Remember how awesome those Taco Chicken Bowls were? If you’ve never tried them, they’re awesome because you literally just throw everything into the slow cooker and press go. A little while later you have awesome shredded chicken cooked right in a flavorful sauce that’s perfect for piling over rice.
I decided to use that same technique again, but with different flavors. My friend Sandy at work brought me a recipe from Southern Living Magazine for some sweet chili shrimp and I loved the combination of flavors so much that I decided to make a similar sauce and use it for chicken. I went a step further and added beans and rice to stretch the chicken breast out over six whole servings. It’s like magic!
This super flavorful dish combines sweet chili sauce, ginger, pineapple, mango, and lime for a sweet & spicy tropical experience. I topped mine with fresh cilantro, but if you’re not a cilantro person green onions would also be great. …and of course I added sriracha to mine (don’t give me that look!).
Sweet chili sauce is pretty inexpensive if you go to an Asian market, but it’s actually really easy to make at home, requires only a few ingredients, and costs pennies. I made my own this time, using this recipe, but the price listed below is what I paid the last time I bought some.
Go get some frozen drinks with umbrellas and enjoy this one out on the back patio!
Sweet Chili Chicken Bowls
Sweet Chili Chicken Bowls
- 1 20 oz. can crushed pineapple in juice ($1.59)
- 1 15 oz. can black beans ($0.63*)
- 1 medium mango ($1.00)
- 3 cloves garlic, minced ($0.24)
- 2 inches fresh ginger, grated ($0.28)
- 1 medium lime ($0.30)
- 3/4 tsp salt ($0.05)
- 1/4 cup sweet chili sauce ($0.24)
- 1 large 3/4 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breast ($1.68)
- 6 cups cooked jasmine rice ($1.04)
- 1/4 bunch fresh cilantro, optional ($0.22)
- Add the crushed pineapple (with juice), black beans (rinsed and drained), cubed mango, minced garlic, grated ginger, juice from the lime, salt, and sweet chili sauce to the slow cooker. Stir to combine the ingredients. (Step by step photos for how to cut a mango here)
- Add the chicken breast to the slow cooker and cover it with the fruit and bean mixture. Place the lid on the slow cooker and cook on high for four hours (or low for 8 hours).
- After cooking the chicken will be very tender. Use two forks to pull the chicken apart into shreds (it will fall apart simply upon touching it). Stir to evenly distribute the shredded chicken throughout the mixture.
- Spoon one cup of cooked jasmine rice into a bowl followed by one cup of the sweet chili shredded chicken. Add fresh cilantro on top and serve.
Step by Step Photos
First just add the beans (rinsed and drained), pineapple (with the juice), mango (cubed), garlic (minced), sweet chili sauce, grated ginger, salt, and lime juice to the slow cooker. Stir them all together. To see how to cut a mango, click here.
Add the chicken breast and cover it with the goodies (yes, it’s hiding under there). Put the lid on top, turn the heat on to high, and let it go for four hours (or low for 8 hours).
Nothing cooked in a slow cooker is pretty – that’s a universal rule. Anyway, at this point the chicken is REALLY tender…
Barely touching the chicken will make it fall apart into pretty shreds. So, just take two forks and gently shred it until it’s all in thin strands. Stir it up to distribute the chicken throughout. Believe it or not, that is just ONE chicken breast. If you want a thicker (rather than juicier) sauce, you can make a cornstarch slurry (1 Tbsp cornstarch + 2 Tbsp water) and stir it into the slow cooker at this point. Make sure the heat is still on high and let it cook a little longer until it is thickened. It will only begin to thicken when the liquid simmers.
And then just add rice, the chicken mixture, and some fresh cilantro to a bowl and you’re on your way to tropical paradise. This freezes great, too!