The ingredients are few but this recipe teaches the newbie chef, your teen, or your hubby a delicious, home-cooked meal can be easy, and the clean up a breeze. This instruction sheet guides the newbie chef on how to prepare, cook, and serve this dish, plus clean up the mess. That’s right – just one step closer to independence!
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Step 1: Let's Get Ready!
Before starting, let me suggest you pin your hair up and out of your face. Or, wear a hat to keep the hair out of your eyes and the food!
- Prepare your cooking area. Wipe down the surface where you will be preparing and cooking your food.
- Wash your hands with Soap and Water.
- Make sure you have the right ingredients and tools before you begin. Gather ingredients and kitchen tools together in your preparation area. You need to be near an outlet to plug in the crockpot.
Step 2: Ingredient List
3 to 4 chicken breasts, thawed (approximately 2 lbs. of meat)
1 bottle (18 oz.) of your favorite barbecue sauce
½ tablespoon Salt
½ tablespoon Ground Pepper
Hamburger buns (4 to 6 buns depending on their size)
Step 3: Kitchen Tools Needed
Platter or bowl for raw chicken
Platter or bowl for cooked chicken
Strainer or skimmer spoon
Three dinner forks
Powder-free disposable gloves used for handling food, optional
Step 4: Gather Your Tools and Ingredients.
Gather all of the ingredients and kitchen tools together in your preparation area. You'll need to be near an outlet to plug in the crockpot. Make sure the crockpot is away from anything flammable, like a dish towel.
Step 5: Prepare the Chicken.
As you work with the chicken, be careful not to get the raw chicken or raw chicken juices on your work surface or any utensils you will be eating from. Use food preparation gloves if you have them handy.
- Remove the chicken breast from the package.
- Lightly sprinkle salt and pepper on each chicken breast.
- Set chicken aside on a cutting board or plate.
- Dispose of the empty chicken package and gloves.
- Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water.
Step 6: Add Barbecue Sauce Inside the Crock Pot.
- Add one-third to one-half of the barbecue sauce to the crockpot before adding the chicken.
- Use a spatula or spoon to spread the sauce out evenly inside the crockpot (or slow cooker). You just want enough to coat the bottom of the inside of the crockpot.
Step 7: Add the Seasoned Chicken Breast.
- Using one of the dinner forks, add the seasoned chicken breast into the crockpot with the barbecue sauce.
- Pour the rest of the bottle of barbecue sauce onto the chicken.
- Using the same fork, turn over the chicken breast inside the crockpot to get barbecue sauce on both sides of the chicken breasts.
- Put that fork in the kitchen sink. Don't use it again until it has been washed thoroughly.
Step 8: Turn on the Crockpot.
Put the lid on the crockpot and make sure it is closed tightly/sealed.
Plug in the crockpot. Turn on the power.
Choose the setting that will cook the chicken at the temperature and speed you need. For example, choose 'high heat' so the chicken will be done in approximately 4 hours.
Set a timer for that same amount of time, i.e. 4 hours.
Important! Watch the timer!
Step 9: Time's Up! Remove the Chicken.
- When time is up, turn off the crockpot. Carefully open the crockpot lid letting the steam escape "away" from you.
- Using a meat thermometer, insert the thermometer into a thicker part of a chicken breast. The desired temperature is 165 degrees Fahrenheit. If it doesn’t reach that temperature, turn the crockpot on for a bit longer. Keep in mind though – if you use a fork to check the chicken and it falls apart when you touch it, it’s definitely ready.
- Remove the chicken carefully with a spatula or skimmer spoon. It will be very hot. The chicken will also be “fall apart tender” so use a large scoop or spatula to lift the chicken out of the crockpot.
- Place it into a clean bowl or large platter.
- Let the chicken rest on the platter for about 10 minutes.
Step 10: Shred It.
- Use the remaining two CLEAN forks for this step.
- Holding a fork in each hand, turn the tines of the fork down and slightly press into the chicken.
- Pull the two forks away from each other pulling the meat apart.
- Repeat this step until all of the chicken is shredded to the consistency and size you like to eat.
*For saucier chicken, add the shredded chicken back into the crockpot. Stir. Remove again. This step adds a little more barbecue sauce back into the chicken.
Step 11: Make a Sandwich. Let's Eat!
- Place half of a hamburger bun on a clean plate. On top of this bun, add a heaping portion of shredded chicken (about 1 cup). There should be enough meat to cover the whole surface of the bun.
- Add the other half of the bun on top of the shredded chicken
- Repeat to make as many sandwiches as you need.
Step 12: Last Step!
Very important! It is time to clean up. Thankfully, you have used very few dishes to prepare this dish.
- Store leftovers in the refrigerator.
- After the crockpot has cooled, remove the inner pot (if it is removable).
- Put it in the sink and fill with water and a few drops of dishwashing liquid for washing. OR put it in the dishwasher if it fits. You may need to slightly "pre-scrub" the crockpot.
- Wash any dirty dishes or put them in the dishwasher too.
- Wipe down the work surface and preparation area.
You just cooked a good meal for yourself (and hopefully others) and you cleaned up afterward.
Way to go, Chef!