slow cooker beer barbecue pulled chicken

i love a good barbecued chicken sandwich, but hardly ever order one when i am eating out. the few times i have, i've always been disappointed. the chicken breast is usually dry and over cooked and it's either slathered in way too much sauce or there's just enough there to say it's topped with sauce. this slow cooker version is the best of both worlds - super tender and juicy chicken swimming in beer barbecue sauce. 

my favorite part? it's made in the slow cooker. on these hot ninety-plus-degree days, the last thing i want to do is turn something on inside to offset my air conditioning or stand over a blazing hot grill. and this recipe makes a ton of chicken, plenty for a party, or freeze the leftovers in dinner size portions and enjoy the next time it's too hot to turn on the stove.

slow cooker beer barbecue pulled chicken
adapted from how sweet it is
4-8 hours, serves 10-12

jessica and a lot of her commenters recommend using a thinner bottled barbecue sauce for this recipe. jessica used bone suckin sauce & i used dinosaur barbecue's sensuous slathering sauce.

about 3 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 tablespoon onion powder
1 tablespoon paprika
1 teaspoon garlic powder
12 ounce beer, not light
about 20 ounces thin barbecue sauce
  1. add the chicken to the slow cooker and coat with the onion powder, paprika, and garlic powder. season with salt and pepper.
  2. pour the beer over the chicken & then the barbecue sauce.
  3. cook on high about 4 hours or low about 8 hours until cooked through and falling apart.
  4. at least fifteen minutes before serving, remove the chicken breasts, shred them, and return the meat to the sauce in the slow cooker. turn your slow cooker up to high (if it isn't already) and cook, with the lid off, for about fifteen minutes to further thicken the sauce. serve between soft rolls.


  1. Yum! I agree, in the heat I want to do anything but stand over the BBQ or turn on the oven/stove. This is a great idea!

  2. I'm so going to make this! Our weather isn't great over here (raining constantly) so I'm going to pull out the slow cooker, make this and pretend like it's the summer!

  3. I have this in the crock pot right now! I think I'll make a BBQ chicken pizza with the leftovers!

  4. Does it matter if you use frozen or thawed chicken?

    1. Nope, just as long as the chicken is cooked through. You may want to add another hour or two to the cook time to make sure it's done.


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