12/12/11

Chicken Master Mix



Freezer Cooking: Chicken

 In the time it takes you to cook a few chicken breasts for dinner tonight, you can make yourself Chicken Master Mix. Tonight I ended up with 3 bags of chicken and 2 cups of chicken broth for the freezer!

Having pre-cooked, precubed/shredded chicken in your freezer really helps you pull a quick dinner together on those busy nights. I will try to add some recipes you can use them in, but I mostly use them for easy pull togethers, like chicken tacos, chicken enchilada casserole (look in the recipe section for this one), chicken alfredo, chicken, broccoli, and rice (look in the freezer meals section), etc.

 Since tonight I'm serving burrito bowls, I needed to cook up a few chicken breasts today. It is just as easy to cook the entire 3 lb bag of chicken breasts and use some tonight and have extra to put in the freezer.
Here's how I like to make mine:

I prefer keeping the seasoning for chicken master mix, pretty simple and a taste that will cross over to any recipe I may use.
Today I used a 3 1b. bag of frozen boneless, skinless chicken breast, but I also watch for sales and use whole chicken, chicken thighs, etc. , use this how to as a general guide to help you make your perfect Chicken Master Mix:



Ingredients:

3 1b. frozen chicken breasts
1 jar of mcCormicks savory herb rub, or turkey rub (can also substitute your own spices like garlic, rosemary, thyme, sage, etc)













Directions:


Place frozen chicken breasts into crockpot. Sprinkle herbs/dry rub generously over chicken breasts.
Cook chicken on high for 3 hours or low for 6-8 hours. They should look like this:










Remove chicken one at a time from crockpot and shred or cube on a cutting board.










My 3 lb. bag had a yield of approx. 7 cups of shredded chicken:










I chose to bag mine in about 2 cup increments, so got 3 bags of chicken:










But, I am not done yet!  There is some valuable broth left in the bottom of the crockpot! Unfortunately it also has some left over yucky fat in it from the chicken.









I place a strainer inside another bowl and strain the broth from the yucky stuff:











And by straining the fat out of the broth, I was able to yield about 2 cups of chicken broth:
Once it has completely cooled, I pour it into labeled freezer bags to use for soups, gravies, etc.

8 comments:

  1. I am so thankful for your helpful tips and recipes! Thank you for blessing others with your knowledge. :)

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    Replies
    1. I second Ashlyn!! What a wonderful blog full of useful ideas and tips for a woman like me, just trying to balance being a new mom and having a career...home...pets...husband...LIFE! I LOVE this blog! Keep up the good work! :-D

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    2. Kristin, Thanks for lifting my spirits! Today was a little challenging and your sweet words gives me the strength to look forward!
      Jan

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  2. An interesting tip that I read and just tried for shredding the chicken is to transfer it while still warm to your stand mixer and mix using the paddle attachment, and I just wanted to pass it along because I appreciate your tips and this one saved me time making my master mix!

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    Replies
    1. Abby, Oh Mylanta! That is an awesome tip! That would NEVER occur to me! I appreciate you sharing your knowledge!

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  3. do you add water when you put the chicken in the crockpot or is it ok without because it is frozen?

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    Replies
    1. Becky in this particular case you can go either way. I usually don't, since they seem to release so much juices. Really the water would only be to keep it from sticking to the bottom. Whether to add water to a meat in a crockpot depends on a couple of factors: 1) if you're adding Vegetables (like a stew) then you need water for the vegies. and 2) how fatty the meat is, if it's on the fatty side like a pork roast then little or no water will be needed. just spray the bottom with non stick spray. It will release alot of liquid as it cooks, but for chicken that is pretty lean a 1/2 cup water is about perfect. Unless you want to make broth, then you can add more water and the chicken juices will flavor the water and be great for cooking soups or gravies another day. I don't know if this helps or not.

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  4. For the broth - pour it into the cups of a muffin pan and freeze. Dip the bottom of the pan in warm water then pop out the frozen broth rounds. This makes it easier to use in different dishes that don't require a whole bag of broth.

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