Yep. That’s a chicken.
I think they’re funny looking, and this one even appears to be covering its bits. It’s a modest chicken.
IF YOU THINK YOU CANNOT COOK/DON’T WANT TO COOK A WHOLE CHICKEN, PLEASE DO NOT STOP READING. THIS POST IS FOR YOU.
This bird has revolutionized my grocery budget. Did you know a whole chicken is $0.85 per POUND at Aldi?
Just what can I do with $5 in chicken? Let me show you.
The Whole Chicken
1 whole chicken
1/2 medium onion
2 cloves garlic
(You can also use Garlic Salt and Onion Powder if that’s what you have on-hand.)
- Allow chicken to thaw COMPLETELY in fridge. This takes a minimum of 3 days for our chickens.
- Remove gizzards etc. (This is by far the worst part, but a pair of tongs works wonders)
- Drop 1-2 pats (TBSPs) of butter in the bottom of your crock pot.
- Sprinkle in garlic powder and onion salt. You WILL under-season your bird, so don’t be afraid of the spices.
- Cut onion into large slices. Nothing fancy here, this is just stuffing.
Toss onion with more Onion Salt and 2 cloves of garlic.
Place coated onions in the chicken cavity.
- Put chicken, breast-side down in your crock pot.
DON’T BE FREAKED BY TOUCHING THE CHICKEN. IT WILL JUST FEEL LIKE A WET/SOAPY BABY.
- Combine 2-3 pats of butter with more garlic powder and onion salt (to taste).
The easiest way to do this is just smoosh it all together in your hand.
- Rub on top of the chicken,
- Set crock pot to LOW.
- Cook 1 hour per pound.
- ***If you want to crisp skin*** heat broiler during last 10 mins of cooking. Remove chicken from crock (Be warned-it will fall off the bone.) Place in oven-safe dish. Broil until skin is the way you like it. This will dry your chicken some, so be careful.
That’s meal #1. Serve with sides of your choice. We had baked potatoes and green beans last night. Sweet Corn Casserole and bread the time before.
My family of 4 eats their fill, and we still have 2 containers of leftover meat.
The Simple Fix
1 to 1 1/2 cups rice
2 crowns of broccoli
- Prepare rice as directed on package.
- Steam broccoli. Or, if you don’t have a steamer (like me), chop the broccoli into bite-sized pieces, place in microwave-safe dish. Fill 1/2 way with water and place a microwave-safe lid (or plate) on top. Microwave 5 minutes. Drain water & Voila.
- Dish out rice. Top with broccoli and chicken and your choice of seasonings.
My favorite is lemon pepper. The boys like salt and cheese. There is also sweet & sour sauce or soy if you prefer.
By now, all the white meat is usually gone…which is all I voluntarily eat. However, dark meat is great for things like soups and stews.
Remaining chicken, removed from bone and cut into bite-sized pieces
1 Onion, chopped
2 cloves of garlic
2 sm. cans diced green chiles
2 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp dried oregano
1 1/2 tsp cayenne/chili powder
3 cans Northern beans, undrained
1 can white hominy
1 can white corn
1 cup shredded cheese (topping)
- In a large pot, heat chicken. Add salt and pepper.
- When warmed, add onion, 1 clove of garlic, chiles and spices. Simmer 3 mins.
- Add beans, corn, hominy and remaining garlic. Heat to boiling.
- Stir. Lower heat and let simmer 5-10 mins.
***If it’s too thick/spicy for your taste, dilute with chicken broth to taste.
- Serve topped with cheese and chives.
These are just SOME of the things you can do with a whole chicken.
- Caesar Salad
- Chicken sandwiches
- Chicken quesadillas/tacos
- Chicken & Dumplings
- BBQ chicken with cornbread (a personal favorite)
This week, I’m going to try to make Buffalo Chicken Wraps with some leftover meat. I will be posting that recipe soon.
Done! Check it out in this post.
Don’t miss out on a great deal just because you assume whole chickens are hard to work with or that the flavor commitment limits the possibilities. If you start with classic flavoring–like garlic and onion–you can only ADD to it!
What do you usually spend on chicken? If you cook whole chickens, what do you like to do with the leftovers? I’d love to add some options for us!