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Entree, Poultry, Winter |400 calories per serving|375 minute recipe

Tex-Mex Pulled Chicken Sandwich

This content was last updated on February 25, 2020

Slow cookers can make healthy cooking easy. This pulled chicken sandwich will satisfy your barbecue craving without the red meat and smoking of a traditional southern recipe. Tomato paste, garlic, chipotle peppers and adobo sauce make a richly flavored marinade for the chicken. Add the roasted poblano peppers to infuse the dish with a kick of heat. Serve on whole-wheat buns with a cool coleslaw and dream of warmer summer days.


  • 1 cup no-salt-added tomato sauce
  • 1 Tbsp. no-salt-added tomato paste
  • 1 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
  • 3/4 cup onion, finely chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1-2 canned chipotle peppers, finely chopped
  • 1 Tbsp. adobo sauce from canned chipotle pepper
  • 2 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. freshly ground pepper
  • 2 lbs. skinless and boneless chicken thighs, fat trimmed
  • 2 poblano peppers, halved and seeded
  • 1 large onion, halved and cut crosswise into ½ -inch slices
  • 6 whole-wheat hamburger buns, split
Makes 6 servings. Per serving: 400 calories, 12 g total fat (3 g saturated fat, 0 g trans fat), 140 mg cholesterol, 37 g carbohydrates, 35 g protein, 2 g dietary fiber, 540 mg sodium, 8 g sugar, 0 g added sugar.


  1. In 6 or 8-quart slow cooker, combine tomato sauce, paste, Worcestershire sauce, chopped onion, garlic, chipotle pepper, adobo sauce, cumin, salt and pepper. Spread mixture to cover bottom of cooker.
  2. Arrange chicken pieces on top of sauce in cooker. Cover and cook on low for 2 hours.
  3. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 450 degrees F.
  4. Line baking sheet with foil. Arrange poblano halves skin-side up on baking sheet. Bake until skin is blistered, 10 to 13 minutes. Wrap peppers in foil and set aside for 5 minutes. With your fingers, pull off skin. Cut peppers lengthwise into ½ -inch strips. Scrub your hands thoroughly.
  5. After chicken has cooked for 2 hours, add poblanos and sliced onion to slow cooker, distributing them over chicken. Cover and continue cooking until chicken shreds when picked at with fork, about an additional 4 hours.
  6. Remove chicken to plate. One piece at a time, using 2 forks, shred chicken pieces by pulling them apart. Return chicken to slow cooker and mix with sauce, stirring vigorously.
  7. To serve, toast buns. For each sandwich, place bottom half of bun on sandwich plate, top with one-sixth of the pulled chicken and cover with bun top. Serve with coleslaw and pickle spears.

This recipe contains cancer fighting foods:

This recipe was specially crafted to support cancer prevention and survival. It adheres to AICR's Cancer Prevention Recommendations. Learn more about our recipe guidelines.

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