Slow Cooker Thai Peanut Chicken is wholesome, filled with bright, good-for-you veggies like butternut squash, green peas, and bell peppers, and the leftovers will keep on living long into the week.
While steadfast and reliable—this is an easy dump-and-go crockpot recipe—this crockpot chicken recipe is not to be underestimated.
It is bursting with layers of flavor, lightly creamy, packs in the veg, and is healthy too.
I’m a sucker for Thai food (like Thai Chicken Curry, Healthy Shrimp Pad Thai, and Coconut Curry), because I adore its freshness and complex layers of spice.
Considering Ben married me for the Thai Peanut Chicken Stir Fry in my cookbook, I’d say he’s a fan too!
5 Star Review
“I love this recipe! It’s my fiancé’s favorite! He absolutely loves it. It’s been amazing every time!”
— Sara —
How to Make Slow Cooker Thai Peanut Chicken
Asian-inspired dishes like Slow Cooker Honey Garlic Chicken, Slow Cooker Chicken Curry, and Crockpot Beef and Broccoli work well in the slow cooker, as the meat can bathe in the sauce as it cooks.
You can prep this slow cooker Thai chicken with coconut milk earlier in the day, then forget about it until dinner when the fragrant scent of it cooking brings you back to the kitchen.
Plus, since it offers lean protein and a variety of vegetables, this crockpot Thai chicken is an ideal all-in-one meal.
Don’t forget to build in time to make rice. Brown rice, what I prefer to serve with this recipe, takes about 45 minutes. For ultimate ease, I like to make big batches of rice, then portion and freeze it for quick access.
Forget to put on the rice? Try swapping a quicker-cooking grain like quinoa, or serve Thai peanut chicken with noodles.
- Chicken Breast. The pices of boneless, skinless chicken breast almost seem to absorb the sauce and become ultra tender, moist, and flavorful.
- Coconut Milk. Rich, creamy, and nutty, coconut milk is a staple in many Thai recipes. It’s critical for the sauce’s flavor and texture.
- Peanut Butter. Not only does it impart the rich, beloved flavor of peanut butter into the sauce, but it also gives it body. Peanut butter packs a protein punch and has healthy fats, which make this dish more satisfying.
- Red Curry Paste. Mega flavor in a jar, red curry paste is the driver behind the sauce’s depth of flavor and hint of spice.
- Fish Sauce. This does NOT make the Thai peanut chicken taste like fish. Rather, it gives the dish savoriness, depth, and (for lack of a more eloquent explanation) makes it taste more Thai.
- Sugar. Helps balance all of the flavors in the sauce.
- Ginger + Garlic. The ultimate flavor building duo.
- Red Pepper Flakes. For a little extra heat.
- Butternut Squash. The nutty, sweet flavor of butternut squash pairs wonderfully with the coconut peanut sauce. Plus, it’s rich in vitamins and potassium.
- Red Bell Pepper. Sweet, colorful, and packed with vitamins.
- Peas. Frozen peas are a quick and easy way to add an extra veggies to the dish.
- Lime Juice. Wakes up and brightens all of the flavors in the dish.
- Whisk the sauce ingredients together in the slow cooker.
- Stir in the chicken and veggies. Cook on HIGH for 2 to 3 hours or on LOW for 5 to 6 hours.
- Thirty minutes before serving, add the peas. Just before serving, stir in the lime.
- Serve with rice and fresh cilantro. ENJOY!
- To Store. Refrigerate leftovers in an airtight storage container for up to 3 days.
- To Reheat. Gently rewarm chicken in a deep skillet on the stovetop over medium-low heat or in the microwave.
- To Freeze. Freeze leftovers in an airtight, freezer-safe storage container for up to 3 months. Let thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.
Meal Prep Tip
Up to 1 day in advance, whisk the sauce ingredients together in a slow cooker (or separate bowl) and cut the chicken and vegetables (except the peas). Cover and refrigerate the sauce until you’re ready to finish the recipe. Refrigerate the chicken and vegetables in separate airtight storage containers.
Recommended Tools to Make this Recipe
Programmable Slow Cooker
With this programmable slow cooker, you can truly set it and forget it! The insert is dishwasher-safe too. Plus it has a locking lid for easy transportation to potlucks.
Whether you are looking for fresh, healthy meals to better your diet, make-ahead dinner ideas, or just want to shovel your fork into a big plate of tasty goodness, slow cooker Thai peanut chicken is the dish for you.
Fire up the crockpot, friends!
Frequently Asked Questions
As written, this recipe has a fairly moderate spice level. However, if you want to decrease the amount of spice, you can reduce or omit the amount of red pepper flakes. Those who want the heat can add some to their individual servings.
While I like to use light coconut milk as a healthy swap, you can certainly use full-fat coconut milk if you prefer.
While I’ve only tested this recipe in a slow cooker, I think you could gently slow simmer it in a Dutch oven on the stovetop instead.
- 2 cans light coconut milk (14 ounce cans)
- 1/4 cup peanut butter creamy or crunchy
- 3 tablespoons red curry paste
- 2 tablespoons fish sauce
- 2 tablespoons coconut sugar or brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons minced fresh ginger
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- 2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breast cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces
- 1 small butternut squash peeled, seeded, and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
- 2 large red bell peppers cored and thinly sliced
- 1 medium yellow onion thinly sliced (about 3 cups)
- 2 cups frozen peas thawed
- 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice (about 1 lime)
- Prepared brown rice for serving
- Chopped fresh cilantro for serving
In a 6-quart or larger slow cooker, whisk together the coconut milk, peanut butter, curry paste, fish sauce, coconut sugar, ginger, garlic, and red pepper flakes until smooth.
Add the chicken pieces, squash, red bell pepper, and onion to the slow cooker and stir gently to coat with sauce. The mixture will be very thick. Cover and cook on high for 2 to 3 hours or on low for 5 to 6 hours.
Thirty minutes before you are ready to serve, add the peas. Immediately before serving, stir in lime juice.
Serve over rice with a generous sprinkle of fresh cilantro.
- TO STORE: Refrigerate leftovers in an airtight storage container for up to 3 days.
- TO REHEAT: Gently rewarm chicken in a deep skillet on the stovetop over medium-low heat or in the microwave.
- TO FREEZE: Freeze leftovers in an airtight, freezer-safe storage container for up to 3 months. Let thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.
Serving: 1(of 6), without riceCalories: 509kcalCarbohydrates: 42gProtein: 40gFat: 19gSaturated Fat: 11gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 97mgPotassium: 1383mgFiber: 8gSugar: 15gVitamin A: 14905IUVitamin C: 104mgCalcium: 116mgIron: 3mg
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