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This Easy Shredded Chicken recipe makes meal prep even easier! Made with just two ingredients, you can customize to use in so many ways!
For years now, I’ve been making this Easy Shredded Chicken recipe. It saves so much time throughout the week knowing that I have it ready and waiting to be used in any number of recipes for lunch and supper. It is just so great for meal prep! From my chicken enchiladas, buffalo chicken dip, Bart’s favorite chicken salad, Poppy Seed Chicken Dip, to salads and sandwiches, this recipe is a weekly standard at my house!
Easy Shredded Chicken Recipe
I think you guys are going to love using this recipe for simple weeknight suppers, easy weekly meal prep, and even stockpiling your freezers when you find the best deals on chicken! I know I sure do!
How to Make Easy Shredded Chicken Recipe
To start, I add my chicken to my slow cooker, my Dutch oven, or even my Instant Pot. For this, I love to use boneless, skinless chicken breasts. You can also use chicken thighs, a mixture of different cuts of chicken or even chicken with the skin on and bone still in.
To the chicken, I add my liquid – either chicken stock or water. I love to use chicken stock as much as possible, but water works great, too.
If you know you will be using all of your chicken in a particular recipe, you can go ahead and add your seasonings as your chicken cooks. However, I have found that I prefer to just cook my chicken without seasonings so that I can use it in any number of recipes that I choose throughout the week.
Slow Cooker Method
To cook in the slow cooker, simply set the timer to low for 8 hours. Then, remove the chicken from the slow cooker and shred with two forks. Additionally, you can shred the chicken in a stand mixer by using the paddle attachment.
To cook on the stovetop, place the chicken and liquid into a Dutch oven over medium-low heat. Allow to cook until the chicken is tender, easily pulls apart when tested with a fork, and reaches 165º F when checked with an internal thermometer. Remove the chicken from the Dutch oven and shred with two forks or with the paddle attachment in a stand mixer.
Instant Pot Method
I’ve previously shared my Instant Pot Chicken recipe, but basically cook for 8 minutes at high pressure and then use the quick release method. You can see the full recipe here: Instant Pot Chicken Recipe
Can I Use Frozen Chicken for this Recipe?
Yes, you can, but in certain circumstances. You can use frozen chicken in the stovetop and Instant Pot methods, but I encourage you to use thawed chicken in your slow cooker. Since the slow cooker does not reach a high enough temperature when cooking chicken at the low setting, the chicken is best cooked using non-frozen chicken to prevent any foodborne issues.
How Much Chicken Can I Cook in this Recipe?
I generally cook between 4 and 8 chicken breasts at any given time using this method. It really depends on how I plan to use it throughout the week. You want to make sure that you are not overcrowding your slow cooker, Dutch oven or Instant Pot so that the chicken cooks thoroughly and evenly.
How to Store this Recipe
Refrigerator – Cooked chicken should be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
How to Freeze
- Cool. Once cooked, allow to cool completely.
- Place in Containers. Portion into an airtight, freezer-safe container(s), label, and freeze for up to 3 months.
- Thaw. Allow to thaw overnight.
- Reheat and Serve. Reheat in oven or microwave until warm and serve.
Here’s my Easy Shredded Chicken Recipe. I hope you find it as useful and love it as much as I do!
Here are a few of our favorite recipes using Shredded Chicken
Easy Shredded Chicken Recipe
- 4-8 skinless, boneless chicken breasts or your favorite cut of chicken
- 1 cup chicken stock or broth or water
Slow Cooker Shredded Chicken Recipe
- Add chicken and chicken stock to slow cooker. Set timer for 8 hours on low setting. To check for doneness, prick chicken with a sharp knife. The juices should run clear. Additionally, the internal temperature should be 165º F when check with an internal thermometer in the thickest part of the chicken. Once done, remove chicken from slow cooker and shred with two forks or using paddle attachment of stand mixer.
Stovetop Shredded Chicken Recipe
- Add chicken and chicken stock to Dutch oven set over medium-low heat. Cover the Dutch oven and cook until the chicken is done, about 20 – 30 minutes. To check for doneness, prick chicken with a sharp knife. The juices should run clear. Additionally, the internal temperature should be 165º F when check with an internal thermometer in the thickest part of the chicken. Once done, remove chicken from slow cooker and shred with two forks or using paddle attachment of stand mixer.
Instant Pot Shredded Chicken Recipe
- Add chicken and chicken stock to Instant Pot. Cook at high pressure for 8 minutes. Use quick release method to release the pressure and carefully remove the cover. To check for doneness, prick chicken with a sharp knife. The juices should run clear. Additionally, the internal temperature should be 165º F when check with an internal thermometer in the thickest part of the chicken. Once done, remove chicken from slow cooker and shred with two forks or using paddle attachment of stand mixer.
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Hello! I had fun looking all around your website/blog. Your recipe for Easy Shredded Chicken caught my eye. I had just bought a couple pounds of fresh chicken breasts and had plenty of chicken broth on hand, so this gave me a chance to try out my new slow cooker. The chicken breasts came out great and shredding them was pretty easy. I packaged them in containers and froze them so whenever needed, they right handy. Thanks for sharing your recipes. I’ll be back!
Thanks, Nancy. Welcome to Add a Pinch. So glad you found a recipe you wanted to try on my website. I hope you find many more that you will try and like.
LOVE THIS RECIPE, SO EASY FOR ME. HAD MY 84TH BIRTHDAY JAN 26 SO I NEED EASY.THANK YOU BE BLESSED .LIZ ( ELIZABETH) PS LOVE ALL YOUR RECIPES
Happy late birthday, Elizabeth! Thank you so much. I hope you can find many more recipes you love. xo
Do you have a recommendation for cook time and temperature when using Dutch oven in oven to slow cook chicken breasts?
I’m sorry, Andrea, I cook the chicken on the stovetop in my Dutch oven so I can’t tell you the oven temperature and time for cooking the chicken in the oven.
I’ve had an Instant Pot for a few years and have barely touched it. This sounds so convenient to make shredded chicken in it!
Can you use the high setting on the crock pot to cut the time in half?