BBQ Chicken Sliders are the tastiest little sandwiches, filled with shredded barbecue chicken and cool, fresh cabbage slaw.
They’re baked with a deliciously seasoned buttery topping until golden brown and crispy, and everyone loves them!
BBQ Chicken Sliders make the perfect party food, appetizer, or easy weeknight dinner!
They are especially delicious when you’re looking for a new way to cook chicken that’s different than your ordinary meals. These pulled chicken sliders turn boring chicken breasts into sandwiches that will remind you of your favorite BBQ spot.
Sweet, smoky, barbecue-sauced shredded chicken is easy to make in a skillet, and then all you need to do is assemble the sliders on Hawaiian rolls, bake, and top with a simple homemade coleslaw.
Kids love these easy Pizza Sliders too!
Why You’ll Love This Pulled Chicken Sliders Recipe
- Big BBQ Flavors– Tex-Mex meets Southern-style barbecue in these sliders. Hints of cilantro in the slaw and spicy chili powder in the chicken pair perfectly with sweet and smoky bbq sauce.
- Easy Pulled Chicken Recipe – While it’s usually easier to make a large batch of shredded chicken by boiling it or making it in a crockpot, those methods can take a while. For this recipe you only need about 2 cups of chicken, so I’ll show you how to cook it quickly in a skillet.
- Tasty Textures – Cold, crisp, creamy slaw is so tasty when added to the warm chicken sliders. The contrast of temperatures and textures is a party in your mouth!
Ingredients In BBQ Chicken Sliders
Here’s what you need to make these baked pulled chicken sliders:
Complete list of ingredients and amounts can be found in the recipe card below.
- Chicken Breasts: Two chicken breasts or about a pound of chicken is just enough to make this recipe. You can also use shredded chicken you’ve already made or meat from a grocery store rotisserie chicken. We’ll cook the chicken in olive oil.
- Seasonings: To make the chicken extra tasty, season it with salt, pepper, and chili powder.
- Onion: Half of a sweet onion is cooked and then added to the chicken for a sweet and savory flavor.
- BBQ Sauce: I love the flavor of Sweet Baby Ray’s original BBQ sauce. You should be able to find this at most grocery stores, but you can replace it with any barbecue sauce that you enjoy too.
- Hawaiian Rolls: I think that King’s Hawaiian sweet rolls were made for sliders! They are the perfect size and flavor for this recipe, but if you can’t find them, look for soft dinner rolls instead.
- Buttery Topping: The key to making really amazing sliders is to slather them with melted butter before popping them in the oven. For bbq chicken sliders, mix melted butter with light brown sugar, and herby Italian seasoning to make the most delicious topping.
- Easy Coleslaw: Shredded coleslaw mix, fresh cilantro, mayonnaise, lime juice, and salt and pepper make a simple slaw to add creamy texture and flavor to the sandwiches. You can also shred cabbage yourself, but I find the bagged mix makes this recipe extra easy to put together.
How To Make BBQ Chicken Sliders
- Cook the Chicken: Season the chicken with salt, pepper, and chili powder, then add it to a skillet over medium-high heat. Sear the chicken on both sides, then transfer the pan to the oven and bake for about 15 minutes, or until the chicken is fully cooked. Then remove the chicken and shred it with two forks.
- Cook the Onions: Place the skillet back over medium heat, and saute the onions until translucent, or about 3 minutes.
- Mix with BBQ Sauce: Add the shredded chicken, sauteed onions, and barbecue sauce to a bowl, and mix until evenly coated.
- Slice the Rolls: Slice the rolls in half using a serrated knife to separate the tops from the bottoms. Leave the individual rolls attached to each other.
- Add the BBQ Chicken: Place the bottom of the rolls on the prepared pan, and spread the chicken mixture evenly over there.
- Bake: Add the top rolls to the sliders. Brush generously with melted butter mixed with brown sugar and Italian seasoning. Then bake in a preheated oven for 10-15 minutes, or until the tops of the rolls are golden brown.
- Make Coleslaw: While the sandwiches are baking, mix together coleslaw mix, chopped cilantro, mayo, and lime juice. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Finish your Sliders! After the sliders have been baked, carefully remove the top buns, then spread the coleslaw over the chicken. Replace the buns and serve.
Make sure that you don’t add the coleslaw to the sandwiches until after they’re finished in the oven. If you add it before baking, the cabbage will cook and wilt!
- Can’t find Hawaiian Rolls? Pick up a package of dinner rolls instead. Look for the kind that are already cooked and stuck together in a rectangular package.
- Any shredded chicken will work. You can make shredded chicken by boiling the chicken breasts rather than using this method. The sandwiches are also delicious with rotisserie chicken or even pulled pork!
- A 7×11-inch baking pan is the perfect size for a package of King’s Hawaiian rolls. If you have a standard Pyrex baking dish, it’s probably the right size. You can also bake sliders in a 9×13-inch pan.
- Use a serrated knife to slice Hawaiian rolls. Since they’re so soft, a regular knife will have a hard time sliding through them without squishing the bread.
- Try adding some cheese: Slices of cheddar jack or shredded Mexican blend cheese would be delicious. Add the cheese on top of the chicken before baking the sandwiches.
BBQ Chicken Sliders are best enjoyed right after baking them! If you expect to have leftovers, wait to add the coleslaw.
You can store the baked sliders without the slaw topping, in the fridge for up to 2 days. When you’re ready to eat them, reheat the sandwiches and add freshly mixed coleslaw.
What To Serve With BBQ Chicken Sliders
Since we added salad right to the sandwiches, all of the major food groups are already represented, so there is really no need to cook an extra veggie side dish.
But if you wanted to, grilled corn would be so good with these barbecue sandwiches!
Sure! This recipe can easily be doubled. Simply double all of the ingredients, then bake the sliders on a sheet tray.
You can prepare parts of the sandwiches ahead of time to make things easier when it’s time to cook. The shredded chicken mixed with onions and barbecue sauce can be made and stored in the fridge for up to 2 days. I suggest mixing up the butter mixture and coleslaw fresh
This recipe uses chili powder to season the chicken breasts, but other than that, the only spice will come from the bbq sauce. If you want them to be mild, you can omit the chili powder, and be sure to use a sweet bbq sauce.
BBQ Chicken Sliders on Hawaiian rolls are going to be such a hit at your house! Save this recipe so you’ll never forget how to make it – I just know your family will ask for it again!
- 1 pound chicken breasts skinless and boneless
- 2 tablespoons olive oil divided
- ½ sweet onion sliced
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- ¼ teaspoon chili powder
- 1 cup Sweet Baby Ray’s Original BBQ sauce
- 12 Hawaiian sweet rolls
- 2 tablespoons melted butter
- 2 teaspoons light brown sugar
- ½ teaspoon italian seasoning
- 2 ½ cups coleslaw mix or shredded cabbage
- handful fresh cilantro chopped
- 3 tablespoons mayonnaise
- 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
- Salt and pepper
- Spray or lightly butter a 7×11” or 9×13” rimmed baking sheet with softened butter, and preheat the oven to 350°F/180°C.
- Season the chicken with salt, black pepper, and chili powder.
- In a skillet, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil and sear the seasoned chicken on both sides, then transfer it into the oven to bake for 15 minutes or until the thickest part of the chicken reaches 165°F/74°C. Remove from the oven (don’t switch it off), and let the chicken rest for 5 minutes then shred it with two forks. Place the shredded chicken in a bowl and set aside.
- In the same skillet, heat the remaining olive oil and saute the onions until translucent, about 3 minutes. Then transfer it into the bowl with the shredded chicken.
- Add the BBQ sauce to the bowl and mix until the chicken is evenly coated in sauce.
- Slice the rolls in half lengthwise leaving them intact, and place the bottom half in the prepared pan.
- Spread the BBQ chicken mixture on the bottom rolls evenly and then cover with the top buns.
- In a small bowl, combine the melted butter, light brown sugar, and Italian seasoning. Then brush the buns with the melted butter mixture.
- Bake in the oven uncovered for 10-15 minutes or until the tops are golden brown.
- As it bakes, prepare the slaw. In a medium bowl, combine the coleslaw mix with chopped cilantro, mayo, lime juice, and salt and pepper to taste.
- When the sliders have finished baking, lift the top rolls off and spread the slaw over the chicken then cover with the top rolls. Serve with potato chips or fries on the side.
- Any shredded chicken will work. You can make shredded chicken by boiling the chicken breasts rather than using this method. The sandwiches are also delicious with rotisserie chicken!
- Try this recipe with pulled pork!
- If you can’t find sweet Hawaiian rolls, look for packaged soft dinner rolls instead.
- Feel free to add cheese to the sandwiches before you bake them. Cheddar jack or shredded Mexican blend cheese will melt beautifully.
- Use a serrated knife. The rolls are quite soft, and a regular knife may crush them.
- To make the rolls super simple to slice, place the whole package in the freezer for about 15 minutes before you cut them.
- To Store: These sliders are best when you eat them shortly after making them. If you think there will be leftovers, wait to add the slaw. Store in the fridge for up to 2 days. When you’re ready to eat them, reheat the sandwiches, and add fresh coleslaw.
This website provides approximate nutrition information for convenience and as a courtesy only. Nutrition data is gathered primarily from the USDA Food Composition Database, whenever available, or otherwise other online calculators.
© Little Sunny Kitchen