{Slow Cooker} BBQ Chicken Chili Mac

Prep Time 10 minutes
Total Time 4 hours 40 minutes
Servings 6 servings

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Slow Cooker BBQ Chicken Chili Mac is a hearty one pot pasta meal that cooks completely in the crockpot!

black slow cooker with bbq chicken chili mac and title above image in black

You guys, I think sometimes I underestimate this whole it-being-winter thing.

Can you blame me? Sometimes it feels really strange to make supper at 3:00 just so I can photograph it for the blog. And then there’s that awkward “do you try to keep it warm until it’s actually supper or do you refrigerate it and reheat it later?” issue.


metal spoon scooping bbq chicken chili mac from black slow cooker

So I made this and, quite frankly, it was fantastic. So I had to remake it at an unnatural time of day so I could get some decent photos for you, in the hopes that you might be able to see how fantastic it was.

As a food blogger, I love looking to other food bloggers, and recipe sites, and cookbooks for inspiration.

But I am super proud of myself when I actually think of a recipe idea that I’ve never seen before.

We cooked a chicken on the weekend so that I’d have some extra chicken to use for a quick and easy meal during the week. And slow cooker = quick and easy. And we pink puffy heart quick and easy. And slow cookers.

I tried a chili mac a little while ago, and it went over really well here. Then I thought, “Barbecue chicken. Chili Mac. Barbecue Chicken Chili Mac?!”

Just say yes.

grey bowl with bbq chicken chili mac topped with shredded cheese and chopped parsley

So I went to Pinterest. And I typed in “slow cooker chili mac”, and I didn’t find much. There were only a few recipes, and most added cooked pasta at the end of the cooking time. I wanted to do this without adding any extra pots. And I wanted that BBQ chicken chili flavour. And that I didn’t find anywhere.

Aside from stirring in the dry pasta half an hour before eating time, this is really a dump it and forget it kind of meal. But I’ll take that over completely mushy, overcooked pasta in my chili mac any day. And I had cooked chicken, so that’s what I used. But I don’t think you’d have any problems adding raw, diced chicken to the slow cooker at the beginning of the cooking time. It will probably release more juices into the chili, so you might want to reduce the liquid just a touch or add a touch more pasta.

*I have also made this with chopped turkey, and it’s just as fantastic!

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{Slow Cooker} BBQ Chicken Chili Mac

5 from 13 votes
{Slow Cooker} BBQ Chicken Chili Mac: a hearty one-pot pasta meal that cooks completely in the crockpot! Forget dirtying other dishes — you can cook it all together without risking mushy pasta. www.thereciperebel.com
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 4 hours 30 minutes
Total Time 4 hours 40 minutes
Cuisine American
Course Main Course
Servings 6 servings
Calories 607cal


  • 2 boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 red pepper diced
  • 1/2 onion diced
  • 540 ml can black or kidney beans, drained and rinsed 19oz
  • 1 tbsp chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 28 oz can diced tomatoes with juice
  • 1 tsp minced garlic
  • 1/2 cup barbecue sauce
  • 1/2 cup ketchup
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 3 cups dry macaroni about 340g
  • 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese


  • Add chicken, pepper, onion, beans, chili, powder, tomatoes, garlic, barbecue sauce, ketchup and chicken broth to slow cooker. Cook on low for 4-6 hours (because I used cooked chicken, the cooking time is pretty flexible — if using raw chicken, you’ll want to cook at least 6-8 hours on low). Shred or chop the chicken.
  • Half an hour before you wish to serve, set slow cooker to high and stir in salt to taste and dry pasta.
  • After 20-25 minutes, check to see that your pasta is cooked (if not, give it a little more time. I found that 25 minutes was perfect). Stir in cheese and serve.


*I like to prep everything the night before, and just dump it in the slow cooker in the morning and turn it on. Saves a lot of time when things get crazy!
**NOTE: Nutrition information is estimated and will vary depending on exact serving size, types and brands of products used.

Nutrition Information

Calories: 607cal | Carbohydrates: 83g | Protein: 34g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Cholesterol: 63mg | Sodium: 1442mg | Potassium: 1126mg | Fiber: 10g | Sugar: 18g | Vitamin A: 1715IU | Vitamin C: 41.1mg | Calcium: 371mg | Iron: 5.7mg

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Meet Ashley

My name is Ashley Fehr and I love creating easy meals my family loves. I also like to do things my way, which means improvising and breaking the rules when necessary. Here you will find creative twists on old favorites and some of my favorite family recipes, passed down from generations!

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  1. Mary says

    I just saw this recipe and happen to have everything needed. It’s almost 4 on a school night now so I am going to attempt this on the stove top. Wish me luck!!!

  2. Shannon says

    I want to make this! 24 oz seems like a lot of pasta for our crew. If I want to cut it to 16 oz should I cut the broth? And how much?

    • The Recipe Rebel says

      Hi Shannon, this is based on weight and not volumn. 340g is roughly 11 ounces. Hope this helsp!


    Its a bit too sweet for my taste..next time i make it, i will cut back on the sauces, otherwise, pretty good.. I did add a few spoonfuls of corn for color.

  4. Jennifer says

    This looks delish!

    I’m wondering tho – for those of us that work and pick up the kids from the sitter – to then have to wait for the noodles to cook… 🙁 Would it work to have the noodles in from the beginning – maybe just on top?

    • Ashley Fehr says

      Hi Jennifer! I really wouldn’t recommend that because they would be so mushy. 20 minutes is really all you should need to cook the pasta. If you want to save some time, I would try leaving out the broth and adding completely cooked noodles right at the end, that way you could keep the cooked pasta in the fridge.

  5. Debi says

    I’m interested in making this! How many servings? I have a large group of people coming over this Wednesday and I’m wondering if this would be enough with side dishes!

    • Ashley Fehr says

      Hi Debi — sorry about that! The recipe was missing some information. I would say this would easily make 6 main dish servings. If you have a lot of side dishes or people (like children) who eat less, you might get more out of it. 6 servings would give you about 1/2 cup of chicken and 1/2 cup dry pasta per person, plus the beans and sauce and veggies. You can always double it if you need more!

    • Ashley Fehr says

      I’m so glad to hear that Kristine! We’ve made this one a few times and just love it — I even made it for a potluck last weekend and it was scraped clean!. Thanks for letting me know! 🙂

  6. Raegan Dyck says

    My family loved this meal tonight. So delicious and I’m not a chili lover. Great flavour and you don’t always get that in an easy crock pot recipe. Thank you!

  7. Jess @ On Sugar Mountain says

    Yeah winter is definitely kicking my butt too. It’s supposed to be -15 here tonight because of crazy polar vortex 2015, and man would my night be improved if it involved a giant bowl of this bbq chicken chili mac and cheese! So warm and comforting, I love this recipe, Ashley! 😀

    • Ashley says

      Thanks Jess! That sounds like the kind of weather we’re having too lately — we’ve had down to -45 Celsius! And yet, I’d still take a big bowl of ice cream after… Lol

  8. Alice @ Hip Foodie Mom says

    Ashley, I love this!!!! Barbecue Chicken Chili Mac is genius!!! and it looks freaking fabulous!! I totally feel you on cooking and shooting and doing all of this before an actual real meal time. . ah the life of a food blogger. . I, just like you, am at the mercy of the sun and natural light. . but I would have devoured this right after the photoshoot! 🙂

    • Ashley says

      Haha, I definitely sampled it Alice! I think I’ve just gotten used to the weirdness of it all and I only cook lunch now. Lol. Thanks so much!

  9. Christina @ Bake with Christina says

    What an awesome and delicious twist to classic mac & cheese! This seriously looks SO yummy and I just need a bowl full right now! Haha 😛 Pinned!

  10. Sarah @ The Gold Lining Girl says

    Omgosh – this looks perfect! Combines so many of my favorite things too, and it looks so warm and filling! It’s a great meal all on its own – one pot! I know what you mean about taking food photos – you have to wait for the perfect window of time when the sunlight is best, and that makes for some strange cooking hours! Haha!

5 from 13 votes (11 ratings without comment)

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