Slow Cooker Shredded Chicken, Black Beans & Salsa

 

Yields:  about 4-6 servings    Prep Time:  15 minutes       Total Time:  4 hours

 

Incredibly easy and healthy shredded chicken with black beans is made on its own in the slow cooker, with minimal preparation.  A jar of salsa provides most of the seasoning, making for a kid-friendly, dinner that is ready when you are!

 

Ingredients

1 1/2 pounds organic boneless, skinless chicken breasts

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 jar (at least 12 ounces, 16 if more chicken) of your favorite salsa

1 (15 ounce) can black beans, drained and rinsed

1 tablespoon brown sugar

1 teaspoon ground cumin

 

Directions

1. Place all ingredients in the slow cooker.

 

 

2. Cook on high for about 3-4 hours, depending on your slow cooker, until the chicken is cooked thoroughly. 

*I have this one, and the timing works perfectly.

 

3. Once chicken is cooked thoroughly, take two forks and gently shred the chicken by need to cook more.

 

 

4. Let chicken mixture cook on high or low for another 30 minutes to let all of the flavors blend into the newly shredded chicken.

 

5. Serve on corn tortillas, flour tortillas, corn taco shells, or even rice with toppings as you desire.

 

 

So, this is a recipe I have been making for a little over a year now as a weekly staple.  I cannot take credit for the original concept of a jar of salsa, black beans and chicken in a slow cooker.  I was talking with a friend one day, and she mentioned it (thanks, Kate!).  It sounded so easy, and yet also possibly very delicious, so I was intrigued.

 

And voila!   Seriously, this is one delicious family-friendly meal that could not get any easier.  We have a favorite salsa that has a mild kick, and it works perfectly as a flavor base.  Over the course of making this so often, I have added a little brown sugar for a hint of sweetness to round out the savory.  Ground cumin also adds a depth of flavor that compliments the salsa, giving it an extra touch of homemade taste.

 

 

I have made this countless times for company and it is always a hit.  For guests, I’ve doubled the black beans, added a little more chicken and spices.  It’s really very versatile.  I just can’t believe that it took me so long of struggles over dinner to hear about this gem. 

 

The fact that you can put the three ingredients (and additional spices if desired) into a slow cooker in the time one of your kids takes a trip to the bathroom (which is often the only moment of free time I get), amazes me. 

 

 

To be fair, I have to spend an equal amount of time cleaning up the shredded toilet paper (don’t ask) and wiping up the floor from the apparent ocean of water it takes to wash hands and necessary sprinkling of water everywhere as the search for the towel unfolds.  I don’t get it.  It’s not that hard.  Our bathroom is like 4 feet wide, and the towel rack is right next to the sink…

 

And these are the reasons I am so excited about how quick, easy and delicious this dinner is.

 

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