Slow Cooker Chicken Thighs Are A Flavorful Family Favorite

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Slow cooker chicken thighs are one of my family’s absolute favorites for simple, low-effort crock pot meals. This isn’t some fancy, intricate technique. It’s just a simple “dump everything in the slow cooker and add some fresh lemon juice” recipe.

And the result is succulent, juicy chicken that practically melts in your mouth. This chicken is perfectly seasoned, and the lemon tenderizes the chicken and adds flavor.

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It’s about making a tasty meal from everyday ingredients and turning boring chicken into a delicious dinner. That’s the beauty of home cooking! You can find joy in the dinner chaos, one slow-cooked meal at a time.

This post will cover everything you need to know to make this dish a star at your dinner table. We’ll talk about the ingredients, walk through the steps, and I’ll sneak in some of my best tips to make this chicken dish finger-lickin’ good.

Looking for more Slow Cooker recipes? Try Slow Cooker Creamy Chicken, Crock Pot Chicken Tacos, Slow Cooker Chicken Spaghetti and Slow Cooker Chicken Gnocchi Soup.

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🍋Ingredient Notes

For exact amounts needed see the recipe card below

  • Boneless skinless chicken thighs: I prefer boneless because it’s less fussy – no bones to fish out later. Plus, the thighs tend to be less expensive, juicier, and more flavorful than chicken breasts.
  • Lemon: We’re using the zest and juice to add flavor. The zest adds a lovely hint of brightness, and the juice brings a tangy punch, balancing out the richness of the chicken.
  • Garlic
  • Butter
  • Chicken broth
  • Salt
  • Black pepper
  • Garlic powder
  • Onion powder
  • Red pepper flakes
  • Italian seasoning
Chicken breast ingredients on a white plate.

🥣How to Make Slow Cooker Chicken Thighs

  1. Start by placing the raw chicken thighs into your slow cooker.
  2. Mix the chicken broth, lemon juice, and zest in a separate bowl. Pour this liquid gold over the chicken.
  3. In another bowl, combine all your dry ingredients. I love this part because the spices create an aromatic blend filling the kitchen. Sprinkle this vibrant mix over the chicken.
  4. Sprinkle minced garlic all over the top. Place the slices of butter evenly on top. Cover and let your slow cooker work magic for 6 to 8 hours on low.
  5. Once it’s done, transfer the chicken to a serving platter. Garnish with some chopped parsley and lemon slices. They add a nice pop of color and a fresh twist.
A bowl of yellow liquid on a marble surface.
Broth and lemon juice
A white bowl with a mixture of spices in it.
Spice mixture
A crock pot filled with chicken and butter.
Before slow cooking
A crock pot full of chicken in a sauce.
After slow cooking

🍴Serving Ideas for Your Slow Cooker Chicken Thighs

One of the simplest and my personal favorite ways to serve slow cooker chicken thighs is over a bed of fluffy white rice or brown rice. The rice soaks up all those delicious juices, and it’s just a match made in heaven.

Let’s say you want to mix things up a bit. You could also serve these chicken thighs with mashed potatoes and steamed broccoli. It’s a classic combination that never fails. Or how about some warm, buttered noodles? That’s always a winner in my house.

If you’re watching your carb intake, no worries! A big, colorful salad or some steamed vegetables are splendid accompaniments, too. This slow cooker chicken thigh recipe plays nicely with just about any side dish.

If you are looking for more recipes for chicken thighs try this tasty yum yum chicken!

A plate of spaghetti with chicken and lemons on it.

💭Storing Your Crockpot Chicken

First, let the chicken cool down to room temperature. You want to avoid putting hot food directly into your refrigerator, which can raise the overall temperature and cause other foods to spoil.

Once the chicken is cool, transfer it to an airtight container. These slow cooker chicken thighs will keep in the fridge for about 3-4 days.

If you want to extend their shelf life, you can freeze them. Just pop them into a freezer-safe container or a zip-top bag. I prefer to use bags because they’re easy to label and stack. They’ll be good in the freezer for about 2-3 months.

When you’re ready to eat your stored chicken, thaw it in the fridge overnight if it’s frozen. You can reheat it in the microwave or oven until it’s hot.

A crock pot filled with chicken and lemons.


Be sure to check out the step by step instructions

  • If you’re a fan of spicy food, add more red pepper flakes. It gives a nice kick to the chicken.
  • Cook on high for 3-4 hours. It’ll be just as delicious!
  • I’m all about easy cleanup. After dinner, the last thing I want to do is scrub down my slow cooker. Enter slow cooker liners. These lifesavers make cleanup a breeze. Just lift out the liner when you’re done.
Easy Cleanup
Reynolds Kitchens Slow Cooker Liners, Regular (Fits 3-8 Quarts), 6 Count
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Can I put frozen chicken thighs in the slow cooker?

Definitely not. From a food safety perspective, frozen chicken in the slow cooker can spend too long in the danger zone (between 40°F and 140°F), where bacteria can multiply rapidly. Always thaw your chicken before slow cooking it.

How long should I cook chicken thighs in the slow cooker?

For chicken thighs, you’re looking at about 4-5 hours on high or 6-8 hours on low. Your chicken is ready when it reaches an internal temperature of 165°F. A quick note – every slow cooker is different, so these times can vary.

Do I need to add liquid to my slow cooker?

While not always necessary, adding a small amount of liquid can prevent your chicken from drying out and create a flavorful sauce. Just a third of a cup of broth or water is usually enough.

Did You Make This? Leave a Star Rating!

A crock pot filled with chicken and lemons.
4.59 from 12 votes

Slow Cooker Chicken Thighs Recipe

Published By Anne
Turn ordinary ingredients into a delicious meal with slow cooker chicken thighs. This recipe is all about flavor and simplicity for home cooking at its best!
Prep Time10 minutes
Cook Time6 hours
Total Time6 hours 10 minutes
Servings: 4
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  • 6-8 boneless skinless chicken thighs
  • 1/3 cup chicken broth
  • Juice of one lemon
  • Zest of half a lemon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt and pepper
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 4 cloves garlic minced
  • 1/2 stick butter
  • Fresh parsley and lemon slices for garnish optional


  • Place the chicken pieces into an 8-quart slow cooker. In a small bowl, stir the chicken broth, lemon juice, and lemon zest. Pour all over the chicken thighs.
    6-8 boneless skinless chicken thighs, 1/3 cup chicken broth, Juice of one lemon, Zest of half a lemon
  • In another small bowl, combine all the dry ingredients: the Italian seasoning, onion powder, garlic powder, paprika, red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper. Mix and sprinkle over the chicken thighs.
    1 teaspoon garlic powder, 1 teaspoon onion powder, 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes, 1/2 teaspoon paprika, 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning, 1/2 teaspoon salt and pepper
  • Sprinkle the minced garlic on top and place the slices of butter all over.
    4 cloves garlic, 1/2 stick butter
  • Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours.
  • To serve garnish with chopped parsley and sliced lemons.
    Fresh parsley and lemon slices for garnish


  • Store in an airtight container for 2-3 days in the fridge.
  • Want it spicier? Add more red pepper flakes.
  • Cook on high for 3-4 hours if you are in a rush.

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Nutrition Information

Calories: 214kcal | Carbohydrates: 2g | Protein: 33g | Fat: 7g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Trans Fat: 0.05g | Cholesterol: 161mg | Sodium: 517mg | Potassium: 457mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 0.2g | Vitamin A: 173IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 33mg | Iron: 2mg

Nutrition facts are estimates.

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A plate of spaghetti with chicken and lemon on it.

Hi, I’m Anne!

I love to cook and I want to share my recipes with you. I believe cooking should be approachable and fun, not a chore. I want to make simple recipes using everyday ingredients that you can make again and again, whether it is for a busy weeknight, a summer cookout or a special dessert. Read more...

1 thought on “Slow Cooker Chicken Thighs Are A Flavorful Family Favorite”

  1. 5 stars
    Easy and delicious – thank you for sharing this recipe . The whole family loved it and we had no leftovers. Will definitely be making this again and again.


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