CrockPot "Peking Duck" Recipe

Day 351.

I have cracked the duck-in-the-crockpot code. You need to use a rack. Too much liquid forms in the pot, and the meat needs to be up above it. I used a little round rack that came with my rice cooker, but you could use anything---an inverted ramekin to lift the bird up out of the collected juice, a collapsible steamer basket (great idea, KW!), foil balls, etc.

This duck tastes great, is seasoned nicely, and held up in the crockpot. Here's how to make traditional Peking Duck, and here's how I made it crockpot-friendly:

The Ingredients.

--4 to 5 pound duck
--5 whole green onions
--4 star anise
--1 inch ginger, peeled
--2 teaspoon Chinese 5 Spice (or you can make your own.)
--1 tsp cinnamon
--1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
--1 tablespoon honey
--2 tablespoons soy sauce (La Choy and Tamari wheat-free are gluten free)

The Directions.

Use a 6 quart crockpot, and insert a cooking rack of somesort in the bottom of your pot. Wash the green onions and lay on top of the rack.

Skin the duck the best you can. Peel ginger and stuff inside cavity, with the star anise. In a small bowl, combine dry spices. Rub all over the bird, inside and out. Place the duck inside your crockpot, breast up. (I did breast down yesterday, and that was a mistake. It got too soggy.) Drizzle on soy sauce and honey.

Cover and cook on high for 4 hours. Serve with plum sauce.

I made a down-and-dirty plum sauce:
--1/3 cup plum jam
--1 tablespoon soy sauce (La Choy is GF)
--1 tablespoon white sugar
--1 teaspoon garlic powder

The Verdict.

I was much happier at how this duck held up in the crockpot, and how most of the grease dripped away. The meat was nicely seasoned, and tasted great. We really liked the plum sauce. The kids ended up eating little smokies in bbq sauce because it was the Girl Scouts Holiday Party and that was our offering (done in a crockpot, of course).

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Posted by: Stephanie O'Dea | A Year of Slow Cooking at December 16, 2008

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What they say about this article

  1. Anonymous12/16/2008

    I'm sure the meat tasted better when not setting in the juices, but the yesterday's picture looks a little more appetizing! Today's looks like...the carcass of a dead bird. But I'll probably try it anyway. Duck has always looked so complicated and scary to cook. Not anymore. Thanks again Steph!

  2. Is that picture at the top of the post your picture, or is it just some generic one. The one at the bottom of the post, when it is finished looks really nice. The one at the top isn't how it comes out looking, is it? :-)

  3. Anonymous12/16/2008

    OMG!! Sure, I've liked some of your other recipes, but this is the one that has me falling head-over-heels in love with your blog. I love duck, cooked pretty much any way, but Peking Duck has to be one of my favorites. (now I need to find the recipe to make those flat little pancakes to roll the meat in) Thank you!!!

  4. hahahaha Jodi and the7gerbers,
    I liked that picture, but you're right---it does look a little petrified. I think Peking Duck is traditionally a bit dry looking because it is hung to dry and smoked, etc. The photo at the bottom was when it was still raw. I totally see your point, though.


  5. I just wanted to add that this is similar to how I make my "rotisserie" chicken in my crock pot. I use balled up foil to keep my chicken off the bottom of the pot, and clean up is a breaze! Usually 6 foil balls for my 6qt. works well.

    Blessings, Beth Ann

    P.S. I am the one who had the twins who broke my lid and asked about foil, it works! I have made a foil "lid" twice now with great results. Hoping to get a new crock at the top of the year if not for Christmas! Beth

  6. Oh, I apologize. Duh. Showing my ignorance that I thought the one at the bottom (raw) looked better.

    Blushing in OH,

  7. Anonymous12/16/2008

    Dear Crockpot Lady,

    I have a recipe for Cinnamon Pecan Pull-Aparts that uses Pillsbury refrigerated cinnamon rolls. Have you ever made something like this in your crockpot. Do you think it would work? Any tips or tricks would be awesome

    Also, recently I saw someone put a piece of aluminum foil across the top of the crockpot and then set their lid on top of the foil. What does this accomplish?

    Thanks for all your help and food inspiration!


    P.S. There are 4 of us who check your website almost daily and will be super sad when 2008 is over. What are your plans for the new year blogging-wise?

  8. Anonymous12/16/2008

    oh, crockpot lady....your Peking Duck brings back such lovely memories of munching in Beijing a few years back. never thought the treat could be enjoyed at home. Mustave smelled gorgeous. Thank you for another vicarious treat.

  9. hahahahaa, Andrea, I think you're right! It reminds me of the homeschooling project of mummifying a chicken. :-)


  10. These two post are perfect husband is off tommorow to go duck hunting for the weekend.

    Thanks for the recipes, keep the duck post coming.

  11. Anonymous12/16/2008

    Does the duck *need* to be skinned? We love the duck skin!

  12. Hi anon,

    lol, it needs to be skinned *for me*---I have weird skin issues.

    I think the skin on top will brown, but the skin on the sides and bottom will be pretty soggy. If you're up for it, you can remove the bird and broil it for a bit to brown and crispify the skin.


  13. Congrats on your duck cooking success! I think I might make a duck this weekend with this recipe. I've never made duck before, or even eaten it!

    Thanks for another wonderful sounding recipe!!! You're a star!


  14. I have a divided crock pot. It's Rival brand, and I got it a few years ago at Sams. It lets me cook two things at once. I also have the undivided insert (both came with the original crock as a special). Any idea where to get another one of these? My brother has crock pot envy, or something like that.

  15. Hi there Baking Scientist, here's one. Will that work?


  16. seems like there are just no more divided crock pots to be had...I called Rival and the crock pot that crock fits in has been discontinued...

  17. hmmmmmmmm may be a Christmas brunch dish

  18. Hi Crockpot Lady!
    Big fan of your site - I wanted to let you know that I would love to give your site a "foofing up". On me :-)

    Here is my design site - - if you would be interested, just drop me an email!

  19. How fun that you made Peking duck with the crockpot! I am such an avid reader of your blog.

    Traditionally, Peking duck is served with plum sauce and green onions, sandwiched between sweet, steamed bread called "mantou." If you find that in a specialty/Asian supermarket, I highly recommend it.

    How are you feeling, knowing that your year of experimentation is almost over?

  20. Anonymous12/16/2008

    Sometimes when I have finished scraping the remains of a "yuck! I wanted a pbj" dinner into the compost & garbage pails, I reread your miniscule flop list to cheer myself up. Because I'm not really Betty Crocker (not even close, my kids would tell you, once they had a sense of who Betty was/is), and it's just so darned frustrating, some days, to work on making something good/nutritious/ etc., and get honest/brutal kid feedback...... particularly after teaching teenagers all day, since they're pretty darned brutal, too.

    Anyway, I've loved your blog this year, and hope it's not disappearing (though I would totally understand you not posting DAILY....) Thank you for your humor, and inspiration!

  21. I just found your site tonight and it's amazing. Reading back through the recipes, it has made me now add crockpot to my list of things I want.

    I'm going to try making the plum sauce to use a dipping sauce for tofu tonight.

  22. Anonymous12/16/2008

    All I can think of when I read about this duck is the "chopping off of the head" on A Christmas Story - after the Bumpus's dogs ate the turkey. Perhaps you should make this for Christmas :)

  23. I don't know if you've ever posted this idea, but I thought I'd share anyway :-)
    You can make "handles" to remove your bird (or meatloaf...) from the crockpot by folding two fairly long strips of foil. Place the strips in the bottom of the crock cross-wise, then set the meat on top. The edges of foil should drape over the top edge of the crock. This makes it much easier to remove a super tender bird, so it doesn't fall apart.
    Thanks for your blog!!!

  24. ardnas, that's a great suggestion!
    thank you!

    lol, Anne, I love the Christmas Story!

  25. Now this recipe may be the winning one for me. Especially as you say here in the comments that it doesn't have to be skinned! Yeah! That was the part that I kept coming back to. No way was I touching the duck *that* much. I like the idea of popping it under the broiler for a few minutes to brown/crisp it up, hubby will like that. He loves skin on every thing (where as I also have skin issues, lol). Since this is for him, he gets the skin.

    Thanks again, as always you have come through. I am impressed that you pulled this off so quickly and TWICE! Yeah Steph!

    Cheers, and my thanks again,


  26. Hi- I am new to your site, and I am wondering about water. The ingredients don't say anything about adding water. This may sound like a stupid question, but won't it burn w/o some type of liquid? If you do use water, how much? Thank you so much for your great blog! - 29ersclub

  27. hi 29ers Club! It's not a stupid question at all. Duck (and a whole chicken) creates it's own liquid when it's cooking and doesn't need you to add any. I've found that a lot of traditional crockpot recipes go overboard with the liquid and the meat falls apart, or begins to all taste alike (like the broth, wine, etc). In this case, I wanted the duck to kind of dry out, which is why I elevated it out of the cooking liquid. And why it looks so weird... ;-)


  28. Anonymous6/10/2009

    Peking duck is all about the skin. Your roast duck sounds and looks delicious but it's not Peking duck if you skin it. It is meant to be dried before cooking (that's why you see the ducks hanging in the windows all over Chinatown). Also, the accompaniment is not plum sauce, it is hoisin sauce. Plum sauce is too sweet and tangy for this dish. Plum sauce is for spring rolls.

  29. I made your recipe last night, except I put it in the oven instead of the crockpot so I could shave an hour off the cooking time. It was good.

  30. Hi, I'm new to your site. I just read a post from "baking scientist" dated Dec. 16, 2008, looking for a divided crockpot. In Ontario they sell them at Giant Tiger, I think under $20, and always seem to have them. Hope he finds this helpful.

  31. I just found your site today, and how convenient is that? Tonight's dinner plan is for duck! I've always wanted to try it in a crock pot, but never found a recipe that gave me any faith it would turn out. I'm soooo excited! My friend Lynne raises them and they are much leaner than grocery store ducks, so sadly I don't get as much fat usually. I'm looking forward to this experiment very much!! Salivatingly yours, Ivy Leaf