August Recipe Challenge: Crock pot Cranberry Chicken
I've had this recipe in my recipe files, pinned to Pinterest, etc. For years. Seriously years. As I was going through my Pinterest file the other day I decided it was now or never time. I have Cranberry sauce about to expire (though I expect, as acidic as it is, it will be good for a while yet) on my pantry shelf. I had a bottle of Catalina type dressing in the fridge. I had chicken. I'd just purchased onion soup mix. It was a "Go" on all points.
I admit I was slack this morning. I waited until 9:30 to start this dish. My chicken breasts were frozen solid. I forgot the cranberry sauce about to expire in the pantry and hunted all through the fridge for cranberry sauce I thought I had leftover. In the end, I grabbed a container of homemade cranberry relish from the freezer to use and I'll explain why. I wanted to make just enough for two.
I used the smaller crockpot and put the ingredients in it and set the temperature to HIGH and walked away. It wasn't nearly done at 11:30 and I feared it wasn't going to be done by 12:30 either, which was when the rest of the meal would be ready. I chose to dump all into a covered casserole dish and bake at 350F, since I was going to be using the oven for the rest of the meal anyway.
I'll post my proportions/adjustments below the original recipe. I'm using the photo from the website because I forgot to take a picture of mine. The recipe title will also be a link to the original post.
Crockpot Cranberry Chicken
4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 can OceanSpray Cranberry Sauce
1 bottle Kraft Catalina (or Russian) salad dressing
1 packet Lipton Onion Soup Mix
Cook Chicken breasts 3 hours on high. After 3 hours, remove the chicken, and drain any juices from the crockpot. Return chicken to crockpot. Mix the remaining ingredients. Pour over chicken and cook on High for 30 minutes or until done.
I should really try to read recipes and follow them. Here's what I did:
Removed two solid frozen bone in breasts from freezer and ran water over to separate. Put in crockpot. Added 1/2 cup frozen cranberry relish, 1/2 cup catalina type dressing and 2 tsps of onion soup mix to crockpot and covered. Cooked for 2 hours. Dumped into casserole dish, basted the chicken with the cranberry sauce mixture and covered the casserole. Baked in a 350F oven for 1 hour.
Despite my complete lack of following directions, using frozen foods and all such, I have absolutely no complaints with this dish. Yes, it was a bit soupy but that wasn't really a problem. If I'd used jellied cranberry sauce I expect it would have baked into a thicker topping. My homemade cranberry relish did not have any pectin in it at all, nor much sugar either. The relish did have orange and apple in it and they added a nice citrus sort of flavor to the dish that I liked very well.
I don't like foods that are terribly salty. Honestly, I don't think I'd follow the recipe exactly just because of that. I'd probably use half a packet of soup mix, which is what I normally do, even when making the California Onion Dip. I find bottled dressing is rather salty as well and so would likely use less of that in following the recipe.
I liked this. I will make it again. MY way with decreased soup and dressing even if making for four, though I may well use canned cranberry sauce.
John liked this. I was going to ask him if he thought it good, but when I turned to look at him he was very busy eating. It was obvious he enjoyed it. He told me he did as soon as he'd cleaned his plate. I told him it was a new recipe and he said "Well make it again sometime, that was good!"
I served a corn pudding with this and steamed Brussels Sprouts. The flavors in the chicken dish went well with the sides.
This one is definitely a keeper and earns: