This delicious slow cooker chicken stew recipe is perfect for those who crave a hearty and satisfying dinner on a cold day. With tender chicken, red kidney beans, and savory herbs, this crock pot chicken stew is a comfort food classic that is easy to make and perfect for a busy weeknight.
Stew has been around as long as we have had the ability to cook in some kind of pot. Stew is a hearty and comforting meal that typically includes meat or poultry, vegetables, and a flavorful broth. Stew recipes are incredibly versatile and can be flavorful and healthy main dishes.
This slow cooker chicken stew recipe is packed with tender chicken thighs, flavorful vegetables, and kidney beans in a rich broth, seasoned with fragrant herbs and spices.
Slow cooker recipes are easy to make because they need minimal prep, so they are perfect for busy weeknights or lazy weekends. If you're looking for a delicious and effortless chicken stew recipe, this one works!
• Olive Oil - Or use vegetable oil.
• Onion - Or you can use onion powder, or shallots.
• Celery - Or use fennel, or other veggies.
• Boneless Skinless Chicken Thighs - You can substitute boneless skinless chicken breasts for the chicken thighs if you prefer.
• Salt and Black Pepper - Staple seasonings.
• Bay Leaf - Bay leaves add a subtle herbal mintyness and bitterness that brightens the heaviness of stew. It won't taste minty or bitter, it's very subtle.
• Fresh Thyme, Rosemary, Dried Sage - Fresh herbs and/or dried herbs can be used. Poultry seasoning or Italian seasoning can be used if you don't have thyme, rosemary, or sage.
• Fresh Garlic - Adds a great savory flavor. Use jarred garlic, minced, or garlic powder in place of fresh.
• Chicken Broth - I normally use a low sodium broth or chicken stock, but you can use regular broth and adjust the salt in the recipe to taste.
• Canned Red Kidney Beans - You can use any canned beans that you like.
• Yukon Gold Potatoes - If you don't have Yukon Golds, just use any type of potato you have on hand, red potatoes, baby potatoes, or russet potatoes. Keep in mind that different varieties may have different cook times.
• Better Than Bouillon® - Enhances the chicken flavor. If you don't have chicken Better Than Bouillon®, you can substitute 2 chicken bouillon cubes instead.
• Corn Starch and Cold Water - To make a corn starch slurry that will thicken the stew. This is optional.
• Fresh Kale - I add this after the stew finishes cooking. You can also add fresh baby spinach, canned green beans, frozen peas or other frozen vegetables.
- There are many ways to make a crock pot chicken stew recipe. You can create unique flavor profiles by switching up the ingredients. Here are a few variations you may want to try:
- Creamy Chicken Stew: Make a creamy white sauce with butter, a little flour, and half and half or heavy cream and you'll have a delicious white chicken stew.
- Spicy Chicken Stew: If you like a little spicy heat, add some diced jalapeños, oregano, chili powder, and cumin to your chicken stew in place of the rosemary and thyme. You can also use hot sauce or cayenne pepper for an extra kick.
- Coconut Chicken Stew: Use coconut milk as the base for your chicken stew, and add some ginger, lemongrass, and curry powder for an Asian-inspired flavor. You can also include some diced sweet potatoes and bell peppers for a pop of color and sweetness.
Vegetarian and Vegan Stew Options
• Vegetable Stew: Omit the meat and add a variety of veggies, including carrots, onions, potatoes, beans, and mushrooms. Use a flavorful vegetable broth.
• Lentil Stew: Lentils add plant-based protein and a thick consistency. Vegan lentil stew features green or brown lentils and vegetables like bell peppers, carrots, onions, and celery.
• Chickpea Stew: Another protein-packed vegan stew option includes chickpeas, spinach, sweet potatoes, and onions.
• Mushroom Stew: This meaty-textured vegetarian stew combines earthy mushrooms with vegetables like onions, carrots, and potatoes.
• Vegan Beef Stew: Using seitan or other meat substitutes can create a similar texture and flavor to chicken stew, with carrots, potatoes, garlic, peppers, and onions.
1. Heat a skillet over medium heat. When the pan is hot, add the olive oil, onion, celery, and carrot. Sauté until the vegetables are softened. Then add them to the slow cooker crock.
2. Add the raw chicken pieces to the crock, then add the beans and potatoes.
3. Add the salt, pepper, sage, herbs, and bay leaf. Pour in the chicken broth.
4. Add the garlic, then stir in the chicken bouillon.
5. Press the ingredients into soup with a spoon. Cover the slow cooker with a lid and cook on low heat for 5-6 hours, or until the chicken is cooked through (165°F internal temperature) and the potatoes are tender.
6. Stir in a few handfuls of fresh kale.
7. Remove the bay leaf, then mix the corn starch and water together in a small bowl to make a cornstarch slurry. Stir this mixture into the stew to thicken it slightly .
8. Cover and let the stew cook for an additional hour to thicken.
9. Before serving, garnish the finished dish with fresh parsley (optional).
What to Serve with Crockpot Chicken Stew?
This slow cooker chicken stew is a complete and hearty one-pot meal, but you can serve it with some additional sides to make it an even more filling and well-rounded meal. Here are a few ideas:
• Crusty Bread: Serve the stew with some crusty bread on the side for dipping into the flavorful broth. Dinner rolls or biscuits are also great bread options.
• Rice: Serve the stew over a bed of rice to soak up the delicious sauce and add some extra bulk to the meal.
• Salad: Serve the stew alongside a fresh green salad for a contrasting crunch and some added nutrition.
Whatever you choose to serve with this hearty stew, you will enjoy the comforting and satisfying flavors of this hearty slow cooker meal.
More Easy Slow Cooker Dinner Recipes
Storage for Leftover Slow Cooker Chicken Stew
Once the stew has cooled to room temperature, transfer it to an airtight container and store it in the refrigerator for 3-4 days.
Freezing Leftover Stew
You can also freeze the stew for up to 3 months. To freeze, let the stew cool completely, then transfer it to a freezer-safe container or plastic bag.
Reheating the Leftovers
When you're ready to reheat the stew, you can do so on the stove top or in the microwave. To reheat on the stovetop, simply heat the stew in a pot over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until it's heated through.
To reheat in the microwave, transfer the stew to a microwave-safe bowl and microwave on high in 1-minute intervals, stirring in between, until it's heated through.
Chicken stew is a comforting and hearty dish that's perfect for cool weather or anytime you're in the mood for something warm and satisfying.
If you make this delicious chicken stew in the slow cooker, please let me know! You can leave a comment with a star rating below. I'd love to know how you liked it!
- 6 quart Slow Cooker
- 3 Tablespoons Olive Oil
- 1 Onion chopped
- 1 cup Chopped Celery
- 1 ½ pounds Chicken Thighs* boneless-skinless
- 1 teaspoon Salt
- ¾ teaspoon Black Pepper
- 1 Bay Leaf
- 1 Tablespoon Chopped Rosemary
- 1 teaspoon Thyme
- ½ teaspoon Dried Sage
- 4-5 cloves Garlic pressed or minced
- 3 cups Chicken Broth
- 1 15-ounce can Red Kidney Beans rinsed and drained
- 1 pound Gold Potatoes cut in 2" pieces
- 2 Tablespoons Better Than Bouillon
- 2 Tablespoons Corn Starch
- 2 Tablespoons Cold Water
- Fresh Kale (optional)
- Heat a skillet on medium heat. When the pan is hot, add the olive oil, onion, celery, and carrot. Sauté until veggies are softened. Then add them to the slow cooker crock.
- Add the chicken, then add the beans and potatoes.
- Add the salt, pepper, sage, herbs, bay leaf, and pour in the broth.
- Add the garlic, then stir in the bouillon, and place the lid on the cooker.
- Cook on Low for 5-6 hours, or until the chicken is 165°F internal temperature, and the potatoes are tender.
- Remove the bay leaf and mix the corn starch and water together and stir into the stew. Let cook for 1 more hour to thicken a little.
- Before serving, stir in a few handfuls of fresh kale and let it soften before serving.