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Make Crockpot Express Apricot Chicken in no time! This savory-sweet dish with chicken, onion soup mix, and apricot preserves is cooked to perfection in a pressure cooker.
If you’re looking for a delicious and easy chicken recipe that’s perfect for busy weeknights, look no further than Crockpot Express Apricot Chicken.
This flavorful dish is made with boneless, skinless chicken breasts, onion soup mix, Catalina dressing, apricot preserves, and chicken stock, all cooked together in a Crockpot Express pressure cooker.
The result is tender, juicy chicken that’s bursting with sweet and tangy flavor. Plus, since it only takes a few minutes to prep and cook, it’s a great option for when you’re short on time but still want a delicious home-cooked meal.
Ingredients needed for Crockpot Express Apricot Chicken
- boneless skinless chicken breasts-boneless, skinless chicken thighs are another great option
- onion soup mix-this can often be found on the salad dressing aisle, as well as the soup aisle
- Catalina dressing-look for the bright red dressing (not to be confused with 1000 Island dressing)
- apricot preserves-look specifically for preserves rather than jelly, since you want chunks of fruit if possible
- chicken stock-I like to use my own homemade Crockpot Express Chicken Broth
Preparing the chicken for the Crockpot Express
For best results when pressure cooking chicken (or cooking chicken breasts in any manner, really) be sure to pound them out to even thickness using a kitchen mallet like this one.
If you don’t want to flatten them, another option is to slice and “butterfly” the breasts.
The flatter, thinner parts of the chicken breast will cook much more quickly than the thickest sections, resulting in dry overcooked chicken on the edges and unsafe, undercooked chicken in the middle. So aim for an even thickness all the way around.
Making the Sauce for Apricot Chicken
Once you’ve prepared the chicken, the only other step in this recipe is to mix the sauce that will be poured over the top!
In a small bowl, mix together the onion soup mix, Catalina dressing, apricot preserves and chicken stock. It will be chunky, but try to get the preserves thinned out and evenly distributed as possible.
If you’re having trouble getting the sauce to combine, microwave the bowl for 20 seconds to help smooth it out.
What to serve with Crockpot Express Apricot Chicken
There are plenty of tasty side dishes that would pair well with Crockpot Express Apricot Chicken. Here are a few ideas:
- Roasted Vegetables: Roasted carrots, broccoli, or Brussels sprouts are a great complement to the sweet and tangy flavors of the apricot chicken.
- Rice: A side of rice is a classic pairing with chicken dishes, and the apricot sauce from this recipe would be delicious poured over a bed of fluffy white or brown rice.
- Mashed Potatoes: Creamy mashed potatoes are always a crowd-pleaser and make a great side dish for any chicken recipe.
- Green Salad: A simple green salad with a light vinaigrette would be a refreshing contrast to the rich and savory apricot chicken.
- Garlic Bread: If you’re looking for something carb-heavy to soak up all that delicious sauce, garlic bread is a classic choice.
- Quinoa: This nutritious grain is a great source of protein and fiber and would be a healthy and flavorful side dish for the apricot chicken.
- Steamed Vegetables: A side of steamed green beans, asparagus, or sugar snap peas would be a light and healthy complement to the sweet and savory flavors of the apricot chicken.
Choose your favorite sides, and you’ll have a complete meal that’s sure to be a hit with your family or guests.
Frequently Asked Questions about Pressure Cooking Chicken Breasts
Yes, you should always add some liquid when pressure cooking chicken breasts to prevent them from drying out. You can use chicken broth, water, or any other flavorful liquid you prefer.
It’s best to use the natural release method (NPR) when cooking chicken breasts in a pressure cooker. This allows the chicken to continue cooking as the pressure naturally releases, which helps to keep it moist and tender.
Yes, you can cook frozen chicken breasts in a pressure cooker. However, you will need to increase the cooking time by about 50% to ensure that they are fully cooked through. Best flavor and results will come from thawing the chicken first, but frozen breasts are OK if necessary.
To ensure that your chicken breasts are tender and juicy, add flavorful liquid to the pot and allow for a natural release. Also, avoid overcooking the chicken, as this can cause it to become tough and dry. Finally, let the chicken rest for a few minutes after cooking to allow the juices to redistribute throughout the meat.
Crockpot Express Apricot Chicken
- 1.5-2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts (about 4)
- 1 pkt (1 oz.) onion soup mix
- 1 cup Catalina dressing
- 1/2 cup apricot preserves
- ¼ cup chicken stock
- 1.5-2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breastsPound out the chicken breasts so they are even in thickness. Place in the bottom of the pot (it’s OK if they overlap a bit.)
- 1 pkt (1 oz.) onion soup mix, 1 cup Catalina dressing, 1/2 cup apricot preserves, ¼ cup chicken stockIn a small bowl, mix the other 4 ingredients and then pour over the chicken.
- Close and lock the lid, turning the steam release valve to closed. Press Steam (high pressure) and adjust the time down to 8 minutes. Pres Start/Stop.
- When the cooking time has ended, allow a 10 minute NPR and then release any remaining pressure. Press Start/Stop. Open and remove the chicken breasts, setting them aside to rest.
- If desired, dissolve 1 tbsp of corn starch in ¼ cup of cold water and add to the sauce to thicken. Use the saute or simmer setting to cook for a few minutes until desired thickness is achieved. Spoon over the chicken and serve.