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Elevate your dinner with this single serve Mini Slow Cooker Orange Chicken recipe, a healthier twist on classic takeout. Enjoy succulent, boneless chicken thighs on a bed of sliced onions, drenched in a vibrant sauce of orange preserves, fresh orange juice, ginger, garlic, and soy sauce. This breading-free dish highlights the rich, tangy flavors and is ideal for effortless cooking – just set it in your slow cooker and relax.

Looking for more single serving mini slow cooker recipes? You’ll love our Ropa Vieja, Chicken Burrito Bowl, and Meatloaf recipes! Each of these slow cooker recipes for one are cooked in a small slow cooker – the ideal size for those cooking for one.

Why You’ll Love This Mini Crockpot Orange Chicken Recipe

  • Easy to Make: Throw the ingredients into your slow cooker and let it do the work.
  • Healthier Option: This version skips the deep-frying, offering a more nutritious option without sacrificing taste.
  • Flavorful: The combination of orange preserves, ginger, and garlic creates a rich sauce.
  • Perfect for One: Created to yield just a single serving, making it super convenient for those cooking for one and not looking to make leftovers.
  • Grocery-Store Friendly: All ingredients are readily available at your local supermarket.
Overhead view of a bowl of orange chicken with sauce over white rice.

RELATED: Cooking For One Tips To Eat Healthy And Save Money

Ingredients

two chicken thighs, orange marmalade, orange juice, soy sauce, and other ingredients needed to make orange chicken on a wooden cutting board.

This section provides a quick rundown of the ingredients used in this small Crockpot orange chicken recipe. For complete measurements and step-by-step instructions, please scroll to the recipe card located at the bottom of this post.

  • Chicken: Opt for 1 to 2 boneless, skinless chicken thighs for a tender and flavorful result. If you have leftover chicken thighs, consider using them in Chicken Cacciatore or a Chicken and Rice Casserole.
  • Orange Preserves or Marmalade: Choose either low-sugar or regular orange preserves to impart a tangy, sweet undertone to the dish.
  • Orange Juice: Freshly squeezed orange juice is ideal, but a quality bottled version works well too. Extra orange juice can be used in a small batch of Morning Glory Muffins or a Tequila Sunrise!
  • Soy Sauce: This is your umami kicker. Go for low-sodium if you’re watching your salt intake, or stick with regular for a richer flavor profile.
  • Garlic and Onions: Incorporate 1 garlic clove and half of a small onion for a depth of flavor that perfectly complements the chicken.
  • Ground Ginger: For the sake of convenience, ground ginger is recommended. However, 1/4 teaspoon of freshly minced ginger is a great alternative for a more intense flavor.
  • Salt and Black Pepper: These are your basic seasoning agents that fine-tune the flavors of the dish.
  • Sesame Seeds: While optional, a sprinkle of sesame seeds adds a delightful crunch and aesthetic appeal to your finished plate.

If you have any ingredients leftover from this recipe, check out our Leftover Ingredients Recipe Finder.

Recipe Variations

Looking to switch things up without losing the essence of your beloved orange chicken? Change your routine with these easy modifications:

  • Vegetarian Friendly: Skip the chicken altogether and use firm tofu cubes or tempeh as a protein-packed vegetarian option.
  • Crispy Orange Chicken: After slow cooking, transfer the chicken pieces to a baking sheet and broil for 3-5 minutes for a crispy texture. Then toss them back in the sauce before serving.
  • Spicy Orange Chicken: Craving some heat? Add 1/8 teaspoon of red pepper flakes or 1/2 teaspoon of sriracha to the sauce mixture before cooking.
  • Citrus Medley Chicken: Why stop at orange? Add lemon and lime juice, and even a bit of zest, to give the dish a more complex citrus flavor.
  • Pineapple Orange Chicken: Add a 1/4 cup of pineapple chunks or pineapple juice to the slow cooker for a tropical twist that’s reminiscent of sweet and sour chicken.
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How To Make Orange Chicken

These step-by-step instructions help you visualize how to make a single serving Slow Cooker Orange Chicken. See the recipe box below for ingredient amounts and full recipe instructions.

  1. Place thinly sliced onions into the bowl of a small Crockpot or slow cooker. Place the chicken thighs on top of the onions.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk together the orange preserves, orange juice, soy sauce, garlic, ginger, salt, and pepper. Pour over the chicken.
  3. Cook the chicken on high for 3 hours or on low temperature for 6 hours.
  4. Serve with brown or white rice and top with sesame seeds.
Raw chicken in an orange sauce in the base of a slow cooker.

Expert Tips

  • Adjust Spice Levels: Personalize the dish by tweaking the amount of spices to suit your taste preference.
  • Choice of Chicken: While chicken thighs are preferred for their moisture retention and tenderness, a boneless, skinless chicken breast is a viable alternative.
  • Storing Leftovers: Keep any leftover orange chicken in an airtight container in the fridge, and it’ll stay good for up to 3 days.
  • Scaling the Recipe: If you’re in the mood for more, this recipe is easily doubled. Just make sure to switch to a larger slow cooker, ideally 3-quarts or more, to accommodate the extra ingredients.

RELATED: Recipes For Empty Nesters – The Joy Of Cooking For Two

What To Serve With Orange Chicken

Nothing complements a succulent dish like slow cooker orange chicken better than the perfect side dish. Finding that flawless pairing can elevate your meal from good to unforgettable. Here are some versatile, yet classic options:

  • White Rice: Fluffy and neutral, white rice soaks up the flavorful orange sauce, making each bite a well-balanced experience.
  • Brown Rice: A healthier alternative, brown rice offers a nutty flavor and extra fiber, which can add a complex layer to your dish.
  • Buttered Noodles: Soft, buttered pasta serve as an unconventional but delicious base, providing a contrast in texture to the tender chicken.
  • Mashed Potatoes: Creamy and comforting, a dollop of mashed potatoes can add a heart-warming richness that rounds out your meal beautifully.

Frequently Asked Questions

Which slow cooker size is ideal for single serving recipes?

For single serving slow cooker meals, a 1.5-quart slow cooker works best. However, if you only have a larger slow cooker, you can adapt it for smaller meals by using an oven-safe bowl inside the cooking vessel.

How do I adapt a large slow cooker for single servings?

If you’re equipped with a large slow cooker but aim for single serving recipes, you can easily modify your appliance. Place an oven-safe bowl into the base of your slow cooker, fill the bowl with your chosen ingredients, and proceed with cooking as directed. It’s essential to note that the bowl should be about two-thirds to three-quarters full for optimal cooking performance. Under-filling may result in quicker cooking and the risk of burning the dish.

adapting recipes to fit slow cooker | one dish kitchen

How do I store leftover orange chicken?

Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.

More Single Serving Slow Cooker Recipes To Try

If you’re a fan of our single serving slow cooker orange chicken, don’t miss out on exploring more of our delicious and easy-to-make individual slow cooker recipes.

Ways To Use Leftover Ingredients

If you have any ingredients leftover from this recipe, check out our Leftover Ingredients Recipe Finder or you might like to consider using them in any of these single serving and small batch recipes:

For more information on the cooking and baking dishes I use in our “recipes for one”, please visit our FAQ page.

For examples of the dishes used at One Dish Kitchen, please visit our Store page.

If you’ve tried this slow cooker orange chicken or any recipe on One Dish Kitchen please let me know how you liked it by rating the recipe and telling me about it in the comment section below.

If you take a picture please tag us on Instagram (@onedishkitchen) we’d love to see!


Your Cooking For One Source
Because you’re worth it

Mini Slow Cooker Orange Chicken For One

4.83 from 17 votes
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 3 hours
Total: 3 hours 10 minutes
Servings: 1 serving
Transform your dinner plans with this single serving Slow Cooker Orange Chicken! A healthier, flavorful twist on your favorite takeout. Ideal for busy days.

Ingredients 
 

  • ½ small onion -thinly sliced
  • 2 boneless skinless chicken thigh (about 7 ounces)
  • ¼ cup low sugar orange preserves
  • 2 tablespoons orange juice
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 clove garlic -minced
  • pinch ground ginger
  • teaspoon salt
  • teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon sesame seeds -optional
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Instructions 

  • Place the sliced onions in the bowl of a small slow cooker.
  • Place the chicken thighs on top of the onions.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together the orange preserves, orange juice, soy sauce, garlic, ginger, salt, and pepper. Pour over the chicken.
  • Cook on low for 6 hours (or cook for 3 hours on high).
  • Serve with your choice of rice and top with sesame seeds, if using.

Notes

  • Adjust Spice Levels: Personalize the dish by tweaking the amount of spices to suit your taste preference.
  • Choice of Chicken: While chicken thighs are preferred for their moisture retention and tenderness, a boneless, skinless chicken breast is a viable alternative.
  • Storing Leftovers: Keep any leftover orange chicken in an airtight container in the fridge, and it’ll stay good for up to 3 days.
  • Scaling the Recipe: If you’re in the mood for more, this recipe is easily doubled. Just make sure to switch to a larger slow cooker, ideally 3-quarts or more, to accommodate the extra ingredients.

Nutrition

Serving: 1serving, Calories: 385kcal, Carbohydrates: 39g, Protein: 45g, Fat: 9g, Saturated Fat: 2g, Cholesterol: 214mg, Sodium: 875mg, Potassium: 711mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 25g, Vitamin A: 120IU, Vitamin C: 20.5mg, Calcium: 20mg, Iron: 2.4mg

The information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.

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I’m Joanie and I’m incredibly happy you’re here! Our aim is to inspire individuals with access to single serving recipes, education, and a supportive community that will enable them to enjoy the preparation of a meal that will nourish both body and soul.

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Recipe Rating




32 Comments

  1. dragnlaw says:

    Was so very easy – not a huge amount of ingredients and quick to put together! Plus mine was ready at about 5 hours on slow. (Maybe even earlier but I had not checked.) Try to use the low sugar orange preserves if possible. I did not have and used regular marmalade, so for me it was a tad too sweet but that is my personal preference. Feel that the sauce needed thickening at the end.
    Very good, simple, fast recipe! (LOL for a slow cooker!) I especially like that the ingredients are what I generally have on hand. I also like that there is no prepping with breading involved. Served over Jasmine rice which I did in my rice cooker. Talk about an easy, no stress, open lid and serve dinner.

  2. AJ Devies says:

    This is my favorite slow cooker chicken dish. I serve it over rice in a bowl for a delicious meal.

  3. Tamara Atkinson says:

    This was great. I had to sub apricot for orange preserves and chicken broth for the orange juice but it was fantastic. I just retired myself and am looking for ways to stop wasting so much food and to be able to enjoy my love of cooking on a daily basis. Next up is the Italian chicken. I have high hopes for it!

  4. Lynn says:

    Delicious! So easy. Doubled with no problem. These recipes help with portion control. Bought 3 quart slow cooker just so I could try these recipes. Ready to try Joanie’s other slow cooker recipes!

  5. Marilyn says:

    Perfect every time !

  6. Cheryl says:

    This was really, really good!!! So glad I found your website, and thank you much for the info on adapting a large slow cooker for smaller recipes. Will be making this recipe often!

  7. Marilyn Manter says:

    Perfect every time, just as written ! For a retiree just learning how to cook, you have given me hope !!

  8. DABF says:

    I am cooking again after 40 years. I have made this recipe several times and it gets better each time. I substituted cut-up chicken breasts for the thighs with a double recipe (it fit great in my 2 qt. slow cooker) when I had company – my guest did not leave any leftovers.

    I leave out the pepper as I do not care for it. However, I have used freshly grated ginger and it is a wonderful addition.

  9. Candice says:

    Tried the Orange Chicken recipe, if I make it again I will definitely use chicken breast, did not care for thighs. I kinda changed the recipe at the end of cooking by making it into a stir fry but not much orange flavor, I finally added a jar of PF Chang’s Orange Chicken sauce which did give it more flavor.

  10. AJ says:

    I love this recipe. The chicken is so delicious and just falls apart because it is so tender. I serve it over rice so I can enjoy the “juice” that is left over.