Flavored with fresh ginger and lightly sweetened with honey, this Asian spin on Sonoma Chicken Salad features juicy mandarin oranges and salty, crunchy peanuts.
When warm weather hits, one of the first things I start to crave is chicken salad. For some reason, it just screams spring and summer to me, and it’s one of my favorite things to serve (and eat!) at the baby and bridal showers that seem to abound at this time of year.
And while I love fruity, nutty, slightly sweet Sonoma Chicken Salad, I’ve had fun over the years playing with my basic recipe to create new and exciting variations. For instance, last fall I shared my Chicken Salad with Apples & Cashews, brimming with (you’ll never guess!) crispy apples and savory cashews. Well today, I’ve got yet another spin on things…Asian Chicken Salad!
So what makes this chicken salad “Asian?“…you might be inquiring. Well, I’m so happy you asked! This chicken salad starts with a dressing that’s half mayo (for flavor), half Greek yogurt (to lighten things up), and sweetened with honey. But instead of using apple cider vinegar to lend a little twang (as I typically do when making chicken salad), this recipe calls for rice wine vinegar. And then, to up the Asian flavors even more, a few teaspoons of freshly grated ginger get stirred in.
As for the fruit and nuts that are hallmarks of typical Sonoma Chicken Salad, this version calls for cute, sweet, mandarin orange segments and roasted peanuts, which lend a fantastic crunch. I recommend using fresh mandarins (or clementines, or tangerines), since canned orange segments are really soft and would likely fall apart in the salad. I also prefer using salted peanuts, since they nicely contrast with the honey-kissed dressing. But regardless of any liberties you take with the ingredient list, the different flavors and textures in this Asian Chicken Salad are sure to complement one another perfectly.
So the next time you’re in a chicken salad kind of mood, I invite you to try this Asian twist on an old favorite! It’s refreshing over a bed of lettuce, it’s yummy on crackers, and it’s delightful on slider buns or croissants. Actually, it’s even pretty darn tasty if you inadvertently find yourself standing over the bowl with a spoon. 😉 Yup, regardless of your preferred vehicle for delivering it to your mouth, Asian Chicken Salad is sweet and salty, creamy and crunchy, and absolutely delicious.
Adapted from Five Heart Home
More sandwiches & salads…