Chicken Salad

Picture of Chicken Salad
A tasty Asian-inspired variation on chicken salad.
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Step 1: Prepare chicken

Picture of Prepare chicken
You'll need cooked chicken. If you've got leftovers that's great- proceed directly to chopping.

I had a number of chicken breasts on hand, so I sprayed a pan with canola oil, added my chicken, covered the pieces with ground pepper (turning them to ensure full coverage) then cooked them at 350F until they just started turning golden-brown on top. Make sure the juices run clear when you slice into the middle of the thick pieces. If you're colorblind make sure you've got an assistant on hand who can tell the difference between pink and clear juices. Pink is undercooked; dry is overcooked. We want the happy medium.

If you start the meat cooking before chopping the vegetables the timing will work out very nicely.

When the chicken is cooked chop it into bite-size pieces and set aside.

Step 2: Add base ingredients

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1 purple onion, finely chopped
1 large red bell pepper, finely chopped
4 stalks celery, finely chopped
1c mayonnaise
2-3T good mustard

These are your base ingredients. Chop the vegetables well, then stir.

Step 3: Incorporate additional ingredients

Picture of Incorporate additional ingredients
chicken, chopped
1 bunch cilantro, chopped
1 cup raisins

Add and stir. Look at the color combination- do you like the balance of red, green, purple, brown, and white? Do you want more crunch (celery) or sweetness (raisins)? Add more of your favored bits as necessary.

Step 4: Season

Picture of Season
1 lime, zested and juiced
3 large cloves garlic, grated
1 inch ginger, grated
salt and pepper to taste

Optional seasonings:
seasoned rice vinegar
white pepper
sriracha chili sauce (rooster sauce)

Mix in the seasonings above; taste to check, and modify if needed. The optional seasonings are exactly that, and shouldn't all be added together. I'm particularly partial to allspice, but it and the other subtle spices would likely get lost under much sriracha. The rice vinegar is helpful if the salad is too dry, while sriracha obviously adds heat. Play around with your spicing- sniff containers, make small mixes in a spoon to try, and see what you like, or at least what you feel like eating today. There's no right or wrong here- just your taste.
crazylam152 years ago
Nice idea with the lettuce cups :)
I wonder, do you think the Mayo could be replaced by something like Greek Yogurt or some such? I honestly can't stand Mayo, but would love to try this recipe.
joeslops4 years ago
looks so very tasty!
Chicken Salad! Yes!
canida (author)  Yerboogieman5 years ago
Let me know if you make it!
I'll make it with Baconaise.
Baconaise?  I just realised that I've wasted my life.  Well thus far anyway.  Baconaise???  Of course.  Maybe with extra smokiness.
bFusion5 years ago
I made this last night, it turned out fantastic. I couldn't find any of the lettuce you talked about at my grocery, but I just took romaine leaves and that works just as well. One thing to note for those keeping track of calories is that it calls for a LOT of mayo... you could probably get by with a lighter coating by using a half cup (and be sure to reduce the mustard as well, then!) Thanks for posting this, it's a very versatile recipe!
maven7 years ago
I put grapes and diced apple in mine. I may try the raisins.
canida (author)  maven5 years ago
That sounds good!  Raisins are a bit sweeter per bite, so it depends on your tastes, but the added crunch of apple goes beautifully with chicken salad.  Nice modification!
fatboyslim7 years ago
Ohhh That looks sooo good. Im definitely making that now
canida (author)  fatboyslim5 years ago
How did it go?
Delicious! I roasted a whole chicken for this and added a jalapeno. We had it on butter lettuce... Best chicken salad ever!
canida (author)  Trust_in_Dust5 years ago
Awesome.  Raw jalapeno, or roasted?
Lettuce + chicken salad is just too good.
Cedfelix8 years ago
This looked so good that I made it last night. It is as good at it looks, but I suggest only using half the onion, and go light on the cilantro. They both overpowered mine. Another idea to keep it silverware free is to stuff it in a pita. Besides that, totally go out and make this, it is excellent!
canida (author)  Cedfelix8 years ago
Glad you liked it! I shoud probably post warnings on my recipes: we're huge onion/garlic fans, so modify as necessary. I'm a firm believer in treating recipes as very rough guidelines, so I'm glad you made it work for you.
I read this at work durihng my lunch break and you are making me feel very hungry! Pete
jerbtown8 years ago
That is an absolutely perfect lettuce leaf.
canida (author)  jerbtown8 years ago
SF bay area farmers' markets are just about the best thing ever. We've gotten SO spoiled.
TristanW8 years ago
I love chicken salad. P.S. Nice photos