Distribute the bacon and mushrooms over the chicken.
In a bowl or large measuring cup, combine the Guinness, broth, garlic, pepper, salt, and thyme.
Pour the Guinness mixture over the chicken, cover, and cook on high for 3-4 hours or low 6-7 hours.
About 20 minutes before you are ready to serve, combine the flour with the water, then slowly add the mixture to the crock pot while stirring. (If you prefer, you can remove the chicken first and replace it when this step is complete. But I'm a little lazy and so I usually just leave it in!)
Add in the mixed veggies, re-cover, and cook until they are heated through, about another 20 minutes.
Bone-in chicken thighs produce the best flavor, but honestly boneless are a really close second, and you can also use chicken breasts.
Frozen chopped onion is a great alternative to fresh. It's easier to use and keeps for much longer in your freezer.
You can buy packages of precooked bacon to eliminate the step of cooking it. Or, if you cooking bacon anyway, fry up some extra and save it in the refrigerator for this recipe (you may have to hide it, though, so the family doesn't eat it!)
If you buy your mushrooms already sliced, you wil only need to rinse them quickly before using them.
Use jarred minced garlic instead of fresh. No one will notice!
Serve with mashed, roasted, or baked potatoes, or with warm crusty bread. (To heat a loaf of Italian, French, or sourdough bread, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F, wrap the bread in foil, and heat for about 10-15 minutes.)