This slow cooker coq au vin makes the French classic of chicken thighs, bacon, mushrooms, onions, and carrots slowly simmered in a red wine sauce seem completely effortless.
Get ready for this slow cooker coq au vin to surpass any and all expectations in terms of its depth of flavor. Named for its velvety red wine sauce, the recipe pairs smoky bacon, earthy mushrooms, and richly browned vegetables with inexpensive, easy-to-find, no-hassle chicken thighs. What emerges after a long, slow, hands-off simmer will make your home smell divine and your guests swoon.–Jenny Howard
Slow Cooker Coq au Vin
For the slow cooker coq au vin
- 12 about 5 lbs bone-in skin-on chicken thighs
- Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
- 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 6 slices bacon coarsely chopped
- 16 ounces white mushrooms quartered
- 3 garlic cloves chopped
- 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 3 small onions peeled and cut into large wedges
- 9 small carrots trimmed and halved lengthwise
- 3/4 cup boiling water
- 1 1/2 cups dry red wine
- 4 sprigs thyme
- Cooked egg noodles or mashed potatoes (optional)
Make the slow cooker coq au vin
- Preheat a 5- to 6-quart slow cooker according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
- Season the chicken with salt and pepper. Place it in a large bowl or resealable plastic bag, add the flour, and toss to coat. Shake off any excess flour and place the chicken on a large plate or rimmed baking sheet.
- In a 10- to 12-inch (25- to 30-cm) skillet over medium heat, cook the bacon until the edges are crisp, 10 to 15 minutes.
- Using a slotted spoon, transfer the bacon to a paper towel-lined plate to drain. Reserve the fat in the skillet.
- Add the mushrooms and garlic to the skillet and cook, still over medium heat, until golden brown, about 8 minutes. Transfer to the slow cooker.
- Add 2 tablespoons oil to the skillet and heat over medium-high. Stir in the onions and carrots and cook until browned, 5 to 10 minutes. Transfer to the slow cooker.
- Add the remaining 2 tablespoons oil to the skillet. Working in 2 batches, add the chicken thighs and cook over medium-high, turning once, until browned all over, about 8 minutes per batch. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the chicken to the slow cooker.
- Pour off any excess fat from the skillet. Return the skillet to medium-high heat and carefully pour in the wine, scraping up the browned bits from the bottom of the skillet.
- Bring the wine to a boil and then reduce the heat and gently simmer for 5 minutes.
- Pour the wine and boiling water over the chicken in the slow cooker. Sprinkle with the cooked bacon and thyme. Cover and cook until chicken is tender, 5 to 6 hours on low or 2 1/2 hours on high.
- Remove the chicken and vegetables from the slow cooker and arrange over the noodles or mashed potatoes, if using, on individual plates or on a large platter.
- Skim any fat from the sauce in the slow cooker and season with salt and pepper, to taste. Pour the sauce over the chicken and vegetables and serve.
Recipe Testers’ Reviews
This FABULOUS slow cooker coq au vin takes just about 6 hours. Considering this is a slow cooker meal, there is a bit of prep but, trust me, you’ll find that your time has been well spent. I halved the recipe as there are but 2 of us. Looking back, this was SO good I wish I had prepared the entire amount!
I used the timings given in the recipe and was quite satisfied with the result. I made the dish with a grocery store Pinot Noir and came away thinking it will be the best 4 bucks I spend all month!
We found that the depth of flavor in this coq au vin can easily rival many competitors which are far more labor intensive. An hours work, an afternoon of wonderful aromas wafting about the cottage, and the respect and adulation of friends and family. After all, what else is there?
There is nothing like coming home to a wonderfully rich aroma and knowing that dinner is already to eat. It’s even better when that aroma is wine! The end results are delicious with tender and tasty chicken and rich vegetables and a lovely wine sauce.
The directions are simple and layer out in easy steps so you can prepare for the next step while you are crisp your bacon and brown the vegetables. I was able to have everything prepped and then cleaned up by the time I placed the last piece of chicken in the crockpot.
This is great especially if you need get out the door and onto the days many other tasks. I would add a step and make a roux before adding the wine to the pan. Making a richer and thicker sauce would take this recipe from being really good to amazing.
This dish was incredible! My kids rate the dishes that I make from 1 to 10 and my 8-year-old said: “Mom this is better than a 10, this is up in the millions. This is 1 in a million” It’s that delicious. I was intimidated by all of the steps, however, it’s well worth it. It’s definitely a dish that should be made on the weekend or when you have more time on your hands.
I served the dish on top of medium egg noodles. We had leftovers over mashed potatoes and I plan to repurpose the rest of the chicken and noodles into a baked cheesy marinara noodle dish. I like that the big batch recipe made enough food for me to use throughout the week.
This recipe could easily feed 6 people but there were only 10 chicken thighs in the 5 pound package. If serving 6, one may want to make sure that there are 12 thighs so that each person is served 2 thighs each.
This recipe was fantastic. We loved the flavors that all the different ingredients brought to each bite. It’s wonderful served with a warm, crusty bread though egg noodles are a perfect accompaniment too! The pre-slow cooker hands on time is worth it. Use a nice dry red in the recipe and serve the rest when you sit down to eat this delicious meal.
Originally published February 09, 2020