Easy Chicken Salad Recipe

recipe

Homemade Chicken Salad Recipe with Grapes

The past couple of weeks my husband and I have been talking about having food for him to eat at work that he can grab during the day. He is one busy man and sometimes lunch just doesn’t happen. He’ll work right through it or grab a spoonful of peanut butter to hold him over. I’m not okay with it! He’s 6’5″ and NEEDS to have food in his belly! Enter this easy chicken salad recipe. It’s the perfect make-ahead lunch! Packed with lean protein from the chicken breasts and greek yogurt, it’s ideal for salads, sandwiches, wraps – you name it.

how to shred chicken in a stand mixer

What Are the Main Ingredients in Chicken Salad?

This healthy, Keto-friendly chicken salad recipe only needs a handful of simple ingredients:

  • Chicken Breasts
  • Pecans
  • Grapes
  • Green Onion
  • Mayo
  • Greek Yogurt
  • Mustard
  • Herbs & Spices

I like to add some tang to my salad and cut the calories by adding greek yogurt and mustard instead of JUST mayo. A squeeze of fresh lemon juice can add so much to any dish and really make it pop! This recipe has the perfect amount of sauce versus chicken and grapes.

My Simple Trick for Making Shredded Chicken Breasts

Shredded chicken breast is the foundation of this salad but I’m not a big fan of standing at the counter trying to shred chicken breasts with forks. It takes too long! So instead I cook my chicken breasts and then use the paddle attachment in my KitchenAid stand mixer to shred the cooked chicken. Any cooking method works for this so just go with your favorite. You can boil, roast, grill or pan sear your chicken breasts then toss them in the stand mixer with the paddle attachment. Set your mixer to high speed and let it do all the hard work for you in about 45 seconds. 

How to Make Chicken Salad

Chicken Salad can be a really easy recipe to make and a great option for a healthy lunch to have on hand during the week! Serve it between two slices of bread or a lettuce cup for a low carb option!

  1. Cook and Shred Your Chicken: Cook your chicken – either roast, boil, grill or pan sear. Once your chicken is cooked, then shred it using forks or my stand mixer method mentioned above. 
  2. Make the Sauce: Most chicken salad sauces have a mayonnaise base. However, for this chicken salad I use greek yogurt, mustard, a small amount of mayonnaise, lemon juice, smoked paprika (for a smoky flavor), sage and garlic powder. This sauce is savory and tart but balances so well with the chicken and sweet grapes.
  3. Add Extras: Most people add fruit, hardboiled eggs, celery, nuts or onions for a little added flavor.
  4. Mix: Add your chicken, sauce and extra ingredients to one bowl. Use a large wooden spoon and stir everything together. 
close up on easy classic healthy chicken salad recipe

Mix In Ideas

One of the best things about chicken salad is how easy it is to customize. This recipe has pecans and grapes, but you can sub these ingredients or add in more according to your preferences. Here are some variation ideas:

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  • Pickles
  • Hard boiled eggs
  • Veggies – Green onions, olives, diced bell pepper, and of course the classic celery!
  • Fresh or dried fruit – Diced apples, dry cranberries or even dry cherries are all tasty options.
  • Nuts – Cashews and walnuts would be delicious alternative to pecans.
  • Avocado – Add mashed avocado to your salad just before serving.

Really the options are endless. Go with your fav and dig in.

Serving Suggestions

This is one of the most versatile, protein-packed recipes you can make! I love to serve it on top of salads or wrapped in lettuce leaves for a low carb alternative to sandwiches. But of course this recipe also makes an amazing chicken salad sandwich. You can also use tortillas to make chicken salad wraps, or croissants to make things a bit fancy!

How to Store Leftovers

Chicken salad will last for 5-7 days when stored in an air tight container and refrigerated. Give it a good stir when you take it out and maybe refresh the flavor with a pinch of black pepper, then serve!

Can I Freeze Chicken Salad?

I would not recommend freezing chicken salad. It tends to get watery after thawing out. However, if you choose to freeze it. Place it in a freezer safe storage bag, remove all the air from the bag and store up to two months. When ready to serve, thaw out in the refrigerator for 24 hours. I would highly recommend adding more mayo to thicken it up or it will be runny.

easy healthy chicken salad recipe on lettuce cups

If you’re in a need of a healthy and easy lunch idea, this recipe is it! It feeds an army and is freakin delicious!

Bon Appetit friends!

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