|Nutrition Facts (per serving)|
|Amount per serving|
|% Daily Value*|
|Total Fat 23g||30%|
|Saturated Fat 4g||21%|
|Total Carbohydrate 16g||6%|
|Dietary Fiber 2g||9%|
|Total Sugars 12g|
|Vitamin C 5mg||27%|
|*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.|
This tasty chicken salad is filled with flavor. The crunchy apples, cranberries, and nuts make it extra special and offer great texture, and the lemon, mayonnaise, and dash of curry powder create a creamy consistency with a bit of zing. This recipe includes basic instructions for cooking chicken breasts on the stovetop, but it's also an excellent way to use leftover chicken, rotisserie chicken, or prepackaged fully cooked chicken breast strips.
Serve this well-seasoned chicken salad on sliced ciabatta or another type of bread as a sandwich, or spoon into lettuce leaves for a lighter luncheon. The salad can be served in tortillas or wraps as well.
"I LOVE the combination of nuts and dried fruit, so this recipe was heaven for me! The toasted walnuts gave the chicken salad a strong and rich aroma and were my favorite part. I would recommend letting it sit in the fridge for few hours so that the flavors blend together." —Tara Omidvar
3 to 4 boneless chicken breasts
Freshly ground black pepper
Olive oil, as needed, for cooking chicken
1/4 cup walnuts, chopped (or slivered almonds or toasted pecans), optional
1/4 cup dried cranberries
1/2 cup diced celery
2 to 3 tablespoons finely chopped red onion
1/2 cup diced apple
4 to 6 tablespoons mayonnaise, or to taste
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
1/8 teaspoon curry powder, or to taste, optional
1 avocado, sliced, optional
Good-quality bread or sliced sandwich buns, optional
Gather the ingredients.
Pound the chicken breasts between 2 sheets of plastic wrap to an even thickness. Season both sides with salt and pepper.
Place a lightly oiled skillet over medium heat. Add the chicken breasts to the hot skillet and cook them for about 6 minutes, or until browned on one side.
Flip and continue cooking for about 5 minutes longer, or until cooked through. (Do not overcook.) The minimum safe temperature for chicken is 165 F. Set aside
Put the nuts, if using, in a dry skillet over medium heat. Cook, shaking the skillet, stirring, and turning the nuts constantly until they are lightly browned and aromatic. This should take 3 to 4 minutes.
Immediately pour the toasted nuts onto a plate to stop the cooking process.
Dice the cooked chicken into bite-sized chunks.
In a bowl, combine the chicken, cranberries, celery, red onion, apple, and walnuts, if using.
In a cup or small bowl, combine 4 tablespoons of mayonnaise, the lemon juice, curry powder, if using, 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper.
Stir the mayonnaise mixture into the chicken, adding more mayonnaise as needed for moisture and for flavor.
Serve the chicken salad on lettuce-lined plates with slices of avocado. Or line bread with lettuce leaves and spread the chicken salad on the lettuce.
- Instead of curry powder, consider adding a dash of Creole or Cajun seasoning to taste.
- Halved seedless red grapes may be used in place of the dried cranberries, or you can replace the dried cranberries with raisins or goji berries.
- If you prefer the chicken salad cold, place it in the refrigerator for about 1 hour before serving.
How to Store
Homemade chicken salad will last three to five days in the refrigerator when placed in an airtight container. Make sure not to leave it out on the counter for more than two hours; if left at room temperature for too long, there is potential for bacteria growth and food poisoning.
Is Chicken Salad Bad for You?
Depending on what you put in your chicken salad will determine whether it is healthy or not—most often, how much mayonnaise is in the recipe is the deciding factor. If you are looking to cut calories, you can use light mayonnaise instead of regular.