Being a mom of three under three always has me moving. Whether it’s removing my newly crawling baby out of the dog food, or constantly chasing after my two and three year old, I never stop. And between the endless diaper changes, “MOMMY, I NEED HELP WIPING, PLEASE!” (at least she’s polite while yelling), and the trails of toys to be cleaned, dinner time always seems to sneak up on me. Then the questions arises: “What do you want for dinner?” I swear this question causes more controversy in marriages than anything else. Here’s how it goes in my house:
Ryan: What do you want for dinner?
Me: I don’t care. What do you want for dinner?
Ryan: I don’t care. I picked last time.
Me: No, I picked the last time. (I usually fib at this point because this conversation is doomed…) 😛
So I have really gotten into the habit of meal planning. Not only does it solve the “What’s for dinner?” fiasco, but it saves money and decreases wasted food. I will go through my Pinterest Recipes and cookbooks and pick out what sounds good for the two week period. I make a grocery list and make a huge trip to Aldi. If there’s something that Aldi doesn’t carry or I won’t buy there, I’ll go to another store. But usually I try to group everything into one or two big trips. I write down the meals for the two week period in my Erin Condren Life Planner. Everything goes into that planner!! So, then in the morning or night before, I take a look at what I’m making for dinner and pull out any meat if needed. Now, I don’t always stick to what’s written down for the week, so an impromptu change up may occur! And then I always have a frozen pizza, spaghetti, or chilli ingredients for the nights we’re rushed on time.
This is a rotisserie chicken recipe I came up with a while ago and recently started using essential oils in it. If I were to guess, this is a pretty health conscientious recipe. And maybe even ‘clean’??? i don’t know! I found a basic poultry rub recipe and googled cooking a whole chicken in the crock pot. Aldi carries the perfect crock-pot sized whole birds for about $6 and you can get at least two meals of out it. Can’t beat the price, but you have to face handling a whole bird. For me, this was the biggest milestone of being a grownup. Screw birthing babies, or getting married. Cooking a whole bird is the definition of adulthood. And if you know me and how I handle raw meat, this.is.HUGE! I’m not even going to go there when it comes to the little baggie of innards… >>I’m dry heaving writing about it.<< Gross. Anyways, this is what I do to make a rotisserie chicken in the crock-pot. We’ll have chicken and sides the night I make it and then use the leftovers for pastas, soups, pulled bbq chicken, etc.
Crock-Pot Rotisserie Chicken Recipe
3-4 stalks of celery
1 medium onion
2-4 garlic cloves
1-2 sprigs of rosemary
Lemon and Rosemary essential oils (Click here to learn what I use.)
1 tablespoon kosher salt
1 tablespoon pepper
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon paprika (I use smoked paprika)
2 large pieces of aluminum foil
butcher twine or toothpicks
I prep everything first to avoid any kind of contamination so I slice the carrots, celery, and onion into 1/3 inch pieces and place in a bowl along with the cloves of garlic. Slice the lemon into 4 slices and have the rosemary set aside. Cut a 12 inch piece of twine to hold the legs together-or you can use toothpicks! Add all the rub ingredients to a separate bowl and set aside. This is a really important part!! Take one large (18 inches) piece of aluminum foil and crumble into and flat ball and place into the crock-pot. Do this once more for a total of two. This prevents the bird from sitting down in the juices and becoming soggy. Plus, this is what really helps with the rotisserie taste and texture of the chicken. Spray the entire crock-pot and aluminum with cooking spray.
This is where you get down and dirty with the birdy!! In the sink with gloves on my hands, I take the bag-o-goods out. This is the part where I dry heave for a good 30 seconds: I separate the skin from the breast with my finger and put a spoonful of rub down in there and smear it around. Once you get that part done, you’re golden! You don’t have to do this, but it really does flavor the breast meat. Sprinkle a spoonful of rub in the cavity and fill with veggies. Tie the legs together with the twine or pull skin over and secure with toothpicks. Next, pour a tablespoons worth of olive oil on the bird and rub all over. Take the left over veggies and place them into the crock-pot around but not on top on the aluminum balls. Then place the whole bird, breast down (like it’s sitting on its legs) into the crock-pot and coat with rub. Place the lemon slices and rosemary on top and add a few 2-3 drops of Lemon and Rosemary essential oils. I add about a 1/4 cup of water to the bottom of the crock-pot too. Cover and cook on low for 8 hours or high for 4-5 hours. Once the internal temp is 185 degrees, the bird is done. I like to CAREFULLY take the bird out and place into a broiler safe pan and place in the broiler for 10 minutes or until the skin begins to brown and crisp.
And voila! Your chicken is finito! We had roasted squash, rice vermicelli and french loaf and it was delish! Whatever we don’t use, I use in another dish a few days later. I also save some of the veggies and broth and freeze them to use in chicken noodle soup or chicken and dumplings. It is SO much better with this stock and veggies! Plus, it’s THRIFTY! No store bought sodium filled chicken broth!