Slow Cooker Shredded Chicken

Ok, so this recipe is sort of a pre-recipe to other great recipes. If you have a slow cooker, and you eat chicken, then this is definitely something you need to try. I read a dozen shredded chicken recipes, and the best one I found is this one from the wonderful folks behind Love Grows Wild. What I love best about this recipes is the simplicity of it. It’s so damn easy to make, and you can make a whole lot of it too.

The recipe is:

  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (thawed or frozen will work)
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
Then the instructions are so simple!
Place all the ingredients in a slow cooker and cook on high for 4 hours or low for 8 hours. Carefully remove the chicken onto a cutting board and dice or shred into bite-size pieces.
And that’s it! That is the entire recipe!
But wait, you’re saying. Surely that can’t be it. You can’t expect me to just munch on shredded chicken as a meal!
And you’re right. That’s why I call it a ‘pre-recipe’. Once you make this, you can freeze it for later. You can throw some in the fridge to use tomorrow. And you don’t have to worry about shredding chicken in the middle of a recipe (which I always somehow mess up).
So what can you use this for? Well,how about sandwiches? I love sandwiches, and shredded chicken takes them to the next level. Since you haven’t seasoned the chicken much, you can add whatever you want to it. Mix some shredded chicken with buffalo sauce or the hottest spices you like, throw down on some bread with some spicy mayonnaise, cheddar cheese, and a bit of lettuce, and you’ve got a Buffalo Chicken Sandwich. Or try just regular mayo, some diced celery and carrots, and make some chicken salad.  Basically, pick a sauce, mix in chicken, spread on bread, add some other toppings, and you’ve got your sandwich!
This works great for wraps too. Too often, using big chunks of chicken in a wrap means I’m pulling chicken out, which pulls out more of the other filler, which then falls down my top. Shredded chicken eliminates that problem for me, making my wraps boob-food-free!
You can use this with salads too. Chicken Caesar salad is as simple as scooping a little chicken into a Caesar salad (yes, it’s almost too simple). Why not substitute the fried bacon chunks in your cob salad with a little shredded chicken? Or just add some to a regular garden salad for some added protein.
And it doesn’t stop there. The chicken in your freezer, thaw it out for other recipes. Throw some in with a can of refried beans, some green chillies, and some enchilada sauce. It’s your own take on a chicken and bean burrito!  Add shredded chicken to pasta sauces, homemade (or even canned) soups, or use it to make homemade chicken burger patties. The options are damn near endless!
Basically, if you have a slow cooker, and you like chicken, then this is definitely something you need to try for yourself. You can do so much with a bit of shredded chicken, and it makes cooking on the fly so much easier when you have what you need pre-cooked and right in front of you.
So go ahead, have a little fun with chicken, sunshine!

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