This is the BEST chicken salad recipe. It could not be easier or more delicious. With chicken, cranberries, apples, and pecans, it’s full of wonderful flavors and textures.
Enjoy a scoop on its own as a low carb option or serve it as a sandwich on a croissant or soft dinner rolls. Or enjoy these ingredients as an appetizer with our Chicken Salad Pinwheels!
Best Chicken Salad Recipe
I want to be that person who invented egg salad and chicken salad. I mean, that person deserves a gold medal. Yummy, versatile, classic.
Even though this particular chicken salad has been floating around for ages, I was only introduced to it a few years ago by a friend. I was practically mesmerized by all the ingredients she was mixing together. Dried cranberries, apples, and pecans? It all seemed so odd…and yet wonderful. I knew immediately how much I would love it.
I’ve been making it this way ever since and everyone I serve it to begs for the recipe.
Is Chicken Salad Healthy?
Depending on the ingredients (and how much!), chicken salad can definitely be healthy and a great choice for lunch or dinner. The biggest culprit of making it unhealthy is the mayonnaise and how much you use, since it is high in fats and calories.
How many calories in chicken salad? This particular recipe uses a combination of mayo and plain Greek yogurt and is 411 calories per serving.How many carbs in chicken salad? This recipe weighs in at only 9 carbs per serving.
What Goes in Chicken Salad?
Chicken salad is very versatile, a lot of times using what you have on hand. I always used to make mine with chicken, mayo, celery, and some seasonings. But I realized I had been missing out. Try it with the following ingredients, you’ll be glad you did!(Scroll below to the printable recipe card for all the measurements and details.)
- Chicken: Seasoned baked chicken breast or rotisserie chicken that’s completely cooled and chopped.
- Dressing: Mayonnaise, plain Greek yogurt, and mustard.
- Seasonings: Onion powder, kosher salt, and pepper.
- Mix-ins: Dried cranberries, chopped pecans, and diced apple.
- Chicken Salad Sandwich: Simply put the mixture on a croissant or soft dinner rolls with some fresh baby spinach or lettuce, if serving as a sandwich.
There are a ton of variations on this recipe, of course. I love my ingredient combination that I don’t ever mess with it, but feel free to experiment!
- Chicken – Baked or roasted chicken is best, but if you’re in a pinch, we’ve made this with canned chicken and it’s still delicious.
- Sour cream – Replace the Greek yogurt with sour cream.
- Add grapes – Chicken salad with grapes is so good! Halve them and sub in for the dried cranberries.
- Try a different nut – Try sliced almonds instead of pecans.
- Add spice – A dash of curry powder gives it a different flavor.
- Celery – Toss in a little diced up celery for added crunch.
- Got leftover turkey from Thanksgiving? That would be great in this recipe, too!
How To Make Chicken Salad
Put together this easy chicken salad in just 10 minutes with only a few simple ingredients.(Scroll below to the printable recipe card for all the measurements and details.)
- Make the dressing. In a large bowl, whisk together all the dressing ingredients.
- Prep the chicken. Chop cooked and cooled chicken and place into the bowl with the dressing.
- Add the other ingredients. Gently fold in the cranberries, pecans, and apple.
- Serve on its own or piled high on dinner rolls or a croissant. Or enjoy on a sliced tomato and bed of lettuce.
How to Store
- How long does chicken salad last? Chicken salad should be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator and will keep up to 3 days. Give it a gentle stir to reincorporate the dressing and ingredients.
- Can you freeze chicken salad? Unfortunately, chicken salad does not freeze well because of the mayonnaise and Greek yogurt. For meal prep, just make the chicken ahead of time and then you’ve got lunch in minutes.
More Classic Salad Recipes:
- Pea Salad
- Egg Salad
- Fruit Salad
- Tuna Salad with Egg
- Macaroni Salad
- Potato Salad
- Cucumber Tomato Salad
I hope you love this delicious and simple recipe – be sure to give it a review below! Also don’t forget to follow Belly Full on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and YouTube!
For more information, please see more information about Ingredients for a chicken salad