There are only 5 ingredients in this healthy, slow cooker jerk chicken recipe.
This is recipe 2 out of 5 in my 5-part series. I posted the first recipe, my slow cooker Italian chicken a couple posts back. As I stated in that post, I’m keeping the ingredients in this series to 5 or less to show you that slow cooking can create healthy, very flavorful yet very simple dishes. I love Caribbean food as you can probably tell from my posts. I make some sort of variation of Caribbean food fairly frequently whether it be a beef stew or island thyme salmon. The idea for this came to me fairly quickly; black beans and corn go great combined together. I knew I wanted to use cilantro too but I didn’t have any fresh. I did however have some frozen cilantro in my freezer. I let it thaw a but before throwing it in. That’s by the way why the color of the cilantro is a dark green versus its usual vibrant green. For this recipe you will need your favorite jerk seasoning. I used my fave, spicy Jamaican jerk by Caribeque. If you don’t have a favorite jerk seasoning on hand here is one for you from CookingLight.com:
1 tablespoon dried parsley
1 tablespoon dried onion flakes
2 to 3 teaspoons ground red pepper
2 teaspoons garlic powder
2 teaspoons ground thyme
2 teaspoons brown sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon grated fresh nutmeg
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 teaspoon ground allspice
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground star anise
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Combine all ingredients in a bowl, stirring well. Store in an airtight container up to 4 weeks.
This time I did something I rarely do – I browned the skin-on thighs first. Boneless, skinless chicken thighs are my favorite cut of poultry to use in a slow cooker. I like skin-on too but with skin-on thighs I prefer them done in the oven so the skin gets nice & crispy. Yes, I could broil the thighs after they are done in the slow cooker to achieve the same crispiness but I know ME which means I know I’m not going to do that. Hence the heavy browning you see on the thighs pre-cooking. I rarely take the time to brown my meat so I thought I’d show you a rare peek into my test kitchen. I browned the thighs in 2 tsp of ghee. For the corn and beans you can use fresh or canned. If you use fresh be sure to pre-soak them overnight first. If you choose to go the canned route (nothing wrong with that by the way), be sure to drain and rinse them first.
I have to admit that while this is one of the recipes that is great with 5 ingredients…but it’s better with 6. The sixth being one juiced lime. As you can see, I cheated. I was going to use the lime as garnish but I juiced half on top of the chicken prior to serving. So technically I ended up using 6 ingredients in this but fundamentally there are just 5. Other add-ins you could use include red onion, bell pepper and jalapeno.
- 2 lbs chicken thighs
- 15 ounces black beans
- 15 ounces corn
- 1 tbsp jerk seasoning
- ¼ cup fresh cilantro
- Add beans and corn to bottom of the slow cooker.
- Season chicken with jerk seasoning and add to slow cooker.
- Top with fresh cilantro.
- Cook HIGH 2.5-3 hours.
- Optional: brown chicken in 1-2 tsp ghee or oil over medium heat prior to adding to the slow cooker.