Sandwich maker goes gourmet

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First Posted: 9/9/2014

Recently, I packed up my life in Central Pennsylvania and headed to NEPA to begin a brand new adventure.

It was an exciting change, but with most of my friends nearly two hours away, I was finding it difficult to find dinner companions.

At first, sustaining myself on take-out and peanut-butter-and-marshmallow sandwiches was divine. Alas, those meals grew old after a few short weeks.

I decided it was time to teach myself something I thoroughly have tried avoiding my entire adult life: cooking my own dinner. I set my sights to Google for inspiration on a perfect test meal.

What I found, folks, will blow your mind: With just a crockpot, three ingredients, a little patience, and practically zero work, you can indulge in flavorful and juicy Crockpot Chicken Tacos!

Without further ado, let’s get to the good stuff. No need to write it down; this recipe is so simple, it will be ingrained in your brain after just one time. You will need:

  • One 1-ounce package of taco seasoning.
  • One 16-ounce jar of salsa.
  • Six boneless, skinless chicken breasts.

Toss the ingredients into a crockpot, and mix them up to blend the seasoning with the salsa. Depending on what your crockpot has under the hood, you’ll generally want to cook your concoction on high for four to six hours or low for six to eight hours. You will know when the chicken is done because it will easily fall apart when stirred with a fork.

When finished, fancy things up with diced tomatoes, shredded cheese, lettuce and sour cream. I chose to wrap everything in soft-shell corn tortillas, which I threw in the microwave. I’m sure hard-shell tacos or flour tortillas would be just as tasty.

I served this dish to a few people, one of whom is — to put it nicely — a picky eater, and everyone agreed it was a dish we had to make again.

This dish is very versatile, with many online commenters offering tweaks to the recipe. One suggested adding a block of cream cheese 15 minutes before the meal was complete. Another added a can of cream of mushroom soup.

With the success of this dish, I look forward to my next installment of Test Kitchen, where I’ll endeavor to create a meal with — brace yourselves — four ingredients.