January 16, 2012

The Slow Cooker Challenge & Low-Fat Lemon Thyme Chicken {Naptime Simple Tips}

Breville Slow-Cooker

Welcome to The Naptime Chef & Small Kitchen College Slow Cooker Challenge! This week Phoebe, Cara, Lily and I are joining forces to talk all things slow-cooker. You might ask: what do college cooks and moms have in common? Answer: they’re BUSY.

Do you use your slow cooker a lot in the winter? What do you make? I hope are excited because we are going to chat slow cooking with you all week long! I know I, for one, am a big fan of slow cooking during naptime and this week I am going to explore all the interesting family foods can be slow-cooked. I’ll give you a hint: it is about much more than soups and stews. We’ll be partnering with Big Kitchen and offering up two great slow cookers, one on each of our sites! See below for how to take home the Breville model. If you visit Small Kitchen College you can also enter to win a great Delonghi version.

More importantly, we’ll be joined by an all-star list of bloggers and food sites whom will be sharing in the slow cookin’ fun and posting recipes, tips, and tricks throughout the week. To get in on the action, simply post about the challenge and feature a slow cooker recipe on your own site and shoot us the link. We’ll add you to the growing list below!

Don’t own a slow cooker? Not to worry! This week is really about celebrating one-pot, hands-off recipes, whether they’re safely cooking in your Crock Pot, or slowly braising in the oven.

If you are in need of new inspiration check out my collaborative Pinterest board and the Small Kitchen College Pinterest board where we can all pin recipes all winter long!

On Wednesday, January 18th from 12pm – 1pm, we’ll be hosting a live twitter chat along with Food52, The Daily Meal, Fine Cooking, Punchfork, Foodily, OXO Good Grips and more. We’ll be using hash tag #slowcooker. Tune in to talk all things slow cookin’! During the Twitter event and throughout the day we’ll be offering the first giveaway of amazing OXO Good Grip tools that are essential for slow-cookin’!

On Thursday, January 19th we’ll be slow-cookin’ all day on Facebook you can enter to win a second prize-pack of OXO Good Grips kitchen tools by uploading photographs of your slow-cooked meals to The Naptime Chef fanpage, Small Kitchen College fanpage or Big Girls, Small Kitchen fanpage

**Participating Sites**

FN Dish, Slow Cooker Recipes for Busy People


The Family Dinner, Slow Cooker Curry

Edible Europe, 7 Days of Slow Cooking

Martha Stewart Family Room, Slow Cooker Double Chocolate Espresso Brownies

Foodily, The Slow Cooker Challenge and 4 Essential Slow-Cooker Recipes

Fine Cooking, The Slow Cooker Challenge Heats Up!

Jeanette’s Healthy Living, Slow Cooker Turkey Bolognese


The Daily Meal, The Slow Cooker Challenge

College Candy

Her Campus

College Lifestyles, The Slow Cooker Challenge

Life2PointOh, Slow Cooker Recipes for Winter

One Bite At A Time, Slow Cooker Dulce de Leche

Mrs. Wheelbarrow, Braised Lamb Neck

Thursday Night Dinner, Stewed Chicken with Mustard Cream Sauce

Savoring the Thyme, Slow Cooker Bison Bolognese

Babble, The Slow Cooker Challenge is Here!

Momtastic, 3 Essential Slow Cooker Recipes!

Families in the Loop

Debbie Koenig, Slow Cooker Chorizo Chili

NY Family Magazine, It is Slow Cooking Season!

One Hungry Mama, Slow Cooker Cassoulet

Dinner with Julie, Slow Cooker Guinness Baked Beans

CafeMom, Slow Cooker Rice Pudding

Simple Bites, Coconut Ginger Chicken & Vegetables

Simple Bites, Apple Pie Steel Cut Oats

Gluten is my Bitch, Gluten-Free 4-Alarm Chili for the Slow Cooker
Cookin’ Canuck, Chicken Tortilla Soup with Black Beans
Food for my Family,
Eclectic Recipes
Family Fresh Cooking, Blueberry Coconut Baked Steel Cut Oats

Talk Nerdy to Me

The Kids Cook Monday, Indian Spiced Tomato Potato Soup

Early Twenties, How a Slow Cooker Could Change My Life

Aggie’s Kitchen

Laura’s Best Recipes

Veggie Vangelist, Slow Cooker Posole

Cooking with my Kid, Asian Pulled Pork Sandwiches (Banh Mi)

Sugar Free Mom, Overnight Oatmeal

Not Derby Pie, Slow Cooker Adobo Black Bean Soup

Entry Requirements to Win a Breville Slow-Cooker:

1. Leave a comment sharing what your favorite slow-cooker meal (sweet or savory!)

2. Subscribe to The Naptime Chef newsletter (upper right hand corner) – I’ll check!

3. Become a fan of The Naptime Chef on Facebook**

4. Become a fan of Big Kitchen on Facebook.**

5. 1 Extra Entry: Share the link to this post with your friends on Facebook and link to @TheNaptimeChef Facebook fanpage and Big Kitchen fanpage

6. 1 Extra Entry: Tweet about this giveaway on Twitter and link to hashtag @TheNaptimeChef

7. 1 Extra Entry: Follow me on Stumbleupon and stumble this entry by clicking the green thumbs up.

8. 6 Extra Entries: Share the post about this article from my Facebook fanpage to at least 10 friends. (I can see who shares what, so I will note when you share!)

Note:  The contest runs from Monday January 16th at 7:00am through Saturday January 21st at 7:00pm. Winner will be announced Sunday January 22nd at 7:00am ET. All winners will be selected by Random.org. Winner has 48 hours to claim prize, or it will be awarded to someone else.

** If you don’t use Facebook simply notify me in the comments and that requirement will be waived.

Disclosure: This gift was generously donated by the kind people at BigKitchen.com.


Slow-Cooker Low-Fat Lemon Thyme Chicken


4 boneless skinless chicken breasts, (on the larger, denser side)
¼ cup olive oil
2 large lemons, zested and juiced
4 large garlic cloves, minced
2 teaspoons kosher salt
2 teaspoons freshly cracked pepper
8 sprigs fresh thyme


1. Mix the olive oil, lemon zest and juice and minced garlic together in a small mixing bowl and pour it into the bottom of a large slow-cooker, about 5 or 6 quart.

2. Pat the chicken breasts dry and place them in the slow-cooker turn them once through the olive oil mixture. Then sprinkle both sides of chicken with large pinches of kosher salt and cracked pepper. Nestle the salted and pepper breasts snuggly into the bottom of the slow cooker. Tuck the sprigs of thyme between and around the chicken breasts.

3. Cut one of the zested lemons into eighths and nestle them top and around the breasts with the thyme.

4. Place the lid on top of the slow-cooker and cook on high heat for 3 hours. Check the inside of one of the breasts to make sure they are cooked through. The cooking time might vary a bit based on the slow-cooker and density of the chicken breasts. If they need to cook longer do it in 15-minute increments.

Naptime Notes

Naptime Recipe Serving ideas

Served with some rice and salad this makes an excellent, healthy dinner for winter – or summer! Play with the flavorings, nearly any herb would taste good in lieu of thyme. I think we might try rosemary next time!


Naptime Stopwatch

15 minutes prep time,  3 hours cooking time


Naptime Reviews

This is always a hit in our house!


More Naptime Recipes