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Slow-cooked Barbecued Chicken

This “fix it and forget it” slow cooker chicken is a hearty dish that is made for cold wintry days.  I saw this recipe in the January issue of “Southern Living” magazine and had to give it a try. 

It’s a simple tasty dish that makes an easy meal.   I doubt that the bourbon would make much difference if omitted.   The mix of vinegar, brown sugar and ketchup gave the chicken an appealing tangy flavor, with the lemon adding piquancy.

This resulted in very tender chicken that shredded easily.  The next time I make it, I will do exactly that:  Prepare the chicken, cook it in the slow cooker and when done, remove the chicken, let it cool slightly, discard the bones and lemon, shred the chicken and serve it on buns for delicious slow-cooked barbecued chicken sandwiches!

Ready to simmer

Slow-cooked Barbecued Chicken


2 teaspoons salt
1½ teaspoons paprika
½ teaspoon garlic powder
½ teaspoon pepper
3 pounds cut-up whole chicken*
½ cup cola soft drink
1/3 cup ketchup
¼ cup firmly packed light brown sugar
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
2 tablespoons bourbon
1 lemon, sliced


Stir together first 4 ingredients in a small bowl.
Sprinkle over chicken.
Place chicken in a 6-quart slow cooker.
Whisk together cola soft drink and next 4 ingredients in a small bowl.
Slowly pour mixture between chicken pieces (to avoid removing spices from chicken).
Place lemon slices in a single layer on top of chicken.
C0ver and cook on HIGH 5 hours or on LOW 6½ to7 ½ hours, or until done.
Transfer chicken pieces to a serving platter; discard lemon slices.
Skim fat from pan juices in slow cooker.
Pour juices over chicken; serve immediately.
6 servings

*Pam’s note:  Use a whole chicken or your favorite pieces.  I removed the skin from all of the chicken---no fat to skim from pan juices.

As Southern Living says, “take comfort in this!”

Be sure to visit my friend, Linda, at My Kind of Cooking!  She’s hosting a great giveaway now ~ one of her cookbooks and cute kitchen towels.


  1. Pam, you old geezer, I'm too old to use a slow cooker. I have enough trouble with my walker. Anyhow,it dos sound good.

  2. Stephen, lol! I always say, it takes an old geezer to know one! ;)

  3. Sounds truly delicious. Now I'm wondering if I could use diet cola...

  4. Hi Pam...
    Sounds good to me...with all of those ingredients, I know it is very tasty!
    Enjoy your weekend..

  5. Love this recipe. The sauce sounds amazing and I would definitely include the bourbon.

  6. This sounds fantastic. I will definitely make this.
    Have a great weekend.

  7. I love to use my slow cooker! Just a few minutes in the morning and when you get home dinner is ready.

  8. This looks delicious! I'm a huge fan of Southern Living AND crock pot cooking! Thanks!

  9. Love this kind of recipe; perfect for chicken on a bun; pinning this one.

  10. My wife recently purchased for me a slow cooker. Have to add this one to my queue to cook.


  11. I love slow cooker recipes..sounds tasty!

  12. More proof to show just how powerful a can of pop can be! It's a great tenderizer, that's for sure.
    This looks simple and easy peasy. Just the perfect combo. Yumm--O!

  13. Looks delicious. I need to use my slow cooker more often.

  14. I must have missed that one in Southern Living. Sounds really good, Pam. I'd be tempted to use the sauce on a smoked chicken as well.

  15. Yum! Looks like a great slow cooker recipe. I like the lemons in there.

  16. Dee, I would guess so. Hope you try it!

    Claudia, thanks!

    Shug, thanks and I hope you've been having a good weekend also.

    Becki, great, it's good!

    Leslie, it's good and easy to make.

    Linda, that's what's so great about it. It's a great convenience.

    Ann, I love Southern Living; it never fails to have some great recipes and pics of beautiful gardens too!

    What's Baking, thank you!

    Rita, yes. I will definitely do that the next time. Don't you just love pinning?

    jose manuel, gracias! Es delicioso pollo.

    Lazaro, you will love it! And I can't wait to see what you're cooking in it!

    Diane, thanks. Hope you're having a great weekend!

    laurie, thanks, it is!

    Corgidogmama, it's nice to see you here! It is easy peasy and I hope all is well your way.

    Carol, I do too. It's so convenient to use.

    Chris, it would be great on smoked chicken. YUM!

    Lyndsey, yes, love the piquant flavor or lemons in this.

  17. I don't use my slow cooker enough, that's for sure. The ease of it should make me want to use it every day!! lol
    This chicken sounds amazing.. very interesting that it uses cola and bourbon... I like that! :)

  18. I love slow cooker recipies. Can't wait to try this one!


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