Sweet and Sour Pulled Chicken Sandwiches

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Let your slow cooker do the work this weekend with an easy sweet and sour chicken filling for sandwiches and wraps.

Sweet and Sour Pulled Chicken - Let your slow cooker do the work this weekend with an easy sweet and sour chicken filling for sandwiches and wraps.

I’ve found that having a plan, and even better, a make-ahead meal, makes for a really relaxed atmosphere in our house. If I know in advance what I’ll be serving and can communicate that to my family so that they can help facilitate or even do all the prep work, life feels calm and peaceful.

I realize that not everyone has seven other people asking them what’s for dinner on any given day. But, still, I think this advance prep would work for you, too.

Believe me, I’m not so organized that it happens every day, but when it does? Wow! I feel like I’m on top of the world. And it’s just one meal!

Today’s recipe is easy, make-ahead, and perfect for game days, mocktail/cocktail parties and really, any time. It cooks in the slow cooker, pretty quickly on high. Last week it was done in less than three hours, making it the perfect winter day lunch.

I served it on Sweet Hawaiian Rolls, but you can use whatever roll you prefer. I thought the sweet rolls went along well with the Asian seasonings, and the size was perfect for little hands. The smaller rolls also make it a great finger food for New Year’s. Go with what you like.

This makes a fair amount of chicken. You can cool and freeze half of it for another meal or simply invite friends over. The filling also goes well in lettuce wraps.

Sweet and Sour Pulled Chicken - Let your slow cooker do the work this weekend with an easy sweet and sour chicken filling for sandwiches and wraps.


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Sweet and Sour Pulled Chicken - Let your slow cooker do the work this weekend with an easy sweet and sour chicken filling for sandwiches and wraps.
Sweet and Sour Pulled Chicken Sandwiches
Prep Time
5 mins
Cook Time
4 hrs
Total Time
4 hrs 5 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American, Chinese
Keyword: pulled chicken, sandwich, sweet and sour pulled chicken sandwiches
Servings: 12
Calories: 230 kcal
Author: Jessica Fisher
  • 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup sherry
  • 1/4 cup rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon crushed garlic
  • 1 teaspoon chopped ginger
  • sweet Hawaiian rolls for serving
  • barbecue sauce for serving
  1. Place the chicken breasts in the bottom of a 4-quart slow cooker.
  2. In a small bowl combine the soy sauce, sherry, rice vinegar, brown sugar, tomato paste, garlic, and ginger. Pour this mixture over the chicken.
  3. Cover the crock and cook on HIGH for up to 4 hours and on LOW for 6 hours.
  4. The chicken will be very tender and easy to shred. Remove the chicken and shred the meat. Return it to the crock and mix with the juices.
  5. Serve on rolls with barbecue sauce, if desired. Chicken mixture is also good inside a lettuce or napa cabbage wrap.
  6. To freeze: the shredded meat and any sauce can be frozen for a later date. Simply cool and store in an airtight container. Chill completely before freezing. To serve: thaw completely in the refrigerator. Reheat or serve cold.
Recipe Notes

Nutritional values are approximate and are based on 1/12 of the recipe. Refrigerate leftovers promptly and use within 4 days.

Nutrition Facts
Sweet and Sour Pulled Chicken Sandwiches
Amount Per Serving
Calories 230 Calories from Fat 36
% Daily Value*
Fat 4g6%
Saturated Fat 1g6%
Cholesterol 58mg19%
Sodium 698mg30%
Potassium 362mg10%
Carbohydrates 26g9%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 13g14%
Protein 20g40%
Vitamin A 96IU2%
Vitamin C 1mg1%
Calcium 13mg1%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.


Have YOU got a favorite make-ahead meal?

Make-ahead meals can make your month! Grab this month’s meal plans to take it easy and enjoy great home-cooked meals.

About Jessica Fisher

I believe anyone can prepare delicious meals—no matter their budget.

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  1. This recipe sounds fantastic! I love a great slow cooker recipe. Pinning!

  2. I made this recipe last night, and my family LOVED it! It was perfect on the Sweet Hawaiian Rolls. My family also commented how wonderful it smelled while it was cooking. Thank you for another great recipe!

  3. Kirstin says

    Do you eat raw sugar snap peas? Or do you blanch them? I’m looking for ways to add them to my diet.

  4. pat piroska says

    wow this looks really good. I’ll be able to make up some of those wonderful little rice bowls. retired and now i have time to have fun in the kitchen. thanks for being here.

  5. Rachel says

    I made these today for dinner. They were a hit! Thank you for yet another great recipe.

  6. Vicky says

    This looks fantastic! I will be trying this soon. Unfortunately, if it is for the pantry challenge, I have everything except chicken. 😉

  7. Becky says

    What can I substitute for the sherry?

    • Sherry is in a lot of Asian style recipes; I’ve found that it gives it a more authentic flavor. You can find affordable “cooking sherry” on the vinegar aisle. You can use chicken broth if you’d rather.

      • Carol says

        Thanks for asking about the sherry, Becky. I was going to ask the same question!

  8. Nafisa Hashim Soni says

    How can we cook for 6 hrs on high flame and 6 hrs on low flame?

    • The cooking instructions for this recipe are for use in a Crock-pot or slow cooker. They have low and high settings. 6 on low or 4 on high.

      • Brenna says

        Thanks for asking, Nafisa ~ the instructions read 4 hours on High and 6 hours on Low. 10 hours of cooking with 4 on high seemed a bit intense to me too!

  9. Jean Breneman says

    Just wondering if I could substitute regular vinegar for the rice vinegar? Even if I substitute something else for the sherry? (I’m thinking chicken broth)

    • Both of those ingredients really give it the Asian flair. It will still be tasty if you make those subs, but not the same.

  10. Laura Strohm says

    Trying out this recipe as we speak. I did go and buy rice vinegar but I did not have Sherry so I used white wine.
    I am having 2 couples over so I will let you know! THanks. LS

  11. Jessica says

    Hey Jessica, this recipe looks great! I have a hard time keeping chicken breats moist in the crockpot. Even with juices, it always tastes dried out. How do you keep that from happening? Since crockpots heat at different temperatures, how do you know when the chicken is done and not overcook it? Should I pull at it with 2 forks at various times and turn it off when it gives easily? I’ve found even when the thermometer says its done, it is not tender enough to shred at that point. Any tips anyone can offer for cooking moist chicken breasts in the crockpot would be much appreciated! Thank you!

    • I think my first question would be what kind of chicken do you buy? I’ve found that the big grocery store breasts get tough more easily than the ones that I buy at Trader Joe’s. It might not be you; it might be your chicken.

      • Jessica says

        Good to know! I have been buying Costco organic frozen chicken breasts lately and they are bigger. Which ones do you buy from Trader Joes? Are they frozen?

        • If you’re getting organic, it probably doesn’t get better than that. It must be that your crockpot cooks fast. I would adjust your time and see how quickly it’s cooking.

  12. Velvet says

    If you are going to use napa cabbage instead of rolls do you have to cook the cabbage first?

  13. Theresa M. says

    I’ve just recently found your blog and love it! I made this recipe x4 for a family gathering of 25 people this past weekend and it was a hit! My 6-yr old nephew deemed it “most awesome sandwich ever!” There was some leftover and I served it for supper last night as wraps: rolled it in some burrito-sized tortillas topped with some crunchy broccoli slaw. THAT was really good! Thanks for the inspiration to serve something different and delicious to my family!

  14. Connie Maynard says

    OMG! This is the best recipe for chicken sandwiches I’ve ever had! Just made sandwiches for my husband & me
    for our dinner & they were fabulous! I’m going to serve this as sliders for a party we’re having soon! I made it
    exactly as called for in the recipe & it was perfect! Great flavor. Good job, Jessica! Thanks much.

  15. Thanks, Connie. So glad you liked them!


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