Slow-Cooker Chicken Cacciatore

by amy on 10 January 2013

the other day, i stumbled across a recipe for chicken cacciatore. my mom used to make it for dinner regularly when i was growing up, + even though I hadn’t eaten it in years, i remembered loving the rich, veggie-packed, tomato-based sauce, served with tender chicken + lots of pasta. so, i decided to introduce my husband to it (he’d never tried it before) + make a version of my own at home.

chicken cacciatore is traditionally made by slow-simmering or braising, either on the stovetop or in the oven, but after reading through some recipe ideas, i realized it would be a great meal to adapt for the slow-cooker. y’all know i can’t resist a good slow-cooker recipe! so, i combined a couple different recipes, got out my crock-pot, + got cookin’! and the result? juicy, tender pieces of chicken, rich, flavorful peppers + onions in a tangy, well-seasoned marinara-based sauce. serve it with one of my all-time favorite foods, pasta, + i’m pretty much in comfort food heaven. if you’re a slow-cooker lover like i am, you have to try this fantastic recipe!

Slow-Cooker Chicken Cacciatore

serves 4, adapted from kitchen concoctions

ingredients

4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts, trimmed and diced
1 tablespoon dried italian seasoning
1 teaspoon sweet paprika
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 tablespoons olive oil, separated
1 yellow bell pepper, seeded + sliced into strips
1 orange bell pepper, seeded + sliced into strips
1 onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 (28 ounce) jar pasta sauce – (use a good-quality sauce, as this will be the base for your cacciatore sauce.)
1 bay leaf
1/2 pound pasta, cooked according to package directions
optional: freshly-chopped parsley + parmesan cheese, for serving

directions

toss the chicken pieces with the italian seasoning, paprika, salt, pepper, + red pepper. set aside while you prep/chop the rest of the ingredients.

note: you can certainly skip the next step of searing the chicken + partially cooking the vegetables, to save time. it *will* add lots of additional flavor to the dish, so if you have the extra time, it’s worth it!

heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. add the seasoned chicken, + cook until chicken has seared slightly on all sides. transfer chicken to the slow-cooker. in the same pan, add 1 more tablespoon of olive oil. add the peppers, onion, + garlic to the pan + cook for about 5 minutes, until the vegetables have softened slightly. transfer the mixture to the slow-cooker.

add the pasta sauce + bay leaf to the slow-cooker. (note: if you skipped the previous step of pre-searing/cooking the chicken + veggies, add the chicken, onions, peppers, garlic to the slow-cooker at this point, too) stir everything to combine. cover, + cook on low for 4-5 hours, until chicken is fall-apart tender.

when ready to serve, toss the prepared pasta with a bit of the cacciatore sauce first, then top with the chicken, peppers + onion mixture. top with freshly-chopped parsley + parmesan cheese, if desired.

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{ 63 comments… read them below or add one }

51 Mackenzie {SusieFreakingHomemaker} January 17, 2013 at 8:17 am

Um, you knocked this one out of the park my dear and the photographs are STUNNING.

52 Caroline Taylor January 18, 2013 at 7:23 am

This looks great, I haven’t had chicken cacciatore in ages! Good job you reminded me of it!

53 Kristi @ My San Francisco Kitchen January 18, 2013 at 5:35 pm

Lovely! And Slow-cooker recipes are great, especially during the week for me!

54 Sue January 19, 2013 at 2:09 pm

Happened across your website from a link at Housewife How To’s and am I ever happy I visited.

Love using my slow cooker and will be trying this chicken dish very soon.

Thanks for sharing!

55 amy January 20, 2013 at 8:29 am

So glad you found your way here, Sue! Hope you find some great recipes to try. =)

56 Nik@ABrownTable January 20, 2013 at 9:00 am

I love Cacciatore and your recipe makes it so easy yet tasty!

57 Mommyof2Girlz/StephD January 20, 2013 at 10:13 am

Yumm! One of my favorite meals and your version looks amazing!

58 Whitney @ The Newlywed Chefs January 20, 2013 at 7:01 pm

Amy, this recipe looks great! I love slow cooker recipes- you can get so much done while it’s cooking away. We’ll try this one soon for sure!

59 Sammie January 21, 2013 at 11:47 pm

Amy! Your chicken cacciatore looks FAB! I see that you’re making very good use of the slow cooker! Haven’t tried cooking pasta with slow cooker yet! Gotta change that soon! :D

60 Jen L | Tartine and Apron Strings January 22, 2013 at 12:33 am

This looks soooo good. Unfortunately for me, I’m going Paleo for some time until I lose the weight and “solve” some of my pain, vertigo, and inflammation issues brought by eating tons of junk and carbs + stress with 3 kids. I’m sure it’s not going to be a farewell to carbs forever because I just love them too much! In the meantime, I will enjoy your beautiful and drool-worthy pictures :)

61 amy January 22, 2013 at 8:42 am

I admit that sometimes a bit of a carbitarian myself, so it wouldn’t hurt me to work in some more paleo-friendly snacks and meals into my diet, either! =)

62 Jennifer March 26, 2013 at 11:39 am

Yay I knew I’d find the right time to make this…I have 2 chicken breasts, some eggplant marinara I made (& froze) over the summer and a fresh batch of Lazzaroli pasta. Sounds like the perfect Thursday night dinner before a long run on Friday! Thanks Amy ;-)

63 amy March 26, 2013 at 4:21 pm

Oooh, your version with the eggplant marinara and lazzaroli pasta already sounds SO good. I hope it turns out awesome for you – do report back! =)

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