It might sound kind of silly for me to say this, but I’ve typically thought that making a meal of Barbecue Chicken Breasts is a bit of a “splurge” for us. Why? Because hardly ever do I just cook boneless, skinless chicken breasts as our “main dish” without spreading them out within a casserole to make them “stretch”.
Even so, this meal costs just a tiny bit more than one dollar per plate. Sweet! I’m so glad to know the price breakdown on this, because we love it. Plus, this meal is super fast and easy to prepare. I’m talking five minutes tops. I can quickly throw chicken breasts and homemade barbecue sauce into the crockpot on a Sunday morning before church, or right after lunch on a weekday – and a few hours later, our main dish is ready! Add a veggie or two, and maybe some bread, and your meal is complete.
We used (free) green beans from our garden for this meal, but to be fair to those who don’t have garden beans in their freezer, I included the price of purchased, frozen beans as I calculated the cost of this meal. Altogether with the chicken, sauce, beans, and muffins, this meal ends up being $1.09/plate. (I calculated my cost based on the food sources and prices I have available to me. Most of the ingredients I use are organic. Your cost may be slightly more or less depending on where you find your ingredients.)
In case you’re wondering – I use Smart Chicken Brand boneless skinless chicken breasts in recipes like this. That is the best I can find around here – and I wait for them to go on sale. (My friend recently got me a case at a great price from her local store. Smart Chicken breast for just $2.71/pound…so exciting!)
Crock Pot Barbecue Chicken
- 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- ½ recipe of Homemade Barbecue Sauce (about ½ cup)
- Cut chicken breasts into portion sized pieces.
- Place in a crock pot, top with barbecue sauce, and cook on low for about four hours or until meat is no longer pink.
- BONUS: Don't have time for the crock pot? Simply put the chicken and sauce into a saucepan over medium heat on the stove. Cook for 20-30 minutes until cooked through. Serve!
Here’s my Homemade Barbecue Sauce recipe. :)
Do you often use boneless, skinless chicken breasts for a main dish…or do you typically try to “stretch” them into more meals?
Looking for more meals on our Real Food Dollar Menu? Here are the recipes I’ve shared so far:
I miss chicken breasts! Sadly, we don’t buy them since we started getting our whole, pasteured chickens from a local farm. It’s much cheaper than buying the breasts separately, at least for pastured chicken. However, I did buy some whole chickens, cut up… and I think chicken pieces on the bone will cook just fine in the crock pot with homemade barbeque sauce. :) Thanks for the idea!
We buy ours from an organic local pasture farmer too, but he offers volume discounts
at certain times of the year so we stock up on breasts then as well as
whole chickens :)
The breast are just split breasts, meaning the breast bone is cut in half
and there is still skin on, but I’ve found it makes a much better broth
that way. Plus I can just cut out the breast meat if I need to and save
the bones etc for when I make chicken stock in the freezer.
I made this recipe with split breasts and it was wonderful (my real reason
for commenting lol).
Thanks for the idea Jamie. My farm does sell individual cuts, but I’ve never asked about a volume discount. I’ll have to ask before we make our purchase next year. The farm is 2 hours away, so we only go once a year and really stock up.
It’s usually in the Summer that mine does the volume discounts to make room for turkeys and chickens about to be butchered.
I’m blessed that mine is only 40 minutes away in PA and offers a drop point
15 minutes away bi-weekly. It’s very hard to eat at other ppl’s houses now :D
I think I might cut up a whole chicken for fried chicken this weekend!
I have done this for years…sometimes I shred the chicken breast, put it back into the crockpot(so it can absorb more sauce) and put it in a wrap or rolls. My family loves it…
Karen Dee says
I just used your Bar B Que sauce on ribs the other day, in the crockpot. I love that recipe. I grew up some Cornish chickens last summer and love sticking them in the pot with the sauce. Whole or half chicken. Makes wonderful leftovers.
I had just done a version of this last Sunday for our potluck before bible study. I shredded the chicken breast and served it on whole wheat rolls like pulled pork.
Oh, check out zaycon.com. You might be able to set up deliveries in your area for fresh hormone free chicken breast drops. I got 40 lbs for $68. You need a group to order enough for a delivery. It is fresh not frozen so you need to be ready to put it up.
I looked up zaycon.com and didn’t find the chicken you were referring to. Would you mind finding the exact link and sending it my way. This is a great price!
You can only find them on the website when the sales go “live”. They deliver regionally so it’s generally state based. You can sign up to start receiving their emails and they’ll notify you when they’re available.
I just wanted to let everyone know that although zaycon has wonderful prices, and
great reviews, the chicken is not organic. The pictures of the chicken breasts I have
seen are huge.
Also, all chicken in the US is hormone free. Hormone use in poultry production has
not been approved by the FDA. So, it doesn’t mean anything when a company labels their
chicken hormone free, as all poultry will is.
Oops…that should read “as all poultry is”
Daddy always called them Chicken Chests.
I do this with chicken legs and I don’t even worry about thawing them. It’s my go-to meal when I don’t feel like cooking. :)
I typically use chicken breasts as the main meal. Then two days later I use the leftovers for a casserole of some sort. I can’t wait to try this recipe!
Two days ago I threw a whole chicken in a pot and 2 hours later had chicken noodle soup….tonight it is going to be chicken dumplings, and in two days it will be chicken pot pie!
I love doing the whole chicken it crockpot…meat falls off bone, makes wonderful broth for soup!! Yummy
Meat is generally an ingredient here. I am feeding some big eaters and can’t afford a slab (or two, or three) of meat for each person. My husband has had to adjust a little since we got together but he has not died yet from the lack of full chicken breasts, or steaks on his plate :)
Shelby Foreman says
Another great frugal meal idea! Here’s a question for you: have you ever calculated the cost of gardening? My fil was adding up the cost of his last summer and came up with a pretty high total – over $550! This would include seeds and plants, fertilizer, pesticides, fungicide, tilling costs, and canning/freezing costs. I don’t think it counted the electricity for the fence to keep out deer. They do get a lot food from it, but not enough to say that the green beans are almost free. I just wondered if all gardens cost this much or if there are cheaper/better ways to grow your own food.
Oh wow, $550 is a lot to spend on a garden, so I can see how this doesn’t seem like a frugal option!! We don’t spend much on our garden (although yes, there is definitely some cost.) Seeds and plants are our main costs, and typically we buy plants from some young friends around here who sell tomato and pepper starts for very inexpensive. We don’t use pesticides and fugicides. My husband has been awesome about finding ferilizer for free from farmers who are happy for him to come haul it off. :)
excellent reply–way to go no pestisides and fungicles!!!compost manure from famers…we give it away by the truckload!!!
Tracy Deakyne says
Since buying whole chickens is always a better price, consider cutting up your own to have your ch. breasts and better price, too! It’s actually very easy once you get the hang of it. We raise about 75 chickens for ourselves plus help several other families raise theirs here, too, so when butchering day comes, I spend as much time as I can spare cutting mine up so as to save freezer space. Lately I’ve been taking out whole frozen birds and defrosting till cutable – if there is such a word – then cutting up 6-9 of them, packing breasts together, legs and thighs together for the grill, and the carcasses go into a big pot for soup broth that I pressure can. I refreeze as the pieces haven’t really defrosted and my dogs eat the wings raw as well as all the skin pieces and nothing goes to waste. There’s probably a You tube video out there on how to cut a chicken up. I forget where I learned – maybe from a tutorial. Give it a try !
Melissa J. says
You are an inspiration! Can’t wait until we enough land to raise our own chickens! :)
If you have a Harris Teeter by you they always have boneless skinless chicken breast at the meat/butcher counter for $1.99 a pound! The best part is I can have them wrap it in one pound increments and freeze it for perfect meal sizes for our family. That’s only $0.50 for each 4 oz serving :)
Delila Chandler says
I didn’t see the recipe for the barbarian sauce. Could you send that to me. I would love to try it thank you very much.!!!
Here you go: https://www.heavenlyhomemakers.com/high-five-recipes-homemade-barbeque-sauce
Wondering what kind of muffins you served in the photo above?
I believe it is a Honey Cinnamon Muffin: https://www.heavenlyhomemakers.com/whole-wheat-quick-mix-honey-cinnamon-muffins.
Jodi J. says
Just wanted to let you know…I’m a beginner at this eating healthy stuff. I just started on this journey..and am using all of your advice (I think I almost bought your shop out last week!). :)
My kids (mostly my 10 yr old son) are even excited to “eat healthy”! My 5 yr old daughter could care less..as long as she doesn’t have to eat green beans or water melon.
Tonight I made your BBQ crockpot chicken, Italian roasted potatoes, and broccoli and cheese. MY KIDS LOVED IT!
I think what I love most about your recipes, ideas, and advice is that nothing is overly complicated…and that is a sigh of relief!