There’s no pre-cooking needed for this easy Slow Cooker Hawaiian Chicken that is sweet and savory with BBQ sauce, pineapple, and soy sauce. Just combine everything in the bowl of a slow cooker and serve the saucy chicken over rice or on sandwich buns.
Happy Monday friends! We fired up the slow cooker not once, but twice over the weekend. Once to make this Hawaiian chicken and once to start testing some new fall recipes. It's July outside but recipe development for the fall is in full swing! I love using the slow cooker in the summer almost as much as in the cooler months because it means that dinner can be cooked entirely without turning on the stove or oven. This chicken is like a Hawaiian spin on BBQ Pulled Chicken. It's the pineapple and soy sauce that give it a fun new twist. Best of all, there's no pre-cooking needed. Just combine everything in the slow cooker and dinner is on its way. Here's all you need.
Ingredients for Slow Cooker Hawaiian Chicken
- Green Bell Pepper - Chopped green bell pepper adds some color and texture. Be sure to chop / dice it fairly fine if you don’t want large pieces of pepper in the finished dish.
- Chicken Breasts - Boneless, skinless chicken breasts work well here. They retain moisture as they cook in the flavorful liquids and are easy to shred. We tested this recipe with boneless, skinless chicken thighs as well, but they led to a finished dish that felt and tasted slightly more oily.
- BBQ Sauce - Use your favorite BBQ sauce here, but a sweet and tangy Kansas City-style (yes - I live in Kansas City - I’m probably biased!) BBQ sauce gives this a great Hawaiian sweet and sour flavor.
- Soy Sauce - This adds a savory flavor to the dish. Want to make this gluten-free? Use Tamari instead.
- Worcestershire Sauce- This adds a smoky, savory flavor that is different than the flavor of soy sauce. If you don't have Worcestershire sauce on-hand, you can skip this ingredient and the result will still be delicious.
- Garlic Powder - Be sure to use garlic powder (not garlic salt, which might make your dish overly salty).
- Crushed Pineapple - Grab a can of pineapple to give this dish that tropical, Hawaiian flavor. Be sure to drain the pineapple well before adding it to the chicken so your finished chicken isn’t swimming in liquid after cooking.
How to Serve Hawaiian Chicken
- Grain or Rice Bowls - Serve the chicken over rice, quinoa, couscous, or cauliflower rice and add your favorite vegetables on the side. If serving it this way, save the cooking liquid and drizzle it over the grains / rice. These are great with extra BBQ sauce and some green vegetables in the bowls for serving.
- Sandwiches - Drain the chicken well (so you don’t have soggy sandwiches) and serve it on sandwiches or in hoagie rolls. Add a fresh, crisp coleslaw for some crunch.
Freeze This Meal
I use the same method as with BBQ Pulled Chicken to freeze this meal. Shred the chicken and transfer the chicken and all of the cooking liquid to a plastic freezer bag or an aluminum pan. (Exposure to air is the enemy of freezer meals, so adding the cooking liquid to the chicken will help it to come into as little contact with air as possible.)
When you’re ready to serve the chicken, defrost it completely before reheating it.
More Summer-Friendly Slow Cooker Recipes
- Slow Cooker Sesame Beef and Broccoli
- BBQ Pulled Chicken
- Slow Cooker Classic Cheesecake
- Slow Cooker Chicken Carnitas
Slow Cooker Hawaiian Chicken
- 6-quart Slow Cooker
- Cutting Board
- 1 Green Bell Pepper, diced
- 2 pounds Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts
- 1 cup BBQ Sauce
- 1 Tablespoon Soy Sauce
- 1 Tablespoon Worcestershire Sauce
- ½ teaspoon Garlic Powder
- 16 ounces Crushed Pineapple, drained well
- Place all ingredients in the bowl of a slow cooker. Stir to combine.
- Slow cook until chicken is cooked through, on low for 5 hours or high for 2 to 3 hours.
- Use forks to shred the chicken inside the bowl of the slow cooker or transfer chicken to a cutting board and roughly chop. Add chicken back to slow cooker and stir to combine chicken with cooking liquid.
- Turn off slow cooker and let chicken soak in cooking liquid for 10 minutes.
- Taste the chicken and season with some salt. (Note: The saltiness of the dish will vary depending on the amount of salt in the BBQ sauce you used, so this may need some added salt at the end.)
- Serve chicken over rice or on buns for sandwiches (see serving notes below).
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Made this in the pressure cooker instead and served over brown rice. Left the peppers in big chunks and added red onion. Soooo delicious!