I know what you're thinking: how can this be barbecue chicken without the drippy brown barbecue sauce? Trust me. This chicken "drips" with all of the sweet, salty, smoky flavors of barbecue, without drowning in sauce, and that makes it perfect for tacos and burritos and quesadillas. Add your own favorite salsa on top, to make this spicy or not.
Adapted from my slow cooker barbecue beef brisket recipe, this version, which my grandkids stuffed in burritos, passed the kid-friendly test with flying colors (i.e., they asked for seconds!). I cut down on both sugar and spice, but left all of the things nice: a little hint of adobo sauce from the chipotle, and some chili powder for rich flavor. If you're making this for adults, you can add more adobo sauce, or even a chopped chipotle pepper. Keep some shredded barbecue chicken in the freezer, for quick weeknight meals.
Slow cooker shredded barbecue chicken
From the pantry, you'll need: chicken breasts, ketchup, light brown sugar, chipotle peppers in adobo, Worcestershire sauce, garlic, chili powder, cumin, kosher salt, fresh black pepper.
Serves 8 or more.
6 large boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1/4 cup ketchup
1 Tbsp light brown sugar
1 Tbsp water
1/2 tsp adobo sauce from a can of chipotle peppers in adobo
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
2 small cloves garlic, chopped
1 tsp chili powder
1-1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp onion powder
1 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp fresh black pepper
Place the chicken in a 5- or 6-quart slow cooker (I use my Ninja Cooking System).
In a measuring cup, stir together all of the remaining ingredients until they combine into a sauce. Pour the sauce over the chicken.
Cook on LOW for 6 hours, until the chicken will shred easily.
Remove the chicken from the cooker into a large mixing bowl. Use two forks to shred the chicken, then return it to the slow cooker. Stir the chicken into the sauce, and let it cook for 10 minutes.
Serve warm or cold in burritos, tacos or quesadillas, topped with salsa or guacamole. Or let the chicken cool completely, and freeze it in airtight containers.
More slow cooker shredded chicken:
Slow cooker tandoori pulled chicken, from The Perfect Pantry
Slow cooker Middle Eastern garlic chicken, from The Perfect Pantry
Slow cooker crispy Chinese shredded chicken, from RecipeTin Eats
Slow cooker spicy shredded chicken lettuce wrap tacos with avocado salsa, from Kalyn's Kitchen
Slow cooker honey garlic chicken, from Just a Taste
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