Slow Cooker Crack Chicken

The dinner my kids come running for! Creamy Slow Cooker Crack Chicken with bacon and ranch is perfect for potlucks and feeding a crowd.

I’ve realized the past few weeks that there are some recipes that are our family favorites that I have never shared on our site. We make them often…maybe so often that they don’t even feel like a “recipe” to me. I realized that since we love them so much, we need to share these easy recipes with you too!

The one recipe that Kinslee requests without fail is this creamy ranch chicken. Anytime I ask what I should make for a special birthday, small group gathering or picnic, Slow Cooker Crack Chicken is always the first thing out of Kinslee’s mouth.

creamy bacon cheddar ranch chicken in slow cooker

What is crack chicken?

Crack chicken is that classic combination of cream cheese, ranch, cheddar and bacon. Remember our crack chicken lasagna? We based that off of THIS recipe. It’s called “crack” because you just can’t stop eating it. I mean really…bacon cheddar ranch chicken? Yeah… It’s that good.

What cut of chicken is best for this recipe?

Most often we make this slow cooker chicken dinner with boneless skinless chicken breasts. That is generally what we have on hand so it is easy to use. You can also use boneless skinless chicken thighs. They are tender and so, so flavorful!

Can you use chicken tenders? Yes, but you are just shredding the chicken so you’re paying more for something that is just not necessary.

Can you make crack chicken with canned chicken? You totally can do this, but canned chicken is already cooked so you don’t need to use the slow cooker. Just mix the ingredients together, spoon it into a casserole dish and bake at 350º Fahrenheit until the mixture is cooked through and creamy.

How to Make Crack Chicken

  • Place the chicken in the bottom of a slow cooker.
  • Sprinkle the ranch seasoning over the top.
  • Place the bricks of cream cheese overtop the chicken.
uncooked crack chicken in slow cooker
  • Cover and cook on low for 6-7 hours or on high for 4-5 hours.
  • Use two forks to shred the chicken in the slow cooker (or move it to a cutting board to shred it) and then mix until all of the chicken is creamy and shredded.
creamy ranch crack chicken in the slow cooker
  • Add the cheddar cheese and bacon on the top. Mix in if you’d like, or just allow the warmth of the chicken mixture to melt it on top.

Does the cream cheese curdle in the slow cooker? The cream cheese may look like it is curdling, but once you mix everything together, it will become creamy.

What can I add to this chicken?

  • canned chilies, drained
  • canned pimentos, drained
  • chopped jalapenos for spice
  • Rotel tomatoes (I would drain the juice)
  • chopped red onion

How to Serve Crack Chicken

We almost always serve this chicken with hamburger buns (pretzel buns are especially popular in our house). But if you’re looking for something different, here are a few options:

crack chicken on pretzel buns

Sides to Serve with Chicken Sandwiches

Looking for something to serve with creamy ranch chicken?

And for dessert, try our crack cake! It’s AMAZING.

Scroll down under the recipe to see some frequently asked questions!

Slow Cooker Crack Chicken in slow cooker
Slow Cooker Crack Chicken in slow cooker

Slow Cooker Crack Chicken

5 from 2 votes
The dinner my kids come running for! Creamy Slow Cooker Crack Chicken with bacon and ranch is perfect for potlucks and feeding a crowd.
Servings 12
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 7 hours

Ingredients
 

  • 3 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 16 ounces cream cheese
  • 2 packets ranch seasoning packet (1 ounce each) (Packet for either the dip or the dressing. Either will work.)
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 3/4 cup chopped bacon

Instructions
 

  • Place the chicken in the bottom of a slow cooker.
  • Sprinkle the ranch seasoning over the top.
  • Place the bricks of cream cheese overtop the chicken.
  • Cover and cook on low for 6-7 hours or on high for 4-5 hours.
  • Use two forks to shred the chicken in the slow cooker (or move it to a cutting board to shred it) and then mix until all of the chicken is creamy and shredded.
  • Add the cheddar cheese and bacon on the top. Mix in if you'd like, or just allow the warmth of the chicken mixture to melt it on top.
  • Serve on buns.

Video

Notes

The calories shown are based on the recipe making 12 sandwiches, with 1 serving being 1 sandwich (bun not included). Since different brands of ingredients have different nutritional information, the calories shown are just an estimate. **We are not dietitians and recommend you seek a nutritionist for exact nutritional information.**

Nutrition

Calories: 358kcal | Carbohydrates: 2g | Protein: 31g | Fat: 25g | Saturated Fat: 12g | Cholesterol: 134mg | Sodium: 409mg | Potassium: 510mg | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 641IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 111mg | Iron: 1mg
Course Main Dish
Cuisine American
Calories 358
Keyword chicken sandwich, picnic, potluck

Frequently Asked Questions

Is crack chicken keto?

Yes! This recipe is considered low carb. It’s great for the keto diet!

Can you use low fat or fat free cream cheese?

Yes! Of course it won’t be as creamy, but you can use it if you’d like.

Can you add broccoli to crack chicken?

Yes. We’ve added small fresh broccoli florets to this recipe. If you are afraid that they will get too mushy, add them about half way through cooking.

Can you freeze crack chicken?

Yes! Freeze any leftovers in an airtight container.

Can you eat crack chicken cold?

You can if you’d like! My husband does. But I don’t. 🙂

I don’t have ranch seasoning. What else can I use?

Try this recipe with an Italian dressing seasoning packet. It changes the flavor slightly but is so good.

About Julie Clark

I'm Julie Clark, CEO and recipe developer of Tastes of Lizzy T. With my B.A. in Education and over 30 years of cooking and baking, I want to teach YOU the best of our family recipes.

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Comments

  1. Thx this sounds great I’m trying different recipes lately being inside more these days. I’m going to try this ,I can’t use ranch dressing it has soy in it I’m allergic to it so I’ll see what I can do to replace it thx again

  2. I am diabetic Type II, cannot handle caffeine, eat mostly non-processed foods as I can eat very little salt. For the salt alone, I would subtract most of the cheese, the processed flavor packets, eat one bread/cereal per day = calories and salt and sugar. But I would use the chicken breasts and thighs, some plain yogurt, a little chicken stock(homemade and frozen usually) and my own choice of herbs and spices. Serving it with riced cauliflower is a good idea plus a green salad with veggies, fruit, nuts, olive oil, herbs. But I have lost a lot of the cheeziness that your recipe has. I have become used to “my way” but your recipe is making my mouth water!
    I am looking forward to your other Top 4. I have made some of the recipes in your column and enjoy them with my spouse!

    1. You can reduce the calories by eating it as a casserole with the bread or rice. I served in like lasagna and it was a huge hit.

  3. 5 stars
    Cracked Chicken is the absolute best recipe for chicken that I have tried in the past year. I.made this last week and shared the meal with a friend who share their portion with their family and now it is a hit in three families,
    Thank you for a great recipe.
    Dave

  4. I don’t have a slow cooker. Can I still make the Slow Cooker Crack Chicken in a Lifetime pot on simmer?

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