The Best Crockpot Shredded Chicken

The Best Crockpot Shredded Chicken

One of my “secret weapons” all these years has been my coveted collection of “master recipes”. A master recipe is one singular recipe that serves as the starter or inspiration for many other recipes. In my opinion, a master recipe needs to be a no-brainer. It’s what you throw together when you’re tired and deflated and at your witt’s end. You throw it together because you can’t stand to think about anything, or even plan anything…but you know you need to eat. The master recipe is INSURANCE, a fall-back, a half-assed plan that actually has your back. Not only will it provide basic good food in a matter of hours, but it will provide the possibility of many other meals in the days to come. You can even turn it into freezer meals if you want. I’ll provide more information later on what I call “satellite recipes” (what you make with the leftovers of the master recipe). But for now, let’s just concentrate on making this shredded chicken, and turning it into delicious soft tacos, ok?

Okay now, pay attention. This recipe makes a ton of shredded chicken. And it’s good. Really good. I attribute it’s deliciousness to the right combination of spices, and a LOT of olive oil. I cook with a lot of olive oil. It’s actually a technique I picked up through my husband’s travels. But that’s a story for another day.

Here are the ingredients for you people who have no time for stories.

And I get that. I so get that.


6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts

1 tablespoon salt

2 teaspoons garlic powder

2 teaspoons onion powder

2 teaspoons chili powder

1 teaspoon black pepper

1 teaspoon cumin

1 cup olive oil

3 cups salsa (Pace Medium Chunky Salsa) – *photo below

You can measure all these spices out with one teaspoon. Remember, 1 tablespoon is 3 teaspoons. I like to keep my measurements tidy. No need to dirty up a 1/2 teaspoon measure, or a 1 tablespoon measure. Efficiency. Efficiency. Every little minute saved is a win.

Another thing real quick, then we’ll make the hell out of this recipe and you can get on with your life: Use this salsa. Obviously, every salsa is different. I buy big vats of this. I use it in many recipes. It’s another of my secret weapons. More on that later. But in order for this recipe to work, I think you’ll need to use this particular brand of salsa. No, I’m not getting paid to say that.

Okay, lets’s start.

Take the 1 cup of olive oil, and drizzle a little bit into the bottom of your crockpot.

Next, add the six boneless, skinless chicken breasts.

Add the rest of that olive oil. Glug glug.

If you’re feeling all artistic, stir the spices around. Or not. Whatever the case, just dump them into the crockpot. You could pre-measure these spices and keep them in a zippy bag. That’s very helpful if you’re making this with a baby on each hip and a toddler standing on your bare feet.

Okay, so dump the spices in.

Stir the hell out of it.

The three cups of salsa. In.

Stir the hell out of it again. Actually just move it around a little, to make sure the oil and spices are in-between the chicken breasts.

CROCK IT. Low. 6 -8 hours.

Smells amazing.

Shred it with 2 forks, or anyway you want. Yes, I have seen the video of the woman shredding chicken with a hand mixer. I can’t bring myself to do it. Don’t know why. We can talk about that later.

It’s delicious and ready to go!

My kids really love a “taco bar”. It took me less than 15 minutes of prep time to throw this whole thing together.

The master recipe is where it’s at.

Taco night is a great place to start because your kids can “choose their own adventure”.

Enough for dinner, with plenty more for quesadillas tomorrow, in a soup the next day, and in enchiladas for the freezer another day. I’ll share all those recipes as we settle in for the fall.

So SO efficient. And affordable. Do I have other Master Recipes? Why yes, I do. My Braised Beef is one of them. I do have more, but I have not published them yet. Would you like me to?

Thanks so much for sticking around!

Shannon Vavich