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It is the middle of winter here and we are still enjoying satisfying warming dishes on cold evenings, in front of the fire or watching rugby. (Sadly my team lost last night – I guess there is always next year).     I have been using our slow cooker a lot more this year and really enjoying the simplicity of it.   Last night it was the perfect choice;  we were going out for a short time in the evening and it meant that by the time we got home I only had to cook some rice and beans, and we had a wonderful hot meal.


I’m also a bit of a sucker for sweet and spicy.    So this recipe was perfect.   This is my mash up of a number of recipes from the net.   Most of them only contained the sauce and meat.    I wanted more vegetables as part of the dish – and even though I cooked green beans separately – it would have been just as good to either add the beans to the slow cooker, or not even have them.    (And use the ‘magic fridge’ to decide what veges go in if you don’t have carrot and zucchini, or prefer a different mix).



The below was enough for 2 of us (we ate 4 of the 5 chicken thighs – they were not huge).   My preference is for bone-in thighs,  I think you get better taste.   But, hey, go boneless if that is what you have.  And of course you could also make this with many other cuts of chicken; drumsticks; wings; breast.  There was plenty of sauce – though I figure you can never have enough sauce.  I think you could easily cook enough for 6 people in a medium sized slow cooker.



  • 500g (approx.) skinless boneless chicken thighs (I usually allow 2 per person – this recipe I cooked 5)
  • 1/3 cup  soy sauce (light soy)
  • 1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 6 large garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger (or use fresh) – my ‘teaspoon’ is always generous!
  • 1 teaspoon five spice
  • 2 teaspoons – Siracha (or as much as you want for heat – or even use fresh chillis)
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons cornflour
  • 1 onion sliced
  • 1 carrot sliced (I used a couple of baby carrots from our garden)
  • 1 zucchini sliced
  • 1/4 cup spring onions sliced, to garnish
  • Handful Coriander, chopped, to garnish


  1. Whisk together the soy sauce, balsamic vinegar, honey, brown sugar, garlic, pepper and spices in a bowl.
  2. Place vegetables in bottom of slow cooker.
  3. Add chicken into the sauce, coat well and add both chicken and sauce to slow cooker. Cover and cook for 3-4 hours on high or 6-8 hours on low setting.
  4. When the sauce is simmering (in the last hour of cooking time), whisk the cornflour and water together in a small bowl until dissolved. Stir the cornflour mixture into the sauce; mix it through and cover again to allow to thicken and continue cooking until the chicken is just beginning to fall apart.
  5. Taste and season with salt and pepper if desired.


Serve with greens of your choice (or not) and rice; garnish with sliced green onions and coriander.