|Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)|
Apple pecan chicken salad is a fan-favorite main dish salad recipe. The combination of tender chicken, crisp pecans, tart apples, and a creamy honey mustard dressing is fantastic.
Like all chicken salads, using a rotisserie chicken often brings the best results. Most other chicken cooking methods don't come close to matching the tender result of these grocery store birds. There's just something about roasting chickens while on a spit that results in the most tender and flavorful meat. Remove the meat from the bird and cut it into large chunks.
You can cook your own chicken for this apple pecan chicken salad recipe. Try baking chicken breasts, on the bone or off, in parchment paper, or simmer them gently in water until they just reach 160°F. When the meat stands after cooking, the temperature will rise to 165°F, which is the safe final temperature for chicken breasts. Or try cooking a whole chicken on a rotisserie on your grill; you need special equipment and instructions for that task. You can cook large batches of chicken this way, let the meat cool, cube it, then store it in the freezer in 2 cup portions for recipes like this one.
You can double or triple this recipe if you'd like. When hot summer weather is at hand, there's nothing nicer than having a huge batch of fabulous apple pecan chicken salad in the fridge, ready and waiting for you. Just add some bakery muffins or breadsticks, some iced tea or white wine, and you have a fabulous meal with absolutely no cooking at all.
In a medium bowl, combine the mayonnaise, honey mustard, lemon juice, and salt and pepper to taste.
Stir in the cooked chicken, the chopped apple, pecans, and dried cherries or cranberries to coat.
Cover and chill the salad for 1 to 2 hours before serving.
Store any leftovers, well covered, in the refrigerator up to three days.