Yes, OK, I admit it, it's not a looker - in fact, in this photo, it rather resembles a vat of vomit ! But trust me, it tasted lovely and it was one of those throw-it-all-in-the-slow-cooker-and-let-it-get-on-with-it jobbies that are perfect when you're going to be out all day at work (or in my case, geocaching, as it was the holidays !) but still want to come home to a home cooked meal.
As always, during the school holidays, I like to have a stocktake in the pantry and clear out anything that's been lurking in there for too long. This time I found a pack of ranch dip seasoning, which is a mix of powdered buttermilk, garlic, chives and herbs. I wanted to do something more exciting than just make a dip with it, and this recipe for Slow Cooker Creamy Taco Ranch Chicken on the Lil' Luna blog was perfect. (Head over and have a look at hers because it looks much prettier than mine !) I actually had a tin of black beans in the cupboard but red kidney beans would be perfectly acceptable too - in fact, I couldn't taste much difference. I also had half a sachet of fajita seasoning which I used in place of taco seasoning.
Slow Cooker Mexican Ranch Pulled Chicken
1kg chicken - the original recipe uses chicken breasts but I used a pack of 6 chicken thighs
1 tin of chopped tomatoes
1 tin of sweetcorn
1 tin of black beans or red kidney beans
2 onions, sliced
1 clove of garlic
1tbsp dry Ranch dressing mix
1tbsp taco or fajita seasoning or Mexican spice/chilli & cumin
a small pack of Philadelphia cream cheese
salt, pepper to taste
Empty the tins of sweetcorn, beans and tomatoes into the bottom of the slow cooker.
Toss in the minced garlic and onion. (Sorry about the poor lighting - it was 7am and still dark, but I couldn't be bothered to faff about !)
Lay the chicken thighs on top and sprinkle with the ranch dressing mix and fajita seasoning.
Leave to cook for 4 hours or so then remove the chicken thighs and use two forks to shred the meat and remove the bones.
Stir the sauce and season to taste with salt. Add extra ranch and/or Mexican seasoning if you like too.
Return the shredded chicken to the pot.
Plop in the cream cheese.
Leave for ten minutes for the cream cheese to melt then stir to combine everything. Mine came out runnier than the original version because I used chicken thighs that released more juices during the cooking process than breast meat would have.
Serve with rice, pasta or mashed potatoes.
Adding to this month's #KitchenClearout linky as it used up a sachet of ranch mix seasoning and half a pack of fajita seasoning.