Orange Saffron Slow Cooker Roast Chicken

4.8 from 17 votes
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Slow cooker roast chicken is perfect for a Sunday supper, elegant enough to make for company, and simple enough to become one of your favorite back to school crock pot recipes!

Intense, exotic aromas and flavors can turn a basic roast chicken into a gourmet meal, but when you make it in your slow cooker, you can enjoy something special with little work, even on busy weeknights. Fancy, flavorful food doesn’t get easier than this Orange Saffron Slow Cooker Roast Chicken.

Orange Saffron Slow Cooker Roast Chicken - a chicken recipe with gourmet flavors, but easy enough for busy weeknights | | gluten free, paleo, low carb, healthy {#SlowCookerMeals #Giveaway #Spon}

No matter what time of year it is, or what the occasion, the slow cooker is one of my best friends in the kitchen. In the summer, I may not want to heat up the kitchen or slave over a hot grill, but I still want some pork barbecue or pasta sauce made with farm fresh veggies. Wintertime is all about comforting chilis or stews. Sometimes we need to have our taco fixins waiting for us when we get home from a busy day, and other times it’s all about “roasting” a big ol’ turkey breast so that we can have a wonderful Sunday dinner and leftovers all week. So when Hamilton Beach gave me the opportunity to review their new Set & Forget® 6 Qt. Programmable Slow Cooker, I jumped at the opportunity.

Why? Well first of all, they besides Manual mode where you just turn it on to Low or High and come back later, you can also program it to cook for a set length of time and then switch over to the Warm setting so that dinner is perfectly cooked waiting for you when you get home. I used this feature she I cooked the Tomato Basil Pulled Chicken that I shared just a couple of days ago. But it also has a temperature probe! I’ve told you before how much I love to roast a whole chicken in my slow cooker because it is just so ridiculously easy. Well this feature makes it even easier to ensure perfectly cooked bird. Truth be told, I was so excited about this chicken that I was making that I pulled it out the second it reached the target temperature when I probably should have given it 5-10 minutes to rest once it switched to the Warm setting. But it was still easier than setting it for an arbitrary time that totally depends on the size of the chicken you are cooking. I am really excited to try it with a roast.

Another feature about this slow cooker that I totally love – the lid locks down, so no rattling or buildup and dripping of excess moisture that collects around the edge. Also, it’s a big slow cooker. You can make a huge vat of chili to feed an entire football team!

Or one eight and a half pound chicken will fit with no problem…

Orange Saffron Slow Cooker Roast Chicken - a chicken recipe with gourmet flavors, but easy enough for busy weeknights | | gluten free, paleo, low carb, healthy {#SlowCookerMeals #Giveaway #Spon}

And let me tell you about this slow cooker roast chicken recipe.

Orange Saffron Slow Cooker Roast Chicken is a recipe I adapted from a fabulous recipe in Weber’s Big Book of Grilling.

We thoroughly enjoy that version, but it requires an overnight marinade, plus setting up the rotisserie on the grill. That’s all fine and dandy, except it’s not something I’m going to do when I am on my own with the boys in the middle of the week. So I took the same ingredients and tossed them into my Hamilton Beach Set & Forget® 6 Qt. Programmable Slow Cooker. I figured that the long cooking time would allow the flavors and aromas to permeate the meat and keep it juicy without requiring that marinating time.

And boy was I right! The citrus flavor totally came through the meat, even at its thickest part, and the little crusting of salt, pepper, garlic and saffron coated the outside. I guess you could have made a citrusy gravy or sauce from the juices that collected in the slow cooker, but we aren’t really gravy folks, and we totally enjoyed the chicken just as-is. My boys even had seconds and thirds of the slow cooker roast chicken. I threw the leftovers in the freezer because we were heading out of town, but if we weren’t, this would have made a great topping for a salad.

Orange Saffron Slow Cooker Roast Chicken - a chicken recipe with gourmet flavors, but easy enough for busy weeknights | | gluten free, paleo, low carb, healthy {#SlowCookerMeals #Giveaway #Spon}

Orange Saffron Slow Cooker Roast Chicken - a chicken recipe with gourmet flavors, but easy enough for busy weeknights | | gluten free, paleo, low carb, healthy {#SlowCookerMeals #Giveaway #Spon}

What is the first thing you’d make in your new slow cooker? 

Orange Saffron Slow Cooker Roast Chicken
4.8 from 17 votes

Orange Saffron Slow Cooker Roast Chicken

Intense, exotic aromas and flavors for a gourmet meal you can enjoy even on busy nights.


  • One 6-8 lb chicken
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • two oranges zest of both and juice of one, plus the other one quartered and set aside
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon coarse ground black pepper
  • 1 clove garlic minced or crushed
  • 1/4 teaspoon saffron
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme
  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh rosemary
  • 1 onion quartered
  • a few sprigs of fresh rosemary and thyme


  • Dry the outside of your chicken and place inside the slow cooker.
  • In a bowl, stir together the olive oil, zest of both oranges and juice of one orange, salt, pepper, garlic, saffron, thyme and rosemary.
  • Separate the skin from the meat of the breast to form a pocket, and pour the mixture over the inside and outside and underneath the skin of the breast and rub all over to coat the chicken completely.
  • Place the remaining quartered orange, onion, and sprigs of rosemary and thyme inside and around the outside of the chicken.
  • Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours, or until the breast reaches 165°F.
  • Remove chicken from the slow cooker, carve and serve.
Disclaimers: Please discuss your individual dietary needs (i.e. gluten free) with a physician. Even when not specified, be sure to verify all ingredients are gluten free, if needed, by reading labels on all packaging and/or confirming with the manufacturer this varies by brand and can change at any time. Nutrition information shown is an estimate and not guaranteed to be accurate.



Want more slow cooker recipes?

Plus a few from my friends…

  1. I’m always on the hunt for a good crock pot meal to use on busy weeknights and this one looks so good! Thanks for sharing! Although I’m a wimp a little afraid of whole chickens haha. Maybe I’ll get brave and go for it!

  2. Alicia Boarts

    I would either make a beef roast or pulled pork. This would be an awesome crock pot for me. I am away from the house 10 hours a day, and almost anything I put in mine is too done by the time I get home. Would love to have one I could program so I could try new recipes like this one.

  3. DeeDee

    I love to make chili in the crock pot so that would probably be the first thing but there are a lot of recipes I want to try!

  4. Joanie Lovell

    This amazing Orange chicken recipe would be the first thing I tried in my new Hamilton Beach slow cooker, it sounds yummy!

  5. Debbie Lind

    I love my slow cooker and sure could use a new one. I would make a balsamic pork. It works well with chicken too!

  6. Tiffany Williams

    The first thing I would make is called Feisty Fiesta. It is a Roast with onions, bell peppers, rotel tomatoes, diced jalapenos, small can of tomato sauce, and water and let it cook down for about 6 hours till you can shredded it and then eat it with flour/corn tortillas and toppings it is awesome. My kids are always asking for it. Then I want to learn how to make cakes and then a breakfast casserole for the next day.

  7. Aaron Bretveld

    I love making slow cooker pulled pork. It doesn’t get smokey like it would on a smoker but it is sooooo much easier making pulled pork in a slow cooker.

  8. Kristina Slocum

    I’d probably make chili first – it’s finally cooling down enough to do it in Florida and talk about timing. My old crock pot just bit the dust.

  9. stephenie h.

    It seems that I use my snow cooker more then anything. In the summer it is either grilling outside or slow cooker meals as it is to hot to use the oven. The cooler temps have hit, but now ppl at work are calling in sick and I try to pick up the slack as much as I can which means I get home late. It is so nice to be able to throw things in it in the morning and dinner is ready eff y when I get home. Now I need a new one as hubby there a towel over it the last time I used it and melted the knob, so it only cooks on high now.

  10. Denise

    I do not have a slow cooker, so I would love to win one. Never made a meal in one but the tomato basil pulled chicken is one I would love to try. Thanks

  11. LINDA

    Anything cooked in a slow cooker is great. You have the time saved and the beautiful aroma of a meal waiting for you when you step into the door.

  12. Jaye L.

    I’d try this chicken recipe you just blogged about! I’ve always been intimidated by making a whole roast chicken:-)

  13. Betsy Barnes

    5 stars
    If I won, the very first thing I would make would be Chili. My family loves it in the slow cooker and I use ground turkey to make it healthier 🙂

  14. Audrey Miller

    5 stars
    I love the looks of this slow cooker!! Would love to slow cook roasts with all the veggies. Good luck to us all!! Thank you 🙂

  15. Tonya

    I LOVE those Hamilton Beach Slow Cookers! My Mom has one and has used it to make amazing meals! My first meal would have to be the Orange Saffrom Slow Cooker Roast Chicken – it looks AMAZING! My second meal would be a Beer Cheese Soup recipe from my Aunt Sharon! YUM!!!!

  16. Shelly

    I need this for my son who is single and just bought his first house. He loves to cook and I think this would come in very handy for him.

  17. Belinda

    I love slow cooker recipes! I have a favorite vegetarian chili recipe, with sweet potatoes, black beans, tomatoes and peppers. Sweet, spicy, and filling!

  18. Susan Spence

    A new Crock Pot? I’d have to search out a new recipe to break it in! If not, probably an old stand by, something like Pumpkin Chili. Thanks so much!

  19. Deborah Singletary

    I already have a slow cooker but could use another. I make applesauce..lots of hot dishes…..but I would really like to find someone who does not have one and give it to them and get them started using it because you can cook when you are away from home and busy moms and grandmoms even..all cooks can use a time saver like that.

  20. Whitney Wall

    Love making chili and kale, sausage and white bean stew in the crockpot! Can’t wait to try this recipe!!

  21. Katrina Schubach

    The lid broke to my Hamilton Beech crockpot when we moved. I needed a replacement fast so i bought the first one i saw which was much smaller and round. With a new one I can cook all our favorites without having to skimp on ingredients our risking boiling over. It would make our chili and soups last longer saving us money on meals.

  22. Pamela Etienne

    I would probably make a pot roast with potatoes and carrots. I love coming home after a long day at work and having dinner ready.

  23. Hannah H.

    Roast chicken:) I do a garlic version with fresh basil and cook it with an apple in the cavity. Sounds strange, but it makes the best applesauce side dish!

  24. Martha

    I love using a slow cooker and they are even great when camping. So much fun to be had you don’t want to stop to cook. The next thing I want to try is an overnight oatmeal recipe.

  25. Kris

    I would love to have this slow cooker!!! Mine is so outdated and doesn’t heat very well anymore. I am just drooling thinking about all the yummy food I could make.

  26. Jeffrey

    I’d make some Pork Carnitas since I’ve seen some recipes floating around that have left my mouth watering!

  27. Jessica DeMay

    I would have to make chicken first! This chicken looks perfectly moist, but not falling apart like it usually does in the slow cooker. I love how you can still cut it.

  28. Merry

    Yum! I’d definitely make this recipe at some point, at it looks like such a great way to have moist, flavorful chicken. But the very first recipe I’d make would be my fall staple: chili.

  29. Stephanie K.

    I will most likely make a hearty chili as a first meal with this new slow cooker–BUT–the next thing would be any meat that would require the use of that probe!! The less use the oven gets (especially in warmer weather), the happier I am.

  30. This is one of those feel good recipes. There is something about chicken in the slow cooker that just puts a smile on my face. This looks fabulous, and love that you used saffron.

  31. Susan Broughton

    I have a recipe that has chicken and stuffing and it makes the chicken so juicy and tender, it is soooo good!

  32. Gina M (Wild Orchid)

    I would love to make some pulled pork BBQ.

    Thanks for the chance to win!
    Entered the rafflecopter form as “Wild Orchid”

    wildorchid985 AT gmail DOT com

  33. Brianne,
    I love this chicken!! orange saffron sounds fabulous!!! I just walked away with a slow cooker last weekend when visiting Better Homes and Gardens. . otherwise, I would totally enter this awesome giveaway!! and thank you for much for sharing my Spicy Asian Beef Short Ribs! 🙂 made my day!!

  34. The first thing I would make would probably be chicken tacos. A giant amount of them! We feast and then we use them throughout the week for all sorts of other delicious things.

  35. Angie Jerde

    I would make some fall soups…I can’t get enough of them this time of the year! Thanks for this giveaway : )

  36. Starla B

    5 stars
    That looks absolutely delicious. I would love to make a fresh pot of homemade chicken and dumplings! Perfect for this weather,too. I think that it would be great on salad,too!

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