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This recipe for Duck Confit is the easiest that you’ll ever find. This classic French dish that began as a method of preserving and grew to be one of the most cherished dishes of France. It’s said to have originated in the Gascony area of southwest France, but is now made across the country. This version is made in the slow cooker and requires just 10 minutes of active time including pan searing!

duck leg confit served on mashed red potatoes in wide shallow bowls

Let’s get it out of the way up front that this is not a traditional method of preparing duck confit. I’ve ordered this dozens of times in restaurants and wanted to figure out a no-fuss way to make it at home. I promise you that this version measures up to the best I’ve had with it’s deep flavor, crispy skin and melt-in-your mouth meat.

Ingredients You Need to Make Duck Confit

Duck Leg Confit Ingredients on a white marble board.
  • Duck Legs
  • Olive Oil
  • Kosher Salt and Freshly Ground Black Pepper

How to Make Easy Duck Confit:

Season the duck legs one day in advance if you have time; cover and let them rest in the refrigerator. You can also season just before cooking, but they’ll be slightly less flavorful.

Instead of spending a fortune on duck fat (some recipes call for as much as 6 cups), drizzle olive oil in the crock of a slow cooker and arrange the legs in a single layer fat side up. Their fat begins to render quickly and they bubble away in it just as they would in a method where they’re submerged in fat.

Cook the seasoned duck legs within a couple of days, no need to worry about the legs being completely covered in fat in the refrigerator.

Once the legs are pulled from the fat, the method is the same – a quick pan sear and you have a magnificent meal on your hands. You’ll also have a generous amount of leftover duck fat and if you’ve ever had duck fat fried potatoes, you know why this is a very good thing.

duck leg confit served on mashed red potatoes in wide shallow bowls

Pair With

I love to serve these crisped duck legs with an elegant appetizer like Tuna Tartare, a green salad, Lyonnaise Salad or Roasted Broccoli and Cauliflower and Fondant Potatoes, Gratin DauphinoisCheesy Potatoes, Lyonnaise Potatoes, or Mashed Red Potatoes (pictured above) that are seasoned with a liberal glug of olive oil, a bit of butter and some fresh garlic.

More Slow Cooker Recipes

I often turn to my favorite Slow Cooker Recipes for meals that taste like they took all day, but were actually prepared in minutes like: Slow Cooker Pork Carnitas, Slow Cooker Vegetable Beef Barley Soup, Slow Cooker Jambalaya and White Chicken Chili. I even use the slow cooker to make Bone Broth!

Recipe Video

Easy Duck Confit

5 from 14 votes
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 5 minutes
Total: 10 minutes
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: French
Calories: 493
Servings: 4 people
An ultra simple version of the classic French dish!

Ingredients  

  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 4 duck legs
  • salt to taste
  • freshly ground pepper to taste

Instructions 

  • Arrange duck legs in a single layer in a baking dish and season generously with salt and pepper. Cover and refrigerate overnight. (You can skip this and season them just before cooking, but if you have time it’s worth it to season them a day in advance.)
  • Drizzle olive oil in the bottom of a slow cooker. Arrange duck legs over the oil in a single layer. Cook on low for 6 hours.
  • Transfer duck legs to a loaf pan and pour rendered fat from slow cooker over legs. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
  • When you are ready to eat, heat a heavy skillet (ideally cast iron) over medium-high heat. Place legs in the dry pan, skin side down, and cook until skin is golden brown and crispy and leg is heated through, 4 to 5 minutes. Carefully turn legs and let cook on opposite side for 1 to 2 minutes more. Serve.

Nutrition

Calories: 493kcal | Protein: 46g | Fat: 33g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Cholesterol: 196mg | Sodium: 190mg | Vitamin C: 2.6mg | Calcium: 17mg | Iron: 3.7mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Leave a comment & rate the recipe below!

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59 Comments

  1. Heidi Barnard says:

    5 stars
    My husband and I agreed we have never tasted a better version of duck. Following the review of another, I made a savory blueberry sauce. It was wonderful with the duck, but absolutely not necessary to ooh and aah over the duck. After having several ‘won’t make it again’ duck dinners, I was considering removing duck from my grocery buying list. This recipe keeps duck legs on the list, for sure. Thank you so much for this recipe.

    1. Marissa Stevens says:

      You made my day, Heidi! So glad this is such a hit for you and your husband!

  2. Amy says:

    5 stars
    I’ve been using this recipe for a couple years now. It is hands down one of my absolute favorites. So simple, yet so delicious. Genius! The only problem is this has made duck confit at a lot of French restaurants pale in comparison!

    1. Marissa Stevens says:

      This is wonderful to hear, Amy! Thank you for coming back to let me know.

  3. Lovigia says:

    5 stars
    I am thinking of doing this for a family Christmas lunch. I usually do the roast duck with cherry sauce the traditional way. I think this will be a go to recipe for me. Can’t wait to try it out.

    1. Marissa Stevens says:

      Hi Lovigia! That’s wonderful to hear. I hope that you and your family will love it.

  4. Julie P says:

    5 stars
    I love a good slow cooker version for any recipe! Thanks for sharing.

    If you can only find duck breast, can you prepare the same way, especially if you just want a “pulled” version of the meat to use in crepes or other dishes?

    1. Marissa Stevens says:

      My pleasure, Julie! That’s a great question. I haven’t tried this recipe with duck breast, but I don’t see why it wouldn’t work. (I’m going to try it soon myself.)

  5. roy says:

    Could you broil these instead of pan fry for crispy skin?

    1. Marissa Stevens says:

      Hi Roy! I haven’t broiled these to finish because pan frying works so well to crisp the skin. If you do broil them, be sure to watch very carefully so they don’t burn.