BEST Crockpot Chicken Leg Quarters or Thighs (Easy Recipe)

4.72 from 113 votes

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These slow cooker chicken leg quarters cook all day while you do your own thing. Do whatever you want and come home to this delicious family dinner.

This easy recipe for slow chicken legs and thighs is one of our favorite low-cost family meals. It also happens to be one of our favorite ways to make chicken.

Read on, and I’ll show you exactly how to make this delicious meal using simple ingredients.

Chicken thigh with green beans ane potatoes on a serving plate.

Make this easy dinner for about two dollars per serving.

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About this meal

I credit my late dad for teaching me to appreciate good chicken. Recipes like roasted chicken quarters, NY fireman’s chicken, and a good chicken salad. I love them all.

We put this latest crockpot chicken recipe together at our little weekend oasis located on a small lake in the middle of Nowhere, Wisconsin. It’s a tranquil place to get off the grid, hit the nearby farmer’s market, and make a lot of family recipes.

A plate of chicken leg quarters with some green beans on the side.
This one pot meal means less kitchen clean-up!

This crockpot chicken leg quarters recipe uses just a few ordinary ingredients you probably already have. It’s one of our favorite ways to feed the entire family.

Like some of our other favorite recipes, this one is super simple.

I’m talking about great recipes like creamy slow cooker chicken breasts, slow cooker Mexican chicken soup, and even our crockpot roasted chicken which is a great way to cook whole chickens. These oven fried chicken thighs are another easy and delicious way to make chicken.

In town or in the country, this easy family dinner is perfect for wherever this may find you.

Ingredients for crockpot chicken leg quarters

  1. Chicken leg quarters or thighs (bone-in and skin-on): This is the base for this juicy and flavorful meal with bone-in, skin-on chicken leg quarters or thighs! The skin locks in moisture while the bones enhance the flavor of your dish.
  2. Honey: This adds some sweetness to your savory meal with the natural goodness of honey. It’s the perfect way to balance out the savory flavors and add a touch of indulgence.
  3. Garlic: This is an easy way to spice up your dish with the pungent and aromatic flavor of garlic. This versatile ingredient brings a depth of flavor to any dish, and its health benefits make it a must-have in any kitchen.
  4. Barbecue Sauce: Adds smoky and tangy flavor to your chicken with barbecue sauce. Use you favorite bbq sauce or make your own.
  5. Soy Sauce: For a slight Asian twist, this will add some umami to your meal with the salty and savory taste of soy sauce. This ingredient is a staple in Asian cuisine and is perfect for adding depth and complexity to your dish.
  6. Ketchup: A staple in our house, this will bring a touch of sweetness and tanginess to your meal.
  7. Oregano: Add some earthy and herbaceous notes to your dish with oregano. You can use fresh or dried, whatever you have on hand.
  8. Salt and Pepper: Add some of both to bring out the most flavor in these crock pot chicken legs.

Recipe Tip

Add some chopped-up fresh Italian parsley (the kind with flat leaves) when you serve this. This garnish adds a flash of beautiful green color, dresses up this busy weeknight dinner, and makes it seem a little more special!

How to make it

This recipe works best in a larger crockpot. You’ll need to be able to fit a couple of whole chicken legs in it.

Otherwise, you can use chicken thighs for this slow cooker chicken recipe. It only has a few steps, making it one of the easiest family dinners you’ll ever find!

Some chicken leg quarters in a crock pot.
  1. Place the pieces in your crockpot, skin-side up.
  2. Add the remaining ingredients. Place the cover on your slower cooker and select low setting for 6 to 7 hours.

How simple is that?!

Once this is finished cooking, you’re going to place each piece on a sheet pan and brown it under your oven broiler for just a couple of minutes. Doing this will give it a nice caramelized finish and taste.

Water is cooked out during the process, so reducing the quantity of barbecue sauce and honey will help reduce the amount of liquid when the meat is finished cooking.

You can also reduce the extra liquid by just removing the cover toward the end and allowing it to evaporate. In cooking, this is called “reduction.” The reduction will often add a ton of flavor as the tasty ingredients are no longer diluted with water.

I suggest you save the liquid and make some delicious crockpot chicken gravy. I’ll show you how to do that as well!

Crock pot chicken gravy

I grew up loving gravy, and that is one thing that hasn’t changed. I will actively seek the chance to make gravy anytime in the kitchen.

My all-time favorite is this rich roasted turkey gravy, but our southern gravy recipe with giblets is pretty darn delicious too!

While the pieces in the oven are browning, you can make good use of the leftover liquid. It’s time to make a flavorful slow cooker chicken gravy with the juices.

Your mom would be so proud of you for not wasting a drop of this recipe!

Adding flour to crock pot chicken juices.
Make a flavorful crockpot chicken gravy with the juices.
  1. Turn the crockpot to a high setting which will help reduce the liquid.
  2. Then, put a tablespoon or two of flour in a small fine-mesh strainer.
  3. Then, use your finger to tap-tap-tap a little flour into the liquid, a little at a time, while continuously stirring with a fork. This will give you a nice gravy with no lumps!

Expert Tips: If you’re wondering how to make good gravy, learn how to Make a Roux. You can use this same technique for other sauces and easy family meals, like our best mac and cheese recipe!

Plate of slow-cooker honey-garlic chicken thighs with potatoe slics and green beans.

We love to serve this easy family dinner with green beans and crispy potatoes.

Food Safety Tip: Chicken should have an internal temperature of 165° F before eating it. I love this instant-read thermometer, and it is the one I always recommend using.

Common questions

How do you make this as a make-ahead meal?


If you want to assemble and freeze the ingredients for this slow cooker meal, it’s easy to do. Simply put them in a freezer bag and be sure to freeze them flat, allowing for even defrosting.

Allow them to thaw and defrost for 24 hours before cooking and follow the recipe card below.

Can you make this using boneless chicken?

You can use this recipe using boneless breasts or thighs.

Can you make this as a make keto-friendly crock pot recipe?

Absolutely. Just be sure that you are using keto-friendly barbecue sauce and keto-friendly ketchup.

What can I serve with this?

Our favorite things to serve with these crock pot chicken thighs are potato croquettes, homemade crusty bread, and shoofly pie for dessert!

What to do with the leftover chicken

If you’re wondering how to use leftover chicken, there are many great ways to use it. Here are some of our favorites.

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Honey Garlic Crockpot Chicken Leg Quarters

4.72 from 113 votes
This recipe for slow cooker chicken quarters takes minutes to prep and is made using one pot – your crock pot!
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 6 hours
Total: 6 hours 10 minutes
Yield: 4

Ingredients 

  • 4 Chicken leg quarters, Bone-in, skin on.
  • 2 tbsp Barbecue Sauce, Spicey flavored.
  • 2 tbsp Honey
  • 5 cloves Garlic, Minced
  • 2 tbsp Ketchup
  • 2 tbsp Low Sodium Soy Sauce
  • Salt and Pepper, To taste.

Instructions 

  • Place chicken quarters, skin side up, in a single layer of your crock pot. Add remaining ingredients, cover, and cook on low for 6-7 hours.

Notes

Top Tips for the best crockpot chicken leg quarters:
  • Leave the chicken skin on for a juicer result.
  • Be sure your chicken is cooked to an internal temperature of 165°.
  • When the chicken thighs are done, brown it for a minute or two, under your oven broiler.

Nutrition

Calories: 382kcal, Carbohydrates: 16g, Protein: 24g, Fat: 24g, Saturated Fat: 6g, Cholesterol: 141mg, Sodium: 543mg, Potassium: 372mg, Fiber: 0g, Sugar: 13g, Vitamin A: 175IU, Vitamin C: 1.5mg, Calcium: 21mg, Iron: 1.2mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Dinner
Cuisine: American
Tried this recipe?Mention @plattertalk or tag #plattertalk!
Updated from the original post of September 27,  2018.

Meet the Platter Talk Guys

Dan & Scott split their time between Wisconsin and Southwest Florida and are dads to six boys. Good food runs through their veins, and they love showing others how to cook easy recipes.

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58 Comments

  1. Hi! This sounds delicious! I am wondering if this recipe is something I can prep now and make later? I am almost ready to have my baby, and I am looking for freezer prep, crock pot recipes and this sounds so delicious and easy!!

    1. Hi Cassie,
      Congrats in advance on your new baby! We don’t recommend prepping this recipe ahead of time. The good news is that it only has a prep time of 10 minutes! Thanks for the great question!