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Chicken Thighs with Black-Eyed Pea Ragout

(from America’s Test Kitchen, Healthy Slow Cooker Revolution)

Couple of notes first: I have used both bone-in and boneless chicken thighs and boneless breast meat depending on what I had on hand, and they all work well. So, pick your preferred chicken. With boneless breast meat, I tend to chop it raw and add to the cooker, rather than cooking whole breasts, making this dish more like a stew than a meat with side.

Beans: I always start with dried beans that I pressure cook (thank you instapot). Canned beans are always fine, I just like to buy in bulk from the co-op and control the salt in my beans. I have a rant about Goya, and why I no longer buy any of their products – happy to share if you are interested. 



1 lb kale, stemmed and chopped coarse (I generally just use one big bunch, whatever that weighs)

1 onion, chopped fine

4 garlic cloves, minced

1 teaspoon neutral cooking oil

1 teaspoon dry mustard

1 teaspoon dried thyme (or 2t fresh thyme; I have been known to use 2t dried thyme, as it’s a flavor I love)


4 cups cooked black-eyed peas (or 2 15oz cans, rinsed)

½ cup chicken broth

8 6oz bone-in chicken thighs (I use about 2lbs boneless skinless chicken breast)

Salt and pepper to taste

2 teaspoons hot sauce (I LOVE a smokey hot sauce with this dish, and generally serve it with more hot sauce to taste)


  1. Microwave kale, onion, garlic, oil, mustard, and thyme in a covered bowl, stirring occasionally, until veggies are softened, about 5-7 minutes. Trans to slow cooker.
  2. Process 1 and ⅓ cups of beans with broth in food processor until smooth and pourable. Transfer to slow cooker. 
  3. Stir remaining beans into slow cooker.
  4. Season chicken with salt and pepper. Nestle whole thighs/breasts; stir in cut up breasts, depending on what you are using. Cover and cook until chicken is tender, 3-4 hours on low.
  5. Remove whole thighs/breasts if using. Stir in hot sauce. Season with salt and pepper, and serve.
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