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The BEST Cafe Rio Homemade Chicken

Sometimes I just crave Cafe Rio... For like a month! What's that about?? Haahaa. And if you arent familiar with this restaurant, you are about to be inducted into the club! 

Our budget doesn't have the kind of give of eating out daily at Cafe Rio, so I absolutely had to find an at home alternative! And, one that is simple because let's be honest... I'm not the worlds greatest chef on any level!

So, when I made it to a wedding reception and the wedding dinner was a mock cafe Rio shredded chicken recipe, I was all in! 

My only "twist" to this recipe is to do 1.5-2xs the chicken to lessen the sodium and sugar. Then, dishing it up on top of a salad or with corn or wheat tortillas, makes it super healthy and fit right in with my clean eating goals. 

And honestly, I don't think it takes away from the flavor AT ALL! So, without further ado... Your mouth is about to taste incredible chicken.

Ingredients 2 pounds chicken breasts

½ small bottle of zesty Italian dressing

2 cloves of minced garlic

½ tablespoon chili powder

½ tablespoon ground cumin

1 {1 oz} package dry ranch dressing mix

½ cup water

Instructions 1. Spray the inside of your slow cooker with cooking spray.

2. Place trimmed boneless, skinless chicken breasts into crockpot.

3. Mix together the Italian dressing, minced garlic, chili powder, cumin, ranch dressing packet, and water. 

4. Pour over the chicken.

5. Place lid on the crockpot and cook chicken dish on low for 4-6 hours or on high 3-4 hours until the chicken is no longer pink and cooked throughout.

6. Remove chicken from the slow cooker and shred with a fork {or pulse in a food processor briefly}. 

7. Replace the chicken back in the slow cooker and mix with the juices!

8. Serve the chicken in salads, burritos, or tacos. 

*Top with ingredients such as, fresh cilantro, chopped tomatoes, shredded lettuce, olives, avocado, queso fresco cheese, sour cream, pico de gallo, and/or creamy cilantro dressing. Enjoy!

*Picture credit and recipe credit to

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