Indulge in the rich and flavorful world of Cajun cuisine with this easy-to-make Slow Cooker Cajun Chicken Alfredo recipe. With a blend of Cajun spices, tender chicken, smoked sausage, and creamy Alfredo sauce, this dish will transport your taste buds to Louisiana. Let your slow cooker do the work, and enjoy a comforting and hearty meal with minimal effort.
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 pound chicken breasts, pat dry and seasoned with salt, pepper, and a sprinkle of garlic powder
- 1 pound smoked sausage, sliced into 1-inch pieces
- 3 cups heavy cream
- 4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 2 tablespoons coarse Cajun seasoning
- 2 cloves garlic, smashed
- 1 pound uncooked penne pasta
- 1/2 cup hot water
- 8 oz freshly shredded Parmesan cheese (about 2 1/2 cups)
- Kosher salt and black pepper, to taste
- Garlic powder, for extra flavor
- Sear the Chicken: In a skillet, heat olive oil over high heat. Quickly sear the seasoned chicken breasts on both sides until golden brown. Set aside to cool and slice into strips.
- Prepare the Slow Cooker: Place seared chicken, smoked sausage, heavy cream, chicken broth, butter, smashed garlic cloves, Cajun seasoning, 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, and freshly ground black pepper in the slow cooker.
- Cook in the Slow Cooker: Cook on low for about 4 hours or high for 2-3 hours, until the chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165°F (74°C).
- Add Pasta: Stir in 1/2 cup of hot water and uncooked penne pasta. Cover and cook on high for about 30 minutes, or until the pasta is tender and has absorbed the flavors of the sauce.
- Finish the Dish: Once the pasta is tender, stir in freshly shredded Parmesan cheese. Add the sliced chicken back into the slow cooker. Taste and adjust seasoning with additional salt, black pepper, and garlic powder if desired.
- Serve: Serve the Slow Cooker Cajun Chicken Alfredo hot, garnished with extra Parmesan cheese and a sprinkle of chopped fresh parsley, if desired.
This Slow Cooker Cajun Chicken Alfredo is a delightful combination of smoky, spicy, and creamy flavors. Enjoy the robust taste of Cajun spices combined with the comfort of a classic Alfredo sauce, all conveniently cooked in your slow cooker. Bon appétit! 🍝
1. Can I use a different type of pasta in this recipe? Yes, you can use different types of pasta such as fettuccine, linguine, or rigatoni. Adjust the cooking time according to the pasta type you choose, as it may vary slightly.
2. Can I use a different protein instead of chicken and smoked sausage? Absolutely! You can substitute chicken with shrimp, cooked andouille sausage, or even a mix of seafood for a Cajun seafood Alfredo. Adjust the cooking time accordingly, especially if using seafood, to avoid overcooking.
3. Is it necessary to sear the chicken before adding it to the slow cooker? Searing the chicken before adding it to the slow cooker enhances its flavor and texture, creating a richer taste in the final dish. However, if you’re short on time, you can skip this step, and the dish will still be delicious.
4. Can I make this recipe in an Instant Pot or on the stovetop? Yes, you can adapt this recipe for the Instant Pot by adjusting the cooking time and using the appropriate settings. For stovetop preparation, follow the same steps but simmer the ingredients in a large pot over medium heat until the chicken is cooked through and the pasta is tender.
5. How spicy is this dish? Can I adjust the level of spiciness? The spiciness of the dish depends on the Cajun seasoning you use. If you prefer a milder version, choose a Cajun seasoning labeled as “mild” or “low heat.” Conversely, for a spicier kick, opt for a Cajun seasoning labeled as “hot” or “spicy.” You can always adjust the amount of seasoning according to your taste preferences.
6. Can I make this recipe ahead of time? Yes, you can prepare the ingredients and store them in the refrigerator a day in advance. When you’re ready to cook, simply transfer the ingredients to the slow cooker and follow the cooking instructions. However, add the pasta and hot water just before cooking to ensure the pasta cooks properly.
7. Can I freeze the leftovers? Yes, you can freeze the leftovers in an airtight container for up to 2-3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight and reheat in the microwave or on the stovetop, adding a splash of milk or cream to restore the sauce’s creaminess.
Enjoy your Slow Cooker Cajun Chicken Alfredo and feel free to customize it to your taste! 🍝😊