I’m back home after a whirlwind weekend visiting my family. I impulsively packed my suitcase and kissed my husband good-bye, leaving my stand-by Southwest Crockpot Chicken filling the house with a delectable aroma and enough leftovers to feed my own absent-minded, someday-to-be professor through the weekend as he braved the wee hours of the night writing papers, researching, and working 8 hour shifts at Wal-Mart.
The crockpot is one of my most-used kitchen gadgets, probably second only to my fancy-schmancy, Pampered Chef can opener. I like the idea of throwing a bunch of food into the crockpot and it coming out like I put all this work into it. It fools people into thinking I’m becoming some Food Network diva instead of the reality, otherwise known as me winging it while squinting over allrecipes.com on my smart phone and praying I don’t kill us this time.
I don’t know where my mother found this recipe; now that I no longer live at home they find amazing recipes and eat them while I get excited over shrimp-flavored ramen. One of the best, though easy and decidedly not sophisticated, is the Southwest Crockpot Chicken. The prep is ridiculously easy, the recipe is highly time flexible, and while it may not win any awards for looks, the flavors are amazing and rather addictive, in my opinion.
I know many newlywed girls who are much more skilled than I who have not discovered the lazy awesomeness that is crockpot cooking. Keep making your homemade enchiladas and onion rings, but if you are super busy, pull out that slow cooker and make this recipe.
Southwest Crockpot Chicken
(Makes approximately 6-8 servings)
1 pound of boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 4-5 pieces)
1 16 oz jar of your favorite salsa.
(Don’t skimp on the salsa; the better the salsa, the better this turns out)
1 14 oz can of black beans, drained
1 small bag of frozen corn
(Canned works okay, but taste and texture-wise, frozen is better)
1 8 oz block of cream cheese, softened
1. Add the frozen chicken breasts, salsa, black beans, and corn to the crockpot. While some caution against frozen, I’ve made this several times and eaten it even more times with no problems. However, you can thaw them but you may want to err on the earlier cooking time.
2. Cook 6-8 hours on low, trying to restrain yourself from opening the lid as the wonderful smells fill your home. You could leave it as long as 10 according to my mother since they have long work days, but 8 hours is as long as I’ve needed it to cook.
3. A half hour before serving, shred the chicken and add the softened cream cheese to the pot. Try to stir it in some and let it cook for the remaining half hour.
4. Serve with tortillas and/or rice. Sour cream, extra salsa, jalepenos, and cheese are some extras we love to add to ours. I don’t encourage freezing this one, but I make this for two of us and the leftovers never last more than 2 days tops anyway since we love it so much.
P.S. Check out my new ‘do from this past weekend. One step closer to my soulless ginger roots.