This lightened up version of Chicken Paprikash is not an authentic, traditional Hungarian recipe. But it is just as flavorful and delicious! It has tender pieces of boneless chicken and a creamy, smoky sauce layered with onions, tomatoes and paprika.
Why this recipe is just so good...
- The chicken is so flavorful and fall-apart tender from the slow cooking method.
- Very little prep means just a few minutes getting ready and letting the slow cooker do most of the work.
- This recipe has a lower carb, keto friendly option with no flour in the recipe. We use xanthan gum and Arrowroot powder for the thickener. However, you can use flour for thickening as noted in the recipe. And we served the chicken paprika over mashed cauliflower. And if you prefer, serve over noodles or mashed potatoes.
- Some delicious side dishes to make while the chicken is cooking is my Low Carb Maple Glazed Carrots or Sweet and Spicy Brussels Sprouts.
- Whether you like dark or white meat, this recipe uses boneless chicken thighs and breasts. If you prefer, you can use one or the other alone.
- We are using a sweet paprika along with some cayenne for a bit of a kick. It is more traditional to use Hungarian paprika but the combination I used was very good. It had enough of a smoky flavor with a bit of sweetness and a little extra heat from the cayenne. When the chicken is finished cooking, you should taste test the sauce to see if you prefer more paprika or another spice.
Step by Step Directions
- Place half the oil in large fry pan over medium heat. Cook the onions for about 2-3 minutes until lightly browned. Remove to a plate and add the remaining oil to pan and place chicken in pan and brown each side about 1-2 minutes.
- Place onions on top of chicken. Pour in the crushed tomatoes, spices and the chicken broth. (Save 3 tablespoons broth for the sauce.)
- Cover and cook on low for 4-6 hours or until a meat thermometer registers 165°F when inserted into the center of the chicken.
- Use a slotted spoon to remove the chicken to a platter and cover with aluminum foil to keep warm. Increase slow cooker's temperature to high.
- Combine about a cup of the juices from the slow cooker with the sour cream and stir well. Pour in slow cooker, stir to combine.
- Mix the 3 tablespoons of reserved chicken broth with the xanthan gum and arrowroot powder. (or flour or cornstarch) to make a "slurry". Stir well to break up any large lumps.
- Pour into slow cooker and stir and heat to thicken. Add chicken back and heat through.
- The recipe will be most successful if you quickly sear the chicken and brown the onions before putting in the crockpot. Doing so deepens the flavor of the food.
- Taste test the paprika before you use it. Unless you cook a lot of recipes using the spice, it will get old and become flavorless.
- Rather than stirring in the sour cream straight from the carton, start with room temperature. Then it is best to mix it with some of the warm liquid from the slow cooker. When you stir it together, this will keep the sour cream from curdling from a big temperature change.
- Make sure to save a bit of broth to make the "slurry" for the sauce. Add liquid to the thickener (either flour or xanthan gum/arrowroot powder) will help prevent the sauce from getting lumpy.
There are four main types of paprika: sweet, made from sweet red peppers without any heat. Hot paprika is made from a variety of spicy peppers. Cayenne can be substituted for hot paprika. Smoked paprika is made from dried peppers and may or may not have some heat.
According to The Kitchn, paprika is made from grinding the pods from a variety of peppers. Hungarian paprika is not smoked and has a fairly sweet flavor.
Most sour cream containers purchased in the grocery store have an expiration date of about 2 weeks. While we try to use up any leftovers, sometimes you have to decide whether to toss or freeze it.
According to Healthline, it is safe to freeze sour cream for up to 2 months. However, the texture will not be smooth and creamy after it has been defrosted. Your best use of defrosted sour cream is to use bit in a creamy soup or stew. Some soup suggestions: Split pea, creamy tomato, pumpkin or sweet potato, butternut squash, cabbage or cream of chicken.
Yes, you absolutely can. Slow cookers are the essential 'dump and go' kitchen appliance. I use mine all the time. While you can put any raw meat into the cooker, I always recommend doing a quick brown or sear first. I have tried recipes both ways and always believe it tastes much better after browning. Yes, it is an extra step with an extra pan to clean, but I believe its worth it!
Traditional Chicken Paprikash is served with Spatzle, an egg noodle/dumpling. You can serve this meal with regular egg noodles or mashed potatoes. Our lower carb version is served over mashed cauliflower. To save time, I used a frozen, microwaveable package of mashed cauliflower with a savory herb flavor.
Some other dinner recipes to try:
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Slow Cooker Chicken Paprika
- Prep Time: 15 minutes
- Cook Time: 4 hours
- Total Time: 4 hours 15 minutes
- Yield: 6 servings 1x
- Category: Dinner
- Method: Slow Cooker
- Cuisine: Hungarian/American
This lightened up version of Chicken Paprikash is not an authentic, traditional Hungarian recipe. But it has the same tender pieces of chicken and a creamy, smoky sauce layered with onions and paprika.
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 4 boneless, skinless chicken thighs
- 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- 2 tablespoons sweet paprika
- 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- ½ cup low sodium chicken broth
- ½ tablespoon Arrowroot powder * (or 1-2 tablespoons flour)
- ½ teaspoon xanthan gum *
- 14 oz. crushed tomatoes
- ¾ cup sour cream, low fat or full fat
- Optional garnish- sliced sun-dried tomatoes, chopped fresh parsley
- Heat 1 ½ teaspoons oil in large pan. Cook onions until lightly browned, about 2-3 minutes. Remove to plate.
- Heat remaining oil and brown chicken for 1-2 minutes per side.
- Place chicken in bottom of slow cooker with onions on top.
- Pour the tomatoes, spices and broth over top, stir to combine.
- Cover and cook for 4-6 hours on low. Test chicken at 4 hours with a meat thermometer. If it registers 165°F., it is done. Every slow cooker is different, so you may need to cook another 1-2 hours.
- Remove chicken to platter, cover with aluminum foil.
- Stir together a ½ cup of the liquid from slow cooker with sour cream. Pour into cooker and stir to combine.
- In a cup, stir the reserved broth and thickener of choice (flour, xanthan gum/arrowroot powder). Mix well and press out any lumps. Pour into slow cooker and stir to thicken sauce. Return chicken to cooker, stir to combine with sauce and heat through for about 5 minutes.
- Serve over noodles, mashed potatoes or mashed cauliflower.
* You can use 1-2 tablespoons of flour or cornstarch as the thickener for the sauce. Make the "slurry" the same way by add the broth to it and stirring well, pressing out lumps before adding to slow cooker.
*Use room temperature sour cream to prevent curdling in the sauce.
*After chicken is thoroughly cooked, taste taste the sauce to see if you would prefer more paprika. Everyone's taste is different and it is always best to start with less and add more if needed.
*Leftovers will keep in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
Keywords: Crockpot dinner, low carb meal
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