50+ Easy Chicken Salad Recipes to Beat the Heat
It's hard to top a good chicken salad, especially when summer temps start to rise. They're a great way to use up leftover or rotisserie chicken, meaning you won't have to turn on the stove or oven to get the meal ready. You can go cool, creamy and traditional with just some mayonnaise and pickle relish, or branch out and experiment with different flavors and combinations to find your new favorite chicken salad recipe.
Greek-Style Chicken Salad
This Greek-style main dish salad features parsley salad topped with homemade chicken salad and pita chips.
The Best Chicken Salad Recipe Ever
This 20-minute chicken salad is creamy, flavorful, and packed full of healthy veggies and protein-rich chicken. Use store-bought rotisserie chicken to save even more time on busy weekdays.
Chicken Salad in Lettuce Cups
Tarragon Chicken Salad Sandwiches
Fresh tarragon infuses this picnic-perfect chicken salad with lovely anise notes. However, feel free to separate part of the salad into a bowl before adding the tarragon for a couple of kid-friendlier servings.
Avocado Chicken Salad
Fresh, tasty, and delicious is how this 5-star, avocado chicken salad recipe is commonly described. Even better than Wendy's Southwest Avocado Chicken Salad (seriously), this particular recipe uses vinaigrette instead of mayonnaise but doesn’t lose its creamy texture, thanks to avocado. Salsa and fresh cilantro give this easy chicken salad its south-of-the-border flavors. So, instead of layering over a bed of greens, serve with tortilla chips for scooping and an added crunch. This recipe works for any week day lunch or even for a Cinco de Mayo celebration.
Creamy Tarragon Chicken Salad
A combo of yogurt and mayo gives a traditional chicken salad more zip. We like the richness of white and dark meat, but you can use all one type. Serve with Steamed Sugar Snap Peas.
Curried Chicken Salad
Spice up a plain chicken salad with curry powder and add grapes for sweetness and chopped walnuts for crunch. Serve the salad in radicchio cups for an elegant presentation.
Waldorf Chicken Salad
Add chicken and grapes to the classic chopped apple salad to make it a hearty main dish.
Chicken Salad with Grapes and Pecans
Use both mayonnaise and sour cream to add creaminess to this classic chicken salad. Grapes, pecans and chopped celery all contribute texture, flavor and color to the salad.
Chicken and Couscous Salad
A great way to use leftover chicken, this 20-minute dinner salad calls for quick-cooking couscous and lots of brightly flavored herbs. Serve it with crackers or over a bed of greens.
Curried Chicken Salad with Apples and Raisins
Using grilled herbed chicken adds extra flavor to chicken salad. This chunky main dish salad features chopped apple, celery and raisins, plus a little kick from the curry.
Chicken Salad With Grapes and Pecans
When you need a traditional Southern chicken salad recipe, this is the one to use. It's full of halved grapes and chopped pecans, and the dressing is a creamy blend of mayonnaise and sour cream. Enjoy it on its own, or serve with crackers.
Chicken Salad with Olive Vinaigrette
Instead of a creamy mayonnaise base, this chicken salad has a citrusy olive oil vinaigrette that you combine with chunks of chicken, kalamata olives, capers, and tender Israeli couscous. It's a great option for picnics or lunch at the office.
Chicken Salad in Radicchio Cups
Combine shredded rotisserie chicken with shredded carrots and sliced scallions, then mix with a light Dijon mustard vinaigrette for a tangy, colorful salad.
In addition to chopped celery and toasted pecans, this salad also has sweetened dried cranberries sprinkled into the chicken mixture. The mayonnaise-and-honey dressing is reminiscent of poppy seed dressing.
Add both crunch and color to a chicken salad with chopped red and yellow bell pepper, diced celery, and red onion. Because it's made with shredded chicken, you can easily spoon the salad onto crackers or sliced bread.
Cha-Cha Chicken Salad
Impress your guests with this creamy chicken salad that's pressed into a mold and inverted onto a cake stand. Press chopped almonds into the side and surround the chicken salad with fresh herbs and fruit for an over-the-top presentation.
Rosemary Chicken Salad Sandwiches
Fresh rosemary and smoked almonds elevate the usual sandwich chicken salad to new heights, yet using rotisserie chicken breast keeps prep quick and simple.
Fruity, Curried Chicken Salad
Barley Salad with Chicken, Goat Cheese, and Walnuts
Pearled barley is convenient and relatively quick-cooking; if you want to make this a whole-grain salad, you'll need to choose hulled barley, which takes about an hour to cook.
Creamy Chicken Salad with Pita Chips
Prepare these homemade pita chips and creamy chicken salad for an easy after-school snack.
Chicken Salad with Bok Choy, Almonds, and Apricots
Use Chicken and Mushroom Stroganoff chicken to make this fresh main dish salad.
Honey-Lemon Chicken Salad
This sweet and tangy chicken salad features honey, lemon juice, apple, almonds, red onion, and more.
Chicken Salad in Lettuce Cups
How to Make Chicken-Horseradish Salad
Horseradish takes this humble chicken salad up a couple of spicy notches.
Chicken and Edamame Couscous Salad
Dried cranberries complement the sweet and tangy dressing on this salad, while roasted peanuts contribute a nice crunch.
Creamy Blueberry Chicken Salad
Red onion and celery add texture to this quick chicken salad. Blueberries have thick skins, so they won't break apart when tossed with the chicken.
Chicken Salad Melts
For a touch more sweetness, substitute halved grapes for the apple. You can also chop the apple and add it to the salad mixture.
Chicken Salad with Mango and Apple
Combine shredded rotisserie chicken with Greek-style yogurt, honey, curry powder, apple, mango, and more to make this tasty chicken salad.
Curried Chicken and Grape Salad
Curried Chicken and Grape Salad makes a hearty one-dish meal, but it's equally as good when spooned onto slices of bread for sandwiches.
Lemon-Basil Chicken Salad
Baby spinach and sun-dried tomatoes add flavor and color to Lemon-Basil Chicken Salad. Serve this tasty chicken salad on whole grain flatbread.
Chicken Salad Tarts
Spoon your favorite store-bought chicken salad into mini phyllo cups and top with basil sprigs, mango slices, and blackberries for what might be the easiest appetizer ever.
Mixed Fruit Chicken Salad
For extra fiber and a boost of antioxidants, serve Mixed Fruit Chicken Salad over dark greens.
Strawberry Chicken Salad
Strawberry Chicken Salad is the quintessential spring salad, celebrating the sweet taste of the season with fresh strawberries and fresh-from-the-garden basil.
Tzatziki Chicken Salad
We made a classic Greek sauce of creamy yogurt and cucumber for the base of this tangy salad. Serve with Mixed Greens Salad.
Chicken-Arugula Salad Open-Faced Sandwiches
This chunky chicken salad features an olive oil vinaigrette instead of mayonnaise and is spooned over one slice of toasted gluten-free bread along with fresh arugula and tomato slices.
Cashew Chicken Salad
If you have extra cooked chicken on hand, then make this salad, which tosses together in 6 minutes. Mix cashews into the salad, crush and sprinkle them on top, or simply omit them if you'd like. Serve it in a sandwich or with whole-grain crackers.
Poppy Seed Chicken Salad
Go tropical and substitute chopped pineapple for the grapes and macadamia nuts for the pecans. Stir in about 1/2 cup coconut for more island flavor.
Chipotle Chicken Salad
Add some kick to your chicken salad with roasted red peppers, chipotle chili peppers and cilantro.
Avocado Chicken Salad Sandwiches
Avocado gives this chicken salad a rich, creamy texture as well as a healthy dose of monounsaturated fat, which protects against heart disease.
Chicken Salad with Asparagus and Creamy Dill Dressing
This tasty salad is perfect for evenings when you're looking for a quick, no-fuss meal. We hand-pulled large pieces of chicken from a cooked chicken breast to achieve a chunky texture. Serve with crackers to complete the meal.
Curried Chicken Salad Sandwiches
If you don't want to make all eight sandwiches at once, simply keep the chicken salad in the refrigerator and assemble the sandwiches as desired.
Cranberry-Almond Chicken Salad
Party Chicken Salad
The juice from the peaches adds a sweet note to this luncheon favorite. Serve on a bed of baby lettuces tossed with blackberries.
Mediterranean Chicken Salad Pitas
Make your chicken salad Mediterranean-style with the addition of Greek yogurt, green olives, and chickpeas, and serve in pita bread halves. Greek yogurt has a thick, rich consistency similar to sour cream. Add honeydew melon and cantaloupe slices on the side.
Lemon Cashew Chicken Salad
This unusual, fresh-tasting version of chicken salad is lower in fat than the standard but not at all dry, thanks to the thick, creamy yogurt that replaces half the mayo.
Lemon-Tarragon Chicken Salad
When fresh tarragon isn't available, substitute 1 1/2 tsp. dried crushed tarragon.
Crunchy Ramen Chicken Salad with Spicy Peanut Dressing
If you never thought you’d be reaching for a package of instant ramen to create an impressive (even company-worthy!) meal—think again. This crunchy noodle chicken salad is loaded with vibrant flavor and dynamic texture that everyone will love, and the salty-sweet peanut dressing definitely seals the deal.
Buffalo Chicken Salad
When you need an instant party, tailgate, or even a basic weekday meal prep winner, this Buffalo Chicken Salad has your back. It couldn’t be easier to mix up, and you’ll love the bright tang that Buffalo sauce, a squeeze of lemon, and crumbles of blue cheese add to creamy chicken salad. We love serving this Buffalo Chicken Salad on slider buns for easy entertaining, but you could just easily serve as lettuce wraps or with sturdy crackers.
Chicken Salad-Stuffed Tomatoes
This light and fresh supper will hit the spot on a hot summer night—which also happens to be when the best tomatoes are in season. This easy recipe calls for just five ingredients (plus salt and pepper) and doesn’t require you to heat up the kitchen, thanks to a rotisserie chicken. Serve the stuffed tomatoes with crusty bread and mixed greens for a refreshingly simple meal.
Kung Pao Chicken Salad
Creamy chicken salad gets a major punch of personality with this wow-worthy, kung pao makeover. Featuring all of the flavors you know and love about kung pao chicken, the incredible savory-sweet dressing only gets tastier as it sits, so feel free to prep your chicken salad in advance and allow it some time to chill in the refrigerator.