Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Slow Cooker BBQ Chicken and Healthy Slaw

Whenever I'm at a good mexican or BBQ place I am always in awe of the delicious shredded chicken. It's usually slathered in some kind of sauce and the chicken is always so juicy and tender you can tell it has been cooking for hours. I've always wanted to replicate this in my own kitchen but I don't have the time to constantly check in on the stove, or even be at home for that long. Luckily we have a magical contraption called a slow cooker which allows me to make deliciously juicy chicken and still have a life! Slow cookers usually range from about $50 to $100 but the freedom they provide whilst delivering amazing home-cooked meals is priceless! Here is a super easy crowd pleasing recipe for delicious BBQ sandwiches...

BBQ Slow Cooker Chicken
I used a mixture of thighs and breasts but you could do one or the other based on your preference.
-1 large chicken breast (skinless and boneless)
-3 chicken thighs (skinless and boneless)
-1 cup chicken broth
-1 cup frozen peas - thawed
-1 cup chopped onion
-3 tablespoons Frank's Red Hot
-1/4 cup bbq sauce

-Rolls (for sandwiches)

-Put a large pan over medium high heat and spray with Pam
-Season Chicken with salt and pepper
- Put chicken on the pan and brown for about 3 minutes, then flip.
-Add onions and peas to the pan and sprinkle with salt.
-After chicken is browned for a few minutes on each side (not cooked through) add the chicken broth to the pan and scrape up any stuck chicken bits.
-Add the Frank's Red Hot
-Bring broth to a boil and then transfer the entire contents of the pan into the slow cooker.
-Set timer for 6 hours on Low - or 4 hours on high. If you are going to work, no worries, once the timer goes off the Slowcooker will default to Simmer mode until you are home to deal with it.

After the 6 or 4 hours...
-Put a bowl in the sink and put a strainer on top of it.
-Pour the contents of the slow cooker into the strainer (catching the liquid in the bowl below)
-Save the liquid to marinade chicken or meat for tomorrow's night dinner! It would also make a delicious broth for spicy chicken soup.

- Pour the chicken and veggies from the strainer into a bowl and use two forks to pull the chicken apart into shreds
-Pour in 1/3 cup bbq sauce and mix with the chicken and veggies. Add in 2 tablespoons of the chicken broth juice and mix up.

-Serve alone or on rolls for bbq chicken sandwiches!

I made a version of Hungry Girl's delicious mayo-free tangy Hawaiian Slaw to serve on the side. I think it complemented the bbq pretty perfectly.

Here's her recipe...

-3 cups shredded cabbage (I buy the pre-shredded bagged kind.)
-1 cup canned pineapple tidbits packed in juice, drained (save the juice.) I actually used fresh pineapple this time but it works well with either.
-1/2 cup fat free greek yogurt
-1 tablespoon seasoned rice vinegar
-1 tablepsoon thick teriyaki sauce
-1 teaspoon dijonnaise
-1 packet splenda
-1 sprinkle salt

-Place cabbage and pineapple in a bowl and set aside
-In a small bowl mix all the other ingredients with 1 tablespoon of the reserved pineapple juice
-Add to the large bowl of cabbage and pineapple, toss and coat
-Cover and refrigerate for at least two hours
-Mix well and Serve!

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