Sweet Fire Crockpot Chicken

Sweet Fire Crockpot ChickenWe don’t eat at Panda Express very often, (our restaurant excursions tend to be limited) but when we do I love to get their Sweet Fire Chicken.  In fact, there was one time when I was pregnant with my daughter that I was having a craving.  I’m sure some of you know how that goes.  Mike was on his way home from work and I told him it was his job to pick up dinner.  The problem was that it was late and by the time he got there Panda Express was about to close.  The result?  They were out of Sweet Fire Chicken.  Mike called me and tried to offer up a variety of other choices and even though I could tell he was a little terrified of my reaction, and that he felt bad, at that moment I was convinced that this was all his fault.  I was tired after my own long day at work, I was taking care of a screaming one and a half year old, I was fat (which he contributed to) and he worked too late.  Yup all his fault.  LOL! 😉 He tried to explain to an irrational hungry pregnant woman that they didn’t have what I wanted, while I pouted on the other end.  The Panda Express crew must have overheard our phone call and my husband’s desperation, because hey sent him home with a bunch of extra free food!  And luckily for him, after the orange chicken, beef & broccoli, General Tso’s, and fried rice finally made it in my tummy and I had stopped crying, I decided that it wasn’t his fault after all and I loved him again.  🙂

Sweet Fire Crockpot Chicken 2

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IngredientsSweet Fire Crockpot Chicken

  • 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts (sliced in half if thick)
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil (divided)
  • 2 15 oz cans pineapple tidbits, divided
  • 4 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 3 tablespoons water
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 small yellow onion sliced
  • 1 red bell pepper sliced
  • 1/4 teaspoon red chile flakes
  • 4 cups hot cooked rice
  • 3-5 chopped green onions

Directions

  1. Coat your crockpot with cooking spray or Crisco.IMG_1965
  2. Sprinkle salt and pepper over chicken.  Brown chicken in a large skillet with 2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium-high heat.
  3. Transfer chicken to crockpot.
  4. Using the same pan that you used to cook the chicken add one of the cans of pineapple tidbits (juice included) to the pan.  Scrape up the browned bits remaining from the chicken.  Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the brown sugar and soy sauce.  Pour sauce over the chicken.  Cover and cook on low for 2 1/2 hours OR if you sliced your breastsIMG_1970 in half you can cook on high for 1 hour and 15 minutes.
  5. About 10 minutes before the chicken is done sauté the onion and red bell pepper in the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil.  Add the vegetable mixture to the crockpot and sprinkle the red chile flakes on top.
  6. After 10 minutes, transfer chicken to serving platter using a slotted spoon.  Turn the crockpot to high.  Combine the water and cornstarch in a small bowl and then whisk that mixture into the crockpot.  Continue to whisk until thick.
  7. Place a bed of rice on each plate, top with chicken and sauce.  At this point you can add pineapple tidbits from the second can on top as well.  These will have a beautiful yellow color that the other pineapple have lost in the sauce and they are sweet whereas the pineapple in the sauce will be spicy.  If you’re serving kiddos I would recommend adding some of the juice from this second can in their bowls/on their plates to lesson the spiciness of the dish.  Finish it up with a sprinkle with green onions and pretend you’re at Panda Express! 🙂
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