This recipe is great for bachelors, students, or the chronically busy because it's a "dump and heat" recipe. All you do is dump all of the ingredients together in a pot, and let it cook. Of course you'll need to make the rice separate but even if you're one of those people who can never get rice right, there is hope. Just stuff the chicken mixture inside of a tortilla with cheese for a quick burrito or fold it over in a tortilla and crisp it up in a skillet like a quesadilla. Presto. Easy, delicious, cheap food.
I'm a black bean lover so next time I'm going to use two cans (or two can's worth of homemade) beans and extend the recipe even further.
Oh, also, this freezes well. Cheese and all. Then just nuke and stir for a couple minutes until hot. Instant freezer meal!
Okay, one more thing. If you for some strange reason need this recipe to be even easier or you don't have a well stocked spice cabinet, just substitute a packet of taco seasoning for all of the spices and herbs that I used below.
Taco Chicken Bowls
Total Recipe cost: $10.66
Servings Per Recipe: 8
Cost per serving: $1.33
Prep time: 10 min. Cook time: 8 hrs. Total: 8 hrs. 10 min.
|1.5 lbs.||chicken breasts||$2.90|
|1 (16 oz.) jar||salsa||$1.99|
|1 (15 oz.) can||black beans, drained||$1.19|
|1/2 lb. (8 oz.)||frozen corn||$0.57|
|1 Tbsp||chili powder||$0.15|
|1/2 Tbsp||minced garlic||$0.10|
|1/2 tsp||dried oregano||$0.03|
|1/4 tsp||cayenne pepper||$0.02|
|to taste||cracked pepper||$0.02|
|2 cups||dry rice||$0.66|
|8 oz.||shredded cheddar||$2.49|
|1/2 bunch||cilantro (optional)||$0.45|
STEP 1: Add everything except the rice, cheese, and cilantro to the slow cooker along with 1/4 cup of water (for good measure). Give everything a good stir and make sure the chicken is covered in the mixture.
STEP 2: Secure the lid on your slow cooker and cook on low for 8 hrs.
STEP 3: Near the end of the cooking time, cook the two cups of rice according to the package directions (Bring the rice and 3 cups of water to a boil in a medium pot with a lid in place, as soon as it reaches a boil, reduced the heat to low and let simmer for 20 minutes. Fluff with a fork before serving).
STEP 4: After 8 hours of cooking, carefully remove the lid of the slow cooker. Stir with a fork to shred the chicken (it should be super tender and will shred easily). Build the taco bowls by placing rice on the bottom, then the taco chicken mix, shredded cheese and fresh cilantro.
Step By Step Photos
This is the chicken that I bought. I usually buy a 5 lb. package to get a good price but even this 3 lb. package was priced super low! I used half and froze the other half for another recipe later. You can also use chicken thighs for a richer flavor (more fat) or bone in chicken and then just remove the bones after cooking.
Place the chicken in the bottom of the slow cooker. Easy.
Add the rest of the ingredients (salsa, drained beans, corn, herbs & spices) plust 1/4 cup water. Easy.
Stir everything together and then make sure the chicken is pushed down below the sauce. Easy.
Secure the lid and cook on low for 8 hours. Easy.
Stir it up and give it a few good pokes with a fork to shred the chicken. It will be so tender that it will practically shred on its own. Easy.
Cook some rice. Semi-easy.
Put the rice, taco chicken mixture, cheese, and cilantro in a bowl. Eat. BAM. Easy.
I can't wait to make this again and again and again... and experiment with different salsa flavors. I keep thinking about chipotle peach or PINEAPPLE! YUM!