How Long To Cook Frozen Chicken In A Crockpot: Detailed Instructions For Juicy Chicken

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The crockpot is a kitchen hero, making frozen chicken effortlessly transform into a perfectly cooked meal. However, understanding how long to cook frozen chicken in a crockpot is essential for flavor and ensuring the chicken reaches the necessary internal temperature for safe consumption.

Proper timing is key, whether you’re using frozen chicken in the crockpot or opting for fresh chicken. This guide will clarify the cooking times to help you create delicious and safe chicken dishes with your slow cooker.

How Long To Cook Frozen Chicken In A Crockpot?

The question, “How long to cook frozen chicken in a crockpot?” is common among those looking to enjoy a perfectly cooked chicken every time. The answer depends on a few factors, including the type and size of the chicken, the setting of your crockpot, and whether the chicken is frozen or thawed.

Cooking times based on the chicken type

The type of chicken you’re cooking can significantly affect the cooking time. If you’re looking to place frozen chicken in the crock pot, a whole chicken may take approximately 4-6 hours on high heat or 6–8 hours on low heat. If you’re cooking a frozen chicken breast, expect about 3–4 hours on high or 5-7 hours on low. 

Due to their density, bone-in, skinless chicken breasts might require an additional hour. If cooking chicken thighs, allocate about 2–3 hours on high or 5–6 hours on low.

Read more about How Long To Bake Chicken Breast At 350 Degrees Fahrenheit? Perfect Cooking Time

How long does it take to cook frozen chicken in a crockpot?
How long does it take to cook frozen chicken in a crockpot?

Differences in cooking times for low and high settings

Cooking your frozen chicken in the crock on a low setting will take longer than cooking it on high heat. However, the low setting is often recommended, as it allows for a more gradual and even cooking process, which typically results in more tender and flavorful chicken.

Factors that may affect cooking times

While the size and type of chicken contribute significantly to the cooking time, other factors also play a part. When cooking chicken in the crock pot, whether chicken breast or a whole chicken, the fact that it’s frozen will add to the cooking time.

However, the most important rule when figuring out how long to cook frozen chicken in a crockpot is ensuring that the chicken reaches a safe internal temperature. According to the USDA, the chicken should be cooked to an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit for safe consumption.

To enhance the flavor of your dish, consider adding chicken broth or your preferred seasonings. By following these guidelines, you can ensure perfectly cooked chicken every time.

Useful Tips For Cooking Frozen Chicken In A Crockpot

The success of a chicken dish hinges on how long to cook frozen chicken in a crockpot, as well as other crucial factors like seasoning, ensuring doneness, and adhering to safety measures.

Useful tips for cooking frozen chicken in a crockpot
Useful tips for cooking frozen chicken in a crockpot

Seasoning and marinating for enhanced flavor

Before placing the chicken in your crockpot, it’s worthwhile to season or marinate it before cooking. Although you’re starting with frozen chicken, the slow cooking process allows flavors to permeate thoroughly. Apply your chosen spices directly to the chicken or prepare a marinade, add the frozen chicken to it, then cook on low for 6–8 hours.

Testing for doneness

Use a food thermometer to tell when a frozen chicken is fully cooked and thus safe to eat. Your chicken should reach an internal temperature of the chicken of 165 degrees Fahrenheit. This step will ensure that your chicken is cooked properly and is safe to consume.

Safe handling and storing of leftover chicken

Proper handling and storage of leftover chicken are as essential as cooking. Once your chicken is cooked, refrigerate any leftovers within two hours to prevent bacterial growth. When reheating, ensure that the chicken cooks to a safe temperature.

Remember, the key to avoiding overcooking frozen chicken in the slow cooker is to cook the chicken on low until it reaches the correct internal temperature. Using these tips to cook your frozen chicken in a crockpot, you can enjoy a delicious and safe meal every time.

Herb And Lemon Chicken Recipe

Herb And Lemon Chicken Recipe

Understanding how long to cook frozen chicken in a crockpot allows for various tasty recipes. Here is one of many options for beginners and those looking for more advanced flavors.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 6 hours
Total Time 6 hours 15 minutes


  • 1 slow cooker
  • 1 airtight container (for marinating)


  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (frozen, each weighing around 6–8 ounces)
  • 1 medium-sized lemon (zested and juiced)
  • 1 teaspoon dried rosemary
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 4 cups chicken broth


  • Place the chicken in an airtight container with lemon and herbs; allow the chicken to marinate overnight.
  • Transfer the chicken before adding it to the slow cooker.
  • Add chicken broth to cover.
  • Cook on low for 6–8 hours.

What should you do with leftovers? 

Handling leftover chicken properly is crucial for its safety and maintaining its taste for future meals. Here’s what you can do with the leftover Herb and Lemon Chicken:

  1. Cool it Quickly: Don’t leave your leftover chicken at room temperature for over 2 hours. Instead, keep the chicken cool and store it in the refrigerator or freezer as soon as possible.
  2. Store Properly: Place the leftover chicken in airtight containers or heavy-duty freezer bags. If you use a container, ensure it’s shallow to help the chicken cool quickly.
  3. Refrigerate or Freeze: Refrigeration is fine if you plan on eating the leftovers in the next 3–4 days. If you want to store it for longer, freeze it. Generally, frozen cooked chicken can last up to 4 months in the freezer without significantly losing quality.
  4. Reheating: When you’re ready to eat the leftover chicken, reheat it until it reaches an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit (74 degrees Celsius). This ensures any bacteria that might have grown on the chicken is killed, making it safe to eat. If you’re reheating the chicken in a microwave, cover it to avoid drying it out.
  5. Use in Other Recipes: Leftover Herb and Lemon Chicken can be used in numerous dishes like salads, sandwiches, wraps, or pasta. Just ensure it’s reheated properly before use.


Can you cook frozen chicken in the crockpot?

Yes, you can definitely cook frozen meat in any Crock-Pot brand appliance. However, you might need to cook it a bit longer than you would with thawed meat. It’s advisable to use a meat thermometer to confirm the chicken has heated to a temperature significantly above 165°F, ensuring it’s safe to consume.

Can you put frozen chicken in the crockpot for 4 hours?

Cooking frozen chicken in a crockpot is a straightforward and tasty way to prepare this meat. For optimal results, cook your chicken on a low heat setting for about four to six hours, including some liquid like broth or juice, and always verify its internal temperature prior to serving.

Can you leave the chicken in the crockpot too long?

Chicken that’s cooked too long can become dry and tough, even if you’ve added liquid. The best strategy to prevent your chicken from drying out is to stop cooking it when it reaches the safe internal temperature of 165°F.

Can you put the chicken in the slow cooker without liquid?

While not my preferred method, cooking your chicken ‘dry’ in the slow cooker is perfectly acceptable. This method can be helpful if you’re short on time or don’t have space to store the stock.

How long to cook frozen chicken breast in a slow cooker on high heat?

Cooking frozen chicken breasts on high in a slow cooker usually takes about 4-5 hours. No matter the cooking time, it’s important to ensure the chicken hits a safe internal temperature of 165°F (74°C) to be safe for eating. Always use a meat thermometer to check this.


Understanding how long to cook frozen chicken in a crockpot allows culinary exploration with this versatile ingredient. A crockpot or slow cooker provides an easy and safe method to cook a frozen chicken bag, whether for a simple weekday meal or an elaborate recipe.

Safely cooking frozen chicken in a crockpot typically takes 6–8 hours on low heat or 4-6 hours on high heat. However, these cooking times can vary based on the chicken pieces’ size and your slow cooker’s specific model.

After the chicken is cooked in the crockpot, it’s easy to shred the chicken for a range of recipes, from soups and salads to tacos and pasta dishes. And don’t forget to store any leftovers properly for future meals.

So, embark on your culinary journey with your crockpot and a bag of frozen chicken. The convenience and versatility will add an exciting twist to your usual cooking routine. Cook, experiment, and enjoy!


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