It wasn’t until a few years ago that I discovered real barbecue. On my first trip to North Carolina’s Outer Banks, I had my first true pork barbecue sandwich. In all honesty, I wasn’t that impressed. The sauce was ridiculously vinegary. BBQ sauce should be sweet and tangy, but whatever I had was too sweet and too tangy.
Anyway, last year, we decided that it would be a good idea to build a smoker. During the summer, we had many great BBQs with a variety of smoked foods, including multiple pork butts. So this is what really sparked and cemented my love of smoked food and true barbecue.
It is not possible to get lean pork butt from supermarkets. In fact, one reason why pulled pork is so good is that it is slow-cooked for upwards of 10 hours, allowing the fat to melt into the meat, making it extremely tender and flavorful. I knew I had to try these pulled BBQ chicken sandwiches after seeing a friend make them. Can I satisfy my craving for good barbecue in a healthy way? BBQ purists would say no, but I say yes.
The chicken is rotisserie chicken from the store, and the barbecue sauce is homemade. They were served on homemade rolls with homemade coleslaw. They were incredible. These aren’t as good as a real pulled pork sandwich, but they’re a great weeknight healthy alternative. I’ll definitely make them again.
For the barbecue sauce, I slightly adapted her recipe. She did not include salt or sugar in her original recipe. Those ingredients were essential.
I added salt and sugar to taste. I will also lower the amount of molasses if I make this again, but this is just a matter of personal preference.
You can find the homemade rolls I made here. The recipe is from King Arthur Flour. I think they really elevated the sandwich. As I was already using store-bought chicken, it was also nice to have homemade rolls. I prefer to have as many homemade elements in my meals as possible. The dough can be frozen until it is time to bake, which makes these rolls a hit.
I adapted an Ina Garten recipe for healthier coleslaw. There is a lot of coleslaw in this recipe. Next time, I will cut it in half.
One pound of white cabbage
• 3/4 lb red cabbage
• 5 ounces shredded carrots
Non-fat Greek yogurt, 7 oz
1/4 cup light or canola mayonnaise
• 3 tablespoons Dijon mustard
Sugar, 1 tbsp
2 tablespoons of cider vinegar
1 teaspoon celery salt
• 1/2 teaspoon salt
• 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- Cut the cabbage into small pieces. Then, place the sliced cabbage into the feed tube of your food processor, using the slicing blade attachment. Slicing is now easier than ever.
Secondly, combine your shredded carrots and sliced cabbage in a large bowl. Let cool.
- Mix the Greek yogurt, mayo, mustard, sugar, vinegar, celery salt, and salt and pepper in another bowl.
- Mix the cabbage with the dressing. Let it chill until ready to serve.