Easy Slow-Cooker Chicken Ropa Vieja

Total Time

Prep: 20 min. Cook: 5 hours


6 Servings

Updated: Sep. 12, 2023
When discussing various methods of cooking ropas, a friend of mine told me her sister adds apple juice. I thought a Granny Smith apple might give the dish an extra kick—and it does. The ropas may also be served with hominy or tortillas, but I think the plantains add a special touch. —Arlene Erlbach, Morton Grove, Illinois
Easy Slow-Cooker Chicken Ropa Vieja Recipe photo by Taste of Home


  • 2 medium sweet red peppers, sliced
  • 1 medium Granny Smith apple, peeled and chopped
  • 1 cup fresh cilantro leaves
  • 1 cup chunky salsa
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 5 teaspoons adobo seasoning, divided
  • 1-1/2 pounds boneless skinless chicken thighs
  • 3 to 6 teaspoons lime juice
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 3 ripe plantains, peeled and sliced into thin rounds
  • Optional: Hot cooked rice, lime wedges and additional fresh cilantro leaves


  1. Place the first 7 ingredients and 1 teaspoon adobo in a 5- or 6-quart slow cooker. Rub the remaining 4 teaspoons adobo seasoning over chicken; add to slow cooker. Cook, covered, on low until chicken is tender, 5-6 hours. Using 2 forks, shred chicken. Stir in lime juice to taste; heat through.
  2. Meanwhile, heat butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Cook plantains in batches until tender and golden brown, about 3 minutes per side. Drain on paper towels.
  3. Serve chicken with plantains using a slotted spoon. If desired, serve with rice, lime wedges and cilantro.

Nutrition Facts

1 serving: 387 calories, 16g fat (7g saturated fat), 96mg cholesterol, 1428mg sodium, 39g carbohydrate (20g sugars, 4g fiber), 23g protein.