Juicy chicken thighs slow cooked in a creamy honey mustard sauce, with bacon, leeks and peas. Chicken thighs are fantastically tender after a slow cook. In this recipe, we also crisp up the skin under the grill at the end, for a beautiful balance of textures.
The ingredients in this recipe are pretty simple. Skin-on, bone-in chicken tends to be very economical, compared to chicken breast. Then it’s just a few extra ingredients, some of which you may have in your cupboard and fridge already. There’s also no need to use an expensive honey here, the basic stuff will do.
You can customise this recipe in loads of ways. We really like using skin-on chicken thighs and taking the time to brown them upfront, beofre crisping the skin under a grill at the end. However, if you want to make this recipe super simple, you could use boneless chicken thighs without skin. You could also use chicken breast. In those cases, there would be no need to brown the chicken upfront, but we still recommend doing the bacon and garlic. However, you can leave out the bacon if you don’t want it and just throw the garlic straight into the slow cooker.
We use dijon mustard, but if you’ve got wholegrain mustard lurking in your fridge instead, that will work well too. And if you don’t have Crème fraîche you could use double cream, but may need slightly less – so just add a tablespoon at a time. So many options!
This recipe is split into three main parts. First, the browning of the chicken. Second, the slow cooking. Third, adding the peas and crème fraîche at the end, and optionally crisping up the chicken skin if you like.
There’s plenty of serving options here too, but we choose to have this just with a couple of slices of crusty bread. You could serve on a bed of creamy mash or rice, and add seasonal veggies on the side.
Slow Cooker Honey Mustard Chicken Thighs
- Slow Cooker
- Grill (broiler) optional
- 1-2 tbsp Oil
- 4 Chicken thighs bone in, skin on
- 100 g Bacon lardons
- 2 cloves Garlic minced
- 1 Leek chopped
- 1.5 tbsp Dijon mustard
- 2 tbsp Honey
- 300 ml Chicken stock
- 75 g Frozen peas
- 3 tbsp Crème fraîche
Browning the skin-on chicken thighs
- Get a pan very hot and add 1-2tbsp of oil. Carefully place the chicken thighs skin-side down for a couple of minutes. Turn the temperature to a medium heat and continue to brown the skin for a further 4-5 minutes, or until the skin is golden brown all over.
- Add the bacon lardons and cook for a further 4-5 minutes, or until they start to crisp up.
- Turn the temperature down and add the garlic. Cook for a further couple of minutes, before taking the pan off the heat.
The slow cooker
- In the slow cooker combine chopped leak, chicken stock, honey and mustard. Stir well.
- Place the browned chicken thighs into the slow cooker, skin-side up. Add the bacon and garlic too and put the lid on.
- Cook for 3-4 hours on high or 6-7 hours on low.
At the end
- Carefully remove the chicken thighs and put to one side.
- Add the frozen peas and crème fraîche. Stir well, put the lid on and cook for a further 5-10 minutes.
- During this time, you can optionally place the chicken thighs under a grill (broiler) skin-side up, to crisp up the skin.
- Stir the sauce well again before serving and make sure to spoon plenty on top of your chicken.
Check out the full recipe video for this one here.