Mediterranean Chicken Salad

Mediterranean Chicken Salad

 The Spruce / Anita Schecter

Prep: 15 mins
Cook: 10 mins
Marinade: 60 mins
Total: 85 mins
Servings: 4 servings
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
782 Calories
38g Fat
59g Carbs
50g Protein
See Full Nutritional Guidelines Hide Full Nutritional Guidelines
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4
Amount per serving
Calories 782
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 38g 49%
Saturated Fat 8g 41%
Cholesterol 119mg 40%
Sodium 1147mg 50%
Total Carbohydrate 59g 21%
Dietary Fiber 4g 16%
Total Sugars 5g
Protein 50g
Vitamin C 17mg 86%
Calcium 248mg 19%
Iron 5mg 30%
Potassium 712mg 15%
*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.)

Sometimes the simplest dinners are the best ones, and that is definitely true when the weather is hot. Salads are ideal warm-weather food but, on their own, not hearty or filling enough for a big meal. But, adding some grilled chicken and toasted pita bread instantly helps to round out this fare.

Although you'll need to leave a little time to marinate the chicken, it will be well worth it for the additional boost in flavor. And if you can't give the marinating a full hour, even 30 minutes will help to enhance the flavor of the chicken. The actual grilling, though, goes very fast since it does not take long at all to cook chicken breast. Mediterranean flavors like oregano, olives, feta cheese, and a simple olive oil and lemon juice dressing are perfect for these easy summer meals.

This recipe is also doubly easy because the dressing and marinade are the same. Just make a double batch, separate half for the dressing, and use the remaining half to marinate the chicken. One step, two uses. What could be better than that? And, of course, it means the flavors of the cooked chicken and the salad dressing will complement each other wonderfully.

Ingredients

For the Marinade/Dressing:

  • 1/2 cup olive oil

  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice

  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

For the Salad:

  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts

  • 2 cups baby spinach, or other salad greens

  • 1/2 medium red onion, thinly sliced

  • 2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved

  • 1/2 cup black olives, pitted and halved

  • 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese

  • 4 pitas

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the half cup of olive oil, a quarter cup of lemon juice, dried oregano, salt, and ground black pepper.

  3. Reserve half in a separate bowl for the dressing. Add the chicken breasts in the remaining half of the marinade and make sure they are fully coated. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for about an hour, but no more than 4 hours.

  4. Heat an outdoor grill or indoor grill pan to approximately 400 F.

  5. Grill the chicken on one side for about 5 minutes, flip, and grill for an additional 5 minutes or until it is cooked through and no longer pink.

  6. Slice the chicken lengthwise.

  7. In a separate bowl, toss together the baby spinach or other salad greens, cherry tomatoes, sliced red onion, olives, and feta cheese. Pour on the dressing and toss together.

  8. Assemble the salad on a platter and top with the sliced, grilled chicken, and toasted pita bread.

Tips

  • When marinating, do not marinate more than 4 hours, or else the lemon juice will begin to break down the chicken.
  • Be sure to discard the marinade the chicken was in and only use the reserved marinade as the dressing.

Recipe Variation

  • Optional Additions: Diced bell peppers, sliced English (seedless) cucumbers, or sliced avocados.