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#CookClub recipe: Slow Cooker Chicken Thighs Over Rice

Creamy peanut butter works wonders in this recipe for Slow Cooker Chicken Thighs Over Rice.

Michelle Stark | Times

Creamy peanut butter works wonders in this recipe for Slow Cooker Chicken Thighs Over Rice.

Food is all about connection, whether it's making a meal in the family kitchen or bonding with friends over a divine cheese plate. In this new weekly column, I want to connect with you about everything from our nation's changing eating habits to the local foodie scene to what's cooking in my kitchen. Look for cooking tips and food trends, with a particular focus on clean, healthy eating and how to put together simple, satisfying recipes. This week, an introduction to our new version of the long-running #CookClub feature.


Sometimes, the stars align, and you have all the right ingredients in your fridge to whip up a wholesome, healthy, hot weeknight dinner.

Then there are the nights — much more common, in my experience — when you just don't, and putting anything on the table that's not a bowl of cereal is a struggle.

We hear you, which is why we're rolling out a new iteration of #CookClub, the online cooking community we started in September 2013. We're simplifying things a bit, featuring new recipes each week in this space and online. Recipes will lean toward quick, easy dinner ideas that fall in the 30-minute-meal category. Seasonal ingredients will play a big role, as will ease. In general, we want these to be something home cooks can replicate.

And we'll refocus on #CookClub's original spirit of improvisation. The recipes will be simple enough to allow room for you to tinker, to put your spin on the ingredients. We can learn from each other through our kitchen mistakes and innovations.

If you make the week's dish, share with us how you made it your own by snapping a photo and posting it to Twitter or Instagram with the tag #CookClub, or write to me at or on Twitter at @mstark17.

This week we're easing our way out with a slow cooker recipe that's about as hands-off as you can get, yet deceptively tasty. I'm always leery of slow cooker recipes that have too few ingredients; where does the flavor come from? But creamy peanut butter works wonders on these chicken thighs, which can cook in as few as four hours or as many as eight. Dark meat holds up better to the long cooking time, staying tender and juicy. (Bone-in thighs are tastier than boneless in this case, too.) Serving the thighs on a bed of herbed rice helps keep the dish fresh and bright. Consider green beans or peas on the side.

Now back to that improvisational spirit for a second. Let's say you don't own a slow cooker. This dish can also be made by combining all of the ingredients in a large pot and letting them cook down and simmer for at least 45 minutes.

For the full interactive #CookClub experience, check out, where you'll find links to our weekly Twitter chat, highlights (including lots of fun kitchen tips) from past chats, Instagram photos from other #CookClub members and a new recipe each week.

Contact Michelle Stark at (727) 893-8829 and Follow @mstark17.




Slow Cooker Chicken Thighs Over Rice

Slow Cooker Chicken Thighs Over Rice


  • For the chicken:
  • 6-8 skinless chicken thighs, bone in (about 2 pounds)
  • ½ cup peanut butter
  • 1 (10-ounce) can diced tomatoes, not drained
  • 1 (4-ounce) can diced green chiles, not drained
  • ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • For the rice:
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • ¼ cup chopped onion
  • 1 cup brown rice
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 ½ cups chicken broth (or water)
  • 1 clove garlic, smashed
  • 2 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 3 green onions, thinly sliced


  1. Place chicken thighs in a slow cooker. Top with peanut butter, diced tomatoes and green chiles, swirling the ingredients together to combine. Add red pepper flakes and salt and pepper. Cook on low for 8 hours, or high for 4 hours.
  2. When chicken is almost done, cook the rice. Heat olive oil in a medium saucepan, then add onion and cook until tender. Add the rice and stir to coat it with oil, then season with salt and pepper to taste. Add the chicken broth, garlic and thyme. Cover with a lid. Cook for about 30 minutes. Remove the thyme sprigs and garlic. Fluff with a fork and add parsley and green onions.
  3. Serve thighs and tomato mixture over brown rice. Serves 6.
Sources: recipe for thighs adapted from; recipe for rice adapted from Food Network


#CookClub recipe: Slow Cooker Chicken Thighs Over Rice 04/20/15 [Last modified: Tuesday, June 16, 2015 1:53pm]
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