It seems like all I’ve been able to handle lately is crockpot meals. HA! Life is busy, friends, and I know you are feeling it, too. That’s why last week I decided to experiment with a crockpot pulled chicken recipe, and it turned out fantastic! I think you’ll love the simplicity of this dish and the variety of meals you can prepare with this as the main ingredient.
- Chicken. This is the star of the show. I used the big bag of frozen chicken breasts that I usually purchase from Costco. I toss them in my slow cooker raw for even less prep. I used about 2 lbs for this recipe. If you want to have extra chicken on hand for lunches and leftovers, you can definitely add more chicken in. But keep in mind that you may need to cook your chicken for longer. More meat in the crockpot = longer cook time.
- Spices. To season the meat, you’ll cook it with a variety of smoky spices. Garlic, chili powder, paprika, salt, and pepper are all you need to give it a smoky taste.
- Liquid Smoke. Speaking of smoky flavor, the addition of liquid smoke gives it that classic barbecue flavor. I find the liquid smoke in my local grocery store next to the barbecue sauce.
- Apple Cider Vinegar. Another classic flavor in barbecued foods. You’ll need just a fourth cup to cook the chicken in.
- Barbecue Sauce. My favorite is Stubb’s barbecue sauce because it has excellent flavor and even better macros. You can substitute your favorite brand, but keep in mind that any substitutions may change the macros.
Probably my favorite part of a simple recipe like this is the variety of ways that you can serve it. Here are some ideas on how to serve up this protein:
- Barbecue Chicken Sandwiches. To make sandwiches, simply place prepared chicken on the bun of your choice. We like to serve ours with additional barbecue sauce and/or a slaw of some sort. Might I suggest this pineapple slaw if you’re looking for something more adventurous?
- Crunch Wrap. Barbecue chicken goes great in a crunchwrap! Wrap up some chicken and whatever other toppings you desire into a lavash wrap for a super high protein meal. I suggest some additional barbecue sauce, chopped tomatoes, cilantro, cheddar cheese, and avocado.
- Barbecue Chicken Salads. This is probably my favorite! It’s a great way to get a ton of veggies in. We start with a big bed of greens, then add the chicken, tomatoes, avocado, pickled red onions, and top with my Skinny Barbecue Ranch. Other topping ideas are crispy sweet potatoes, crispy fried onions, black beans, and corn. But really, the sky is the limit!
- Barbecue Chicken Nachos. To turn these into nachos, first create lavash chips out of lavash bread. Then top with cheddar cheese or jarred queso (we like queso blanco, and it has surprisingly decent macros), prepared chicken, jalapeños, avocado, red onions, tomatoes, black beans, and whatever else sounds yummy!
- Barbecue Chicken Pizza. We love to make grilled pizzas using this two ingredient pizza dough! For the sauce, spread with additional barbecue sauce. Then top the pizzas with shredded cheddar cheese, red onions, bacon, and jalapeños (if you dare!).
The macros for 1 serving (8 total) are rounded to 1F/6C/22P, or approximately 137 calories. I have not included the grams for a serving size on this recipe because they can vary depending on how much cooking liquid you would like to add to your chicken. To find the grams for a serving size, take the total weight of your cooked, shredded, and sauced chicken (minus the weight of the dish) and divide it by 8.
Crockpot Pulled Chicken
- 2 lbs raw chicken breast, frozen (if using thawed chicken, allow for a shorter cook time)
- 2 tsp minced garlic
- 1 tsp chili powder
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp pepper
- 1 tsp liquid smoke
- 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
- 200 g Stubb's barbecue sauce , or more or less to taste
- In a crockpot, place the chicken breasts (frozen if desired). Sprinkle with garlic and seasonings. Add in liquid smoke and apple cider vinegar. Place on lid and cook on high for 4 hours or low for 8 hours.
- Remove chicken from the crockpot into another bowl and shred chicken with two forks. Add in cooking liquid, to taste, to help keep the chicken moist. Then stir in the barbecue sauce. Serve and enjoy! Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator.