Carolina BBQ Crockpot Shredded Chicken

Carolina BBQ Crockpot Shredded Chicken

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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 an Instant Pot (notes in the recipe card for this method)

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. 

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 cole slaw 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 or Air Fryer Carrot Fries recipes for healthier fries ideas. You might also like this chicken on top of my low calorie pizza crust or as a replacement for pork in my pulled pork breakfast casserole.

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.

Carolina BBQ Crockpot Shredded Chicken

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. 

Ingredients

  • 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

Instructions

  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! 

Notes

  • 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: 132 Total Fat: 1g Carbohydrates: 14g Protein: 26g

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40 thoughts on “Carolina BBQ Crockpot Shredded Chicken”

  • 5 stars
    I’ve been using your recipes since joining SU. I was bummed to see you were leaving but I’m really glad to have found you outside of the SU world. This recipe is great and I just wanted to thank you for all of your efforts and wish you great success in your endeavors! You have a really fantastic thing going here.

  • 5 stars
    I don’t have the macros for the recipe with the swerve but have used the Walden farms syrup. If I substitute in this recipe how much would you suggest?
    Thank you

  • 5 stars
    One of the easiest recipes ever! I am not a mustard fan but this recipe has the perfect amount. I like to eat it on a low carb tortilla, salad or on top of rice!

  • 5 stars
    Wonderful!
    I actually read the recipe wrong before I shopped for ingredients and bought pork. It was sooooo good. I wanted to just eat the sauce! I can’t wait to use chicken next time.

  • 5 stars
    I made this for my Mom and I, but she can’t handle spice due to a stomach ulcer. Even with omitting the spicy, the sauce had a sweet tang that I loved!

  • 4 stars
    Recipe is so versitile I love it! I’m a baby when it comes to spicey, so I only put in like a dash of hot sauce instead of the full amount. I normally eat this over rice, but I have tried it in a quesadilla before and it was amazing!

  • 5 stars
    So I was looking for a quick meal for dinner. I came to the website mentioned bbq chicken to my daughter and she jumped at the idea. I threw it all in the insta pot and voila! Definite crowd pleaser.

  • 5 stars
    This was awesome!! I left out the ground mustard because I forgot but this was seriously delicious and lasted for several meals. I think it even got better as it sat in the fridge.
    This was great on its own or even topped on a salad. I was a little hesitant because I wasn’t sure what Carolina BBQ was but I’m hooked now!! Thanks for the awesome recipe!

  • 5 stars
    This turned out delicious! They didn’t sell Swerve at my local Walmart so I used the Splenda brown sugar blend instead and used the substitute measures they recommend – tastes good to me! The first time I made it, the chicken breast was too large and didn’t cook fast/well enough… lesson learned and used smaller pieces the second time! Either which way, I will continue to make this with air fryer French fries as much as I can!!

  • 4 stars
    This recipe was so easy and so delicious and paired perfectly with the coleslaw. I air fried the French fries with rosemary salt and pepper, absolutely delicious.

  • 5 stars
    This chicken was AMAZING! Very simple to make, I just threw it on the crockpot and it was ready to go. My fiancé and I are always on the go, and With having two small kids I’m always looking for easy recipes that we can have for lunches for the week! This is PERFECT!

  • 5 stars
    This recipe was perfect! I count calories and my mom counts smart points and this recipe is super low cal, high protein and ZERO smart points! Highly recommend

    • 5 stars
      The chicken was absolutely delicious and so simple, no changes were made. It is something that we will add to our rotation. I paired with the spicy coleslaw, and that was not really my favorite. Too peppery for my liking.

    • 5 stars
      This is one of my favorite recipes. I added minced garlic, onion, and cracked red pepper to it just bc those are kind of staples in my house. I took it to work for a pot luck and it was all gone. I didn’t even get any of it. Thank you for all the awesome recipes. I send lots of friends to this site. 😊

  • 5 stars
    Super easy set-it and forget it recipe. This is a great dish for busy weeknight dinners knowing that you have a hot meal when you get home. I also make this for lunch meal prep during the week when my weekends don’t allow much time for planning for the week.
    Paired with coleslaw this is a great one for when you don’t have a way to heat up food for a meal because it’s super tasty cold too!

  • 5 stars
    I didn’t know chicken could be so flavorful! Try this. Seriously. I was a bit skeptical because I don’t like the flavor of BBQ and i don’t really like mustard but it somehow all works together and tastes so good. I just put it on top of some cauliflower rice and ate it plain like that. It wasn’t dry and it reheated nicely.

  • 5 stars
    The spicy white slaw in this is the best! I’ve made it more than a dozen times and didn’t realize until recently that I’ve never added the paprika and it still turns out great.

  • 5 stars
    I love this chicken, my only tip would be if your looking for less sweet and more of a kick just double the hot sauce! Also I don’t really like the taste of Walden farms so I just buy my stores generic sugar free maple syrup

  • 5 stars
    Tangy, vinegary, sweet. This hits all the classic Carolina bbq flavor notes perfectly. I absolutely loved this recipe! ate it on some toasted buns with cole slaw and it felt like I was eating a decadent bbq meal! would also be delicous mixed with some mac and cheese!

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