Easy Crock Pot Hawaiian Chicken is the perfect blend of sweet and savory with a delicious burst of pineapple flavor. This Hawaiian Chicken recipe only requires 4 ingredients and results in fork tender chicken that falls apart when it’s ready!
This Crock Pot Hawaiian Chicken is very simple but my whole family loves it and it’s easy to serve with rice and a vegetable on the side for a well-balanced meal. All you need is chicken, pineapple juice, soy sauce and brown sugar – all ingredients that are easy to keep on hand! And the tropical pineapple flavor is amazing – maybe not quite as good as actually being in Hawaii, but as close as I can get these days so I’ll take it!
I absolutely love slow cooker meals because dinner time is such a busy time at my house. I have 5 kids and we have a lot of after school activities, making it really tricky to be home long enough to prepare much of a dinner when it’s time to eat! I love being able to put a few ingredients in the slow cooker in the morning, turn it on and then have dinner all ready when we all get home starving.
This Hawaiian Chicken recipe can be made with fresh or frozen chicken tenders, although it can be made with fresh or frozen chicken breasts as well. The chicken cooks in about 7-8 hours on low, or 3-4 hours on high. The recipe is very forgiving – sometimes I leave the chicken in for an extra hour or two if we aren’t ready to eat and that’s totally fine!
Ingredients in Easy Crock Pot Hawaiian Chicken
-2 lbs. fresh or frozen chicken tenders (or chicken breasts)
-1 cup pineapple juice
-1/3 cup low-sodium soy sauce
-1/2 cup brown sugar
How to make Easy Crock Pot Hawaiian Chicken
Place the chicken tenders in the Crock Pot and then add the pineapple juice, soy sauce and brown sugar. Place the lid on the slow cooker and turn on low for 7-8 hours or 3-4 hours on high. I find that the chicken is a little bit more tender when cooked on low, but it is delicious either way!
At the end of the cooking time, remove the lid and shred the chicken with two forks. The meat should pull apart very easily and should all be shredded and ready to eat within a few minutes!
How to thicken sauce with cornstarch
The sauce is delicious but ends up being pretty thin so if you’d like to thicken up the sauce, that can be done very easily with a little bit of cornstarch and water.
About 30 minutes before you are ready to eat, turn the slow cooker to high heat. In a small bowl, mix 2-3 tablespoons of cornstarch with a few tablespoons of cold water. Mix together with a fork until the cornstarch is dissolved and then add to the sauce and chicken. Give a few quick stirs and then replace the lid.
The mixture should start bubbling a little bit and will thicken up perfectly in about 20-30 minutes. You can use two forks to shred the chicken – it should pretty much fall apart at this point! Turn the slow cooker to low or warm until ready to serve. For an even thicker sauce, use a little bit more cornstarch with the water before adding to the chicken.
EASY CROCK POT HAWAIIAN CHICKEN
- 2 lbs 2 lbs. fresh or frozen chicken tenders (or chicken breasts)
- 1 cup pineapple juice
- 1/3 cup low-sodium soy sauce
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- Place the chicken tenders in the Crock Pot and then add the pineapple juice, soy sauce and brown sugar. Place the lid on the slow cooker and turn on low for 7-8 hours or 3-4 hours on high.
- At the end of the cooking time, remove the lid and shred the chicken with two forks. The meat should pull apart very easily and should all be shredded and ready to eat within a few minutes!
TO THICKEN THE SAUCE (OPTIONAL):
- The sauce is delicious but ends up being pretty thin so if you’d like to thicken up the sauce, that can be done very easily with a little bit of cornstarch and water.About 30 minutes before you are ready to eat, turn the slow cooker to high heat. In a small bowl, mix 2-3 tablepoons of cornstarch with a few tablespoons of cold water. Mix together with a fork until the cornstarch is dissolved and then add to the sauce and chicken. Give a few quick stirs and then replace the lid.The mixture should start bubbling a little bit and will thicken up perfectly in about 20-30 minutes. You can use two forks to shred the chicken – it should pretty much fall apart at this point! Turn the slow cooker to low or warm until ready to serve. For an even thicker sauce, use a little bit more cornstarch with the water before adding to the chicken.
What to serve with Hawaiian Chicken
Hawaiian chicken pairs very well with rice. I usually just make plain rice to go with it but it is absolutely delicious with Coconut Rice recipe! Pineapple is a wonderful side dish because of the pineapple flavor in the chicken, although any tropical fruit (papaya, mango, etc) would also go very well with this Hawaiian chicken recipe. Most green vegetables also complement this dish very well – broccoli, asparagus, green beans or even a nice side salad would work well.
How to make perfect rice in the Instant Pot
This Hawaiian Chicken is best served on top of rice. For years, I made rice in a rice cooker which works well but when I got my Instant Pot and realized how well it worked for making rice, I got rid of the rice cooker. My kitchen isn’t very big and I don’t have room for too many gadgets at once!
After a little bit of experimentation, the Instant Pot cooks rice perfectly every single time! You can use the Rice button on your instant pot, but I have found the rice to cook even better when using the following method. I just use a regular long grain white rice.
- Add the rice and water to the Instant Pot at a 1:1 ratio. 1 cup rice? Add 1 cup of water. 4 cups of rice? 4 cups of water. No matter how much rice you have, the ratio stays the same.
- Seal the Instant Pot and cook the rice on high pressure for 3 minutes.
- Let the pressure naturally release. This will take about 10-15 minutes but results in perfectly cooked rice! If you quick release, the rice won’t be done and if you cook the rice longer because you want to quick release, the rice will be mushy.
With the time that you need to allow the Instant Pot to get to pressure, the cooking time and the time to naturally release the pressure, it takes about 30 minutes to cook the rice. Not much faster than a rice cooker but so nice to be able to cook rice without having to keep an eye on it AND also being able to use an appliance that can do so many more things!
I actually got a small Instant Pot several months after getting my larger one – that way if I’m using the larger one to make the main dish, I can use the smaller one for rice. Absolutely love it – the 3 quart one works great for rice!
Enjoy easy slow cooker recipes? Here are more to try~
- Slow Cooker Beef Stew
- Slow Cooker Easter Ham recipe
- Slow Cooker Easy Pork Roast
- Slow Cooker Turkey Breast
- Slow Cooker Sweet Pork
- Slow Cooker Shredded Chicken
- Slow Cooker Pork Carnitas
Need more Easy Chicken recipes? Here you go!
- Easy Chicken Fried Rice recipe
- Easy Chicken Curry recipe
- 5 Minute Chicken Salad recipe
- Classic Chicken Noodle Soup recipe
- Easy Salsa Chicken recipe
- Easy Chicken Pot Pie recipe
- Best Homemade Chicken Tenders recipe
- 20-minute Chicken Stew recipe
- Best Chicken & Dumplings recipe
- Creamy Lemon Chicken Pasta
- Easy Indian Butter Chicken
- Honey Lime Chicken Enchiladas
- Easy Chicken Cacciatore Bake
- Baked Chicken Parmesan Recipe
Susan Lancaster says
no print option here, UGH!
Susan- you should see a Print Recipe button at the top of the post that will take you straight to the printable version of the recipe. Enjoy!
Love how easy and delicious this recipe is! My whole family enjoyed it!
What is an alternative to the pineapple juice? I get heartburn from pineapples
You could probably use apple juice or a white grape juice? Both would add sweetness without using the pineapple juice.
I have made this recipe a lot of times and love it but I’m wondering…do you have nutrition facts for it? I just found out my son has type 1 diabetes and I’m looking for a nutrition label
For carbs. Just curious if I’m overlooking it?
I just added the nutrition info to the recipe card on the post. So glad you enjoy the recipe!
Silly question, but can you substitute pineapple chucks in lieu of pineapple juice? I don’t have pineapple juice on hand but recently cut up a fresh pineapple. If not, I do have apple juice I can use instead.
I think that’d work perfectly Melissa!
Jason McDonald says
Made this today. Even though I was home all day I still used the low slow cook and let go for 8 hours. I did something a little different at the 6.5-hour mark I shredded the chicken, added corn starch mix, but also added green and red bell peppers. The last 90 minutes on high cook was a huge hit and I 100% be making this again in the near future. Next time I’m going to double the batch and can a bunch in mason jars to heat at work for lunch.
Great additions to the recipe – I’m going to have to try those!
My husband and I loved this easy meal! Thank you – delicious!
CM in Oside
So glad you enjoyed it Carol!
Paula Clifton says
I’m sorry but this was awful. We threw it out and ate cereal for dinner. The chicken was over cooked and the sauce tasted horrible. I followed all directions to a t. Do not make this.
Sounds like something went wrong! Crockpot cooking isn’t an exact science…I’ve had some slow cookers that cook much faster and some that cook a bit slower. Sounds yours might be a little bit on the fast side!
John F Blackwelder says
Made this the other night. Horrible sauce, very runny and not much flavor. Don’t try it eat a hot dog instead. That’s what we did.
So sorry it didn’t turn out for you! It’s one of our favorites so I’m not sure what happened.
Thought I would make a quick meal to watch Super Bowl. I’ve been a cook for over 60 years and this was the most disappointing meal I have ever made. Lacked a whole lot of everything. Never again
Sorry to hear that! It has 1/3 cup soy sauce + 1/2 cup brown sugar and pineapple juice. That’s a lot of flavor! Did you use more than 2lbs of chicken?
I’m sorry as well 🤣, I was so excited,, bought extra supplies that would not haven’t just for this recipe and it was super sweet and that was all we could taste, it didn’t have any flavor that we could taste!!!! It did cook tender of course because I have I have an amazing crockpot!!!
So sorry it didn’t work out for you! It’s one of our favorite meals and we make it often…it definitely has some sweetness to it, but it shouldn’t be overly sweet. The soy sauce should help counter the sweetness of the pineapple and brown sugar.
This is a good base. To flavor things a bit more, I would suggest adding some diced onion and garlic. Season the chicken maybe with some red cayenne pepper or paprika. I also used a whole can of chunk pineapple. You can also use a pressure cooker for this recipe to speed the process. Overall, I enjoyed it over a bowl of rice. Perfect for an autumn day.
This is a staple in our family! Super delicious!
So glad you like it!