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Pale Ale Pulled-Chicken Sliders

Scott Phillips

Yield: Makes 24 sliders

Servings: 10 to 12

The bitter, herbaceous, hoppy flavor of pale ale adds depth to both the chicken and a quick-pickled red onion topping.


For the pickled onion

  • 1 12-oz. bottle American pale ale
  • 3/4 cup white-wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp. granulated sugar
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 medium red onion, thinly sliced

For the chicken

  • 3 lb. boneless, skinless chicken thighs, trimmed
  • 4 medium cloves garlic, smashed
  • 2 Tbs. honey
  • 2 Tbs. tomato paste
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 12-oz. bottle American pale ale
  • 4 tsp. Louisiana-style hot sauce, such as Tabasco; more to taste
  • 3/4 cup mayonnaise

For assembly

  • 24 slider buns, preferably pretzel or whole grain
  • 2 cups baby arugula

Nutritional Information

  • Calories (kcal) : 440
  • Fat Calories (kcal): 190
  • Fat (g): 21
  • Saturated Fat (g): 4.5
  • Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 9
  • Monounsaturated Fat (g): 6
  • Cholesterol (mg): 80
  • Sodium (mg): 560
  • Carbohydrates (g): 33
  • Fiber (g): 1
  • Sugar (g): 7
  • Protein (g): 27


Pickle the onion

  • Combine the beer, vinegar, sugar, and 1/2 tsp. salt in a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Remove the pan from the heat and add the onion. Let cool to room temperature, stirring once or twice.

Cook the chicken

  • Position a rack in the center of the oven, and heat the oven to 325°F.
  • Put the chicken and garlic in a 5-quart Dutch oven or other heavy-duty pot with a lid. In a medium bowl, whisk together the honey, tomato paste, and 1 tsp. salt, then whisk in the beer.  Pour over the chicken.
  • Place the pot over high heat and bring to a rapid simmer. Cover and transfer to the oven. Braise until the chicken pulls apart easily with a fork, 50 to 60 minutes.
  • With a slotted spoon, transfer the chicken to a large bowl. Transfer the garlic cloves to a small bowl and set aside. Using two forks, pull the meat into shreds and set aside.
  • Over medium-high heat, boil the braising liquid until reduced by half, about 15 minutes. Return the chicken to the pot and add 2 tsp. of the hot sauce and 2 tsp. of the onion pickling liquid. Mix well and season to taste with more hot sauce, pickling liquid, or salt.
  • Mash the reserved garlic cloves with a fork. Whisk with the mayonnaise and remaining 2 tsp. hot sauce.

Make Ahead Tips

The chicken and the garlic mayonnaise can be prepared up to 3 days ahead; refrigerate both and reheat the chicken before serving.

The pickled onions can be refrigerated for up to 3 weeks in a covered container.


Rate or Review

Reviews (4 reviews)

  • Victoria20 | 05/26/2020

    Easy and delicious. I made this in my insta pot. Boiled the beer for 1 min with the lid off, then whisked in the other sauce ingredients. Added the chicken, tossed to coat then pressure cooked on high for 15 min followed by 5 min natural release then manual. Removed the chicken and garlic and reduced sauce per the recipe using the saute setting. Came out great! Served on pretzel buns with recipe toppings as suggested. Will be making this again!

  • momsstuffing | 06/25/2017

    Very easy and tasty.

  • Krispie | 11/28/2016

    This was easy and tasty. I would definately make again! I followed the recipe exactly.

  • User avater
    TheMomChef | 10/09/2016

    Tangy, crunch onions, spicy chicken, smooth, creamy mayo. What could be better? You can read my full review at Taking On Magazine: http://www.takingonmagazines.com/pale-ale-pulled-chicken-sliders/

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