Slow Cooker BBQ Chicken

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This is one of the simplest but seriously flavorful chicken recipes I have come up with to-date. I mean when you think of set it and forget it – this is it! This Slow Cooker BBQ Chicken takes minutes to put together, then you put on the lid and let it ride until you are ready to serve it up. This is a perfect weeknight meal – and maybe more specifically a Monday night meal – as it takes all the stress out of cooking while still bringing something special to the table.

Slow Cooker BBQ Chicken
Slow Cooker BBQ Chicken

Some recipes are really just about letting the cooking process do most of the work. With some simple staple spices and the classic technique of cooking “low and slow” – this chicken comes out tender, juicy and bursting with flavor. You want to have a larger slow cooker – at least 6 quarts – so that the chicken isn’t too stacked up. You want it to cook evenly, so one layer with a couple on top is much better to work with. I have opted for Chicken drumsticks for this recipe. You can go for bone-in thighs, but you will want to increase the cook time to 8hours. I would discourage using a combination of the drums and thighs, as the drums may be over done before the thighs are cooked through.

I have included my recipe for Bourbon BBQ Sauce below the recipe. You can use that or your could use your favorite bottle sauce – I like to use Sweet Baby Rays in a pinch. Another necessity for success on this chicken is to use a baking rack with baking sheet to make sure that the sauce glazes all the way around and not just on the top. Parchment paper will also save you on the clean up!

Slow Cooker BBQ Chicken

This is a classic bbq chicken – so you can really serve it up with any sides you like. If you are looking for the comfort of a Sunday Dinner – I suggest a simple mashed potato and buttery garlic green beans (I like French Cut). These would also be great for a potluck type meal – where others are bringing the sides or even mains.

Now Let’s Get Cookin’!


Slow Cooker BBQ Chicken

Juicy, tender chicken drumsticks slow cooked to perfection then glazed with bbq sauce.
Course Dinner, Main Course
Cuisine American
Keyword bbq chicken, bbq sauce, Chicken, chicken drumsticks, crockpot, drumsticks, slow cooked chicken, slow cooker
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 6 hours 10 minutes
Servings 6


  • 1 6 qt or bigger Slow Cooker


  • 12 Chicken Drumsticks
  • 2 tbsp Oil
  • 2 tsp Garlic Powder
  • 2 tsp Paprika
  • 2 tsp Onion Powder
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 1 tsp Pepper
  • 1 cup BBQ Sauce see recipe below


  • Combine oil and seasonings in a one gallon zippered bag. Add chicken and toss around until each piece is thoroughly coated
  • Add chicken to slow cooker and secure lid. Cook for 6 hours on Low.
  • Preheat oven to 400degF.
  • Remove each piece of chicken to a baking rack on a parchment paper covered baking sheet. Brush all sides of chicken with bbq sauce. Place in oven for 10 minutes.

Bourbon BBQ Sauce

A super flavorful, super simple homemade bbq sauce.
Course Sauce
Cuisine American
Keyword bbq, bbq sauce, bourbon
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Servings 2 pints


  • 2 pint mason jars with lids & rings


  • 1 15oz can Tomato Sauce
  • ½ cup Chicken Broth
  • 2 Garlic Cloves minced
  • 2 tbsp Minced Onion
  • ¼ cup Bourbon I use Jim Beam
  • ¼ cup Honey
  • ¼ cup Worcestershire Sauce
  • ¾ cup Dark Brown Sugar
  • 1 tsp Cumin
  • 1 tsp Ground Mustard
  • 1 tsp Parsley
  • 1 tsp Salt


  • Prepare all of the ingredients.
  • In a small sauce pan over medium heat, add all ingredients. Bring just to a boil then reduce to medium-low and let simmer for 15 minutes.
  • Remove from heat and pour half into each of the pint jars. Secure lid with ring and let cool on counter for at least an hour before placing refrigerator. Will last for 3 weeks before opening, 1 week after opening. You can also use it right away if you prefer.

I love to link up my posts to lots of blogs around the internet – check out this Ultimate Handy Linky Party List to find some of the places I share to!

Estelle Forrest self-published this cookbook after a lot of playing around in the kitchen. You can purchase your own copy here:


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3 thoughts on “Slow Cooker BBQ Chicken

  1. EsmeSalon – I help Entrepreneurs | Innovators | Bloggers & Home Chefs, so please check around and let me know if I can assist in any way. We have a weekly InLinkz party, and it’s free to join, so I hope to meet you there!
    EsmeSalon says:

    Hi Estelle, oh wow, this is so perfect and that sauce does look outstanding indeed.
    Thanks for visiting and sharing with SSPS 285

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