This easy Slow Cooker Barbecue Pulled Chicken with homemade Maple Chipotle barbecue sauce is mildly spicy and sweet and absolutely delicious!
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil
- 1 ½ pound boneless skinless chicken thighs
- 1 large onion, finely diced
- 3 tablespoons water
- 1 14-ounce can crushed tomatoes, preferably fire roasted
- ½ cup pure maple syrup, dark or amber
- ¼ cup cider vinegar
- 1 tablespoon coarse ground mustard
- 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon ground chipotle chili
- Heat oil in a large skillet over high heat. Swirl to coat pan. When oil is shimmering but not smoking, add half of the chicken and sear on one side until browned, 4 to 6 minutes. Transfer the chicken to the insert of a large crockpot. Reduce heat to medium-high and sear the remaining half of chicken until browned on one side, 2 to 4 minutes. Transfer the chicken to the slow cooker.
- Add onion and water to the skillet, and cook, scraping up browned bits from the bottom of the skillet, until starting to soften, about 2 minutes. Stir in tomatoes, maple syrup, vinegar, mustard, paprika, salt and chipotle. Remove from heat and scrape the onion mixture into the crockpot.
- Cover the slow cooker and cook on low, undisturbed for 4 hours.
- Shred chicken with two forks before serving. Serve with the braising sauce.
Make Ahead Instructions For Setting Up The Night Before
- Whisk the ingredients from the tomatoes through the chipotle (the sauce ingredients) in the bottom of the slow cooker.
- Sear the chicken and onions as directed and add them to the slow cooker. Stir to coat the chicken with the sauce. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
- In the morning, set timer on low for 6 hours.
Leftovers reheat beautifully in the microwave or on the stovetop with a splash of water. Heat until steaming hot.
- Prep Time: 15 minutes
- Cook Time: 4 hours 15 minutes
- Category: Main Course
- Method: Slow Cooker
- Cuisine: American
- Serving Size: 1 cup
- Calories: 245
- Sugar: 23
- Fat: 6
- Saturated Fat: 2
- Carbohydrates: 23
- Fiber: 1
- Protein: 25
Keywords: slow cooker pulled chicken,pulled chicken,BBQ pulled chicken,Crockpot pulled chicken