This is one of my favorite slow cooker dinners. I typically this recipe with boneless, skinless chicken breasts, but this time made it using a whole chicken that we picked up from a local organic pasture-raised farm. Using the whole chicken takes a bit more effort, as it needs to be quartered, but is well worth it for the additional flavor and tenderness. When I make this meal with boneless, skinless chicken breasts, I lightly flour them before adding them to the slow cooker. But with the whole chicken, I skipped the flouring step, as it creates a "sliminess" (for lack of a better less-gross sounding word) on the chicken that is just not good.
In the past I have served this meal over a bed of egg noodles, but this time I just tossed some extra green beans in the slow cooker and served the chicken on those. We didn't miss the noodles at all!
Crock Pot Chicken Paprikash
3-5 pound organic, free range whole chicken
1 pound fresh green beans, washed and trimmed
1 1/2 cups frozen pearl onions, thawed
24 ounces canned organic tomato sauce
1 cup water
4 Tbsp paprika
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1 cup organic low fat sour cream
1. Coat slow cooker with canola oil. Quarter the chicken. Place green beans and onions in bottom of slow cooker and put chicken pieces on top. Add tomato sauce, water, 2 Tbsp of paprika, salt and pepper. Stir sauce to combine ingredients. Cover and cook on low for 6 1/2 hours.
2. In small mixing bowl, combine sour cream with remaining 2 Tbsp paprika. Scoop 1 cup sauce from slow cooker and slowly whisk into sour cream mixture, then slowly stir into slow cooker.
What are the nutritional benefits of this meal? Chicken is an excellent source of protein and is rich in B vitamins. Green beans are an excellent source of vitamin K and a very good source of fiber, manganese, folate, and vitamins C and B2. Onions are rich in quercetin, a type of antioxidant, as well as vitamins and minerals, including vitamins C, K, folate, thiamin, and minerals calcium, magnesium, potassium and manganese. Canned tomato products contain more bioavailable lycopene compared with fresh tomatoes, and are high in vitamin C. Low fat sour cream is a good source of calcium, phosphorous and vitamins B2 and B12.