Classic Hot Chicken Salad

Chicken salad
Hot baked chicken salad. Diana Rattray
  • Total: 32 mins
  • Prep: 15 mins
  • Cook: 17 mins
  • Yield: 1 casserole (4 to 6 servings)
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
748 Calories
57g Fat
24g Carbs
33g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 1 casserole (4 to 6 servings)
Amount per serving
Calories 748
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 57g 74%
Saturated Fat 15g 73%
Cholesterol 115mg 38%
Sodium 852mg 37%
Total Carbohydrate 24g 9%
Dietary Fiber 3g 12%
Protein 33g
Calcium 255mg 20%
*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.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

This hot chicken salad is a baked casserole made with chicken salad ingredients and a cheese-and-breadcrumb topping. Toasted almonds and toasted bread crumbs give the salad extra texture and flavor. 

Serve this easy hot chicken salad with sliced fresh tomatoes or broccoli salad for a tasty everyday meal. It's a great choice for lunch or dinner menus. 

Use a purchased rotisserie chicken or leftover cooked chicken in this recipe.

Ingredients

  • 3 cups chicken (cooked and cubed)
  • 2 cups celery (thinly sliced)
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/2 cup toasted slivered almonds
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice (freshly squeezed)
  • 2 tablespoons onion (finely chopped)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt (or to taste)
  • 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese or a cheddar-jack combination
  • 1 1/2 cups toasted breadcrumbs (divided)
  • 2 tablespoons butter (melted)
  • Garnish: chopped green onion or parsley

Steps to Make It

  1. Preheat oven to 425 F.

  2. Butter a 2-quart baking dish or baking pan.

  3. Combine the cubed cooked chicken, celery, mayonnaise, toasted almonds, lemon juice, and chopped onion in a bowl. Taste and add salt, if needed.

  4. Stir 1/2 cup of the toasted bread crumbs into the chicken mixture.

  5. Spoon the chicken salad mixture into the prepared baking dish.

  6. Sprinkle with the shredded cheese.

  7. Toss the remaining 1 cup of toasted breadcrumbs with the melted butter. Sprinkle over the cheese layer.

  8. Bake the casserole for 15 to 20 minutes, until the topping has browned and the filling is bubbly around the edges.

  9. Garnish with chopped green onion tops or parsley, if desired.

  10. Serve the chicken hot with cooked rice and a tossed salad, steamed broccoli, or green beans.

Recipe Variations

  • Add diced cooked bacon to the chicken salad mixture for an extra kick of flavor.
  • Lighten the salad up a bit with light mayonnaise and low-fat cheese.

Toasted Almonds

  1. To toast the almonds, spread them out in a single layer in a dry skillet.

  2. Place the skillet over medium heat and cook, stirring constantly, until the almonds are lightly browned and aromatic.

  3. Remove to a plate or bowl immediately so they won't over brown.

Toasted Breadcrumbs

  1. To make homemade toasted breadcrumbs, heat the oven to 325 F.

  2. Cut or tear fresh or day-old bread into small pieces.

  3. Spread out on a large rimmed baking sheet.  

  4. Sprinkle with a small amount of kosher salt, if desired.

  5. Bake for about 12 to 14 minutes, or until dry and lightly browned.

  6. Crush the dried bread coarsely or finely and use in the recipe.

  7. Freeze extra bread crumbs in a zip-close food storage bag.

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