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Full of flavorful, juicy, chicken, tender potatoes, and loads of fresh vegetables and herbs, this healthy Crock Pot Chicken Stew is a cozy, easy dinner recipe for chilly nights! With just a few minutes of prep, the low-calorie, high-protein slow cooker meal will be waiting for you at the end of the day. Serve each bowl with a crusty loaf of no-knead bread, buttery biscuits, or a pan of cornbread for a family-friendly option with very little effort!

Overhead shot of hands holding a bowl of crock pot chicken stew.

How to Make Crock Pot Chicken Stew | 1-Minute Video

Chicken Stew Crock Pot Recipe

We can all use more easy crockpot chicken recipes, and this particular dish does not disappoint! The crock pot chicken stew is very similar to a classic chicken noodle soup — minus the pasta. I also think that a stew should have a thicker broth and an abundance of filling add-ins, so you’ll find plenty of chunky carrots, potatoes, onions, and celery in this dish. It’s warm, satisfying, and perfectly cozy for a chilly evening. Plus, it’s a healthy dinner that you can feel good about sharing with your family!

Close up side shot of a spoon in a bowl of old fashioned chicken stew in crock pot recipe

Chicken Soup vs. Chicken Stew

This recipe has almost all of the same ingredients and flavors as a classic chicken noodle soup, so what’s the difference between a soup and a stew? In general, the primary distinction is the amount of liquid in your pot. A soup has much more broth than a stew, so the ingredients are either completely liquified and pureed, or completely submerged in the broth.

By contrast, a chunky stew tends to be much heartier than a soup, with less broth and a slightly thicker consistency. Another primary distinction between this chicken stew crock pot and a traditional chicken noodle soup? The soup typically includes noodles or rice, while potatoes are the most common starch in a stew.

Adding vegetables and herbs to a slow cooker

Ingredients for Chicken Stew Crock Pot

  • Onions, celery, carrots and potatoes: the vegetables that add flavor and nutrition to the hearty stew.
  • Garlic: for savory flavor.
  • Bay leaf, paprika, thyme, rosemary, and poultry seasoning: herbs and spices that give the stew a cozy, earthy taste.
  • Bone-in chicken breast or chicken thighs: use chicken breast if you prefer white meat, but I find that chicken thighs stay juiciest in the slow cooker. Remove the skin from the bone-in chicken by simply pulling it back and cutting it off with a pair of kitchen shears or a sharp knife.
  • Low-sodium chicken broth or chicken stock: the liquid base of the stew. Starting with low-sodium broth allows you to control the saltiness of your stew by adding more or less salt to taste.
  • Cornstarch: combines with cold water to create a corn starch slurry that thickens the broth.
  • Salt and pepper: to enhance the other flavors in the dish and give the stew a more complex flavor.
  • Chopped fresh parsley: a fresh, colorful garnish that brightens up the dish.
Bone in chicken breasts on a tray

Herbs and Spices to Put in Chicken Stew

I use garlic, salt, paprika, a bay leaf, thyme, rosemary, and poultry seasoning to flavor the hearty chicken stew recipe. Poultry seasoning is a combination of thyme, sage, rosemary, marjoram and nutmeg — so it gives you a lot of flavor with minimal effort! If you don’t care for this ingredient, no problem. Just leave it out, or use other herbs and spices instead.

Pouring chicken broth into slow cooker.

How to Make Chicken Stew in a Crock Pot

This slow cooker chicken stew recipe requires just a handful of basic, easy-to-find ingredients. If you need a healthy, family-friendly dinner option that’s also incredibly affordable, then this old fashioned recipe is the key!

  1. Place the vegetables, herbs, and seasoning in the bottom of a slow cooker.
  2. Season the chicken with salt and pepper, then arrange the meat on top of the vegetables.
  3. Pour broth over top.
  4. Cover and cook on LOW for 6-8 hours, or on HIGH for 3-4 hours.
  5. During the final 30 minutes, remove the chicken from the pot. Shred or dice the meat, and discard the bones. Return the meat to the slow cooker.
  6. Stir in a cornstarch slurry.
  7. Cook, uncovered, on HIGH for about 30 more minutes, or until the broth thickens slightly.
  8. Remove the bay leaf and herb stems, season with salt and pepper, and ladle into bowls.
Overhead shot of two bowls of healthy slow cooker chicken stew on a wooden table garnished with fresh parsley

How to Thicken Chicken Stew

A cornstarch slurry (equal parts cornstarch and cold water) thickens this stew. I recommend 1 tablespoon of cornstarch mixed with 1 tablespoon of cold water for just a slightly thicker broth. If you prefer your broth even thicker, use up to 2 tablespoons of cornstarch and 2 tablespoons of cold water. Cook the chicken stew with the cornstarch slurry for 30 more minutes on HIGH heat without a lid to allow some extra liquid to evaporate while the cornstarch works its magic. The end result will be the best chicken stew that you’ve ever tasted!

Serving Suggestions

Thanks to the protein, starch and veggies in this dish, you have an easy one pot meal that doesn’t require any additional sides. If you’d like to round out your supper, here are a few options that go well with chicken stew:

Hands dipping bread in a bowl of healthy chicken stew.

Make Ahead

To prep ahead, chop all of the vegetables the night before, and then place them in a large zip-top bag or bowl with all of the seasonings. In the morning, just dump the whole bag into the slow cooker, top with the chicken, and proceed with the rest of the instructions.

Storage Tips for Old Fashioned Chicken Stew in Crock Pot

Stored properly in an airtight container, the leftovers will keep in the refrigerator for 3-4 days. You can also freeze the stew in airtight containers for up to 3 months; however, it’s important to know that the texture of the potatoes and vegetables will be mushy when thawed.

How to Reheat

When chilled, the fat from the stew will rise to the top and harden. You can use a spoon to scrape off most of the fat, or you can simply leave it in the pot and stir it back into the dish when it heats up. Place the cooked stew in a saucepan or Dutch oven on the stovetop. Cover and warm over low heat, just until the stew reaches the desired temperature. If it seems dry, you can add more broth to thin, as necessary.

Side shot of a bowl of crock pot chicken stew served in two white bowls

Recipe Variations

  • If you don’t mind a thinner, more soup-like broth, you can skip the final step with the cornstarch. It will still taste delicious!
  • Rotisserie chicken stew: Instead of the raw chicken, use chopped or shredded meat from a store-bought rotisserie chicken. Since you don’t need to cook the rotisserie chicken, add the shredded meat to the pot towards the end of the cooking time (when you add the cornstarch). This way it won’t get too dry while the stew simmers.
  • I use peeled russet potatoes, but you can substitute with white potatoes, gold potatoes, or red potatoes. There’s no need to peel the white, gold, or red potatoes, since they have a thinner skin.
  • Add different herbs and seasonings to make the stew your own. Try cayenne for heat, or different herbs like oregano, sage, dill, chives, or basil.
  • Sliced fresh mushrooms would also be a nice addition to the pot.
  • Add frozen peas or corn towards the end of the cooking time for even more veggie variety.
  • Stir in frozen, cut green beans at the end of the cooking time so that they stay crisp-tender. You don’t even have to thaw them first! If you prefer, you can add frozen green beans earlier and they’ll get really soft — it’s just a matter of personal taste.
Close overhead image of a bowl of chicken stew crock pot recipe.

Tips for the Best Crockpot Chicken Stew Recipe

  • Every slow cooker runs at a slightly different temperature (which is why the recipe gives you general time ranges, rather than exact times). Since my slow cooker tends to cook at a relatively high temperature, I find that the meal is best when cooked on HIGH for about 3 hours or on LOW for about 6 hours. Just get familiar with your pot and adjust accordingly.
  • Use a pair of kitchen shears to quickly and easily remove the skin from the chicken breasts.
  • I use bone-in chicken breasts or bone-in thighs for a couple of reasons. The bone-in meat has a longer cooking time than a boneless, skinless chicken breast or thigh, so the meat stays juicy and tender while the carrots and potatoes finish cooking. The bones also give the broth tons of added flavor. However, if you can’t find them or if you don’t want to bother with them, then boneless thighs or breasts will also work.
  • The total amount of salt necessary will vary, depending on the saltiness of your broth and on your own personal taste preferences. Season as you go, and add extra if desired.
  • For a creamy chicken stew on the stove top, try this recipe.
Hands holding a bowl of slow cooker chicken stew with a side of bread and fresh parsley garnish

More Chicken Crock Pot Recipes to Try

Square overhead shot of crock pot chicken stew

Crock Pot Chicken Stew

4.95 from 17 votes
Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 8 hours
Total: 8 hours 15 minutes
Servings 12 cups
Calories 162 kcal
Full of flavorful, juicy, chicken, tender potatoes, and loads of fresh vegetables and herbs, this healthy Crock Pot Chicken Stew is a cozy, easy dinner recipe for chilly nights!

Ingredients
  

  • 2 medium sweet onions, chopped into bite-sized pieces
  • 3 stalks celery, chopped
  • 4 carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 2 medium russet potatoes, peeled and chopped into small bite-sized pieces
  • 2 small cloves garlic, minced or pressed (about 1 teaspoon)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 3 sprigs fresh thyme (or about 1 teaspoon dried thyme)
  • 2 sprigs fresh rosemary (or about 1 teaspoon dried rosemary)
  • ½ teaspoon paprika
  • ½ teaspoon poultry seasoning
  • 3-4 lbs. bone-in chicken breasts or thighs, skin removed
  • 3 cups low-sodium chicken broth or chicken stock
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch + 1 tablespoon cold water (or increase to 2 tablespoons of cornstarch with 2 tablespoons cold water for a slightly thicker broth)
  • Kosher salt and ground black pepper, to taste
  • For garnish: chopped fresh parsley

Instructions

  • Place onions, celery, carrots, potatoes, garlic, bay leaf, 1 teaspoon salt, thyme, rosemary, paprika, and poultry seasoning in the bottom of a large slow cooker. Stir to combine.
  • Season the chicken with salt and pepper, to taste. Place the chicken on top of vegetables.
  • Pour chicken broth over everything, cover, and cook on LOW for 6-8 hours or on HIGH for 3-4 hours.
  • When there are about 30 minutes left in the cooking time, remove the chicken from the slow cooker and chop or shred the meat. Return chicken meat to the slow cooker and discard bones. Discard bay leaf and herb stems (if using fresh herbs).
  • In a small bowl, whisk together cornstarch and cold water until smooth. Stir the cornstarch slurry into the stew and cook on HIGH without the lid for 30 minutes (or until broth thickens a little bit). Taste and season with additional salt and pepper, if desired.
  • Garnish with chopped fresh parsley, just before serving.

Video

Notes

  • Every slow cooker runs at a slightly different temperature (which is why the recipe gives you general time ranges, rather than exact times). Since my slow cooker tends to cook at a relatively high temperature, I find that the meal is best when cooked on HIGH for about 3 hours or on LOW for about 6 hours. Just get familiar with your pot and adjust accordingly.
  • Use a pair of kitchen shears to quickly and easily remove the skin from the chicken breasts.
  • I use bone-in chicken breasts or bone-in thighs for a couple of reasons. The bone-in meat has a longer cooking time than a boneless, skinless chicken breast or thigh, so the meat stays juicy and tender while the carrots and potatoes finish cooking. The bones also give the broth tons of added flavor. However, if you can’t find them or if you don’t want to bother with them, then boneless thighs or breasts will also work.
  • The total amount of salt necessary will vary, depending on the saltiness of your broth and on your own personal taste preferences. Season as you go, and add extra if desired. 
  • For a creamy chicken stew on the stovetop, try this recipe.

Nutrition

Serving: 2cupsCalories: 162kcalCarbohydrates: 17gProtein: 20.7gFat: 1.2gSaturated Fat: 0.3gCholesterol: 45.3mgSodium: 1108mgFiber: 3gSugar: 4.2g
Keyword: chicken stew, chicken stew crock pot, chicken stew with potatoes, crock pot chicken stew, slow cooker chicken stew
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: American
Author: Blair Lonergan

This post was originally published in December, 2017. The photos were updated in January, 2022.

blair

Hey, I’m Blair!

Welcome to my farmhouse kitchen in the foothills of Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains. Inspired by local traditions and seasonal fare, you’ll find plenty of easy, comforting recipes that bring your family together around the table. It’s down-home, country-style cooking!

Read More

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Comments

  1. Have been looking for a good Chicken Stew recipe for a long time so cannot wait to try this tomorrow. It looks and sounds delicious … I have two fussy eaters so before I add the thickener if I removed the chicken, potatoes & carrots & blended the stock, onion & celery do you reckon it would keep its hearty taste? Then put the chicken etc back in to serve?

    1. Absolutely! You’ll still have all of that great flavor — even if you decide to puree the onion and celery with the broth. Sounds like a great way to keep the kiddos happy. 🙂

      1. Perfect thank you. Always hide their veg what they dont know wont hurt them right?? 🙂 Cannot wait to try this tomorrow. I’m in Ireland so it is getting chilly now, time to bust out the slow cooker again. Thanks Blair

        1. I hope the little ones approve! Enjoy that cool weather — it’s still hot and muggy here in the southeastern US! 🙂

  2. Hello Blair. This is my first attempt at making your chicken stew.
    When you add the bone in chicken breasts do you put them in bone side down on top of the veggies or bone side up with the meaty part of the breast on top of the veggies?
    thank you.

  3. Hi Blair,
    Can I use Trader Joe’s pre-cut/ chopped
    “Mirepoix ” 14.5oz celery, carrot, onion? For your recipe?
    Thank you

    1. Hi, Shelley! I’m not familiar with that blend, but the ingredients sound perfect. I’m guessing they’re chopped smaller than I would otherwise chop the veggies for a stew, so they might break down into mush by the end of the long cooking time. It’s totally up to you — maybe you don’t mind that — but if you prefer larger chunks of carrots and celery, you might not want to use that mix if it’s smaller pieces of veggies. Also, just make sure that you have enough of the vegetable blend to really bulk up the stew. I’m not sure if that weight will be enough…

  4. Hi Blair, I have prepped the chicken stew recipe to cook tomorrow. Since I am using leftover chicken from our roasted chicken dinner, how long would you recommend cooking time in the crock pot. The vegetables are raw and do need time to cook.
    I can’t wait to try this out. Thank-you

    1. Hi, Elinor! I find that vegetables still need about 6-8 hours on low or 3-4 hours on high in order to be tender. If your slow cooker runs at a relatively high temp and tends to cook things quickly, you might be able to get away with slightly shorter — about 4-5 hours on low or 2-2 1/2 hours on high. If you’re worried about the chicken drying out during that long cooking time, you can add it towards the end (during the final hour or so). That will give the meat a chance to warm through, but it won’t be overdone. Hope you enjoy!

  5. 5 stars
    Sounds good. When prepping a day ahead of time, putting the veggies in a zip lock bag, as you suggested, I always thought the potatoes turn brown. Do they?

    1. Hi, Mary! Yes, they might. I’ve had that issue, too. Once they cook and they’re mixed with the other ingredients, I don’t think it’s such a big deal. That said, you can always wait and add the potatoes on the day of cooking if you want to be sure they’re not discolored. Hope you enjoy the meal!

    2. You can prep your potatoes the day ahead by peeling and cutting them, covering them completely with cold water in a pot or bowl, and putting them in refrigerator until ready to use. As long as they are completely submerged in the water, they will not turn brown. I do this often. Saves you the hassle of last minute prepping.

  6. 5 stars
    I cooked this 2x already and it is perfect. Reheats very well. I will keep as a go to recipe at least once a month! Thanks!

  7. I do not understand the calories for this stew. It says 162kcal??? That’s 162,000 calories? That makes no sense.

    1. Hi, Buddy! No, kcal stands for kilocalories, which is used interchangeably with calories. So it’s 162 calories.

  8. Not good! After cooking all day I had to finish it on top of the stove. I should know better than to use a slow cooker for anything but keeping food warm.