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Slow Cooker Bacon Chicken Chowder Recipe

This slow cooker bacon chicken chowder recipe is a creamy, hearty, and utterly comforting dish. It's packed with tender chicken, crispy bacon, and nutritious vegetables, all slow-cooked to perfection. The beauty of this recipe is that it practically cooks itself in a slow cooker, making it a perfect choice for busy weeknights or cozy weekends.

Slow Cooker Bacon Chicken Chowder Recipe
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Photos of Slow Cooker Bacon Chicken Chowder Recipe

The ingredients in this recipe are quite common and should be easily available in your local supermarket. However, you might want to pay special attention to the quality of bacon you choose. Opt for thick-cut bacon for a rich, hearty flavor. Another key ingredient is the Yukon potatoes, known for their golden color and creamy texture when cooked. Make sure you also have some basic spices like thyme and oregano on hand.

Ingredients for Slow Cooker Bacon Chicken Chowder

Chicken breasts: The protein base of the chowder. Chicken breasts are lean and become tender and juicy when slow-cooked.

Yellow onion: Adds a sweet, caramelized flavor to the chowder.

Garlic: Gives the soup a warm, earthy taste.

Yukon potatoes: These potatoes are buttery and creamy, making them perfect for chowder.

Carrots: Adds a sweet flavor and vibrant color.

Kosher salt: Enhances the flavors of the other ingredients.

Black pepper: Adds a bit of heat.

Chicken broth: Serves as the liquid base of the chowder.

Thyme: Gives the chowder a slightly sweet, pungent flavor.

Oregano: Adds a warm, balsamic and pungent flavor.

Thick cut bacon: Provides a smoky, hearty flavor to the chowder.

Cream cheese: Makes the chowder thick and creamy.

Heavy cream: Adds richness and creaminess to the chowder.

Cornstarch: Thickens the soup.

One reader, Gaye Breen says:

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This slow cooker bacon chicken chowder recipe is a game-changer! The flavors are rich and comforting, and the bacon adds a delicious smoky touch. The creamy texture is just perfect, and the slow cooking process really brings out the flavors. It's a must-try for anyone who loves hearty, flavorful chowder.

Gaye Breen

Techniques Required for Making Slow Cooker Bacon Chicken Chowder

How to prepare the slow cooker bacon chicken chowder: A step-by-step guide on preparing the ingredients and setting up the slow cooker for the chowder recipe.

How to cook the chicken chowder in the slow cooker: Detailed instructions on cooking the chowder in the slow cooker, including the time and temperature settings.

How to add the cream cheese to the chowder: Instructions on incorporating the cream cheese into the chowder to ensure a smooth and creamy texture.

How to thicken the chowder with cornstarch and heavy cream: A guide on mixing the cornstarch with heavy cream and adding it to the chowder to achieve the desired consistency.

How to mix in the bacon before serving: Instructions on incorporating the remaining bacon into the chowder before serving to add a delicious smoky flavor.

How To Make Slow Cooker Bacon Chicken Chowder

This creamy chowder is enhanced with chicken and bacon for additional flavor and texture. It’s a nice mix of sweet and salty. Try it for lunch and dinner.

Preparation: 15 minutes
Cooking: 8 hours
Total: 8 hours 15 minutes

Serves:

Ingredients

  • 2chicken breasts,cut into cubes
  • 1yellow onion,chopped
  • 4clovesgarlic,minced
  • 4yukon potatoes,peeled and chopped into 2-inch cubes
  • 4carrots,peeled and chopped
  • 1tspkosher salt
  • ½tspcoarse ground black pepper
  • 4cupschicken broth
  • 1tspthyme
  • 1tsporegano
  • 1lbthick cut bacon,cooked and crumbled
  • 8ozcream cheese,cut into small chunks
  • ½cupheavy cream
  • 2tbspcornstarch

Instructions

  1. Add the chicken, onion, garlic, potatoes, carrots, salt, pepper, broth, thyme, oregano and half the bacon to the slow cooker.

  2. Cook on Low for 7 hours.

  3. Add the cream cheese to the slow cooker.

  4. Mix the cornstarch with the heavy cream and add it to the slow cooker.

  5. Cook on high for an hour.

  6. Mix in the remaining bacon and serve.

Nutrition

  • Calories: 409.42kcal
  • Fat: 28.92g
  • Saturated Fat: 12.02g
  • Trans Fat: 0.08g
  • Monounsaturated Fat: 10.86g
  • Polyunsaturated Fat: 3.65g
  • Carbohydrates: 21.36g
  • Fiber: 2.41g
  • Sugar: 4.50g
  • Protein: 15.98g
  • Cholesterol: 80.28mg
  • Sodium: 631.48mg
  • Calcium: 54.03mg
  • Potassium: 642.16mg
  • Iron: 1.33mg
  • Vitamin A: 291.89µg
  • Vitamin C: 16.60mg

Technique Tip for Enhancing the Flavor of Slow Cooker Bacon Chicken Chowder

When cooking bacon for this recipe, it's best to cook it until it's crispy. This will add a nice texture to the chowder and the bacon will hold up better in the slow cooker. Also, don't forget to reserve some of the bacon grease. You can use it to sauté the onion and garlic before adding them to the slow cooker, which will add an extra layer of flavor to your chowder.

Time-Saving Tips for Preparing This Chowder Recipe

Prep ahead: Chop vegetables and measure out ingredients the night before to save time on the day of cooking.

Use pre-cooked bacon: Consider using pre-cooked bacon to save time and avoid the hassle of cooking bacon separately.

Invest in a food processor: A food processor can help with chopping vegetables quickly and efficiently, saving you time during prep.

Utilize slow cooker liners: Using slow cooker liners can save time on cleanup, as they make for easy and quick disposal of leftovers.

Substitute Ingredients For Slow Cooker Bacon Chicken Chowder Recipe

  • chicken breasts - Substitute with turkey breasts: Turkey breasts can provide a similar texture and flavor to chicken breasts, making them a suitable substitute in this recipe.

  • yellow onion - Substitute with white onion: White onions have a slightly milder flavor compared to yellow onions, but they can still provide the aromatic base for the chowder.

  • garlic - Substitute with garlic powder: Garlic powder can be used as a substitute for fresh garlic. Use 1/8 teaspoon of garlic powder for every clove of garlic.

  • yukon potatoes - Substitute with Russet potatoes: Russet potatoes can be a suitable replacement for Yukon potatoes in this chowder, providing a creamy texture and hearty flavor.

  • carrots - Substitute with parsnips: Parsnips can be used as a substitute for carrots, adding a slightly sweet and earthy flavor to the chowder.

  • kosher salt - Substitute with sea salt: Sea salt can be used in place of kosher salt, providing a similar level of salinity to the dish.

  • coarse ground black pepper - Substitute with ground black pepper: Ground black pepper can be used as a substitute for coarse ground black pepper, adjusting the amount to taste.

  • chicken broth - Substitute with vegetable broth: Vegetable broth can be used as a substitute for chicken broth, providing a flavorful base for the chowder.

  • thyme - Substitute with rosemary: Rosemary can be used as a substitute for thyme, adding a slightly different herbaceous flavor to the chowder.

  • oregano - Substitute with marjoram: Marjoram can be used as a substitute for oregano, providing a similar aromatic and slightly sweet flavor to the dish.

  • thick cut bacon - Substitute with pancetta: Pancetta can be used as a substitute for thick-cut bacon, adding a rich and savory flavor to the chowder.

  • cream cheese - Substitute with Greek yogurt: Greek yogurt can be used as a substitute for cream cheese, providing a creamy texture and tangy flavor to the chowder.

  • heavy cream - Substitute with coconut cream: Coconut cream can be used as a dairy-free substitute for heavy cream, adding richness to the chowder.

  • cornstarch - Substitute with arrowroot powder: Arrowroot powder can be used as a substitute for cornstarch to thicken the chowder, providing a similar thickening effect.

Best Way to Present Slow Cooker Bacon Chicken Chowder

  1. Elevate the plating: When presenting the chowder, consider using a wide-rimmed bowl to showcase the layers of flavors and textures. The contrast of the creamy chowder against the white bowl will create a visually appealing presentation.

  2. Garnish with fresh herbs: Sprinkle finely chopped chives or parsley over the chowder just before serving to add a pop of color and a touch of freshness to the dish.

  3. Incorporate bacon crisps: Create delicate bacon crisps by weaving the bacon into a lattice pattern and baking until crispy. Place the bacon crisps on top of the chowder for an elegant and indulgent touch.

  4. Serve with artisan bread: Accompany the chowder with slices of warm, crusty bread, such as sourdough or artisanal baguette, elegantly arranged on the side.

  5. Use a drizzle of truffle oil: Just before serving, delicately drizzle a small amount of truffle oil over the chowder to impart a luxurious aroma and depth of flavor.

  6. Present in individual mini cocottes: For a sophisticated twist, serve the chowder in individual mini cocottes, adding a touch of elegance and personalization to the presentation.

Essential Tools for Making Bacon Chicken Chowder in a Slow Cooker

  • Slow cooker: A slow cooker is a countertop kitchen appliance used for cooking food at a low temperature for an extended period of time. It's perfect for creating flavorful and tender dishes like the bacon chicken chowder.
  • Knife: A sharp knife is essential for cutting the chicken breasts, onions, garlic, potatoes, carrots, and bacon.
  • Cutting board: A cutting board provides a stable surface for chopping and preparing the ingredients.
  • Measuring cups and spoons: These are used to accurately measure the ingredients such as salt, pepper, thyme, oregano, heavy cream, and cornstarch.
  • Mixing spoon: A mixing spoon is necessary for stirring the ingredients in the slow cooker.
  • Slow cooker liner: While not essential, a slow cooker liner can make cleanup easier.
  • Saucepan: A saucepan is used to mix the cornstarch with the heavy cream before adding it to the slow cooker.
  • Whisk: A whisk is used to ensure the cornstarch is fully dissolved in the heavy cream.
  • Tongs: Tongs are useful for handling the chicken and bacon while cooking and serving.

How To Store and Freeze Leftover Bacon Chicken Chowder

  • Allow the bacon chicken chowder to cool completely before storing or freezing. This will prevent the formation of condensation, which can lead to a watery texture when reheated.

  • For short-term storage, transfer the cooled chowder to an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 3-4 days. The flavors will meld together even more as it sits, making for a delicious leftover meal.

  • If you plan to freeze the chowder, consider the following tips:

    • Omit the cream cheese and heavy cream if possible, as dairy products can sometimes separate and become grainy when frozen and reheated. You can add these ingredients fresh when reheating the chowder.
    • Use freezer-safe containers or resealable bags, leaving about an inch of headspace to allow for expansion during freezing.
    • Label the containers with the date and contents for easy reference.
    • Freeze the chowder for up to 2-3 months for best quality.
  • To reheat the frozen chowder, thaw it overnight in the refrigerator. If you didn't add the dairy products before freezing, stir in the cream cheese and heavy cream during the reheating process.

  • Reheat the thawed chowder gently in a pot over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, until it is heated through. Avoid boiling the chowder, as this can cause the dairy to curdle and the potatoes to become mushy.

  • If the reheated chowder appears too thick, you can thin it out with a little chicken broth or water until it reaches your desired consistency.

  • Garnish the reheated chowder with fresh herbs, additional crispy bacon, or a sprinkle of shredded cheese for added flavor and texture.

How To Reheat Leftover Slow Cooker Bacon Chicken Chowder

  • Reheat the chowder in a saucepan over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, until it reaches the desired temperature. This method allows you to control the heat and prevent the cream from curdling or separating.

  • If the chowder has thickened too much during storage, add a splash of chicken broth or milk to help thin it out while reheating.

  • For individual portions, reheat the chowder in the microwave using a microwave-safe bowl. Heat in 30-second intervals, stirring between each interval, until the desired temperature is reached. Be careful not to overheat, as this can cause the cream to separate.

  • If you have stored the bacon separately to maintain its crispness, reheat it in a skillet over medium heat or in the microwave on a paper towel-lined plate before adding it back to the reheated chowder.

  • To add a fresh flavor to the reheated chowder, garnish with fresh herbs like thyme or oregano, a sprinkle of black pepper, or a dollop of sour cream.

  • If you have a large quantity of leftover chowder, consider reheating it in a slow cooker on low heat for 1-2 hours, stirring occasionally. This method is ideal for maintaining the texture and preventing the chowder from burning or sticking to the bottom of the pot.

Random Fact About Slow Cooker Bacon Chicken Chowder

Bacon is a versatile ingredient that adds a rich and savory flavor to dishes. It is a popular addition to chowders, soups, and stews, enhancing the overall taste and providing a satisfying crunch.

Is Making Bacon Chicken Chowder in a Slow Cooker Economical for Home Cooking?

This slow cooker bacon chicken chowder recipe is quite cost-effective for a household. The ingredients, including chicken breasts, potatoes, carrots, and bacon, are affordable and easily accessible. The use of a slow cooker also reduces energy costs. The approximate cost for a household of 4 people is around $20. The rich and hearty chowder yields a comforting and satisfying meal, earning a solid 9/10 rating for its affordability and deliciousness.

Is This Chowder Recipe Healthy or Unhealthy?

The slow cooker bacon chicken chowder recipe is a hearty and flavorful dish, but it may not be the healthiest option due to several ingredients:

  • High in saturated fat: The recipe includes cream cheese, heavy cream, and bacon, which are all high in saturated fat. Consuming too much saturated fat can increase the risk of heart disease and other health issues.
  • High in sodium: With the addition of kosher salt and bacon, this recipe is likely to be high in sodium. Excessive sodium intake can lead to high blood pressure and other health problems.
  • Limited vegetables: While the recipe includes onions, garlic, potatoes, and carrots, it could benefit from the addition of more nutrient-dense vegetables to increase its overall nutritional value.

However, the recipe also has some positive aspects:

  • Protein-rich: Chicken and bacon provide a good source of protein, which is essential for building and repairing tissues in the body.
  • Slow cooking method: Using a slow cooker can help retain nutrients in the ingredients and make the dish more flavorful without the need for excessive added fats or oils.

To make this recipe healthier, consider the following modifications:

  • Reduce the amount of bacon or opt for a leaner alternative, such as turkey bacon
  • Use low-fat cream cheese and replace heavy cream with a lower-fat option, such as half-and-half or evaporated milk
  • Increase the variety and quantity of vegetables in the chowder, such as celery, bell peppers, or leafy greens like spinach or kale
  • Use low-sodium chicken broth to reduce the overall sodium content
  • Serve the chowder with a side salad or additional steamed vegetables to increase the nutrient density of the meal

Editor's Thoughts on This Slow Cooker Chowder Recipe

This slow cooker bacon chicken chowder recipe is a delightful combination of flavors and textures. The use of bacon adds a rich, smoky depth to the chowder, while the cream cheese and heavy cream contribute a luxurious creaminess. The addition of thyme and oregano brings a lovely herbaceous note to the dish. The slow cooking process allows the flavors to meld together beautifully, resulting in a comforting and satisfying chowder. The use of chicken breasts ensures a lean protein source, making this a well-balanced and hearty meal. Overall, this recipe is a winner for anyone looking for a delicious and easy slow cooker meal.

Enhance Your Slow Cooker Bacon Chicken Chowder Recipe with These Unique Side Dishes:

Roasted Garlic Parmesan Asparagus: Tender asparagus spears roasted to perfection and topped with a savory garlic parmesan seasoning.
Honey Glazed Carrots with Thyme: Sweet and tender carrots glazed with honey and infused with the earthy flavor of thyme.
Balsamic Roasted Brussels Sprouts: Crispy Brussels sprouts roasted with a tangy balsamic glaze for a flavorful and satisfying side dish.

Other Slow Cooker Chowder Recipes Similar to Bacon Chicken Chowder

Savory Beef Stew: This hearty stew is packed with tender beef, carrots, potatoes, and a flavorful broth that will warm you up on a cold day.
Zesty Lemon Garlic Shrimp: This quick and easy shrimp dish is bursting with fresh flavors of lemon, garlic, and herbs, perfect for a light and refreshing meal.
Creamy Mushroom Risotto: Indulge in this creamy and rich risotto made with Arborio rice, mushrooms, and Parmesan cheese for a comforting and satisfying dish.
Apple Cinnamon Crisp: Enjoy the comforting flavors of baked apples with a hint of cinnamon, topped with a crispy oat and brown sugar crumble for a delightful dessert.
Spicy Thai Coconut Soup: Experience the bold and aromatic flavors of Thai cuisine with this spicy coconut soup filled with tender chicken, vegetables, and fragrant herbs.

Suggested Appetizers and Desserts to Serve with This Chowder Recipe

Appetizers:
Savory Stuffed Mushrooms: Create a delectable appetizer by stuffing large mushrooms with a savory mixture of cream cheese, garlic, and herbs. Bake until golden and serve hot for a crowd-pleasing starter.
Crispy Coconut Shrimp: Whip up a tropical-inspired appetizer by coating shrimp in a crispy coconut breading and frying until golden brown. Serve with a sweet and tangy dipping sauce for a delightful flavor combination.
Desserts:
Chocolate Lava Cake: Indulge in a decadent, rich chocolate lava cake that oozes with warm, gooey chocolate in every bite. Pair it with a scoop of vanilla ice cream for the perfect balance of sweetness and richness.
Strawberry Cheesecake: Delight in a creamy and luscious strawberry cheesecake topped with fresh, juicy strawberries. The smooth texture of the cheesecake combined with the sweet and tangy flavor of the strawberries creates a delightful dessert experience.

Why trust this Slow Cooker Bacon Chicken Chowder Recipe:

This slow cooker bacon chicken chowder recipe offers a delightful combination of chicken, bacon, and potatoes, creating a rich and flavorful chowder. The use of cream cheese and heavy cream adds a creamy texture, while the addition of thyme and oregano infuses the dish with aromatic flavors. The incorporation of cornstarch ensures a perfect consistency. Trust in the quality of this recipe, as it has been carefully crafted to deliver a comforting and satisfying chowder experience.

Share your thoughts on this Slow Cooker Bacon Chicken Chowder Recipe in the Recipe Sharing forum section.
FAQ:
Can I use chicken thighs instead of chicken breasts in this recipe?
Yes, you can absolutely use chicken thighs instead of chicken breasts. The thighs will add a slightly richer flavor to the chowder.
Can I substitute turkey bacon for regular bacon in this recipe?
Yes, you can substitute turkey bacon for regular bacon if you prefer a leaner option. Just keep in mind that the flavor and texture may be slightly different.
Can I prepare this recipe on the stovetop instead of using a slow cooker?
Absolutely! You can prepare this chowder on the stovetop by simmering the ingredients in a large pot over low heat for about 1-2 hours, or until the chicken is cooked through and the vegetables are tender.
Can I use low-fat cream cheese and milk instead of heavy cream in this recipe?
Yes, you can use low-fat cream cheese and milk as a substitute for heavy cream. However, keep in mind that the chowder may be slightly less rich and creamy.
Can I add other vegetables to this chowder?
Of course! Feel free to customize the chowder by adding your favorite vegetables such as corn, peas, or celery. Just adjust the cooking time as needed to ensure all the vegetables are cooked to your liking.

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