Don’t you just love eating that cheap, MSG-heavy Asian food at the mall? When I was little, it was my favorite meal. Now, it smells and tastes good…but doesn’t feel good….immediately after.
I’m not sure what, exactly, makes that mall food so evil for one’s entire body. Especially when you can easily make those foods at home for less money and without any of the repercussions. Anyhow, this meal offers all the pleasure of Asian flavors in a way that is guilt-free and risk-averse.
My Slow Cooker Honey Sesame Chicken makes me feel like such a mom. It involves a Crock Pot, is healthy, makes large quantities and is pleasing for little people. I even found it on some mom blog that posts recipes on Pinterest. But in my never-ending pursuit of slow-cooker recipes, I charged ahead into momland and will never come back.
My only complaint is that the maximum cooking time is 4 hours. This working gal needs something that can slow-cook for at LEAST 9 hours, preferably 10. Do most people just come home at lunch and put the Crock Pot on? People take lunch breaks? I don’t get it. So I made this over the weekend, when a rainy day kept me inside with other endeavors: baking sandwich bread, pasta frittatas and a lovely spicy pork dish with black-eyed peas.
I made a few adaptations to this (I will definitely be trying more of their recipes!)…
Slow Cooker Honey Sesame Chicken
- 1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breasts (thighs would be fine too)
- Salt and pepper
- 1 cup honey
- 1/2 cup soy sauce
- 1/2 cup diced onion
- 1/4 cup ketchup (surprise! don’t judge – just do it)
- 2 tablespoons canola oil
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1 T toasted sesame oil
- 4 teaspoons cornstarch dissolved in 6 Tablespoons water
- Sesame seeds, for garnish
- Chopped green onion, for garnish
Season both sides of chicken lightly with salt and pepper, place flat into Crock Pot. Scatter onion over the top. In a small bowl, whisk together honey, soy sauce, ketchup, oil, garlic, sesame oil and pepper flakes. Pour over chicken. Cook on low for 3-4 hours or on high 1 1/2 – 2 1/2 hours, or until chicken is cooked through and shreds easily (mine cooked 3.5 hours). Remove chicken from crock pot, leave sauce. Dissolve 4 teaspoons of cornstarch in 6 tablespoons of water and pour into crock pot. Stir to combine with sauce. Replace lid and cook sauce on high for ten more minutes or until slightly thickened. Shred chicken into bite size pieces, then return to pot and toss with sauce before serving. Serve, sprinkled with sesame seeds and scallions.
The honey plus ketchup add the right sticky sweetness that you expect from a good teriyaki-type dish. So yummy! Sweet and savory and satisfying. Wonderful over rice, as we had it, or noodles. Even in taco shells would be good.
I am a huge slow cooker fan and will definitely try this recipe. Thanks, Anna 🙂
PS: I find that most of the long-cooking recipes involve beef. I did, however, recently cook a tex-mex chicken stew on low for nine hours (the recipe said 4-6 hours) and it still tasted great when I got home from work. I put the chicken thighs in frozen for that recipe hoping it would buy me some extra time, and, who knows, maybe that worked!
Leila, good idea with the frozen chicken! It’s true, beef tends to be the only tough enough to handle that much cooking time. I’ve had some great pork recipes that can do it, though!
Maybe you could make it the night before and then just reheat the next evening for your dinner. This looks great and I’m anxious to try it. Thanks for sharing!
The first time I made this, I cooked it on low for about 9 hours with partially frozen chicken breast. I would not recommend doing this. This recipe cook time definitely needs to be followed. Cooking to long made the sauce very dark and it tasted burnt. The second time I made it, I followed the cook times and it turned out great.
Good tip, Lisa, thanks!
Sounds yummy…definitely on the weekend try out list 🙂 I agree with the frozen chicken…i’ve done it with many different chicken recipes and it seems to work well in my experience. It usually gives you a good 8 hours. I’ll comment if i try it that way . Cooking the night before is a great idea too. Thanks!!
have this slow cooker now…didn’t have enough honey so i substituted some real maple syrup and a bit of light corn syrup. also made my own sesame oil. excited to see how it turns out. thanks for the recipe 🙂
I have found that newer slow cookers tend to be set much higher so they do cook things like chicken much faster. This is the first recipe I have found that has realistic cooking times for chicken using the cooker I have. I look forward to trying this tomorrow–it sounds really good!
I made this for dinner yesterday and it was absolutely devine!! I added a piece of ginger to it though and it was still great!! Tasted even better today. Even passed it on to a friend…..keep up the good work
I made this for dinner tonight. It was DELISH!!!! Big hit with everyone. This is definately be in my recipe box. HIGHLY recommend!!!!
They have slow cookers that are programmable with timers…I just received one from my wedding registry. They are a godsend to working people who love coming home to a warm meal but can’t be home 4 hours before to turn the slow cooker on. If you frequently cook in a slow cooker it is a worthwhile investment!
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