They can satiate your appetite for a good brunch and they can be so incredibly relaxing. On the flip side, they can lull you right into a false sense of a long, lazy day.
Sundays and I have developed a love-hate relationship over the years. Every week, like clockwork, I try to convince myself my last day of the weekend will go on forever and I won’t have to get ready for work. Then, once I’ve finally called it a day, I drag myself to bed, toss and turn, then finally fall asleep, only to find myself fumbling for the alarm on my iPhone seemingly minutes later. I hit snooze, I hit snooze again, and I write a mental checklist in my head of what I’ll need to do before I head out the door, squeezing every last possible second out of the weekend.
The mental checklists I write for myself on Sundays (outfit and lunch) are nothing like the ones I physically write out on Saturdays: Try this recipe! Try that one! Make an appetizer, too! Don’t forget to make dessert! I scroll through countless meal prep Instagram photos on Saturdays, confident that on each upcoming Sunday, unlike the previous ones, I will be incredibly organized and efficient.
If only that were the case.
I love cooking. I love baking. It calms me down after work, and the meals that emerge from the oven or stove are so rewarding. I also love when date nights huddled over a cookbook at my kitchen counter. But on Sundays, it’s a chore, whether I want to treat it that way or not.
That’s where the slow-cooker comes into play. I used to rely heavily on it during mainly the winter, but I’m learning it can be just as helpful for creating light summer recipes, too. The latest recipe I came up with is fairly simple, and it’s meant to be that way. The ingredient list is short, and so are the steps required to assemble it. As a huge Ina Garten fan, I’m taking one of her party planning tips to heart – even if it’s for a party of one: it’s okay to mix in pre-made, store-bought components.
This dish consists of boneless, skinless chicken thighs, avocado, roma tomatoes, cheese and pre-made salsa from my local grocery store, Sendik’s. If you’ve got your own made-from-scratch salsa recipe and the time to prepare it, by all means, use it – and then share the recipe with all of us! But if your schedule is jam-packed, save yourself an extra 15 minutes that you can use to finish up a chapter of the book you’re reading, or to soak up a little more sun outside. I promise, it will still taste great if you take a little time for yourself!
Slow-Cooker Chicken Tacos (4 servings)
- 5-6 pieces of boneless, skinless chicken thighs
- 1 cup of salsa (pre-made mango peach salsa with charred tomatoes)
- 2 diced roma tomatoes
- 1 sliced avocado
- Shredded cheese (I went with a blend of Asiago, Parmesan and MontAmore to complement the fruity salsa)
- Flour tortillas
Lightly season the chicken thighs on each side with salt and pepper.
Place at bottom of slow cooker. Pour in salsa on top. Turn on slow cooker to low setting and cook for 7-8 hours.
Shred chicken. Scoop onto on tortilla, and garnish as desired.
Here’s a little shortcut for the shortcut recipe: I grilled the tortilla with a thin layer of shredded cheese before placing the chicken on it. If you’re in a hurry, you can heat up the tortilla and cheese in the microwave for 45 or 60 seconds on a medium power level. Like I said, this recipe is all about saving time while still getting to enjoy a great home-cooked meal.