This Slow Cooker Barbecued Beans & Chicken Joes recipe is a kid-friendly meal, and one the entire family will enjoy! The sandwich is simple to make and packed with fiber. Barbecued beans are a hit with dieters with special needs because they taste like a treat. But, they’re actually quite healthy. We’ve cleaned up the barbecue sauce in this healthier version, so you can enjoy this classic American treat without being worried about consuming too much sugar or going over your calorie count for the day.
Best of all, these sandwiches taste fantastic! Even if you are not an expert chef, you can whip up a delicious meal for the family any day of the week. They come together quickly on the stovetop, but we like making them the hands-off way in the slow cooker.
A Healthy Twist on an American Classic
When you break it down, a Sloppy Joe is simply a combination of ground beef and tomato sauce, served up on a soft, potato bun. It’s a play off the classic Midwestern sandwich, the loose meat sandwich. They were born out of economy because you could add a lot of ingredients to stretch your ground meat, but they survived to this day because they’re comforting and delicious.
That’s what we love about these Chicken Joes: they taste just like the Sloppy Joe or loose meat sandwich of your childhood. Using lean ground chicken definitely reduces the calorie and fat content of the sandwich. All without sacrificing flavor! Once you add in the sweet flavor of the barbecue sauce and the savory additions of onions and bell peppers, you would never know it’s not ground beef in your sandwich. Add in fiber-rich and full flavored beans, and you’re really in for a treat with these Slow Cooker Barbecued Beans & Chicken Joes!
If you can’t find ground chicken, feel free to swap in ground turkey instead. Any ground meat would work, really, but turkey and chicken have significantly less saturated fat and calories as compared to beef or pork.
Yields: 6 servings | Serving size: 1 cup & 1 bun | Calories: 315 | Total Fat: 9 | Saturated Fat: 2 | Trans Fat: 0 g | Cholesterol: 80 mg | Sodium: 204 mg | Carbohydrates: 36 g | Dietary Fiber: 5 g | Sugars: 16 g | Protein: 24 g | SmartPoints (Freestyle): 5 |
- 1 pound lean ground chicken (ground turkey can also be used)
- 1 small onion, diced
- 1/2 cup diced bell pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher or sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 (15 ounce) can pinto beans, drained
- 1 (15 ounce) can Great Northern beans, drained
- 1/4 cup coconut sugar (less to taste)
- 1/2 cup ketchup (recipe)
- 6 Whole Wheat Buns, optional gluten-free buns
- In a large skillet cook ground chicken and onion over medium heat, breaking up chicken with a fork as it cooks. Cook just until chicken begins to lose its pink color, drain off fat and add to the slow cooker.
- Add the remaining ingredients and stir to combine. Cover, cook on low heat 6 to 8 hours.
- Fast Slow Cooker Prep Option: Add uncooked ground chicken to slow cooker, break up with a fork, add remaining ingredients and cook 7-9 hours on low.
- Stove Top Method: Cooked ground over medium-high heat, breaking up with a fork as it cooks. Drain off any fat. Add the remaining ingredients and cook for 10 minutes or until heated through.
- Serve over wheat buns.
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