This simple Slow Cooker BBQ Chicken is tender, juicy, and perfect for busy weeknights all year long. Serve on slider rolls with our spicy ranch slaw, or use this BBQ chicken recipe to make tacos, pizzas, quesadillas, and more.
Easy BBQ Pulled Chicken (Slow Cooker Recipe)
This Slow Cooker BBQ Chicken recipe uses just three ingredients to make delicious pulled chicken that is perfect for parties, game day, potlucks, and busy weeknight dinners. Most often, I serve this BBQ pulled chicken on slider rolls so I’ve also included my favorite spicy ranch slaw in this recipe. The combination of tender sweet and savory chicken with the crunchy spicy slaw is out-of-this-world delicious.
Sliders aren’t the only option, however. You can serve this Slow Cooker BBQ Chicken in burritos, tacos, over rice, on pizza, and so much more. It also freezes well, so plan on making plenty. If you are looking for more crockpot recipes, this Slow Cooker Chicken and Gravy is another family favorite.
Ingredients in Slow Cooker BBQ Chicken
- Chicken Breasts - I like to use boneless skinless chicken breasts for this recipe, although it would also taste amazing with chicken thighs.
- BBQ Sauce - you can use your favorite type of BBQ sauce or even homemade BBQ sauce for this recipe.
- Chicken Broth - you can use store bought or homemade chicken broth or chicken stock for this recipe. It helps to cook the chicken and keep it super juicy and flavorful.
- Buns - you can either use small slider buns from the grocery store or make your own. I highly recommend either these Potato Rolls or our Quick Dinner Rolls if you decide to go the homemade route.
For the Spicy Slaw
- Red Onion - you’ll want to dice this into small pieces. White or yellow onion would also work, but if possible use red onion because it is slightly more firm and adds a nice color.
- Carrots - these should be washed, peeled, and shredded on a cheese grater.
- Cabbage - I like red cabbage, but Napa cabbage would also work. You’ll want to shred this using a sharp knife.
- Ranch Dressing - you’ll just need a couple tablespoons of Ranch dressing to add a ton of flavor and creaminess to this slaw.
- Jalapenos - I like to use either jarred or canned jalapenos for this slaw because it has a milder spicy flavor. This is completely optional so feel free to omit if you don’t want your slaw to be spicy.
How to Make a Pulled BBQ Chicken Sandwich
- Add ingredients to the slow cooker. Place chicken breasts in the bottom of a slow cooker, then pour the chicken broth and BBQ sauce on top.
- Cook the chicken. Cover and cook chicken on high for 3-4 hours or on low for 6-7 hours. The cooking time may vary depending on how much chicken you cook at once, so make sure that the internal temperature has reached 165 degrees F.
- Shred the chicken. Once the chicken is easily shreddable, remove from the slow cooker and shred using two forks. Place back into the slow cooker and let the shredded chicken absorb the BBQ juices.
- Make the spicy ranch slaw. In a large bowl, combine the red onion, carrots, shredded cabbage, ranch dressing, and minced jalapenos if using. Mix well, then use immediately or store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days.
- Build the sandwiches. Place about ¼ cup of shredded crockpot BBQ chicken on a slider bun. Add the spicy ranch slaw and extra BBQ sauce if desired. Enjoy!
Frequently Asked Questions
You sure can! While I don’t recommend putting frozen chicken directly into the slow cooker, you can absolutely put any type of raw meat into your crockpot and let it cook. Some recipes direct you to sear your meat first, but for this particular recipe that is not necessary.
For this Slow Cooker BBQ Chicken recipe, cooking on either high or low heat will work perfectly fine. Either way, your chicken will turn out super juicy, so it mostly depends on your schedule. If it’s already early afternoon, go ahead and cook on high. If it’s morning and you’ve got the time, you can cook it on low.
Yes! Just make sure the chicken has cooled completely before transferring into freezer bags or another airtight container. You can store frozen for up to 2 months before thawing and reheating. You can not, however, freeze the spicy slaw as the freezing and thawing process will cause the cabbage to break down and turn mushy.
Storing and Reheating
- Refrigerator: cool completely then transfer to an airtight container and store in the fridge for up to 5 days. Spicy slaw can also be stored for up to 5 days in the fridge.
- Freezer: cool chicken completely then transfer to freezer bags and store frozen for up to 2 months. To thaw, transfer to the fridge overnight.
- To reheat: you can reheat your BBQ chicken in the microwave, or add to a saucepan with a splash of water, chicken stock, or BBQ sauce and reheat over medium low until warmed through.
Pulled BBQ Chicken Sandwich Recipe
Shredded BBQ Chicken
- 2 pounds Chicken Breast
- 1 cup BBQ Sauce
- ¼ cup Chicken Broth
- 8-12 small Slider Buns
Spicy Ranch Slaw
- ¼ cup Chopped Red Onion
- 2-3 large Carrots shredded
- ½ head Cabbage shredded
- 2-3 Tablespoons Ranch Dressing
- 1 Tablespoon Jalapenos (jarred or canned) minced
Slow Cooker BBQ Chicken
- Place chicken breasts in the bottom of a slow cooker, then pour the chicken broth and BBQ sauce on top.
- Cover and cook chicken on high for 3-4 hours or on low for 6-7 hours.
- Once the chicken is easily shreddable, remove from the slow cooker and shred using two forks. Place back into the slow cooker and let the shredded chicken absorb the BBQ juices.
Spicy Ranch Slaw
- In a large bowl, combine the red onion, carrots, shredded cabbage, ranch dressing, and minced jalapenos if using. Mix well, then use immediately or store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days.
Pulled BBQ Chicken Sandwich
- Place about ¼ cup of shredded BBQ chicken on a slider bun. Add the spicy ranch slaw and extra BBQ sauce if desired. Enjoy!
More Crockpot Recipes To Try
- Slow Cooker Chicken and Gravy
- Crock Pot Salsa Chicken
- Crock Pot Scalloped Potatoes
- Slow Cooker Spare Ribs
- Mississippi Chicken
- Slow Cooker Chicken Noodle Soup
- Crock Pot Rump Roast
- Tuscan Chicken
- Slow Cooker Kalua Pork
- Pork Carnitas
- Pulled Pork
- Slow Cooker Baby Back Ribs
- Chicken Fajitas
- Crockpot Chicken Pot Pie
- More Slow Cooker Recipes
- More Chicken Recipes
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This Slow Cooker BBQ Chicken uses just 3 ingredients to make tender, juicy, pull chicken. It's perfect for serving on slider buns with spicy slaw, or on tacos, pizza, quesadillas, burritos, and more.
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