Braised BBQ Chicken Sliders with Purple Slaw

Braised BBQ chicken sliders by Chef Alejandra Schrader

Nothing says summer like BBQ!  Using an all-natural, good quality barbecue sauce makes all the difference. I love using Grandma Izetta’s! Its mustardy taste goes great with all kinds of meats.

Chef Alejandra Schrader at ABC News Chicago

I had the opportunity to present three healthy summer dishes on ABC News during my visit to Chicago last week: a watermelon and calamari salad, a summer green gazpacho, and these sliders. So happy to share healthy ideas with others!

Summer and all, we don’t have to throw our healthy eating plan out the window just to satisfy our cravings. I love to rehab summer favorites with small changes — using whole wheat buns, skipping the processed cheeses and condiments, and avoiding fatty sides like chips or french fries. I like to serve these sliders with a delicious pineapple purple slaw. Did you know purple cabbage packs twice the amount of vitamin C compared to green cabbage? It adds a great color and texture to the sliders but also nutrition. That’s what I am talking about!

Hope you’re enjoying this beautiful summer. Buen provecho.

Yield: 12 sliders



  • 2 lbs chicken thighs, boneless and skinless
  • 3 tbsp grape seed oil, divided
  • 1 large onion, sliced thinly
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper, sliced thinly
  • 1 1/2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 cup BBQ sauce

 Purple slaw

  • 2 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • Coarse sea salt
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 2  cup purple cabbage, finely shredded
  • ½ cup pineapple, diced
  • ¼ cup scallion greens, finely chopped

To serve:

  • 1 cup cucumber, sliced thinly
  • 12 mini whole-wheat slider rolls (toasted, if desired)



Season the chicken with salt and pepper. Heat 2 tbsp grape seed oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Brown the chicken on both sides, approximately 3-4 minutes per side. Work in batches, if necessary; transfer to a platter.

Add 1 tbsp of grape seed oil to the hot pot and sauté onions for a couple of minutes. Add garlic and bell pepper; continue to sauté for additional 3-4 minutes. Stir in broth and BBQ sauce and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and transfer chicken and drippings back to the pot. Cover and cook until chicken is very tender, approximately 1 hour, stirring frequently.

Using thongs, transfer chicken thighs to a clean baking tray and allow cooling slightly. If necessary, return pot to a medium heat for a few minutes until the sauce has thickened. Using two forks, shred chicken finely; return to pot and mix with sauce thoroughly.

At this point, additional BBQ sauce may be added to chicken to reach desired consistency or flavor

Purple slaw

In a medium bowl, combine lemon juice, olive oil, sea salt, and pepper; whisk to emulsify. Add cabbage, pineapple, and scallions; toss to coat.


Assemble each slider with shredded chicken, purple slaw, and top with a cucumber slice! Use a bamboo skewer to secure it all in place.

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