This Crock Pot Cashew Chicken is better than most Chinese takeout cashew chicken. Throw it all in the slow cooker and have a delicious, no fuss dinner!
This is an easy-to-prepare Crock Pot recipe that the whole family will love! It can also be adapted to be an Instant Pot Recipe or a Freezer Meal. Serve this for dinner with rice, roasted vegetables, or roasted asparagus.
Crock Pot Cashew Chicken
In addition to being delicious, this Crock Pot Cashew Chicken is super easy to make! You can have this ready and in the crock pot faster than you can get your kids in the car and drive to the nearest Chinese place for take-out. My family absolutely LOVED this recipe! We served it with some steamed veggies and it was the perfect pairing. You can throw veggies in the crock pot with this dish or you can serve it on the side — whatever is easiest for you!
Cashew Chicken | Tasty history
When you bite into the sweet and savory flavor of cashew chicken, you’re probably imagining some rich, Chinese heritage for this food. Not so. Actually, this dish heralds from Springfield, Missouri in the United States in 1963. A chef from China, David Leong, created the dish as he was trying to incorporate the flavors of his homeland with the tastes of the local residents. It became a very popular dish and he was very open to sharing the recipe with other restaurant owners. No, more than 50 years later, the entree that consists of bite-sized pieces of fried chicken in the rich brown sauce with crunchy cashews is on the menu of almost every Chinese restaurant in the United States.
Cashew Chicken Freezer Meal
This cashew chicken recipe can easily be adapted to be a freezer meal. Make double the amount and freeze half for later! When making this a freezer meal, skip dredging the chicken in flour. That will just make a mess after freezing. Simply add the chicken pieces (un-dredged) to a gallon-sized plastic zip-top freezer bag, combine the sauce ingredients, and add the sauce to the bag. Squeeze the air out and seal tightly. That’s it! To enjoy later, thaw your bag in the refrigerator then add it to the Crock Pot just as you would in this recipe. Add cashews after cooking.
Instant Pot Cashew Chicken
If you are in a hurry to make dinner and would rather make this cashew chicken in an Instant Pot, it’s easy to do! You can even brown the chicken right there in the Instant Pot before cooking so you don’t have to dirty a skillet. You will just have to do it in batches.
- After browning the chicken, remove the chicken and add the sauce to the bottom of the Instant Pot.
- To avoid getting the “burn notice” on your Instant Pot, you will want to add 1/2 cup of chicken broth over the sauce.
- Add the chicken over the top of the sauce, seal the Instant Pot, and cook on high pressure for 20 minutes.
- Do a quick release and stir to cover the chicken in sauce.
Stove-Top Cashew Chicken
If you don’t have a Crock Pot or an Instant Pot and just want to make this on the stove top, that is easy too! Just be sure to use a skillet large enough to hold everything.
- After cooking the chicken in the skillet, there is no need to remove it. Just pour the sauce right over the chicken.
- Cover and simmer on low heat until the chicken is cooked through (165-degrees F), stirring occasionally. This should only take about 30-40 minutes.
- If the sauce seems to be getting too thick, just add some chicken broth to thin out.
A Big Thank You!
This recipe for this version of Crock Pot Cashew Chicken was adapted from Karen at 365daysofcrockpot.com. She is such a sweetheart. I have had the pleasure of meeting her several times and she has some awesome recipes. She gave this one a 5-star rating and I couldn’t agree more. It is delicious! Check out her blog for even more amazing crock pot recipes!
More Slow Cooker Recipes to Try
- Slow Cooker Chicken and Rice Soup: Chicken and Rice Soup warms you up on cold fall and winter days. It is also ideal for busy days. The ingredients go into the Slow Cooker in the morning and a nice, hot meal awaits in the evening.
- Slow Cooker Lasagna: This Slow Cooker Lasagna recipe is not only delicious, it is definitely the easiest way to make lasagna. You don’t have to boil the lasagna noodles ahead of time and deal with wet, sticky noodles.
- Slow Cooker Cheese Tortellini Soup: This Cheese Tortellini Soup is a flavorful, easy slow cooker meal. Tortellini, sausage, and spinach in a creamy tomato soup and slow cooked to perfection.
- Slow Cooker Kalua Pork: Kalua Pork with Cabbage is a Hawaiian dish often served at Luaus. This version is made in the slow cooker and tastes just like authentic shredded Kalua Pig.
- Slow Cooker Pasta E Fagioli Soup: Our version of the Olive Garden Pasta E Fagioli Soup tastes just like the original.
- Slow Cooker Zuppa Toscana Soup: Many agree that this Zuppa Toscana Soup Olive Garden Copycat is actually better than the original! It has a creamy both base and is loaded with sausage and potatoes.
- Slow Cooker Molten Chocolate and Caramel Cake: I am in love with this Slow Cooker Molten Chocolate and Caramel Cake. Besides this being rich, chocolatey, and delicious, it is so easy to make and the clean up is a breeze!
- Easy Crock Pot Pork Chops: With four ingredients and a sauce you’re going to love, you won’t want to miss this comfort food!
How to Make Crock Pot Cashew Chicken
- 2 lbs chicken breasts boneless skinless , about 4 chicken breasts, cut into smaller pieces
- 1/4 cup flour all purpose
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
- 1 Tbsp canola oil
- 1 cup low-sodium soy sauce
- 1/2 cup rice vinegar
- 1/2 cup ketchup
- 4 Tbsp brown sugar
- 4 garlic cloves minced
- 1 tsp fresh ginger grated
- 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
- 1/2 cup cashews UNSALTED, or to taste
- Combine flour and pepper in resealable food storage bag. Add chicken. Shake to coat with flour mixture.
- Heat oil in skillet over medium-high heat. Brown chicken about 2 minutes on each side. Place chicken in slow cooker.
- Combine soy sauce, vinegar, ketchup, sugar, garlic, ginger, and pepper flakes in small bowl; pour over chicken.
- Cook on LOW for 2 to 3 hours. Stir in cashews and serve.
- Crock Pot Slow Cooker