Slow Cooker Applesauce Chicken

by Erin, The $5 Dinner Mom on October 13, 2009

applesauce-chicken

In honor of the release of Stephanie’s Make it Fast Cook it Slow Cookbook, I thought it only fitting to make a recipe from her site tonight!  I found this recipe in the book…and knew the boys would love it.  So I made it.

And they loved it. Not only did they ask for more  chicken, they asked for more squash too!  Even had 3rds on the squash!!!

Oh.  And I try to make meals that have some “color” in them…doesn’t always happen.  And I don’t usually notice until I go to take a photograph.  Tonight’s meal might not be terribly colorful, but it does contain something from each of the 4 food groups and is quite “balanced”. My high school nutrition teacher would be proud! 

Applesauce (natural). Acorn Sqush. Brown Rice. Chicken.

This was delicious. Thanks Steph!!!

Ingredients
2 large chicken breasts (about 1.5 lbs.) ($2.28) On sale for $1.49/lb at a local grocer this week!!!
Salt and pepper, sprinkled over chicken
1 tsp garlic powder ($.05)
1 1/2 cup applesauce ($.50)
1 Tbsp apple cidar vinegar ($.05)
1 tsp cinnamon ($.05)
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes (optional)
1 medium acorn squash (about 2 lbs.) ($1.02) Unadvertised sale of $.49/lb!
Butter or margarine ($.20)
3-4 Tbsp brown sugar, maple syrup or honey ($.25)
1 cup brown rice ($.40)
1/2 cup apple juice ($.20)

**Note: Use split breast chicken, chicken thighs or drumsticks to make this meal even cheaper!!!

Directions
1. Spray slow cooker with non-stick cooking spray. Place chicken breasts into base of slow cooker. Sprinkle chicken breasts with salt and pepper and garlic powder.
2. In small bowl, combine applesauce, cidar vinegar and cinnamon. Pour over the chicken breasts. Set slow cooker on high and cook for 6 hours, or low for 8 hours.
3. Cook acorn squash, same method as you cook butternut squash. Takes about 45 minutes to bake, so start at the same time as you start the rice to get them both on the table at the same time!
4. In medium saucepan, bring 2 cups of water to a boil.  Add 1 cup of brown rice and 1/2 cup of apple juice.  Bring to boil, then reduce heat and cover.  Simmer for 45-50 minutes, or until brown rice is fluffy.
5. Serve Slow Cooker Applesauce Chicken with Sweetened Acorn Sqaush and Brown Rice

Cost $5.00

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{ 24 comments… read them below or add one }

Susie's Homemade October 14, 2009 at 5:54 am

That sounds really good! I might have to add that to a menu soon:-)

Reply

Karen October 14, 2009 at 9:59 am

it looks really good! I just need the apple juice. Do I need to have the slow cooker? or can I use something else?

Reply

Erin, The $5 Dinner Mom October 14, 2009 at 12:14 pm
Karen October 14, 2009 at 12:25 pm

I do have a pot that I used for a pot roast so that might work. :)

I love tender chicken…yum! I plan on also making fried chicken with biscuits this week or next…just need to figure out the coating. :)

Reply

Beth in Ohio October 15, 2009 at 11:24 am

@Karen, I just printed some recipes this morning, from youvegotsupper.com. I saw 2 yummy-sounding coatings for fried (or oven fried) chicken, and maybe one of them looks good to you too!

Idea 1: Chicken Dijon; use 1/4 cup melted butter, 1/4 cup olive oil, 3 Tbs Dijon mustard, 1/4 tsp basil, 1/2 tsp salt & 1/2 tsp pepper all mixed together. Coat your chicken pieces in that, then in 2 cups fine breadcrumbs. Fry or bake.

Idea 2: Ritzy Cracker Chicken; marinate chicken pieces in 2 cups Italian dressing (reg or lite) for 3-4 hours. Remove chicken from marinade, and shake in ziploc bag with 1 cup grated/shredded parmesan & 1 1/4 cups crushed ritz crackers. Fry or bake.

Reply

Susan October 14, 2009 at 2:40 pm

I just happen to have an acorn squash and homemade applesauce in my fridge! I am making the exact dinner (brown rice,too!) and it smells wonderful in here! Made Apple Crisp this morning so will have that with vanilla ice cream. LOVE your site! Found it by accident a couple weeks ago and have been back daily. Thanks for all the great recipes and info!

Reply

Beth in Ohio October 15, 2009 at 11:34 am

This recipe sounds so great! I’ve printed it, and will make it this weekend. Apple juice is on my shopping list, and I have the rest of the ingredients already. Yeah!

Reply

Frank Weir October 16, 2009 at 11:18 am

I’m in Michigan and apple cider is very popular here this time of year. I wonder how cider would do replacing the apple juice?

Reply

Erin, The $5 Dinner Mom October 16, 2009 at 11:47 am

@Frank Weir,

Would work just the same! Let us know how it turns out!

Reply

Frank Weir October 16, 2009 at 1:24 pm

@Erin, The $5 Dinner Mom,
Erin…thanks for your reply! This is a great site! I hope to make some of the recipes. I’m not much of a cook but I’d like to learn. Our kids are grown and my wife is more than burned out on cooking. I’m not so worried about the cost, but I like how easy your dinners are! That’s a big plus for an inexperienced cook like me. And the shopping lists are a big help too for sure.

frank weir

Reply

Tina Chase October 16, 2009 at 3:26 pm

Hi Erin,

I just discovered your site today through a Facebook post by Mary Hunt (Debt Proof Living). I’ve become a fan of yours on Facebook too!

Anyway, maybe a silly question but if I were to substitute bone-in chicken would you recommend removing the skin first or would it cook okay with it? I don’t cook in the crockpot very often, and even less often chicken that is not boneless/skinless (unless roasting a whole chicken). However, there was a great sale on chicken legs/thighs a while ago and they are just sitting in my freezer waiting to be part of a delicious recipe. I think this would be quite tasty to use up that chicken! LOL

Thanks!
Tina

Reply

Erin, The $5 Dinner Mom October 16, 2009 at 4:04 pm

@Tina Chase,

You could certainly use the bone-in chicken with the skin! Would add some flavor to the meal. And save those bones and boil them to make homemade chicken stock too!

Reply

Beth in Ohio October 19, 2009 at 9:30 am

I ended up not making the Slow Cooker Applesauce Chicken over the weekend, but it is on my list to make this week. I am substituting pork country-style ribs for the chicken, and am anticipating delicious success. I love that you can do that with chicken & pork recipes: substitute chicken for pork & vice versa!

Reply

dj January 17, 2010 at 11:08 pm

Slow Cooker newbie here. If I double the chicken, do I double everything else too? What do I do with the time?

Reply

Erin, The $5 Dinner Mom January 17, 2010 at 11:29 pm

@dj,

Yes, double the ingredients, not the time.

Reply

dj January 31, 2010 at 10:14 pm

What does the vinegar do? Is it necessary? My family loved this recipe but they didn’t like the smell of it cooking and I assume it is probably the vinegar. Can I leave it out? Or would apple juice serve the same purpose?

Reply

Erin, The $5 Dinner Mom January 31, 2010 at 10:44 pm

@dj,

You could certainly leave out the vinegar. I add it in to take some of the edge off the “chicken flavor”

Reply

orville March 23, 2010 at 6:44 pm

ok, i loved the chicken. however, a word of advice…. use large breasts. do not use tenderloins!!!! i used both thinking that my kids could have the smaller pieces, but the little ones DRIED OUT bad. :( the larger ones were great though. also, we had baked sweet potato casserole instead of acorn squash. mmmmmmmm. thanks for the recipe!

Reply

Erin, The $5 Dinner Mom March 23, 2010 at 7:23 pm

@orville,

True…the tenderloins usually bake/cook in half the time!

Reply

Christine Milczarek December 14, 2010 at 4:38 pm

I have the chicken set in the crockpot, but I don’t have butternut squash so I’m skipping that. I’m questioning whether or not to do the rice with apple juice. It sounds like this meal with turn out super sweet. Did it? I’m thinking of serving green beans with this meal, but do you think we will be missing out if we skip the apple juice in the rice? Thanks!

Reply

Dana October 30, 2011 at 2:15 pm

This is the second recipe I have tried and again it was very bland. It had no flavor to it.
You would think that the applesauce would make it sweet but it wasn’t.
Thanks for the recipes but it seems like they are not my taste.

Reply

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