Slow Cooker Pulled Chicken with 5-Ingredient Peanut Sauce - Real Food Whole Life

Slow Cooker Pulled Chicken with 5-Ingredient Peanut Sauce

March 2, 2017 (Updated on September 11, 2021)

Slow Cooker Pulled Chicken with 5-Ingredient Peanut Sauce is a crave-worthy dinner that can be prepped in minutes!

I’m pretty sure that peanut sauce is magical.

It elevates a simple veggie noodle bowl, and takes an easy quinoa bowl over the top.

Really, peanut sauce on everything is my motto.

But, like all things, I don’t feel like we need to fuss over the recipe.

A good, complex, nuanced peanut sauce is a thing of beauty for sure.

On a busy weeknight, though, I need simple. Give me alllllllllllll the 5-ingredient recipes.

Enter 5-Ingredient Peanut Sauce. It is both simple and tasty, and can be made during your simplified meal prep.

Trust me, having a jar of this crave-worthy sauce made ahead in the fridge makes pulling dinner together a no-brainer.

Once the yummy peanut sauce is made it’s literally as simple as dumping the chicken into the slow cooker along with some of the sauce and hitting start.

Done and done.

Leftovers are perfect for repurposing throughout the week, too.

I hope you’ll make this one soon.

Now, let’s make some Slow Cooker Pulled Chicken with 5-Ingredient Peanut Sauce!


1 | Swap almond butter for peanut butter, or use sunflower seed butter for a nut-free option.

2 | Broccoli and bell pepper make great veggie add-ins to this recipe, but feel free to skip them and serve with any lightly steamed or sautéed veggie you like.


Naturally Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, and Egg-Free

Image of Slow Cooker Pulled Chicken with 5-Ingredient Peanut Sauce
5 from 2 votes

Slow Cooker Pulled Chicken with 5-Ingredient Peanut Sauce

Yield 4 -6

Slow Cooker Pulled Chicken with 5-Ingredient Peanut Sauce is a crave-worthy dinner that can be prepped in minutes!


5-Ingredient Peanut Sauce

  • cup natural peanut butter at room temperature or melted*
  • 1 garlic clove finely grated or minced
  • 1 tablespoon pure maple syrup
  • 4 tablespoons low-sodium gluten-free tamari or soy sauce
  • 4 tablespoon rice vinegar or fresh lime juice
  • cup warm water
  • Hot sauce to taste

For the Pulled Chicken + Veggies

  • 2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts or thighs
  • 2 cups broccoli florets**
  • 2 cups sliced red bell pepper**
  • Chopped green onion and cilantro for serving optional


  • In a medium bowl, make the peanut sauce by whisking together the peanut butter, garlic, maple syrup, tamari, rice vinegar or lime juice and warm water until very smooth. Alternatively, add all the ingredients to a blender and blend until smooth.
  • Add the chicken along with ⅓ cup 5-Ingredient Peanut Sauce to a 6-quart slow cooker.
  • Cover and cook on high for 3-4 hours or low for 4-5 hours, or until the chicken shreds easily with a fork.
  • Remove the chicken, shred with two forks, or chop into pieces.
  • Meanwhile, add the broccoli and bell pepper to the slow cooker. Cover and cook on high for 20-30 minutes, until the veggies are just tender.
  • Add the chicken back the slow cooker along with the remaining 5-Ingredient Peanut Sauce, stirring to combine. Alternatively, serve the chicken and cooked veggies in a bowl along with the juices that have accumulated in the bottom of the slow cooker.
  • In either preparation, drizzle the remaining 5-Ingredient Peanut Sauce over top or on the side, sprinkle with cilantro and green onion, if using, and serve.
  • Use it in bowls, pasta, tacos, salads, stir-fries or mason jar salads.


*Since the consistency of natural peanut butter varies from brand to brand, you may need to add more (up to an additional ⅓ cup) if you prefer a very thick sauce. Alternatively, you can refrigerate the sauce to help it thicken a bit.
**Note that the veggies go into the slow cooker for a quick steam after the chicken has cooked all the way. The ingredients are shown altogether in the photo simply to give you sense of the ingredients.

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21 comments to " Slow Cooker Pulled Chicken with 5-Ingredient Peanut Sauce "

  • Betty H.

    This sounds wonderful, and with ingredients that I almost always have on hand. Broccoli is just going out of season where I live, so I’ll try to make is very soon. I much prefer to use thighs in the slow cooker. Hope to get back to you with a proper review.

  • Jessica

    This sounds delicious! I just whipped it up for dinner and the sauce isn’t creamy, it’s very liquid like. I thought maybe that would change with cooking but see that only a third of a cup is actually cooked. Is this the right consistency of what can I do to improve?

    • Robyn Downs

      Jessica, If you pop the sauce in the fridge for a few hours is will thicken up. If the peanut butter you started with was very thin it may have affected the final product, too. You can add half the water next time for a thicker consistency.

  • Kathy

    Great recipe!
    I made two batches of the sauce one using almond butter and the other using natural peanut butter. The Allmond butter had a nice thick consistency and the peanut butter sauce was a little bit runny so I added more peanut butter and that helped quite a bit.

    This will be another one of my favorite recipes thanks again !
    Kathy. 🙂

    • Robyn Downs

      Kathy, great feedback! I’ll add a note to the recipe about the peanut butter. I think natural peanut butter varies quite a bit in consistency, so it’s worth noting that more may be necessary. Glad you enjoyed this one!

    • Ashley

      Great feedback! I used almond butter and it was thick. Good to know for when I make it in the future.

  • Letoya

    Ditto on the previous comments about a thin sauce. I too used natural peanut butter. I’m at work, can’t wait to get home and try it! I did lick the spoon after mixing it up this morning, very tasty.

    • Robyn Downs

      Letoya, I think the consistency is definitely personal preference–I like a thinner, pourable sauce, but I get that some people want a thicker option. The good news is you can always add more peanut butter or add less water to change the consistency. I hope you enjoy this one tonight! 🙂

  • Ashley

    I made this last week with almond butter and it was so good! Thanks for this amazing recipe!

  • Avery

    Just made this last night and everyone in the family loved it! Toddler ate allll the broccoli! Thank you as always!

  • Carin

    Hi Robyn! Could a whole chicken be used instead?

  • Caroline S.

    Just came across this recipe and it looks so yummy! What would be a good sub for the maple syrup? I don’t use it often enough to justify the cost. Honey? Regular sugar? Thanks!

    • Robyn Downs

      Caroline, honey would be a great option if you have that on hand! If all you have is regular sugar I’d cut the amount in half.

      • Jen

        5 stars
        Now that I’ve made this 5 times I feel I should leave a review. We LOVE this!! So insanely easy and delicious. Rarely do I serve a meal where no carb is needed! I add green beans to the veggies too. Would 100% recommend!

        • Robyn Downs

          Jen, YAY, so happy to year you are enjoying this one and that it’s good enough to make the repeat list. Love that! Thanks so much for the review!

  • Amy I.

    Thoughts on converting this as an instant pot recipe with cooking the chicken?

    • Robyn Downs

      Hi Amy, I haven’t tested this one in the IP yet, so can’t say for sure. They IP can be tricky with the burn sensor, so it’s possible the sauce could set off the burn sensor before the chicken is cooked. If you try it, you’ll want to add the veggies after the chicken is cooked to avoid over cooking. If you do give it a try let us know how it goes!

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If you love this recipe it would mean SO MUCH if you gave it a star rating and left a comment. Your feedback helps me create more recipes you'll love, and helps others find my recipes online. Thanks so much for your feedback! —Robyn

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