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Carolina BBQ Crockpot Shredded Chicken

Crockpot shredded chicken is one of the most useful healthy meal prep recipes around. You can use it in salads, by itself with veggies, or on some of my favorite recipes—nachos, fries, sandwiches, tacos, and more.

This version puts a spin on Carolina BBQ for slightly sweet and tangy chicken that’s loaded with flavor without the carbs and calories. I’ve also included a spicy white coleslaw recipe that goes perfectly with this crockpot shredded chicken.

a crockpot shredded chicken sandwich, chicken with carolina bbq sauce in a bowl, and pulled chicken fries

How to Make This Crockpot Shredded Chicken

This recipe is crazy simple. Mix a handful of ingredients together and add to a crockpot with two pounds of chicken, cook, shred, thicken the sauce, and you’re done!

chicken in a crockpot, shredded, and topped with carolina bbq sauce

You can make this Carolina BBQ chicken in a crockpot or in a pressure cooker (like my Instant Pot BBQ Pulled Chicken or Spicy Coconut Pulled Chicken Thighs).

Carolina BBQ Sauce Ingredients

If you didn’t know, I’m from Arkansas—smack dab in the middle of Texas and Memphis BBQ country. So, I’m no expert in Carolina-style BBQ sauce. But I love the flavor combos, and this is my take on it.

Here’s everything you’ll need aside from a few spices:

  1. Yellow Mustard
  2. Worcestershire Sauce
  3. Hot Sauce
  4. Apple Cider Vinegar
  5. Swerve Brown (or a brown sugar substitute)
carolina bbq sauce over crockpot shredded chicken

These ingredients will be the only liquid you cook your chicken in. And after the chicken cooks, the recipe calls for reducing the remaining liquid to create a thicker sauce like you see in the photo above.

What is Swerve Brown?

Swerve Brown is a zero-calorie, non-glycemic substitute for brown sugar. I use their powdered sugar substitute in all kinds of recipes on my blog, and love their brown sugar all the same. If you don’t have any, you can use real brown sugar, another substitute, or maybe even something like Walden Farms Pancake Syrup in its place.

And if you’re worried about buying an ingredient to never use it again, I have tons of stuff to make with it. Check out my firecracker ground chicken and peanut butter protein cookies for starters.

Side note: You can also use a natural sweetener like the maple syrup in my Korean BBQ slow cooker chicken if you’re not that concerned with the sugar content.

shredded chicken sandwich on a plate with fries

The Spicy White Coleslaw

If you’re going to make sandwiches with your crockpot shredded chicken, this slaw is a must try.

  • 12 oz bag of Tri-Color Coleslaw or Broccoli Slaw Mix
  • 1/2 C (113g) Fat Free Greek Yogurt
  • 2 Tbsp (30mL) White Wine Vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp Swerve, stevia, or granulated sugar substitute
  • 1 Tbsp Black Pepper
  • 1 tsp Ground Mustard and Paprika
  • 1/2 tsp Salt

Mix everything together before tossing with the coleslaw mix. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes to let the flavors develop and serve chilled.

crockpot shredded chicken fries in a barrel pan

Final Crockpot Shredded Chicken Recipe Notes

If you’re wondering about the fries in all the photos you see, check out my Wingstop Fries, Cajun Fries, or Air Fryer Carrot Fries recipes for healthier fries options. You might also like this chicken on top of my low calorie pizza crust, in BBQ chicken sliders or BBQ chicken mac and cheese, or in a low carb wrap like my BBQ rotisserie chicken wraps.

For the fries in the photo above, I made air fryer fries and topped them with the shredded chicken and shredded mozzarella cheese. Then drizzled Greek yogurt mixed with additional bbq sauce on top with sliced pepperoncinis. 

Okay, that’s about it! I’ve included notes on cooking this chicken in an Instant Pot in the recipe card below. If you have any additional questions, drop a comment at the bottom of this post.

carolina bbq sauce over crockpot shredded chicken in a white bowl

Be sure to let me know what you think about this crockpot shredded chicken when you try it! Take a photo of your creation and tag me on Instagram @mason_woodruff. Or you can join my free Facebook group and share it with the Proton Party.

shredded chicken sandwich on a plate with fries

Carolina BBQ Crockpot Shredded Chicken

Yield: 8 servings
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours
Total Time: 2 hours 10 minutes

A simple recipe for slow cooked shredded chicken with a Carolina-style tangy bbq sauce. 


  • 2 lbs Boneless Skinless Chicken Breast
  • 1/4 C (60g) Yellow Mustard
  • 1/4 C (60g) Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 1/4 C (60g) Worcestershire Sauce
  • 2 Tbsp (30g) Hot Sauce, I used Valentina's
  • 1/2 C (96g) Swerve Brown Sugar, or light brown sugar
  • 1 tsp Ground Mustard
  • 1 tsp Black Pepper
  • 1 tsp Onion Powder


  1. Mix everything together in a bowl or crockpot before adding the chicken. Flip the chicken a few times to fully coat both sides.
  2. Cover and cook on low for 1.5-2.5 hours or until the chicken reaches an internal temp of 165F. Be careful not to overcook or the chicken will be difficult to shred and rubbery. (You can cook on high, but the longer cook time will produce more flavorful chicken.) 
  3. After the chicken is cooked, shred it with two forks or use a stand mixer with a flat beater attachment. (You can also chop the cooked chicken with a knife.)
  4. Set the crockpot to its keep warm function and add the chicken back to the crockpot. Let the chicken rest in the juices for an additional hour. 
  5. Remove the chicken and add the sauce to a small sauce pan over medium-high heat. Cook until the sauce thickens, about 4-5 minutes. (If you're using an Instant Pot, use the sauté function.) 
  6. Pour the sauce over the chicken, stir, and enjoy! 


  • Each serving has 0 Smart Points.
  • For an Instant Pot, cook the chicken on manual for 10-12 minutes with quick release pressure. Make sure the chicken is fully cooked before shredding. If you're using a Ninja Foodi, use similar cook times. You could also use the broil function like I used in my crispy bbq pulled pork recipe for crispy edges. 
  • If you'd like to double or triple the recipe adjust the cook time by 30-90 minutes accordingly. 
  • Recipe makes about eight 3-ounce servings. For accuracy, you can weigh your chicken after cooking and divide by 8 to find the exact weight of each serving. For more info, check out my guide to using a food scale for tracking macros
  • The nutrition facts include the carbs from Swerve Brown. Even though it's zero-calorie, non-glycemic, I include the carbs on the label. This means each serving has 14g of carbs but 2g net carbs. Track whichever you'd like. 
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 8 Servings Serving Size: 3 ounces
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 132Total Fat: 1gCarbohydrates: 14gProtein: 26g

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Heidi Riederer

Saturday 10th of October 2020

One of my family’s favorite recipes! Has a nice sweet tangy flavor. I used frozen chicken breasts then mixed all the other ingredients in a bowl before pouring over the chicken already placed in a crockpot. Cooked it for 8 hours on low and came out perfect. I find cooking this way allows the sauce to be more absorbed by the chicken. Chicken is tender and easy to shred. We absolutely love it!

Rebecca Goll

Saturday 10th of October 2020

This recipe was so good!! I made this for my family and everyone loved it, we had a bit of leftovers and the rest was finished the next day! I put the chicken on slider buns and made chicken tacos with them too! Highly recommend this recipe! Super simple and easy!


Wednesday 15th of April 2020

I am from South Carolina and this recipe is legit!! The flavor is delicious and the swerve and zero calorie is genius. This is a must try.


Wednesday 15th of April 2020

Soooo good! My husband is picky and loved this too!


Wednesday 15th of April 2020

Loved this recipe. My boyfriend really enjoys Carolina BBQ and lived it too. I didn’t thicken the sauce. #toolazy but it turned out brilliantly! I have some this recipes to a bunch of people to try. Thanks Mason!

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