Slow Cooker Herbed Chicken and Rice Pilaf. I turned everyone’s favorite dinner into an easy and delicious slow cooker recipe using pantry staples like wild rice, autumn herbs, and chicken breasts. This slow cooked chicken dinner is a hearty, but healthy meal to come home to after a busy day. The best part? It’s the easiest dinner to prepare!

overhead photo of Slow Cooker Herbed Chicken and Rice Pilaf on serving plate

If there was ever a Gerard family classic dinner, it’s chicken and rice. You guys have heard me say this before, but my dad used to make my brothers and I chicken and rice at least a couple of nights a week while growing up. It was a staple dinner, mostly because it was one that we would all happily eat.

To this day, chicken and rice is one of my ultimate comfort foods. So it’s always fun for me to come up with new ways to serve it. Especially during the cooler fall months when all I crave is warming comfort food.

I’m sure you guys have noticed. I don’t think a day’s gone bye in the last few weeks that I’ve not made something cozy and delicious. And I am A-OK with that. Everyone has their thing. Mine is definitely fall comfort food, and I am clearly embracing it. I may even have had two slow cookers and an instant pot working their magic on Monday. Always testing something new over here…

photo of olive oil in sunlight

Anyway, every fall I get the urge to make a slow roasted chicken and rice dinner. It’s a classic, it’s well loved, and it’s good. This year though, I really wanted to come up with an easy way to get that slow roasted flavor, but in the slow cooker, and complete with wild rice and veggies, because I love an “all in one meal”.

I wasn’t sure how this would turn out, but in the end, I was so pleasantly surprised. This recipe is SO GOOD.

And it’s kind of healthy too. Plus it makes your house smell incredible. And did I mention it’s delicious? Oh, and simple!

Yes, you just have to make it.

chicken in skillet

Here are the details.

Start out by combining the rice and veggies in your slow cooker. I love using wild rice, it’s one of my favorite pairings with “roasted” chicken.

Next, season the chicken with fresh thyme and sage. Then pan sear it in a screaming hot cast iron skillet. Yes, I am telling you  to take the extra effort to dirty a skillet by searing the chicken first. Trust me, I wouldn’t tell you to do this if I didn’t think it was needed. But searing the chicken locks in so much flavor. It’s really just something you have to do. I know it’s super, super annoying, but in the end it will be worth it. And it really only takes an extra ten minutes to sear the chicken. Not a big deal.

Add the seared chicken right to the slow cooker with the rice. Now add the shallots to that hot skillet and toss them around in the chicken drippings to give them a little color. Then add the shallots (and all those good pan drippings) to the slow cooker.

Cover, and cook low and slow for a few hours. Then come home to a perfectly cooked dinner where all you need to do is serve. Nothing else, just grab your plates and some silverware and enjoy.

Simple as that. And yes, I’m also including Instant Pot instructions, but I do prefer this in the slow cooker.

overhead photo of Slow Cooker Herbed Chicken and Rice Pilaf in slow cooker before cooking

Slow Cooker Herbed Chicken and Rice Pilaf in slow cooker after cooking

I absolutely could not love this recipe more…even if it is lacking in color, and the photos are not my favorite. It’s one of those recipes that I’ll be coming back to time and time again, because it’s easy, it’s pretty healthy, and everyone enjoys it.

I love making this dish on Sundays, for a nice family dinner. It reminds me of being a kid again and that’s always a welcomed memory!

This recipe works great for any night of the week though. You can throw everything in the slow cooker in the morning, come home and dinner is done. Could not be easier or more delicious. Feeling like you guys will love this one!

close up photo of Slow Cooker Herbed Chicken and Rice Pilaf

If you make this chicken and rice pilaf, please be sure to leave a comment and/or give this recipe a rating! Above all, I love to hear from you guys and always do my best to respond to each and every comment. And of course, if you do make this recipe, don’t forget to also tag me on Instagram! Looking through the photos of recipes you all have made is my favorite!

Slow Cooker Herbed Chicken and Rice Pilaf

Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 4 hours
Total Time 4 hours 20 minutes
Servings: 6
Calories Per Serving: 439 kcal

Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.

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Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups wild rice blend (mix wild and brown rice)
  • 3 cups low sodium chicken broth
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 2 teaspoons dried parsley
  • 1 carrot, cut into 1 inch pieces
  • 1 cup wild mushrooms, torn
  • 2 pounds bone-in chicken breast and or thighs
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves
  • 1 tablespoon fresh chopped sage
  • kosher salt and pepper
  • 4 shallots, halved
  • 1 sprig fresh rosemary

Instructions

Slow Cooker

  • 1. In the bowl of your slow cooker, combine the wild rice, 3 cups chicken broth, lemon juice, parsley, carrots, and mushrooms. Season with salt and pepper and mix everything up to combine.
    2. Rub the chicken with 1 tablespoon olive oil, thyme, sage, and a pinch each of salt and pepper. 
    3. Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. When the oil shimmers, add the chicken and sear until golden brown on both sides, about 5 minutes per side. Toss in the shallots and cook another 1-2 minutes. Remove the chicken and shallots from the skillet and place directly into the slow cooker, skin side up, along with any juices left in the skillet. Add the rosemary.
    4. Cover the slow cooker and cook on low for 5-6 hours or on high for 3-4 hours. If the rice is hard, add and addition 1/2 cup broth and cook another 30 minutes on high.
    5. To serve, fluff the rice with a fork and serve the chicken, rice, and veggies together. 

Instant Pot

  • 1. In the bowl of your instant pot, combine the wild rice, 3 cups chicken broth, lemon juice, parsley, carrots, and mushrooms. Season with salt and pepper and mix everything up to combine.
    2. Rub the chicken with 1 tablespoon olive oil, thyme, sage, and a pinch each of salt and pepper.
    3. Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. When the oil shimmers, add the chicken and sear until golden brown on both sides, about 5 minutes per side. Toss in the shallots and cook another 1-2 minutes. Remove the chicken and shallots from the skillet and place directly into the instant pot, skin side up, along with any juices left in the skillet. Add the rosemary. 
    4. Cover, select the manual setting, and cook on high pressure for 25 minutes. Once done cooking, use the quick release function and release the steam.
    5. To serve, fluff the rice with a fork and serve the chicken, rice, and veggies together. 

Notes

*I slow cooked this for 6 hours on low with great results. My rice is soft, but not overly mushy. Because we are slow cooking, the rice will be softer.

overhead horizontal photo of Slow Cooker Herbed Chicken and Rice Pilaf on serving plate

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Comments

  1. 1 star
    Bottom line: This recipe desperately needs a refresh/rework. We’ve tried both the slow cooker and the instant pot. Almost every comment mentions the rice as an issue.

    tl;dr: The chicken tasted good, but putting the seared (skin-on) chicken into slow cooker/instant pot undoes alot of the delicious crispiness. For rice, the amount of liquid suggested is just too much. It should probably follow the specific rice brand’s instructions; following the 3 cups amount seems to yield mushiness no matter the method.

    chicken comment #1 – the photos seem to show skin-on thighs, but that’s not in the recipe 16/4/2021. Makes a difference in cooking and searing time. loss of crispiness in slow cooker/instant pot doesn’t matter as much with skinless.

    chicken comment #2 – skin-on: you spend all that time deliciously searing the chicken and getting it crispy, and then when you put it in the pressure cooker, it’s in a high moisture environment and it comes out soggy. same deal with slow cooker.

    Wild rice/rice – it’s a mushy mess no matter what. My hypothesis is as follows – you need to calibrate the amount of liquid very carefully, and probably to follow the recommendations for YOUR rice. These liquid recommendations (3 cups + chicken juices, which increase with skin-on chicken) just do not work. Furthermore, the amount of liquid will probably not be constant when converting from slow cooker to instant pot.

    I highly recommend re-working, or refreshing, this recipe to address the majority of comments – mushy rice.

    1. Hey Lauren,
      So sorry this recipe has not been working for you, I appreciate your feedback. Please let me know if I can help in anyway! xTieghan

  2. 3 stars
    The chicken was incredible! However, the rice was essentially mush. I followed the recipe perfectly but my rice was definitely not how it looks in the picture.

    1. Hey Miranda,
      Thanks for giving the recipe a try, sorry to hear about your rice! Let me know if I can help in anyway! xTieghan

    1. Hey Rachel,
      Yes, that will work well for you. I hope you love the dish, please let me know if you have any questions! xTieghan

  3. I also added Broccolini and it was delicious, came out a little soupy, i will probably add less broth next time.

  4. 4 stars
    This was delish. I modified by doing 2 cups bone broth and 1 cup 1/2 1/2. Also I would cut down the rice to 1 cup combo brown and wild.

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