Check out the How to Make Homemade Chicken Gravy section below with step by step instructions to make some.
This tasty recipe is great as is, but you can totally customise it to your taste. This recipe is so versatile and you can add any flavour profile to your crockpot whole chicken.
- Add herbs – feel free to add fresh herbs like fresh rosemary, fresh thyme or dried thyme, oregano and more
- Add heat – with things like cayenne pepper, red pepper flakes, hot sauce, and more.
- Butter – you can swap out the olive oil for some melted butter.
- Seasoning Ideas – I love adding in treats like smoked paprika, onion powder, garlic powder, Poultry Seasoning, Tuscan seasoning, and more. It will work well with any flavors, like Mexican spices for chicken tacos, or Indian spices for kabobs.
- Here are some of my favorite things to use to make this delicious dish. Do you have any of them already?
Elevate Your Whole Chicken in the Slow Cooker For The Best Results
The key to making Slow Cooker Roast Chicken turn out more like a traditional roasted chicken is to elevate it off the bottom of the cooker. This will provide continuous air flow to mimic a rotisserie-style cooking process and will help your whole chicken stay in one piece.
There are a few different ways you can create a base to cook your meat on. Try using the trivet that came with your Instant Pot (if you have one) or another small wire rack.
You can also make a stand out of 3-4 crumpled foil balls, or simply cut large, 1-inch tall chunks of onion or quartered potatoes to use as a way to raise the chicken up so that it stays out of the liquid.
How To Make Homemade Chicken Gravy
Trust me, you’re going to want to make a delicious homemade gravy once your crockpot whole chicken is cooked through. It’s so easy to make gravy with your chicken juices drippings and worth the little bit of effort with whisking.
- Remove chicken from slow cooker and turn on to high. If required, add broth to create about 2 cups of liquid.
- In a small bowl, combine 4 tablespoons cornstarch with 4 tablespoons water to create a slurry.
- Whisk about 2/3 of the cornstarch into the drippings/broth and let cook on high. Depending on the amount of liquid, you may need to add more of the cornstarch slurry to reach the desired consistency. Let it cook for at least 5 minutes before serving.
- Taste and season with salt and pepper.
- You may even add some more chicken broth or chicken stock if you want to make more gravy.
- You can also fry some onions first to add more flavor to the sauce if you prefer.
What To Do With Leftovers
Leftover chicken recipes are my favorite thing. Use this to make;
- Chicken salad.
- Chicken tacos.
- Make chicken soup with veggies and chicken broth.
- Chicken Quesadillas.
- Refrigerate – Keep completely cooled chicken in an airtight container in your refrigerator for up to 3 days
- Freezing– I did some research on how to go about freezing a whole cooked chicken. Some people do it all the time. Others don’t recommend it, as they say the process of freezing cooked bones can make the meat bitter and gritty.
- If you do decide to freeze this in its entirety, it is very important to completely thaw it in the fridge (minimum of 4 hours) before reheating and serving.
- You can also freeze this by removing the meat from the bones and then freezing. Whatever method you choose, follow these steps below to make freezing and thawing super easy.
- Let the meat cool down completely. Carefully wrap the whole bird in a layer of plastic wrap and then cover it completely with aluminum foil. Or, remove the meat from the bones and then transfer it into freezer bags.
- Squeeze out all the extra air and seal the bags. Label the bags and then lay them flat in the freezer and store for up to 3 months.
- To Thaw – Remove the meat from the freezer the night before it is needed and let it fully thaw in the fridge.
- If meat has been removed from the bones, transfer the thawed chicken into a bowl and reheat in a microwave.
- Or, transfer the thawed whole chicken onto a rimmed baking sheet and reheat in the oven.
I loooooove crispy chicken skin as much as anybody but there’s an extra step. Once your meat is finished cooking, simply place it in your broiler for 5-10 minutes for crispy skin before serving
Wondering how long to cook whole chicken in slow cooker? An average 3-4 pound chicken usually takes 3-4 hours on high heat, or 7-8 hours on low.
Chicken is considered cooked and safe to eat when the internal temperature reaches at least 165 degrees F / 74 degrees C.
The cooking time will also depend on the make and model of your slow cooker, so be sure to check your manual for instructions.
For food safety concerns, avoid cooking frozen chicken on the crockpot. If you have a frozen whole chicken you should let it thaw out first before cooking.
Yes, it is possible to leave chicken in the slow cooker too long, resulting in overcooked, dried out and tough meat. That’s why it’s important to keep your eye on the time and check for doneness using a meat thermometer.
What Are The Benefits of Slow Cooking
I love every meal that has come out of my slow cooker. Using a crockpot isn’t beneficial to every cooking situation but it’s an incredibly useful kitchen tool to own. Here’s why:
- Tougher meats like chuck and less lean meats are tenderized during the longer cooking process.
- More oven space. If you can create a dish in your crockpot, you’ll free up much needed oven space during holiday parties. A slow cooker also travels well! No need to fight over oven space at your potluck if you use a slow cooker.
- Development of flavor. You’ll develop more flavors in your ingredients during the longer cooking time. Perfect for soups, stews and casseroles.
- Slow cookers use less energy and won’t heat up your home like an oven will. My slow cooker gets a lot of use in the summer when I just don’t want to turn the oven on.
- Less dishes. You know I have no desire to scrub a bunch of pots and pans. Most crockpot meals are set it and forget it till supper time.
More Slow Cooker Chicken Recipes
Looking for more EASY, delicious, and flavorful crock pot chicken recipes? I’ve got you covered. Check out my full collection of Crockpot recipes.
Check out my other awesome slow cooker recipes!
Weight Watchers Points
There are 7 Blue Plan SmartPoints in each serving of this.
Thank you for reading my Crock Pot Whole Chicken recipe post. And please come visit again as I continue to slice, dice, and dream up affordable Air Fryer recipes, Instant Pot Recipes, Southern Recipes, and more. Thanks for supporting Recipes from a Pantry, food blog
Originally published Sept 2018. Updated October 2023.
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Slow Cooker Whole Chicken
Make a perfectly tender whole chicken in your slow cooker.
In a small bowl mix together the paprika, garlic, coriander, herbs, nutmeg, salt, pepper and the olive oil into a paste.
Put the chicken in a bowl and rub the paste all over, including in the cavity.
Place inside the Crockpot and cook on high for 3 ½ – 4 hours.
Make sure you check the internal temperature of the chicken using a thermometer. Guidelines state meat is done once the internal temperature reaches at least 165 degrees / 74 degrees C.
Remove the chicken from the Slow Cooker and set aside on a plate.
Let the chicken rest for 10 minutes before carving and serving.
For crispy skin, brown the chicken under the broiler for about 5-10 minutes.
- Cook at a high temperature to ensure your chicken is cooked all the way through.
- You want your chicken to reach an internal temperature of 165 degrees F / 74 degrees C.
- If you want crispy skin on your whole chicken, use your broiler once the chicken is cooked in your Crockpot for 5-10 mins.
- Check out the ‘How to Make Homemade Chicken Gravy’ section above with step by step instructions to compliment your meat.
- Storage – keep leftovers in an airtight container inside the fridge up to 5 days.
- There are 7 WW Blue Plan SmartPoints in each serving of this.
Calories: 352kcal | Protein: 26g | Fat: 26g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Cholesterol: 104mg | Sodium: 98mg | Potassium: 278mg | Vitamin A: 385IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 18mg | Iron: 1.5mg