1-1/2 quarts water
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
2 tablespoons salt
1 tablespoon liquid smoke
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts
1/3 cup liquid smoke
1-1/2 cups hickory smoke-flavored barbecue sauce
16 slider buns or dinner rolls, split and warmed
Deli coleslaw, optional
1. In a large bowl, mix brine ingredients, stirring to dissolve brown sugar. Reserve 1 cup brine for cooking chicken; cover and refrigerate.
2. Place chicken in bowl with remaining brine; turn to coat chicken. Cover and refrigerate 18 to 24 hours, turning occasionally.
3. Remove chicken from brine and transfer to a 3-qt. slow cooker; discard brine from bowl. Add reserved 1 cup brine and 1/3 cup liquid smoke to chicken. Cook, covered, on low 4 to 5 hours or until chicken is tender.
4. Remove chicken; cool slightly. Discard cooking juices. Shred chicken with 2 forks and return to slow cooker. Stir in barbecue sauce; heat through. Serve on buns, with coleslaw if desired.
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 25 min. + brining Cook: 4 hours
YIELD: 8 servings
Brining the meat overnight helps make these BBQ chicken sliders taste exceptionally good. Plus, they're so tender, they melt in your mouth.
2 sliders: 376 calories, 8g fat (2g saturated fat), 98mg cholesterol, 883mg sodium, 43g carbohydrate (9g sugars, 3g fiber), 30g protein.