Wondering if you can make chicken salad with a certain ingredient? Chances are you can, but find out the best ingredients that make amazing salad varieties.
You have eaten plenty of chicken salad before. Now that you are throwing a batch together, you may be a little fuzzy on the exact foods that go in the salad.
Not to worry. This guide will answer all your questions about what ingredients you can put in chicken salad.
This article is broken into what kinds of chicken (and other meat) you can use, complementary ingredients, and types of dressings for the salad. Read on and find your specific answer. Plus, get some inspiration for unique varieties of the dish.
You may also be interested in learning how to make chicken salad in advance. It all depends on the ingredients you use. Check out my best tips.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with a Food Processor?
Using a food processor to shred chicken is one of the easiest ways to prep chicken salad. After cooking the chicken, cool it for a few minutes.
Then add the medium-small chunks of chicken to the food processor and pulse until the meat is shredded. Mix the chicken into any salad recipe.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Canned Chicken?
Opening a can of chicken is one of the easiest ways to assemble chicken salad. It makes prepping the salad quick and effortless.
Not all canned chicken is the same. The only canned chicken brand I recommend is Costco canned chicken. Each can has approximately 1 cup of shredded chicken. This size is perfect for a small family meal.
Do you have a canned chicken brand you like? Comment below and let me know.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Leftover Chicken?
It is a brilliant idea to use leftover chicken in chicken salad. It saves time because the chicken is already seasoned and cooked.
Wondering if you can freeze chicken salad? Find out all about when you can freeze the salad and when you can’t.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Chicken Breast?
Chicken breast is one of the best cuts of meat to toss into chicken salad. Boneless skinless chicken breast is painless to cook in the slow cooker, Instant Pot, or stove.
After cooking, shred the meat, cool it, and then assemble the salad.
If you want to cook chicken breast on the stove, check out my post on how to cook chicken on the stove without drying it out.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Chicken Thighs?
Chicken thighs are marvelous for chicken salad because the dark meat is tender and flavorful. When you have leftover thigh meat, plan to blend leftovers into a salad.
Be aware that prep will be longer because you need to strip the meat from the bone. However, the effort will be well worth it when you taste the appetizing meal.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Dark Meat?
You can compose chicken salad with dark meat. Dark meat is often moister and more tasty than white meat. Dark meat chicken salad will burst with flavor.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Ground Chicken?
Classic chicken salad is not usually prepared with ground chicken. Instead, shredded or cubed chicken is used.
If you want to use ground chicken in chicken salad, make a hot chicken salad or a zesty taco chicken salad. Both are inviting salads.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Fried Chicken or Leftover Fried Chicken?
You can produce a chicken salad with fried chicken. But first, peel the skin off before cutting the chicken up into the salad. Traditional chicken salad relies on moist chicken mixed with a dressing. The fried chicken skin does not fit into that recipe.
To use leftover fried chicken in the salad, peel the skin off and remove the meat from the bone. Then chop or shred the chicken before using it in the salad recipe.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with a Rotisserie Chicken or Leftover Rotisserie Chicken?
Use rotisserie chicken to compose a tasty chicken salad. The savory roasted flavor of the meat will be scrumptious in any salad recipe.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Boiled Chicken?
Boiled chicken is a terrific choice for chicken salad. The best chicken salad recipes have moist, shredded chicken. Boiled chicken is juicy and very easy to shred.
Either hand-shred the chicken or shred it in a food processor. You can also pulse it in a high-powered blender like a Vitamix blender.
You may be interested in my post on how to use a Vitamix blender. I run you through all the features so you can see what it is best for.
They also have superb customer service, as I share in the post on how I broke my container and Vitamix sent me a new one.
When you have the perfect chicken salad filling, you need an equally amazing sandwich topping. Check out some amazing chicken sandwich toppings.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Frozen Chicken?
You can prepare chicken salad with frozen cooked chicken after it thaws in the refrigerator. If the frozen chicken is uncooked, thaw it in the fridge and cook it before making the salad.
You can also quickly and safely cook frozen chicken in the Instant Pot for 11-12 minutes. Then mix it into the salad.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Grilled Chicken?
Grilled chicken tastes amazing in chicken salad. After pulling the meat off the grill, let it rest in an aluminum foil tent for 10 minutes.
Then dice it and create the salad.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Warm or Hot Chicken?
You can prepare the salad with warm chicken, but it is slightly different from the classic cold chicken salad.
Instead of using raw celery and onions in the salad, sauté them, along with green bell peppers as the chicken cooks.
Then mix everything together, top with crushed crackers, and bake in the oven. The ingredients are the same as the original chicken salad. But it is hot instead of served cold.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Turkey?
You can easily substitute turkey for chicken in chicken salad. This salad is a wonderful way to use leftover Thanksgiving turkey.
Substitute the turkey in equal proportions for the chicken.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Imitation Crab?
You can swap out chicken and replace it with imitation crab in chicken salad. You can also create the salad with both meats.
Add snow peas, celery, and green onions to the chicken and crab. Make a dressing with tartar sauce, horseradish, and sour cream.
Need a few ideas for bread? Check out all my suggestions for the best bread and non-bread alternatives for chicken salad.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Almonds?
You can make chicken salad with almonds. Panera Bread creates a Napa almond chicken salad sandwich. It has toasted sliced almonds in it. The chicken mixture is served with tomatoes and greens on sourdough bread.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Almonds and Walnuts?
Most chicken salad recipes with nuts include only one kind of nut. Although you can add almonds and walnuts, it might overwhelm the salad and make it especially nutty.
What nuts go in chicken salad? The most common nuts in a chicken salad are pecans, walnuts, and almonds. You can also try pine nuts, macadamia nuts, and even peanuts.
Lightly toast the nuts for added flavor.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Apples?
Many chicken salad recipes include apples. Apples add a fresh, sweet crunch to the dish. The apples are usually peeled before being chopped and added. However, you can use unpeeled apples if you prefer.
What kind of apples go with chicken salad? Choose crisp apples for chicken salad. Crisp apples stay fresh and crunchy for days when you have leftovers. Try these apple varieties.
- Granny Smith: tart and crisp
- Honeycrisp: sweet and crisp
- Gala: mildly sweet and crisp
- Fuji: sweet and crisp
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Apples and Walnuts?
Apples and walnuts are a fantastic combination to add to chicken salad. For best results, choose a crisp apple and toast the walnuts.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Avocado?
You can produce chicken salad with avocado chunks or mashed avocado dressing. Chicken and avocado are a refreshing combination.
Try composing the salad and then serving it in half of an avocado instead of on a slice of bread.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Honey Walnuts?
Honey walnuts are a splendid addition to chicken salad. They add a sweet crunch, along with Craisins, grapes, or apples.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Hard-Boiled Eggs?
Southern chicken salad is assembled with chicken and hard-boiled eggs. Don’t forget to include the dill pickle relish as a final touch.
Looking for perfect, moist hard-boiled eggs? Then read up on how to make hard-boiled eggs that peel easily.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Just Walnuts?
Generally, chicken salad is mixed with more than just walnuts. Other additions, such as celery, grapes, apples, and onions make the salad more complete.
However, if you do not have any other ingredients in stock, try the salad with just walnuts, a flavorful dressing, and plenty of sandwich toppings.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Jalapeno?
You can design a spicy chicken salad with jalapeno. Mix jalapeno, bacon, onion, and cream cheese with the chicken.
A tortilla is an outstanding way to serve this salad recipe. Chill it and cut the tortilla into pinwheels for an inviting appetizer.
Want to know the best way to cook bacon? Read my post on how to bake bacon in the oven to get crispy or chewy slices.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Kale?
A chicken salad can be built with kale. Generally, it is not a classic version of the recipe. Instead, it is a tossed green leaf salad.
If you love kale, check out the ultimate guide to all things kale.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Kidney Beans?
You can make chicken salad with kidney beans, but the recipe is not the classic salad used on sandwiches. Instead, the chicken and kidney bean salad is closer to a taco salad.
Season the chicken and beans with burrito spices. Then serve them on a bed of lettuce with tortilla chips as a garnish.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Lettuce?
When you construct chicken salad with lettuce, you can either use the lettuce as “bread” to make a sandwich. Or you can top the lettuce with the chicken mixture.
Both methods are refreshing and lighter than using bread. I recommend using lettuce as a summer meal. Don’t bother heating up your kitchen tonight.
Romaine lettuce is the best to use for a lettuce sandwich. Read the ultimate romaine lettuce guide to find out how to store, wash, and cut it.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Quinoa?
Chicken and quinoa salad is not a classic chicken salad served as a sandwich. Instead, it is a grain-based salad.
The quinoa is the base. Chicken, cheese, tomatoes, and cucumber top the quinoa. And a zesty vinaigrette moistens the salad. It is light and refreshing.
Ready to cook up a healthy bowl of quinoa? Learn how to make delicious, light, fluffy quinoa grains every time.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Quick Oats?
There are three ways to construct chicken salad with quick oats.
- Blend raw oats into powder. Then use the powder to thicken the salad dressing.
- Prepare the oatmeal. Stir it with the chicken and the other salad ingredients.
- Use the oat powder as a coating for chicken cutlets. Make a salad of greens and top with the meat.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Zoodles?
You can prepare chicken salad with zoodles. However, it is not ideal for serving this recipe on sandwiches. Zoodles are long and it is hard to keep them in a sandwich.
Instead, mix all the salad ingredients and serve on a bed of lettuce or in a quinoa bowl.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Zucchini?
It is simple to create chicken salad with zucchini. Slice or dice it and then add it raw to your classic chicken salad. It adds more nutrition to the dish and brings a hint of summertime.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Vegetables?
Vegetables are a wonderful addition to chicken salad. The most common vegetables in a classic chicken salad are celery and onions. Other terrific vegetables to add are grated carrots, corn, peas, and cucumbers.
Wondering if you can freeze chicken salad? It all depends on the ingredients in it. Check out this post on freezing chicken salad. You will get all the info and best practices for freezing it.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Italian Dressing?
You can prepare a delicious chicken salad with Italian dressing. When you use Italian dressing, you never need to worry that your sauce will separate. Unlike sour cream and some mayonnaise-based dressings might.
Italian dressing puts an interesting spin on the classic salad. Sprinkle in roasted red peppers, olives, and bacon. Serve the salad on Italian bread, and you will feel like you are stepping out of an Italian café.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Ketchup?
Although ketchup can taste good on chicken, chicken salad is not usually made with ketchup. However, some recipes dress the salad with a Louisiana-based remoulade sauce made with ketchup.
Remoulade is a mayonnaise-based cold sauce from France. Louisiana has its own version, generally made with hot sauce. However, some recipes use ketchup instead of hot sauce for a milder version.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Lemon Juice?
Lemon juice is a bright addition to chicken salad. Many chicken salad dressing recipes call for lemon juice, mayonnaise, and mustard.
And if you find your salad dry, try adding a splash of lemon juice before stirring in more mayonnaise or oil. The lemon juice moistens while keeping the salad light.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Miracle Whip?
Many chicken salad recipes call for Miracle Whip or another mayonnaise. Very simple recipes moisten the chicken only with Miracle Whip.
Keep in mind that Miracle Whip is sweeter than other brands of mayonnaise. Some salad ingredients are already sweet, so adding Miracle Whip might make the salad too sweet.
However, many people prefer the taste of Miracle Whip to other types of mayonnaise. If this is you, you will like Miracle Whip in your salad.
Try Instant Pot chicken salad with grapes. Use Miracle Whip in the dressing for a delicious flavor.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Ranch Dressing?
Ranch dressing is a zesty sauce to use in chicken salad. Add a little bacon, green onion, and parsley to make bacon ranch chicken salad.
The appealing perk of ranch dressing is that you can either add the prepared version or the ranch dressing packet to the salad.
Ranch dressing is versatile and so yummy with chicken.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Yogurt Instead of Mayo?
You can use yogurt instead of mayo in chicken salad. However, the sauce will be slightly thinner since yogurt is thinner.
Pro Tip: Drain the yogurt for a few minutes before mixing it into the salad. This helps keep the salad from getting too watery as it sits.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Plain Yogurt?
Adding plain yogurt to chicken salad is a great way to lighten the chicken salad dressing. Yogurt’s tangy flavor is a wonderful contrast to ingredients like cranberries, apples, and grapes.
Can you make chicken salad with vanilla yogurt? Using vanilla yogurt in chicken salad is not a good idea unless you are making a sweet dressing.
Combining vanilla yogurt, honey, lime juice, and poppy seeds can be an excellent dressing for chicken salad with grapes and apples.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Greek Yogurt?
Greek yogurt is the base for a delicious chicken salad sauce. Swap out the sour cream and replace it with Greek yogurt. Add dill, parsley, lemon juice, salt, and pepper for a light, tasty salad.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Sour Cream?
Sour cream is a wonderful choice to add to chicken salad to keep it moist. Many recipes call for mayonnaise or a combination of mayo and sour cream.
However, you can use sour cream only with no problems. Don’t forget to season with salt, pepper, dill, and parsley for a tasty dressing on your salad.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Cream Cheese?
The salad will be thicker when you produce chicken salad with cream cheese. This is ideal for making tortilla pinwheel appetizers.
Don’t forget to soften the cream cheese before mixing it.
Mix the softened cream cheese with the rest of the salad ingredients. Then spread it on the tortilla. Wrap the tortilla and chill it. When the cream cheese has thickened, slice the tortilla into pinwheels.
Looking for a cream cheese substitute? Check out all the healthy alternatives to cream cheese.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Almond Milk?
Almond milk does not go into chicken salad. Instead, chicken can be poached in almond milk before being shredded for the salad.
Did you know you can make your own almond milk? Check it out. It is way better than store-bought.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Honey?
You can create a sweeter chicken salad by combining honey with mayo, salt, and pepper. Do not combine honey with Miracle Whip, or it will be too sweet.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Honey Mustard Dressing?
Chicken salad tastes fantastic with honey mustard dressing. Design your own dressing with honey, mustard, and apple cider vinegar.
You can also use the honey mustard sauce to marinate the chicken before cooking it and making it into a salad.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Relish?
Both dill and sweet relish are excellent additions to chicken salad. Some claim that dill relish is the secret ingredient that transforms plain salad into mouthwatering, drool-worthy chicken salad.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Unsweetened Applesauce?
Unsweetened applesauce makes a unique dressing for chicken salad. Combine the applesauce with Greek yogurt, Dijon mustard, salt, and pepper. Add it to the rest of the salad ingredients to get a unique and mouthwatering meal.
Have you made homemade applesauce yet? Check out the best applesauce recipe without sugar.
Can You Make Chicken Salad with Vinegar?
Vinegar is one of the ingredients commonly found in dressing that goes into chicken salad. White vinegar, apple cider vinegar, and balsamic vinegar are the three most common kinds used.
Lemon or lime juice can take the place of vinegar as the acidic addition to the dressing.
Now that you know all the ingredients you can use in chicken salad, make your favorite version today.
Now that you know what you can make the salad with, you may wonder if you can leave out certain ingredients. Find out all about what items you can leave out of chicken salad that still tastes great.