Slow Cooker Pulled Chicken Recipe (2024)

By Laura

Posted Aug 03, 2022, Updated Feb 16, 2024

5 from 6 votes

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This simple slow cooker pulled chicken recipe is easy, versatile and a great way to meal prep chicken for the week. This flavorful slow cooker shredded chicken is made with only 5 ingredients and can be used in a variety of ways – in soups, chicken salad sandwiches, pot pies, casseroles, etc.

Slow Cooker Pulled Chicken Recipe (2)

I created this slow cooker pulled chicken recipe as a delicious but simple way to prepare chicken breasts.

I always prefer to cook meat in the crockpot, and this slow cooker shredded chicken isn’t an exception. The meat always turns out tender, flavorful, and easy for my little ones to chew – which is important for babies and kids who are in the phase of losing teeth!

This slow cooker pulled chicken recipe is easy to make with 5 simple ingredients. It’s flavorful enough to serve on its own, but seasoned in a way that make sit incredibly versatile.

It can be used in a variety of different dishes. I often use this recipe to cook chicken for chicken pot pie (or healthy chicken pot pie), chicken noodle soup, , chicken tetrazzini and to make chicken salad (or avocado chicken salad).

Slow Cooker Pulled Chicken Recipe (3)

Slow Cooker Pulled Chicken: Ingredients & Substitutions

Slow Cooker Pulled Chicken Recipe (4)
  • Chicken breasts. Both, chicken thighs or a combination of thighs and breasts work well.
  • Chicken broth. Use ready-made broth or make your own with 1 cup water and 1 tsp better than bullion)
  • Paprika. smoked paprika tastes amazing in this recipe. You can also add more seasonings like oregano, cumin, coriander, fresh herbs, etc. if you want to experiment with new flavors.
  • Salt. It’s always better to start with less salt because you can always add more later, but you can’t remove it from the recipe once it’s in there!
  • Onion. yellow, white, or red onions are all great choices.
  • Minced garlic. Fresh or jarred both work well. You can substitute 1 tablespoon minced garlic with 1 tsp garlic powder.
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How to Make Shredded Chicken in the Crock Pot

Let’s walk through how to make shredded chicken in the crock pot step-by-step, and don’t forget to watch the video.

Begin by whisking together chicken broth, paprika, salt, pepper, onion, and minced garlic in the container of a slow cooker.

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Then, add the chicken breasts and turn to coat.

Next, cook the chicken breasts on low for 6 hours or on high for 3 hours until they are fork tender.

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Then, shred the chicken with two forks, turn crockpot to low, and let the mixture cook for another 30-60 minutes (to soak up the juice). Taste and adjust salt and pepper if necessary.

You can also remove the chicken from the crockpot and shred it in a separate bowl with forks or using a standing mixer.

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Serve

Serve the slow cooker pulled chicken warm with your favorite sides here are some suggestions:

  • We always serve it with a vegetable side or salad recipe like Roasted vegetables, roasted broccoli, kale salad, burrata salad, etc.
  • Serve it with potatoes like these mashed potatoes, mashed sweet potatoes, roasted sweet potatoes, etc.

Or, use the crockpot shredded chicken in your favorite recipe that calls for cooked chicken. Here are some of our favorites:

  • Chicken pot pie (or healthy chicken pot pie)
  • Soup: chicken noodle soup,
  • Chicken salad or avocado chicken salad
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Store

Store leftover slow cooker pulled chicken in an airtight container for 5-7 days.

Freeze

Put the shredded chicken in a freezer-friendly, airtight container and freeze for up to 2 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator and reheat on the stovetop or in the microwave.

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Pulled Chicken Recipe FAQs


Can you put raw chicken into a slow cooker?

Yes, you can cook raw chicken in the slow cooker. Cooking it until it’s fork-tender ensures it reaches a high enough temperature to be safe to eat.

Is it better to cook chicken on high or low in crockpot?

When I have the time, I always prefer to cook the chicken breasts on low. This ensures they are tender and moist.

Can you overcook chicken in a slow cooker?

Yes, if you overcook this slow cooker pulled chicken it will turn out mushy or it could end up being tough to chew.

Can you put frozen chicken breast in a slow cooker?

I don’t recommend putting frozen chicken breasts in the slow cooker. When chicken goes from a very cold temperature to a high temperature too quickly it becomes rubbery and difficult to chew. Instead, I suggest slowly thawing the chicken breasts overnight in the refrigerator, at room temperature for a few hours or in cool water, then using them in this recipe.

Can I double this recipe?

Absolutely, double it and cook it in a large slow cooker.

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Slow Cooker Pulled Chicken Recipe (12)

Slow Cooker Pulled Chicken Recipe (13)

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Slow Cooker Pulled Chicken

Laura

This simple slow cooker pulled chicken recipe is easy, versatile and a great way to meal prep chicken for the week. This flavorful slow cooker shredded chicken is made with only 5 ingredients and can be used in a variety of ways – in soups, chicken salad sandwiches, pot pies, casseroles, etc.

5 from 6 votes

Course Main Course

Cuisine American

Servings 8 Servings

Calories 137

Prep Time5 minutes minutes

Cook Time6 hours hours

Total Time6 hours hours 5 minutes minutes

Ingredients

  • 2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 cup chicken broth (or 1 cup water + 1 teaspoon better than bullion)
  • ½ teaspoon paprika
  • ¼ to ½ teaspoon salt* (or to taste, see note)
  • ¼ teaspoon ground pepper
  • ½ onion diced
  • 1 Tablespoon minced garlic

Instructions

  • Whisk together chicken broth, paprika, salt, pepper, onion, and minced garlic in the container of a slow cooker.

  • Then, add the chicken breasts and turn to coat.

  • Cook on low for 6 hours or on high for 3 hours until fork tender.

  • Shred the chicken with two forks (alternatively, you can remove the chicken from the crockpot and shred it in a separate bowl with forks or use a standing mixer).

  • Then, turn the crockpot to low, and let the mixture cook for another 30-60 minutes (to soak up the juice). Taste and adjust salt and pepper if necessary.

  • Serve warm.

Video

Notes

*Do not add any salt if you are using better than bullion. If using chicken broth, the amount needed will depend on the salt content of the broth. I suggest starting by adding ¼ tsp. You can always add salt later, but you can’t remove it.

Ingredient Substitutions

  • Chicken breasts. Chicken thighs or a combination of thighs and breasts work well.
  • Chicken broth. Use ready-made broth or make your own with 1 cup water and 1 tsp better than bullion)
  • Paprika. smoked paprika tastes amazing in this recipe. You can also add more seasonings like oregano, cumin, coriander, fresh herbs, etc. if you want to experiment with new flavors.
  • Salt. It’s always better to start with less salt because you can always add more later, but you can’t remove it from the recipe once it’s in there!
  • Onion. yellow, white, or red onions are all great choices.
  • Minced garlic. Fresh or jarred both work well. You can substitute 1 tablespoon minced garlic with 1 tsp garlic powder.

Store

Store leftover slow cooker pulled chicken in an airtight container for 5-7 days.

Feeze

Put the shredded chicken in a freezer-friendly, airtight container and freeze for up to 2 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator and reheat on the stovetop or in the microwave.

Nutrition

Serving: 0.5cup | Calories: 137kcal | Carbohydrates: 2g | Protein: 24g | Fat: 3g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 73mg | Sodium: 314mg | Potassium: 446mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 97IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 12mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Did you enjoy this recipe? Have a question? Leave a comment below!

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Slow Cooker Pulled Chicken Recipe (2024)
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