Recipe: Easiest Crock Pot BBQ Shredded Chicken and Simple Cole Slaw

After yet another seemingly never ending winter, Korea is in full spring mode and simply gorgeous lately.

One of the things I quite liked about the building I'm living in now when I first moved in here last year was the spacious rooftop which offers some really great views of my hilly neighborhood. Thinking of all the awesome parties and get-togethers I could hold with friends when the warmer weather kicked in was a huge dream of mine and for months now I've been thinking and re-thinking all the different eats and drinks I could hold up there from barbecues to wine parties.

I finally got to have those dreams over the winter come to fruit when I decided to hold an American barbecue party in light of my recent day of birth. In addition to picking up good old burgers, sausages, chips, dips and such, I knew I needed to have options for a few friends of mine who don't eat beef.

It didn't take me long to contemplate what alternative menu item I'd have though since lately I've been quite into a barbecue chicken dish I recently found and tried out with my handy dandy slow cooker.

Now I know a lot of crock pot recipes out there all claim to be the simplest recipe or whatnot but this one (so far) takes the cake in terms of both easiness and taste.

As an added bonus, it works superbly even with leaner parts such as chicken breasts without turning up dry and flavorless. It's become quite a favorite of mine in recent weeks and I just freeze or refrigerate the leftovers for easy sandwiches, wraps, salad and pizza toppings!  

This ish is so easy it requires only a crock pot and two (yes that's right, two!) ingredients (three if you count Pam spray for a coating inside the slow cooker). The result is a big batch of flavorful barbecue shredded chicken that can be used and eaten in a versatile manner.

Crock Pot BBQ Shredded Chicken
Makes 4-5 servings
Time required: 4-6 hours

You'll need:
- Six chicken breasts (doesn't matter frozen or not)
- One 16 oz bottle of your favorite barbecue sauce

1. Spray the inside of your crock pot with oil spray to prevent sticking during the cooking process

2. Dump your chicken breasts into the pot

3. Pour the entire contents of the barbecue sauce on top and around the chicken. Give the whole thing a mix to ensure each piece is thoroughly covered in sauce

Just cover the chicken with the BBQ sauce and let the slow cooker do the rest!

4. Set the crock pot on high for 4 hours on high or 6 hours on low. An hour before serving, take two forks and shred up the chicken breasts. Let the shredded chicken absorb the sauce during the final hour and serve.

Note: If the chicken breast looks a little dry during the final hour of cooking, you can add a bit more barbecue sauce or even a bit of ketchup. I like a little kick so I added Sriracha sauce and Tabasco to the barbecue sauce for a spicier kick in the sauce.

You can store the shredded chicken in a tight container in your fridge to use as fillers for sandwiches, toppings for salads or pizzas or just enjoyed with rice and side dishes.

BBQ chicken quesadilla, bbq chicken and spinach sandwich and cole slaw

If you want some nutritional boost, you can add some chopped onions or bell peppers during the cooking process in the crock pot. 

As a great accompaniment, I also like to make this very quick and simple cole slaw salad on the side to create a more "authentic" barbecue feel. 

Quick and Simple Cole Slaw
Makes 5-6 servings
Time required: 15 minutes

You'll need: 
- Half a head of cabbage (If the cabbage is small, use the entire head. If you can get a mix of red and white cabbage... even better for additional color!)
- 1 large carrot
- 1/2 onion
- 1 cup of your favorite mayonnaise (I use a low fat version. I've read you can even swap half the cup with low fat, plain yogurt)
-  1 tbsp of lemon juice
- 1 1/2 tbsp of apple cider vinegar
- 1/4 cup of sugar (I actually start with a few tablespoons and then taste and add as needed)
- 1 tsp of celery seed

1. Wash and dry your vegetables making sure to peel the carrot. Take your halved cabbage head and cut a v shape in the core to remove the hard core and discard it. Slice the cabbage head into quarters

2. Thinly slice each quarter cross-wise into strips and place in a large bowl. Mince the onion as small as possible and shred the carrot and add to the sliced cabbage

3. Mix together remaining ingredients and add to the veggies and combine. Taste and adjust seasoning as needed

4. You can serve immediately but it's best to let it chill for 30 minutes or so in the fridge