Spice Rub Crock Pot Chicken

I love, love, love my crock pot and came up with a new and insanely easy spice rub chicken recipe that I hope you all enjoy!

Spice Rub Crock Pot Chicken

1 5-6 lb free range organic chicken – giblets removed, rinsed, and patted dry with paper towels

1 white onion sliced

1 tsp sea salt (optional)

2 tsp paprika

1 tsp cayenne

1 tsp white pepper

1 tsp poultry seasoning

1 tsp garlic powder

Cover the bottom of the crock pot with the sliced onions.  Mix all spices in a small bowl and then rub the spice mixture all over the whole chicken.  Place the spiced chicken on top of the onions in the crock pot, cover and cook on low for 5-6 hours (depending on your crock pot).  No need for any liquid, the chicken will cook in it’s own juices.  Make sure you spoon the onions and a little bit of the juices over the chicken when you serve it.  I served my chicken with our favorite brussel sprouts, steamed for 5 minutes and then sauteed with a little olive oil, dried dill, garlic powder, and pepper.


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  1. says

    Thanks for the recipe….

    but really, no liquid at all?

    Never heard of it, but it sounds like it works…….Either you’re a genius, or you’re completely insane-


    • sarah sparks says

      i’ve done a lot of recipes with no water, when i do chicken like this i like to put potatoes, onions and carrots or green beans mixed too. the chicken and veggies make their own juices

    • Sarah says

      Hey Chuck!
      I just inspected my crock pot and it doesn’t say the quart size any where on it and the box is long gone but it’s pretty darn big – I can fit a good size whole chicken in it with room to spare. I hope that helps!

  2. Natalie says

    Hey Sara
    Ok first thank you for helping me make my body and my husbands tummy happy. I was just wondering about the brussel spouts, did you put the dill and garlic on them? I think I might step out of my I hate them box and try it.
    Thanks again

    • Sarah says

      Hey Natalie!
      Yes, I sauted the brussel sprouts and while they are cooking I added the dill and garlic. I love them, the key is to not over cook them because when they are mushy, they taste pretty bitter. Good luck!!

  3. Julia says

    This sounds great! I’m normally a really good cook, but I just haven’t gotten the hang of roasting a whole chicken, so I am really looking forward to trying this :) I just found this site yesterday and am loving it!

  4. says

    So after making your chicken from “Two dinner to dish about” and falling in love with it, I am currently making THIS recipe – well actually I already had some and holy cow it’s amazing!!

    My crock pot would like to thank you for inspiring me to bring it out of hibernation and realize how awesome it is!


  5. Brian says

    I noticed in your picture you have the chicken breast side down. Did you cook it that way also?



  6. Sheila says

    Folks I have done the same spice rub for years.. clean 3 birds pat dry rub well inside and out put in a clean trash bag let set in fridge over night.OH BOY DOES THE FLAVOR GO THU OVERNIGHT….. next day put in oven or Roaster oven and bake 225* FOR 6-7 HRS.
    When the chix go on sale I buy several to do this with..
    You can also do bone in chix breasts this way and do a whole crock of them drain cool and bag ready to eat ..sure saves time.. sorry this is so long..

  7. says

    hi! first time commenting, but long time reading. (well… “long time” as in as long as I’ve been eating paleo!) i was just wondering if i’d have to adjust the recipe at all if I was using chicken breasts and legs, or pieces, instead of a whole chicken? thanks for so many great recipes and tons of inspiration!! it made my transition to paleo that much easier!

    • Sarah says

      Hey Erika! I don’t think you would need to adjust the recipe at all, except it might not take as long to cook! Good luck!

    • Sarah says

      I am not a big fan of the giblets, but if you like them I see no reason why you couldn’t throw them in with the chicken, just keep in mind that when you are slow cooking something it really takes on the flavors of everything in the pot, so your whole chicken might taste a little giblet-y! Good luck!

  8. Lyndi says

    This was a great recipe! Chicken was fabulous! I am so glad I came across your blog!! Can’t wait to try more things!!

  9. Lindsay says

    Hi Sarah,
    Just found you and just found this chicken recipe.
    Wow! It’s by far the easiest and the best tasting chicken I’ve ever made! I’m done with the oven!
    I can’t wait to try your other recipes. Consider me a follower!

  10. Erin says

    Thanks for this amazing recipe! I found your site after searching for a Paleo crock pot chicken recipe. Your site is now bookmarked!

    It was so easy, and the chicken was falling off the bones and tender. So glad I found your site!

  11. Heidi says

    I love this recipe. I’ve made it 3x so far. With the leftovers I made a chicken salad (usual mayo, then added cranberries to it) then I made bone broth by putting the bones back in the crockpot w/ water and cooking for 24 hrs. I have 3 bags of broth in the freezer now. I think the spices will be fabulous in my next soup.

  12. Alyson says

    I’d like to make this recipe, but my fiance and I don’t like dark meat. What changes would I need to make to this recipe if I wanted to use chicken breasts only? Shorter cook time? Some chicken broth?

    • Sarah says

      Hi Alyson – yes I would add about 1 cup of chicken broth if you were using 4 chicken breasts and cook on low for 6 hours. : )

  13. Marci says

    So has anyone tried making this yet with just chicken breast, or tenderloins, or just parts? I’m not a big fan of the “cooking a whole chicken” thing, but this sounds so delicious and amazing!

  14. Mark says

    I think this is the second recipe in the book, and I tried it last night. I NEVER cook for the family (me, wife, 5 year old son, 3 year old daughter). Everyone loved it! As the seasoning was on the outside of the chicken, it was easy to cut up less “spicey” parts for the kids yet the adults could enjoy a little kick.

    I really needed a practical book like this.

  15. Erica Schwaiger says

    I just have to say THANK YOU!! I recently have decided to adopt a more Paleo lifestyle, and this recipe has been a huge help this week. I am a medical student (well, for the next 10 days, then I’ll be a doc…whoa!) and I travel A LOT for my clinical rotations. Right now I am living in a house with a non-working kitchen, except for an old microwave. I had been having a hard time eating paleo entirely on the go, or without a kitchen (a lot of subway salads without cheese or croutons and topped with olive oil). I was paging through your book, and found this recipe. Immediately went to the store and bought a crock pot, two knives, and the ingredients, along with some lettuce leaves and avocado. I’ve eaten a different meal for the last 3 nights with the same essential ingredients and it has been awesome! There are definitely ways to eat Paleo, even with very limited resources :) Kudos to you and your book! I just can’t wait to move into my apartment and finally be able to try all of the other recipes.

  16. Carrie says

    I make a very similar recipe by adding 1 TBSP of e.v.olive oil to the seasoning and creating a paste. This can be rubbed on chicken breasts and cooked in the crock pot. Another option would be to grill the chicken. It even works as a good marinade if you just have a few marinating minutes before grilling. I also like to add 1 tsp. of cumin to the paste.

  17. Karen B. says

    LOVE LOVE LOVE this chicken!! I am making it again for dinner tonight–soooo yummy! Thank you for posting such deliciousness!

  18. Shannah says

    I will never roast a chicken in the oven again. This was fab! And I made the Sun-dried tomato chicken slaw with the leftovers and had lunch for 3 days. Like!

  19. Melodie says

    Chicken is in the crock-pot now, smelling up the whole house and making my mouth water! Can’t wait until dinner! I have to say thank you so much for a cookbook that is actually usable, practical, easy and best of all DELICIOUS! I have made probably 7 or 8 of the recipes in your book and every single one has been outstanding! Thank you for making the transition to Paleo so yummy and easy! Even my husband and kiddos (5 & 3 y/o) have been super happy with mama’s new way of cooking!

  20. kim says

    I made this on Friday with just 2 bone-in chicken beasts. It was my first receipe I tried from your book and now I wish I had of made more, I’ll never go back to Boston Market armed with this! Amazing!!

  21. Jan says

    Do you think this would work if you use a skinless chicken, rubbing the rub right into the meat? Or is the skin necessary for moisture? Do you eat the skin?

    Can’t wait to try it.

  22. angela says

    I made this today and I am still in awe of how delicious it was. I used bone in chicken leg quarters instead of a whole chicken since that’s what I had on hand, cooked 5 hours. I also didn’t have poultry seasoning so made my own: rosemary, thyme, sage, pepper. (out of marjoram). It is amazing and fall off the bone juicy. Thank you Sarah! You are awesome.

  23. Chelsea says

    I’ve been looking for a recipe like this all morning and by the comments, I can tell I want to make it. However; I wanted to add potatos, carrotts, and possibly mushrooms in mine. Would you still reccomend not adding any liquid for this amount of ingredience or should I go for a good chicken stock just to coat?

    • Sarah says

      You will be amazed at the amount of liquid you will have just from the chicken but if adding veggies, I would just put in maybe 1/2 a cup or so of chicken stock. : ) Enjoy!

  24. THeather says

    Another long time reader first time poster =) The reviews on this are outstanding so I just have to try it. I’ve given your book to both sets of parents and slowly converting them Paleo! Thank you for all you do and making the transition easy and fun! I love all the real pictures in the book =) Time to cook

    • Sarah says

      Thank you so much for your comment and I’m so glad you are enjoying the book and thanks for spreading the word to your family!

  25. THeather says

    Another long time reader first time poster =) The reviews on this are outstanding so I just have to try it. I’ve given your book to both sets of parents and slowly converting them Paleo! Thank you for all you do and making the transition easy and fun! The pictures are great =) Time to cook

  26. Melissa says

    For anyone choosing to use chicken breasts:

    This is my FIRST day on Paleo and this is absolutely DIVINE!! Thanks Sarah! :)
    I added: Onions, mushrooms, garlic powder fresh ground pepper – sauteed them in olive oil & served atop each breast of chicken before serving.
    Also, I used chicken breast instead of a whole chicken (if doing this, rub each breast w/spice rub, place breasts atop chopped onion in crock pot, then add 1/2 cup broth to your crock pot. Cook on high heat for 2 hrs, reduce heat to low for an additional 45-50 mins; stirring meat amid juice throughout cooking times).
    I served brussel sprouts as a side (Steam sprouts for 5mins; then saute’ them in olive oil w/garlic powder, dill & fresh ground pepper). Both were VERY Yumm-O!! :)

  27. Pat says

    We’re fairly new to Paleo but this recipe was hands-down the best we’ve tried so far. We made the chicken over the weekend, then shredded it a few days later, reheated it in the juice from the crock pot, and served it wrapped in Boston Bibb lettuce leaves. I wanted to go back for more! We bought the chicken on sale and that one chicken will feed the two of us for two dinners for a very low price. Plus, we used the chicken carcass to make some spicy chicken broth. Fabulous – thanks!

  28. Niki says

    This is becoming my go-to spice rub for chicken, no matter how I cook it. The only thing I do different is sauteing the onions on the side since I’m the only one who eats them.

  29. Snobot says

    I made it today and it was terrible. The chicken was dry even though it was sitting in quite a bit of its own juice. No one in the family liked it so I am putting the chicken back to make broth.

    • Sarah says

      How long did you cook it for?? It could be that your slow cooker cooks a lot fastar than mine and you just overcooked it? I’m so sorry to hear that this didn’t turn out for you. Typically this dish is a favorite among my readers. Again, I’m so so sorry!

  30. Lisa says

    My online Paleo buddies suggested I throw a whole chicken in the crockpot and have it remain there the whole weekend, for an instant protein. This is the recipe I found … and have been following for for consecutive weekends. Thank you! <3

  31. Mrs. Duh says

    I made this for the first time tonight, and… WOW! It turned out great! The chicken was very moist and the spices gave the chicken excellent flavor. Not to mention the recipe was super easy! Thanks for this, because I’m putting it in regular menu rotation!

    • says

      Yes, you can use a chicken breast but the cooking time will be WAY less. It will probably only take a couple of hours on low if you are using just 1 chicken breast. I would also add maybe 1/4 cup of chicken broth because you won’t get as much moisture from a chicken breast unless it’s skin on.

  32. Joanna says

    I made my first whole chicken using this recipe, excellent and flavorful. I had a lot of juice in my crock pot once done cooking. Can I use this juice as broth for chicken vegetable soup, it was a little greasy, or do I need to discard this juice and remake broth with the carcass in my crock pot?

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