Colorful Asian Chicken Salad Recipe

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I’ve had plenty of chicken salads in my life, but I wanted to mix up the flavors a little. This Asian salad with chicken is full of protein and delicious, crunchy veggies. It’s a feast for the eyes as much as your appetite!

It’s naturally gluten-free and dairy-free and you can even meal prep it ahead of time.

Asian Chicken Salad

There’s something about warmer weather that has me craving a crunchy, fresh salad. I like to keep several different ones in my meal rotation for a variety of flavors and nutrients. Instead of iceberg lettuce or romaine lettuce though, this Asian salad has more of a slaw base. I used napa and red cabbage, but you could also use green cabbage if that’s what you have. Cabbage is a cool weather crop so it’s the perfect main ingredient for a springtime salad!

I add colorful, crunchy veggies like carrots and snow peas for even more variety. Mandarin oranges add a touch of sweetness, and hearty chicken makes it a protein-rich meal. The best part though is the salad dressing. It has a lovely umami flavor from the coconut aminos, garlic, and toasted sesame oil. Then I use both maple syrup and honey to add a little sweetness.

What Chicken to Use

I pre-cook my proteins at the beginning of the week to make meal prep even easier. This recipe is also a great way to use up some leftover chicken breasts or rotisserie chicken. You can even use chicken thighs or grilled chicken if that’s what you have. I cook my chicken in some bone broth which makes it really tender and easy to shred. If you’re using grilled chicken it will need sliced instead.

To save time I don’t marinate my chicken like some Chinese chicken salad recipes do. If you want to add even more flavor though, then you can marinate your chicken in a few tablespoons of the sesame dressing for 30 minutes before cooking.

Garnish Ideas

These add yet another layer of crunch! Instead of chow mein noodles or ramen noodles though we’re using real food ingredients.

Toasted Sesame Vinaigrette

This just might be the star of the salad. I usually add olive oil to vinaigrettes but this version uses toasted sesame oil. It’s a little sweet, a little tangy, and full of flavor. The fresh garlic and ginger add a nice antimicrobial boost and a little spice. If you like your salad a little spicy you can add a little siracha or red pepper flakes to the dressing.

asian chicken salad

Asian Chicken Salad

This Asian Inspired chicken salad recipe isn’t just a quick meal idea; it’s a colorful, nutritious, and refreshing way to enjoy a variety of textures and flavors in one bowl.

For the Salad

  • 3 cups cooked chicken (shredded or chopped)
  • 1 cup red cabbage (finely shredded)
  • 1 small head of napa cabbage (finely shredded)
  • 1 cup carrots (grated or finely shredded)
  • 1 cup snow peas (sliced, optional for added crunch)
  • 1 cup mandarin orange slices (optional for a sweet burst)
  • ½ cup cashews (toasted, optional for extra crunch)
  • In a 16-ounce mason jar with a lid, combine the dressing ingredients; soy sauce, rice vinegar, sesame oil, maple syrup, honey, minced ginger, minced garlic, and sesame seeds (if using). Secure the lid and shake well until all ingredients are thoroughly mixed. Set aside.

  • In a large bowl, mix the shredded chicken, red cabbage, napa cabbage, carrots, snow peas, and mandarin oranges (if using).

  • Drizzle the salad dressing over the salad ingredients as needed (you might not use all of it) and gently toss to ensure everything is evenly coated.

  • Sprinkle on any desired garnishes and serve immediately for the best flavor.

Nutrition Facts

Asian Chicken Salad

Amount Per Serving (1 serving)

Calories 427
Calories from Fat 171

% Daily Value*

Fat 19g29%

Saturated Fat 3g19%

Trans Fat 0.01g

Polyunsaturated Fat 5g

Monounsaturated Fat 8g

Cholesterol 72mg24%

Sodium 438mg19%

Potassium 1373mg39%

Carbohydrates 36g12%

Fiber 6g25%

Sugar 20g22%

Protein 32g64%

Vitamin A 6942IU139%

Vitamin C 105mg127%

Calcium 261mg26%

Iron 3mg17%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

  • I like to add some homemade wonton strips and green onions to the top as a garnish. 
  • If you want to make this salad ahead of time, add the dressing and crispy garnishes right before serving. 

More Salad Ideas

Looking for more easy recipes to add some more crunch to your life? I love salad but having a variety throughout the week is key. Give one of these recipes a try!

What’s your favorite go-to healthy salad? Leave a comment and let us know!



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