Hello friends! Can you believe April is almost over already? It has been a cool, rainy week so far in Minnesota. The one bonus is that everything is turning so green and beautiful! The spring weather makes me anxious for the warmer days! Spring and summer seem to bring more gatherings with family and friends. While grilling is fun and delicious, sometimes it’s nice to have a barbecue-style recipe that can be prepped ahead of time. I hate having to be busy cooking when our friends and family are over so I am always looking for menus that can be made in advance. With a baby coming in 2 months I also have meal prep on my mind and this Raspberry Chipotle Barbecue Pulled Chicken is perfect for both…get-togethers and freezer meals!
The base of the barbecue sauce is inspired by a recipe from my great grandma Edie. You can find that one here. A few changes and the addition of raspberry and chipotle flavors give this barbecue sauce a little more sweetness and spice. I would recommend looking for a raspberry jam that is as natural as possible…low in sugar and a minimal ingredient list. You don’t want the sauce to get too sweet, just to add the subtle raspberry flavor. To get the chipotle flavor I like using the chipotle flavored Tabasco sauce. I use this in place of buying the canned chipotle peppers in adobe sauce because I can just use the amount I need and store it in the cupboard.
To make the pulled chicken part of this recipe I just use the slow cooker. I like the combo of light and dark meat for pulled chicken, but if you prefer you can use all of one or the other. The slow cooker does all of the work for you in a few short hours.
While the chicken cooks you can get the sauce made. I cool and refrigerate it until I am ready to add the sauce to the slow cooker. The chicken only needs part of the sauce recipe so you can freeze the extra sauce and use it for another recipe later. We brushed it onto baked chicken breasts the other day for dinner…yum!
To serve the pulled chicken I like to keep it simple with a gluten free bun and some basic coleslaw…but this is not a basic sandwich!
Have a great rest of the week!
- ¼ cup water
- 1 - 14 oz package boneless chicken breasts
- 1 - 14 oz. package boneless chicken thighs
- salt and pepper to taste
- ½ cup raspberry preserves/jam
- 2 tbsp chipotle Tabasco sauce
- 1 small onion, finely chopped
- 4 tbsp unsalted butter
- 1 - 15 oz. can tomato sauce
- ⅓ cup apple cider vinegar
- 3 tbsp brown sugar
- ½ cup water
- 2 tbsp yellow mustard
- 1 tsp salt
- ½ tsp black pepper
- ¼ tsp garlic powder
- Add chicken thighs, chicken breasts, and water to a slow cooker.
- Season with salt and pepper.
- Cook on high for 2-3 hours until the chicken can be easily shredded.
- Remove chicken from slow cooker and shred.
- If there is a lot of excess liquid in the slow cooker, remove all but 1 cup or so.
- Add the pulled chicken back to the slow cooker.
- Pour in 2 cups of the Raspberry Chipotle Barbecue Sauce and stir to combine.
- Cook an additional 30 minutes.
- In a large skillet melt the butter on medium-low to medium heat.
- Add the finely chopped onion and saute until onions are soft and translucent, about 3-4 minutes.
- Add tomato sauce, vinegar, brown sugar, water, mustard, salt, pepper, garlic powder, raspberry jam, and chipotle Tabasco sauce.
- Stir to combine well.
- Reduce heat to low and let simmer until sauce reaches your desired thickness.
- I simmer mine for 10-15 minutes.
- This will make 3-4 cups of sauce.