Sunday, January 9, 2011

Crockpot Pulled Chicken

John and I spent a weekend in Washington DC a few years ago and stayed at a really nice hotel right next to the White House. Our hotel had a great roof top restaurant with a view of the White House roof and lawn. It was interesting eating and watching all the men with huge guns on the roof a short distance away. Now before you wonder where I'm going with this seemingly unrelated story, let me tie it in for you. When we were there John ordered a pulled pork sandwich- something I had never seen him eat before. That man is truly a man of mystery I'm telling you- I learn something new daily!

That event wasn't overly memorable and truly I hadn't given it much thought until I saw this recipe on a blog. It instantly reminded me of our lovely weekend away and I knew I'd give it a shot. Plus, it has chipotles in adobo in it which has quickly become one of my favorite ingredients ever. John loved the sandwiches and was thrilled to have them. They were smoky, saucy, and tender. Delicious.

Best of all- I continued with my New Year's resolution and repurposed the leftovers instead of tossing them. I halved this recipe and there was still a ton left so I used the leftover meat to make chicken tacos. I figured the chipotles in adobo would give it a flavor that worked for tacos and it surprisingly did! Big fan of not wasting food- big fan. Let's hope I can keep it up!

**Don't forget to follow me on facebook- the first giveaway ends Sunday (TODAY) at noon (EST) but there will be another giveaway Monday and one on Thursday! 

Source: Apple A Day

1 (14 oz.) can tomato sauce 
2-3 chipotle chiles in adobo, finely minced
1/4 c. cider vinegar
3 TBSP honey
1 TBSP plus 2 tsp. sweet or smoked paprika

2 TBSP tomato paste
2 TBSP Worcestershire sauce 
3 tsp. dry mustard
1 TBSP chili powder
1 tsp. salt
3 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken thighs or breasts trimmed of fat 

1 medium onion, chopped 
3 cloves garlic, minced


1. Stir tomato sauce, chiles, vinegar, honey, paprika, tomato paste, Worcestershire sauce, mustard, chili powder and salt in a 6-quart slow cooker until smooth. Add chicken, onion and garlic; stir to combine. 

2. Put the lid on and cook on low until the chicken can be pulled apart, about 5-6 hours.

3. Transfer the chicken to a cutting board and shred with a fork. Return the chicken to the sauce, stir well and serve. Serves 8-10.


  1. Wow, I can't believe you guys don't eat pulled pork very often (at least until your trip!) I LOVE barbecue and we meet my parents at least 3x's a month at my Dad's favorite barbecue restaurant and I eat pulled pork every time. Seriously, almost weekly!

  2. I'm so glad you liked this recipe, Stephanie!

  3. I tried this today, and it was wonderful. Mine turned out alot soupier than your appears to be; any ideas on how I can thicken up the sauce?

  4. Cassie- I'm not sure... did you use the same amount of liquids (tomato sauce, etc.) to chicken ratio? If so, Maybe letting it sit for awhile after you shred it, sometimes it absorbs the liquid back in.

  5. I made this tonight and at first I thought it was going to be too juicy as well after the water from the onions cooked out but with the chicken it was just perfect. My husband and 18 month old loved it! I am going to try and freeze the left overs for "one of those nights" Thanks for a great recipe!

  6. just put this recipe in the crockpot <3 so excited! I think I may serve this with a side of rice - total yum!!

  7. Made this tonight; the sauce is really, really, really good! I started it on high because I was short on time; thought I'd do it for 2 hours and then switch to low to finish it, but it was done after those two hours. Also, I used the food processor to shred, which you can do by putting one piece of chicken in at a time and pulsing carefully. If you over-pulse, it doesn't have a great texture. This way, you don't have to cool it before preparing it.

  8. Okay, I found this via a search on pinterest and made it today, so I thought I would add my review here as well. I used frozen chicken breasts and just tossed them in the crock pot with the rest of the ingredients. I cooked it on low for about 8 hours and it was cooked perfectly - super moist. I think I only used about 2 lbs. of chicken, but didn't change the amounts of the rest of the ingredients (I just forgot), so when I pulled the breasts out to shred them, I added some cornstarch/water to the sauce, and it thickened right up to the perfect consistency.
    Served this on hamburger buns, with a little shredded cheese, kosher dill pickles and mustard. YUM. It was a hit.
    The only thing I will change for next time is I may lessen the amount of the chipotle chilies or make sure I take the seeds out (this was my first time cooking with those chilies, so maybe it is the norm to take the seeds out and I just didn't know?). It was SPICY. My hubby and I like things spicy, but I ended up making last minute hot dogs for my kids because I knew it would burn their mouths.
    Thanks for the recipe!

  9. Cant wait to try this! :-)