sweet smoky pulled chicken

Smoky Mud Puddle Pulled Chicken

Inspired by traditional Mexican mole sauce, this smoky-sweet recipe gets its chocolate component in the form of Mud Puddle Bitter Chocolate Vodka. A riff on a recipe from Melissa Clark’s excellent book Dinner in an Instant, this method uses an electric pressure cooker (such as the Instant Pot), but you can get similar results using a crock pot or cooking the chicken in a 350° oven for about 45 minutes. This is a great do-ahead camp meal as it keeps well in a cooler and can be reheated over the fire or camp stove. And don’t forget the cocktails! Pair with a Pita Amor if you’re at home, but if you’re camping, batch out a flask of Black Russian Shots to share with friends.


This recipe comes to us from our friend Carlin St. John of Get Together PDX. Specializing in recipe development and catered events, Get Together PDX provides fantastic food and thoughtful details to create special gatherings and dining experiences. Follow @gettogetherpdx and contact Carlin with inquiries at gettogetherpdx@gmail.com.



  • ½ cup ketchup (preferably a smoky ketchup such as Red Duck Smoky Ketchup)
  • 1 TBSP light brown sugar
  • 1 TBSP honey
  • 1 TBSP chopped chipotle peppers in adobo sauce (Note: you can save the remainder of the peppers and sauce packed in an airtight container in your fridge for up to 3 months)
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 TBSP fresh oregano, chopped (or 1 tsp dried oregano)
  • 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • ¼ tsp cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp mustard powder
  • 2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 TBSP apple cider vinegar
  • ¼ cup Mud Puddle Bitter Chocolate Vodka
  • 2 ½ lbs. boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • Tortillas, salsas, and shredded cabbage for serving



  1. Make the sauce: combine the ketchup, brown sugar, honey, chipotle peppers, garlic, oregano, black pepper, salt, paprika, cinnamon, and mustard powder in a small saucepan. Stir well to combine. Add Worcestershire sauce, vinegar, and Mud Puddle Vodka to the pan. Simmer the mixture over medium heat, stirring often with a whisk or fork, for 5-10 minutes or until the sauce becomes thick and slightly sticky.
  2. In an electric pressure cooker, add the chicken thighs and top with the sauce. Cook on high pressure for 15 minutes and allow the cooker to release naturally.
  3. Carefully remove chicken from the cooker and allow to cool slightly before pulling the meat with 2 forks. Set aside.
  4. Transfer the leftover sauce from the cooker to a small saucepan. Simmer over medium heat, stirring often with a whisk or fork, until the sauce comes together and starts to reduce, about 10 minutes.
  5. Toss the shredded chicken with the sauce and serve with warm tortillas, salsas, and shredded cabbage.

Pita Amor

Mexican poet, Pita Amor is remembered for her rebellious nature. This drink is pretty rebellious by nature, too.

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