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Smoked pulled chicken sandwiches with bbq sauce and creamy coleslaw.

Smoked Pulled Chicken Sandwich

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These juicy Smoked Pulled Chicken Sandwiches are so tender, juicy, and simple to make. Whole chickens are deeply seasoned, slowly smoked, shredded, and piled on soft buns with a creamy slaw.

  • Total Time: 3 hours, 20 minutes
  • Yield: Serves about 6




  1. Split the chicken in half, see notes below for steps.
  2. Place the chicken halves on a wire rack with a baking sheet. Sprinkle the seasoning from up above, evenly coating all sides of the chicken. Allow the chicken to rest in the fridge, uncovered, for at least an hour or up to overnight.
  3. Preheat the smoker to 250°F. You can use a lower temp such as 225°F for more smoke, but the cooking will take longer. Take the chicken out of the fridge while the smoker is warming up.
  4. Place the entire baking sheet with chicken into the smoker. Allow it to smoke for about 2 hours, longer if needed. The internal temperature of the breast meat should be about 165°F. This allows it to shred easily.
  5. Remove the baking sheet and cover the chicken with loosely tented foil, allowing it to rest for about 10 minutes.
  6. Using gloves, remove the skin in one piece if you can. Set aside. Remove the smoked chicken from the bones and place into a large bowl. Shred the chicken into smaller strands, mixing the white and dark meat.
  7. Take the smoked chicken skin and rub the chicken, transferring the fat and smoked seasonings back into the meat.
  8. Pour the juices from the baking sheet into the chicken and mix.
  9. (optional) Add the warmed BBQ sauce to the chicken and mix. 
  10. Serve immediately by adding to a soft bun with slaw, or pickled vegetables of choice. Top with additional BBQ sauce as desired.


  • This recipe provides enough rub for about 2 whole chickens.
  • To split a chicken in half: Place the chicken on a very cutting board surface area. Pat down the outside with a paper towel to dry excess moisture. Rotate the chicken so the backbone is facing up. Start at the tail end and work upwards, snipping through the rib bones as you go. Remove the backbone and flip the chicken over so the inside is facing down. Spread the chicken out carefully and push firmly in the middle of the breast – you should hear a snap, which is the breastbone. Take a large chef knife or cleaver and cut the chicken in half, pushing the blade down the center of the chicken where the breastbone is. You should now have two halves.
  • Author: Brad Prose
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Marinate Time: 1 hour
  • Cook Time: 2 hours
  • Category: Chicken & Poultry
  • Method: Smoking
  • Cuisine: Dinner
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