This quick and comforting Slow Cooker Spinach Artichoke Chicken is absolutely delicious!
If you like the popular appetizer dip, you’re going to go crazy over this recipe! Our Slow Cooker Spinach Artichoke Chicken takes all the flavor from the dip and turns it into a delicious dinner. It’s still as tender and creamy as the delicious appetizer, but with a fraction of the calories. Not only that but since we cooked it up with chicken, you won’t need to waste your carbs on dipping bread!
This simple, slow cooker chicken recipe looks gourmet, but it’s so easy to make. You just toss the ingredients into the Crock Pot and turn it on low for six to eight hours. The chicken will be melt-in-your-mouth tender, and that sauce is so creamy, you won’t believe it’s actually healthy! This recipe is perfect for lazy autumn weekends or wowing company at a dinner party.
What’s Up With Cream Cheese?
You might be wondering why we say to use reduced-fat cream cheese, but state NOT to use the fat-free stuff. What’s the deal with that? Wouldn’t we want you to use the lowest calorie, lowest fat ingredient possible? When it comes to cream cheese, it’s not worth it, and we’ll tell you why.
The thing about milk is that it’s naturally full of fat. It’s one thing to opt for skim milk at the store. To make that milk less fattening, the manufacturer only has to skim the cream off the top. Same thing with 2% milk: they remove the majority of the cream before homogenizing the milk.
When it comes to cheese, it’s not that easy. Skim milk doesn’t make great cheese because the butterfat is part of what gives cheese its texture and consistency. So, to make fat-free cream cheese, cheesemakers are adding in chemicals, sugar, and sodium. Just take a peek at the ingredients label of fat-free cream cheese and reduced-fat cream cheese and tell us which one you’d rather eat!
Using reduced-fat cream cheese is a great way to achieve a delicious sauce that mimics everything you love about spinach artichoke dip. But, it cuts out a significant amount of calories as compared to the full-fat versions without adding any extra sugar or sodium. How great is that?
Slow Cooker Spinach Artichoke Chicken
- 8 cups spinach loosely packed, chopped
- 1 cup chicken broth
- 4 chicken breast filets
- 3 garlic cloves fresh, chopped
- 1/4 sweet onion finely chopped
- 4 tablespoons cream cheese reduced-fat but not fat-free
- 4 tablespoons parmesan cheese shredded
- 14 ounces artichoke hearts can, preservative-free or 6-8 artichoke hearts from a jar, drained and chopped
- 1 cup grape tomatoes or cherry tomatoes, chopped
- salt and pepper to taste
- Place spinach, chicken broth, and chicken breasts in 4-quart slow cooker. Sprinkle with garlic, onion, and salt and pepper. Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours, or on high from 4-6 hours.
- Just before serving, gently remove chicken breasts from the slow cooker and place on serving platters. Stir in cream cheese, parmesan cheese, and artichokes. Stir until creamy. Spoon sauce over chicken.
- Top with tomatoes. Sprinkle with extra parmesan cheese, if desired.
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What size can of artichokes do I need?
Ieanne, A 14 ounce can of artichoke hearts, drained, or about 6- 8 from a jar.
Are these boneless or bone-in. Thanks
Denice, We made them with bone-in, skin-on 6- 8 ounce chicken breasts and removed the skin after cooking, before topping with the sauce.
Is it okay to use boneless chicken breasts instead?
Barbara, Yes, boneless chicken breasts would work too.
Hi! This looks delicious– do you use fresh spinach or frozen? If you use fresh spinach, do you guestimate the 8 cups by handfuls? Or do you use a certain number of ounces (like 3 bags for example of fresh spinach) Thanks!!
Karen, Thanks. It is delicious! One 10 ounce bag of spinach equals 6 cups, so you will need a bag and a 1/4 if you get the 10 ounce variety. Baby or regular leaf spinach will work and measure the same.
Fresh spinach leaves or frozen spinach (drained)??
Nathalie, Fresh spinach is preferred, baby or regular, because frozen spinach will release a lot more liquid, and you don't want too much in this dish.
Could I use greek yogurt instead of cream cheese?
I did, and it was great!
ok. I used bonless, skinless and this recipe did not work for me .. not sure what else I did wrong, but it had zero flavor. :/ I put and extra clove of garlic in and used extra onion .. we like lots of flavor and this just didn't cut it.
Taila, Adding more salt will help. You can also add crushed red pepper flakes for some heat, and even add fresh torn basil leaves.
I tried this today and not a huge fan. Love spinach artichoke dip, but this didn't translate well for me. I used boneless/skinless breasts and had them in for 7:30 hours on low, but the chicken was overcooked, so that was the first problem. When I got home the crock pot had so much liquid in it – so I used the cream cheese and parm to help thicken, but it didn't do much. I then added in some hummus and more cream cheese (I use Hummus in my spinach artichoke dip in stead of mayo and it's delicious), and that helped a little. I let it sit on warm to set. Besides the chicken being overcooked, it was just okay, not my favorite. Makes me now want to go make my hot spinach artichoke dip (with hummus) though! 🙂 Thanks for the suggestion!
We're so sorry it didn't work for you. We see that you used boneless/skinless chicken breasts. The recipe states to use bone-in with the skin. The skin should be removed later. This is what provides the extra moisture and prevents the chicken from drying out. Chicken filets would need to be cooked for half the time it takes the bone-in whole or half breast to cook. We hope this helps in case you make this again. It really is a delicious recipe. Thanks! 🙂
Wow! This was delicious! Feels like a guilty pleasure!
The chicken breasts I got are huge! 2 out of the 4 are a pound each. Will they cook in time if on high for 4-5 hours???
I would suggest cutting them in half to be on the safe side. 🙂
I love the flavor of the sauce, but it’s very thin, would like it thicker.
Beth, Try adding a little more parmesan cheese, one tablespoon at a time until desired consistency.
do you know what the equivalent for 1 serving using the 21 day fix portioning would be? Thank you in advance.
Sam, If you are referring to one of our Skinny Ms. 21-day plans, then the portion size would be the same as listed, one chicken breast with 1/4 of the artichoke and tomato mix. If this is an outside plan, you will have to check the guidelines of that plan. Thanks!
So good! Thank you for sharing this recipe.
We’re glad you liked it!
And the tomatoes go…where?
They are listed in the ingredients but not the recipe, and it says they should be chopped although in the photo they are sliced or quartered so what s up?
PS. I am bananas over the recipes on this site, not a bad one yet. Not even a mediocre one. I’ve started coming to this site every day for dinner Thanks!
Christiane, They are mentioned near the bottom of the directions.
By the Way, thanks so much for your feedback! We are super happy you love our recipes. 🙂
Oh man m mistake I see the tomatoes in the recipe now…oops 🙂
Seems like way too much spinach compared to everything else?
John, After the spinach wilts it definitely isn’t too much.
Marinated or not – artichoke hearts??
Dana, It’s a personal preference, I prefer not marinated.
Making this with boneless chicken breast this week so I won’t have to make a trip to the store after work. How should the cooking time be adjusted?
Also, is there a way this could just be made on the stove?
Yes the stovetop should work fine.
Place spinach, chicken broth, and chicken breasts in a large, covered skillet. Cook over medium heat until chicken is cooked through, approximately 30 minutes.
Just before serving, gently remove chicken breasts from the skillet and place on serving platters. Stir in cream cheese, parmesan cheese, and artichokes. Stir until creamy. Spoon sauce over chicken.
Top with tomatoes. Sprinkle with extra parmesan cheese, if desired.
Absolutely loved the taste! However I couldn’t get the sauce to thicken? Did I do something wrong? I want to make it again but what should I do differently? It looked like the chicken broth wouldn’t mix.
Hi, Melissa. Glad you enjoyed our recipe!
There could be several reasons why the sauce didn’t thicken, like if you used frozen chicken breast. No matter the reason, next time you can reduce the amount of broth and/or increase the amount of Parmesan cheese.
Any suggestions on what to serve this with? Thanks!
Here are some great side dish suggestions: 8 Healthy Sides for Chicken . All of these are great options! Since this chicken dish is a little more rich, I would also suggestion a fresh salad such as my recipe for Almond Orange Frisee Salad .
This is wonderful!!!!!I It felt like eating a creamy “cheat” yet being good for my diet. I did substitues chicken breast for the bone and skin chicken. I served it over rice to soak up that yummy sauce with corn on the side.the freshness of the tomatoes cut the richness to perfection. I cant wait til lunch to have the left overs. This recipie is a keeper for sure. Thanks for sharing it
My husband and I enjoyed this even though silly me forgot the artichokes they were sitting on the counter and everything lol. Only issue I had was the cream cheese didn’t want to melt and the cheese just turned into clumps not sure why.
Dawn, Next time try using reduced-fat cream cheese rather than fat-free. I tried both and it seems a little fat melts easier. Just be sure to add just before serving.
So my husband eats ANYTHING…except cherry/grape tomatoes. Is there anything you suggest to substitute them with? Or do you think leaving them out would be fine?
Kortney, What about sun-dried tomatoes? That would be yummy. Otherwise, just omit the tomatoes. 🙂
How much plain nonfat Greek yogurt would you sub for cream cheese??
Kelly, Equal amounts should work!
So you remove the chicken breasts, do you then add the cream cheese and artichokes to what is left in the crock pot? Or stir those ingredients together separately?
I’m cooking this tonight and am so excited!
First remove the chicken. Then, add the cream cheese, artichokes, and Parmesan to the mixture in the crock pot. Stir well so the sauce is creamy.
I used blskless thighs and oh my goodness. I didnt add the spinach till the end and ended up with a little cornstarch but again. … oh my goodness picky husband and daughter liked it too.
Sarah, YAH!!! So happy the entire family enjoy the chicken. 🙂
This was bland because it had way too much moisture which spread out / thinned out the creamy richness of the cheeses. Chicken with the skin on and bone in is very moist, which works well for slow cooking, but unfortunately produces too much moisture for a thick sauce. I’d recommend cooking seasoned chicken with onions and garlic alone, then adding the other ingredients after the chicken is cooked thru and removed from the pot. Then if you need additional moisture, you can add the broth into the crockpot with the spinach, cheeses, and artichoke. About 10 minutes on high should do it! It’s a good idea, just doesn’t execute well as described.
This was really good. The only change I made was substituting sundried tomatoes for the cherry tomatoes. The first time I made it there wasn’t enough liquid so I’ve added more chicken bone broth this time.
Do the points on this include the fat that drips into the juice from the skin-on chicken?
Sharon, Everything is included in the data.
This was my very first official weight watchers recipe and I have to say I loved it as did my husband. I was impressed by the complex flavors it produced. I really appreciate these postings and i can’t wait to try another recipe. In this recipe I took the skin off the chicken and used weight watchers cream cheese. Thank u again for an amazing dinner!
So glad to hear you and your husband enjoyed the recipe, Tiffany!
Is it really only 1 cup of chicken broth? It doesn’t seem like that’s enough liquid for a slow cooker? am I missing something?
Hi Alyssa. One cup of chicken broth will be plenty! The chicken and vegetables will also release liquid as the cook. Since this isn’t a soup or stew, you don’t want too much extra liquid in the slow cooker!
How many we freestyle point would this be
Kelly, Freestyle hasn’t been implemented yet.
Question: any adjustment to cooking time when using a 6 qt. slow cooker? I’m gone for 10 hours each work day, so the slow cooker will switch to “warm” setting after the number of hours it is set to cook on low. Thank you.
Hi Sonia, the cooking times will work for any size slow cooker. No need to adjust for a 6 quart!
Could this recipe work for the instant pot?
Yes! In an Instant Pot you would follow the instructs as direct but only Cooke for about 20-30 minutes with high pressure.
Where do you find the preservative-free artichoke hearts at?
Jolynn, My favorite brand https://amzn.to/2tzVugq
Hi! I am using frozen Boneless skinless chicken for this recipe. It is a little weird to me to use the leftover chicken water for the sauce, are you sure you are supposed to eat that?
Yes, the leftover chicken “water” is actually broth once it has been cooked.
Do I still use broth liquid when using boneless skinless to make sauce? So the artichokes aren’t cooked necessarily?
If you’re using boneless and skinless chicken breast you can still make the recipe as directed! No changes need to be made.
If I want to use greek yogurt instead of the cream cheese, is it still the same amount? 4 tablespoons?
Angela, Yes, that’s correct.
The carb count is not correct. It says 14 g and is more like 41 g
Hi Beth, we double checked the nutrition information for this recipe and the carb count listed is correct.
Can you make this in the oven?
Marie, Sure can. I recommend following the recipe but bake in a 375 degree oven for 45 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through. Add the cream cheese mixture and bake 5 additional minutes.
Great Recipe. I doubled the sauce ingredients, shredded the chicken, and put it over whole wheat noodles for dinner. Delish!!! Served it with roasted cauliflower.
Can you freeze the leftovers?
Jill, Yes, be sure to defrost in the fridge before reheating. 🙂
This was awesome!! I used boneless breasts and cooked for 3 hours
We’re so happy to hear that you enjoyed it, Tammy! 🙂
So I followed the directions but I feel like it is not getting creamy. What can I do?
Hi Krissy, for this to be more creamy add a hot liquid and cheese.
Loved it! Even my super picky bf who didnt think he liked artichokes liked it. I used boneless skinless breasts, I whipped in a little flour to make the sauce thicker, and used half cream cheese and half greek yogurt (I didnt have enough cream cheese) and it was delcious. Thanks for the recipe!
That’s great, Jennifer! We love that you both enjoyed it! You’re very welcome 🙂
I do not get home from work until my husband has left. I use Crock-Pot recipes so he will have something to eat before he goes in. With that being said, what would happen if I just put EVERYTHING in the Crock-Pot from the get go? Would the sauce be ok? If not, do you have a suggestion? Thank you in advance!
Hi Michelle, you cannot add all ingredients. The dairy ingredient (cream cheese and Parmesan) will curdle and burn. The artichokes will over cook and turn to mush. These must be added last with minimal cook time.
Mine was a little dry. Maybe because I used boneless breasts not bone-in. It seemed like not nearly enough liquid. I modified to salvage this by adding the artichokes with some of the liquid and also the tomatoes at the same time as the cheese. Warmed all that a few minutes to actually melt the cheese. Npt sure why the veggies are added in raw but lightly cooked worked well. I would make this again but not in slow cooker. Would be easy to make as a 30 minute skillet meal and be less dry. Flavor profile is good.
looking forward to making this recipe
Excellent taste but sauce is quite thin…not like the picture. May add cornstarch/water slurry to see if it thickens
Super easy to make and will definitely make it again!
Awesome, Mary! We’re happy to hear that you enjoyed it! 🙂