Cooking is much easier with a one-year old than it was with a baby. It got better when she was able to sit upright and play with toys or watch me from her high chair. Now that she can toddle into and out of the kitchen, I can get much more done!
Still, I prefer to cook things that require minimal effort and time, things that I don’t have to focus on. This usually means using my slow cooker. Deb at Smitten Kitchen posted the perfect recipe earlier this year – a chicken chili made entirely in the slow cooker. No soaking beans. No browning meat.
I love this recipe. I just throw all the ingredients in the crockpot and let it cook until dinner. I only have to cut up an onion and a jalapeno (if I use a whole pepper instead of chili or pepper flakes, which I usually don’t). I don’t cut up my chicken first; after 10 hours in the slow cooker, I easily break it up with a sturdy serving spoon. And this chili even turns out if I forget that I’m out of onions when I make it (oops).
This was a great chili and a perfect slow cooker meal. It was delicious and not too spicy (as long as I added the amount of jalapeno I wanted). As a chili, it’s hearty and healthy. This is way, way better any of my attempts to make a chili with ground turkey. This recipe is not as tomatoey as when I make a chili on the stove, but that’s not a big deal. Leftovers are great. And my one-year-old absolutely devours it, meal after meal.
- 2 pounds boneless chicken breast (I never need to cut mine, but cut yours into large pieces if you're worried)
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic (2 cloves)
- 1 tablespoon ground cumin
- 1½ teaspoons dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon salt, plus more to taste (was 2, but it's been too salty recently)
- 1-2 chopped jalapenos, or some small amount of jalapeno or red pepper flakes, or chili powder to taste
- 1 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes
- 2⅔ cups small dried beans (I used half black beans and half small red beans; no need to soak if your slow cooker cooks well)
- 5⅓ cup water
- Toppings of your choice
- Combine all ingredients in a 6-quart slow cooker. Cook on high heat for 4½ to 5 hours, or on low for 8-10 hours. Stir and pull chicken apart with forks or use your serving spoon to divide it into chunks.