5-Ingredient Slow Cooker Balsamic Chicken

4.63 from 110 votes

No prep and no watching over the stove.

balsamic chicken

How many evenings have you come home from work wishing that something truly hearty, gourmet, and delicious was waiting for you in the kitchen? Too often, that feeling drives us to pick up the phone and order takeout. After all, it’s so easy to grab takeout, but a home-cooked meal can take hours. We have the solution: 5-Ingredient Slow Cooker Balsamic Chicken. You can easily prepare a restaurant-quality meal, minus the typical restaurant amounts of calories and fat, in just a few simple steps.

Simple Ingredients, Easy Recipe

We love that this 5-Ingredient Slow Cooker Balsamic Chicken boasts only five ingredients (and two are optional!), but the simple cooking method impresses us even more. It can be tossed in the slow cooker in the morning and fill your house with fragrance throughout the day. By the time you return home in the evening, your dinner will be cooked to perfection. Who could say no to that?

How to Enjoy Our Slow Cooker Balsamic Chicken

balsamic chicken sandwich

There are so many different ways to enjoy this 5-Ingredient Slow Cooker Balsamic Chicken, so let’s take a look at some of our favorites. If you’ve made it before and you have a favorite dinner or lunch idea using this recipe, let us know in the comments! I’m sure our community of health enthusiasts would love some inspiration.

There are no shortage of ways to use shredded chicken. After all, a chicken dish that’s this flavorful would taste good on anything! No matter if you’re following the Keto diet, Paleo, low-carb, high-protein, Whole 30, Weight Watchers, or any other healthy diet, you’ll be able to find a way to use this 5-Ingredient Slow Cooker Balsamic Chicken.

If carbs aren’t an issue for you, there are a multitude of ways you can enjoy this flavorful chicken. It tastes great on whole-wheat buns as a sandwich, and you could even serve it as sliders for a tailgating party. It’s also particularly good as tacos or burritos, so feel free to load up on the fiesta-style toppings.

For those of you who are watching their carbs or are on a gluten-free diet, this shredded chicken tastes incredible on top of brown rice or quinoa. You can also make lettuce wraps with it, and it’s even good with roasted vegetables. Feel free to cook up those summery vegetables like zucchini and tomatoes or winter squash and roasted beets. The possibilities are endless, so have some fun with it, and don’t forget to enjoy!

All you need to make this 5-Ingredient Slow Cooker Balsamic Chicken is chicken, salsa, balsamic vinegar, and optional garlic and salt. From there, all you need is a slow cooker and some imagination to decide how to serve it. Sounds like a perfect quick-and-easy weeknight dinner to me!

4.63 from 110 votes

5-Ingredient Slow Cooker Balsamic Chicken

Make this versatile, restaurant-quality meal any night of the week. It's super easy and only requires three basic and two optional ingredients!
Prep Time 2 minutes
Cook Time 4 hours
Total Time 4 hours 2 minutes
Yield 6 servings
Serving Size 1.5 cups
Course Dinner, Main Course
Cuisine Universal
Author SkinnyMs.


  • 2 pounds boneless and skinless chicken breasts
  • 16 ounces chunky salsa jar
  • 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 2 medium cloves of garlic, minced, (optional)
  • Salt (to taste, optional)


  • Add chicken breasts to the slow cooker, pour salsa balsamic, and garlic (if using) on top. Cover and cook on low for 6 hours or high for 4 hours. Shred chicken with a fork and mix with the salsa mixture. Add salt to taste.


TIP: This recipe makes delicious tacos or burritos. If desired, add additional garnishes, i.e., lettuce and cheese. Also, makes great sandwiches when served on buns.

Nutrition Information

Serving: 1.5cups | Calories: 263kcal | Carbohydrates: 8g | Protein: 35g | Fat: 5g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 126mg | Sodium: 687mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 5g |
SmartPoints (Freestyle): 4
Keywords Budget-Friendly, Keto, Low-Carb, Slow Cooker

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More Healthy and Delicious Options

Want more Crock Pot chicken recipes? We’ve got plenty more where that came from! Try these next:

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The SkinnyMs. team believes that all people, regardless of age, size, and fitness level, have the power to transform their lives — they just need the resources to do so. The SkinnyMs. method promotes healthy living through a combination of clean eating and regular exercise. We offer everything you need to be successful.

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    1. The recipe calls for 4-6 breasts to allow for some variation in size. This would be about 2 1/2 pounds of chicken.

  1. I am seeing more and more crockpot recipes on line, but I don´t have one. I do have a pressure cooker . Do you think they would work in that. ?

    1. YES!!! Research how to convert slow cooker recipes to pressure cooker recipes. Many references available via google.

    2. Yes you can convert slow cooker recipes to use in the pressure cooker. If you know how long it takes to cook chicken in your cooker, use that amount of time. I do it all the time in my pressure cooker.

  2. You can also use your oven as a crock pot – put everything in a dutch oven, casserole or roasting pan. Cover tightly with foil and cook at 200 for 6-8 hours. If you have a gas oven, you might want to do this only when you will be home.

    1. Lynne, I’m so sorry. We’re having an issue with some of the recipes not showing up. We’re working nonstop to get it fixed. Please be patient, we would really apprecite it. Thanks so much for being a loyal reader. Check back in a little bit and everything should be back to normal. We won’t stop until it is. 🙂

  3. I would appreciate it if the links actually took me to a recipe. About half the time the links take me to a page without the linked recipe. What a waste of time.

    1. I deeply apologize for the inconvenience. We’ve been working all day on the issue and finally got it fixed. You should be able to see the entire recipe now. Don’t hesitate to let us know if you ever have any issues whatsoever. 🙂 Our goal is always to give our audience free, delicious and healthy recipes, but every now and then there’s an issue, as with any website. Thank you for understanding.

    1. Rachel, I use a balsamic that does not contain caramel coloring. I usually look for Colavita. Thanks! 🙂

  4. You are being way too apologetic. Some people are just plain rude and lack any patience what so ever. Can’t wait to try your recipe tomorrow!

    1. Marcy, Your chicken might dry out if cooked beyond 6 hours. If you’re slow cooker has a “Warm” that would work for beyond 6 hours.

  5. Hi, I am on a low cholesterol diet and was wondering where the high cholesterol amount is coming from??

  6. Is the balsamic vinegar supposed to let off a disgusting odor while you cook? Because I may have used the wrong vinegar if so

  7. What brand of salsa do you prefer to use? When I see chunky salsa, I think of PACE salsa. What is your go to brand for the balsamic?

    1. Jennifer, Pace is a good choice. I use different brands, mostly Simple Truth which is sold at Kroger. Also, if it’s not chunky that’s fine, the results will be the same.

  8. Made this yesterday and it was delicious! One of the best crock pot meals I make. I put it over rice and it was very hearty, tangy and savory!

  9. Are there any veggies you might recommend putting in with the chicken to cook? I would love to make this an all in one meal.

    1. Rene, Any brand is fine, minus sugar in the ingredients. My personal favorite is Alessi White Balsamic Vinegar.

  10. Hi! Would this recipe be altered much if a different type of vinegar was used? For instance apple cider vinegar?

    1. Allison, great question! I would not recommend using a different vinegar. Balsamic vinegar has a very distinctive flavor. Using a different type, such s apple cider vinegar, would make this recipe very sour and tart tasting!

  11. This recipe is AHHHMAZING! First try (as soon as it finished cooking) the vinegar taste was a little strong. However, after you let it rest some it is great and even better the next day. My picky husband (who thinks chicken is diet food) loved it!.

  12. Without thoroughly thinking it through, I picked up a balsamic vinaigrette dressing. Will that work or should I use actual balsamic vinegar (as in not a dressing)

  13. I just made…!/2 cup Pineapple Balsamic Vinegar, 16 oz. Pace mild salsa, 3lbs. bnls, sknls chicken thighs. 4 hrs. high in crockpot. Absolutely awesome! Shredded for all dinners mexican:)

  14. Anyone try this with red potatoes and carrots? If so do you throw them in at the start of cooking or would the be too done cooking that long? Thank in advance

  15. If it has to cook longer because I’m usually gone 9-10 hours before I get home from work should I add more salsa or some extra water or do you think it will be ok?

    1. Dina, If you have a “warm” that automatically kicks in after the cooking time, please use it. If not, adding a little more liquid should prevent it from drying out. Please keep us posted. This recipe is delicious! 🙂

  16. Would cilantro work well with this flavor? I was thinking about doing burritos with this recipe and am looking for a way to add to/enhance the flavors.

    1. Great question, Jessica! Cilantro would be great with this recipe! I use this chicken is my tacos all the time. It’s a fantastic recipe!

  17. I make versions of this recipe all the time, but…..I use thighs!! More flavor and economical!! I can double and triple the chicken!!

  18. This was so delicious! My family really enjoyed it. We put it on Jasmine rice and sprinkled a bit of cheese on top. It was like a little chicken taco bowl. This was so easy too! Definitely joining my dinner rotation!

    1. Reily, I would recommend is increasing the balsamic just a little, maybe 2 tablespoons more, and increase the salsa by 1/4 – 1/3 cup.

  19. I’m planning to make this recipe in 2 days. Just wondering what would be best to serve with it Rice, Pasta, on a roll with lettuce for a complete meal.??? 67yo guy getting into cooking. Doing pretty good so far?

    1. Hi Ron, Good for you! My favorite is on a whole grain bun. You could also enjoy over brown rice, quinoa, or whole wheat pasta. There are so many options. Another idea, add to a bun or roll, serving of balsamic chicken, along with a little brown rice, and eat as a sandwich.

  20. Made this yesterday and it was delicious! Served w roasted veggies. Hubby loved it. Will be a go to at my house. Thank you. Love your site!

    1. Sandra, Once you divide the 1/2 cup balsamic by 6, that would be your serving of balsamic. 🙂

  21. What can you use instead of salsa? I’m not a fan of salsa, but would like to try this recipe. Any ideas?

  22. Made this a couple of days ago, I was really nervous because my son said the house smelt horrible, and because there were so few ingredients too, but when it was actually ready, the strong smell had gone and we had it on buns, my partner had 3 and he loved it and asked me to make this again soon, this is a fantastic recepi for when you´re busy or simply can´t be bothered cooking, keeping this one and thank you for sharing 🙂 Have a nice Christmas.5 stars

  23. My husband and I both loved this easy peasy chicken! Since I only had 1 pound of chicken tenders, I halved the recipe and it made enough for three meals, so far (there is still enough left for another taco!)
    We had it over rice (microwave easy) the first meal, in a taco the second, and again over rice the third time around.
    The flavors improved each time we had it.
    Thank you…this will be a staple in our household.5 stars

  24. I made this tonite and it was delicious! Even my picky eater liked it. I used about 2 3/4lb. of chicken breast as that was the size I had in the freezer. I used the rest of the ingredients as stated. I started this shortly after noon planning for it to finish up shortly after 6 p.m. Everything came out fine but I found out later that I had been cooking it on high for the 6 hours instead of low. Fortunately that did not seem to harm the recipe in any way. I took the chicken out and shredded it but thought the sauce in the cooker was more watery than I like so I made a corn starch slurry and thickened it up a bit. I served it with soft tortilla shells so everyone could make their own. I put some shredded lettuce in mine with a garnish of some sour cream. The three of ate about half of it so I still have a good bit for another day. I did not experience any unpleasant odors while this was cooking. Thank you so much for this EZ to make recipe. I need to find more “3 ingredient recipes” as they as they take so little effort.5 stars

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