I have a mantra.
If dinner’s not done by noon, it’s not gonna happen.
Oh, I’ll still feed my hungry brood, but it most likely will not be the home cooked meal of their dreams.
For me, the hardest time of the day is between 4:00 – 7:00 pm. If we aren’t shuffling in the minivan from one activity to another, chances are the four children are melting down doing homework, school projects or reminding me I volunteered to iron 52 choir robes for tomorrow’s concert. I’m just kidding about the choir robes. I’m not sure I even own an iron. Needless to say, the witching hour is no time to attempt to cook the family meal.
So, I really do cook dinner during the breakfast hour. Or at least I do most of the prep work so that when suppertime rolls around all I need to do is re-heat and serve.
Using my slow cooker takes my cooking before noon mantra to a whole ‘nother level. It almost feels like cheating. I’m sure y’all have tons of delicious slow cooker recipes, but this one is my son’s absolute favorite.
Slow Cooker BBQ Chicken Sloppy Joes
- 1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes
- 1 (7 oz) can chopped green chiles
- 3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
- 3 tablespoons honey
- 1 tablespoon hot, smoked paprika
- 1 (6 oz) can tomato paste
- 2 tablespoons Worcestershire Sauce
- 2 teaspoons dry mustard
- 1 teaspoon celery salt (or regular salt)
- 1 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
- 2 1/2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken thighs
- 2 onions, chopped
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
In a slow cooker add tomatoes, chiles, vinegars, honey, paprika, tomato paste, Worcestershire Sauce, mustard, salt and pepper. Stir well until combined. Add chicken, onions and garlic. Stir until chicken is completely coated.
Cook on low for 5 hours, or until chicken is tender and can be pulled apart with a fork.
With the tongs of two forks, gently pull chicken until finely shredded. Stir until well combined and keep the slow coooker on warm until ready to serve.
Serve BBQ Chicken Sloppy Joes topped with jalapenos, chopped onions, or pickles on whole-wheat buns or sliders.
Serves 6-8 hungry boys.
How do you handle meals and the “witching hour” at your house?