Best-Ever Chicken Salad

This Best-Ever Chicken Salad is really the perfect go-to chicken salad for sandwiches or on top of a green salad.     You could easily add crumbled bacon, or raisins, or cashews, or even mix in a little curry powder to the mayo.  Of course, homemade mayo puts this salad over the top.  But again, a good quality store-bought mayonnaise works perfectly well, too.  145% Loon Approved!

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I love to roast chicken pieces ahead of time, but you can also easily purchase a rotisserie chicken from your local supermarket and use that instead.   Either way, this chicken salad is so tasty and can also be adjusted to fit your favorite tastes.

You could easily add crumbled bacon, or raisins, or cashews, or even mix in a little curry powder to the mayo.

Best-Ever Chicken Salad

These have become my new all-time favorite mixing bowls.  So durable, handy, and affordable.  I can’t believe I’m so excited over bowls!

It’s all about using fresh ingredients.   This truly is the Best-Ever Chicken Salad!  The flavor combo simply cannot be beat.  And it’s even better after it sits in the fridge for a few hours, or overnight!

Best-Ever Chicken Salad

 

5.0 from 25 reviews
Best-Ever Chicken Salad
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
This Best-Ever Chicken Salad is really wonderful. Perfect for incredible chicken salad sandwiches (croissants are great!), or on top of a lovely bed of greens. Either way, you're just going to love this Best-Ever Chicken Salad! 100% Loon Approved!
Author:
Recipe type: Lunch
Cuisine: Lunch
Serves: 4 - 6
Ingredients
  • 3 - 4 lbs of chicken parts (bone-in, skin-on thighs and breasts work well) (you'll need about 3 to 4 cups of cooked chicken)
  • 2 tablespoons quality olive oil
  • 1 cup of seedless grapes, sliced in half (red and green varieties are great)
  • 1 cup almonds, thinly sliced (optional)
  • 2 celery ribs, chopped
  • 3 scallions, thinly sliced, white and green parts
  • 2 tablespoons fresh dill, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher salt (start with ½ teaspoon, then add more, to taste)
  • Freshly ground pepper
Instructions
  1. Pre-heat oven to 350 F.
  2. Rub oil all over the chicken pieces and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  3. Bake for 45 to 55 minutes (internal temp should reach 165 F). .
  4. Remove the chicken, let cool, then pull the meat from the bones and roughly chop.
  5. In a large bowl, mix together the chicken, grapes, almonds, celery, scallions, dill & parsley
  6. In a small bowl, mix together the mayonnaise, lemon, mustard, salt and pepper.
  7. Add the mayonnaise mixture to the chicken mixture, and gently stir until will mixed.
  8. Refrigerate for at least an hour.
  9. Serve on a bed of green leaves with sliced tomatoes and avocado. Or, serve on bread with green leaf lettuce. Add more toppings to your taste!
  10. Enjoy!

 

 

131 Comments

  • This is great; the combination of sweet with savory is just right . One I make that I got from my mother uses sweet western cantalope cut into bite size pieces , halved grapes, toasted slivered almonds, and chicken. I don’t have the amounts, I just eyeball what I want. Add mayonnaise and salt when ready to serve as it brings out the water in the cantalope. I have never served this that it was not liked and the recipe wanted. I think she tried to make a similar salad that she ate at the Pump Room in Chicago years ago.

    • Becky, you just made our day! So glad to hear you all loved the chicken salad. We love it, too, and have it every chance we get! Thanks for letting us know, and please stay in touch! Kris & Wesley

  • My husband really likes this chicken salad and I thought I wouldn’t but I do! He asks for it all the time. Thank you for the recipe.

  • I am anxious to try your recipe. It sounds so good and your contributors seemed to love it. One day recently I was in a hurry and didn’t have all these ingredients so I used canned chicken, mayonnaise, CRAISINS, and pecans and it was delicious, especially for a quick meal. Probably doesn’t compare to all your delicious ingredients so I will try yours soon.

    • Woo hoo!! We really, really hope everyone loves it at the baby shower! How wonderful! Hope mommy and baby are doing well and we send our best! Thanks for letting us know about the recipe. Stay in touch! xoxoxo Kris & Wesley

  • This is the only recipe for chicken salad that my family will eat. My past chicken salad was boring and bland. So glad I found this one. Actually making it for dinner tomorrow. Thanks.

    • Hi Erin, you could…and we’ve heard from some folks that it still tastes good. But, if you’re looking to cut some time, go with a rotisserie chicken from the deli section in your supermarket, and just pull and shred the meat. But in a pinch, you could go with canned cooked chicken. Let us know what you end up doing and how it turns out! Good luck! Kris & Wesley

  • First time making this recipe, and man oh man is it good!!! Mixed dark and white meat chicken to give it a classic deli style taste, but I had to sub the scallions with green onion as well as use lemon juice concentrate and dried herbs. Tossed in some sunflower seed as I didn’t have the celery on hand no the scallions which add a crunch to it! Also used half veganase and half mayo as I ran out of mayo!

  • Thank you so much for this recipe! 5 stars all the way. The only thing I changed was I toasted the almonds, and used dry dill, I did not have fresh on hand. It is by far the best chicken salad I have ever made. For some reviews that thought It had to much lemon juice, use 2 tablespoons, that seemed to be perfect for our taste.

    • Thank you, Debra! We couldn’t be happier that you enjoyed the recipe! And so glad you adapted it to your taste preferences! Thanks so much for letting us know, and please stay in touch! Best, Kris & Wesley

  • Wow.. this was my first time making chicken salad and its amazing. I of course have had chicken salads but back home they are usually more on the savory side, instead of this sweeter, healthier salad. I omitted the lemon, because we are not crazy about it.. but wow.. this is just delicious and my 2 and 4 year old LOVE it. I also used dried dill and parsley and its still out standing. I also added a bit of garlic powder because.. come on.. everything could use garlic! haha Thanks so much, this will become a regular staple in our home!

    • That sounds fantastic! We are super happy you liked it! It’s a pretty versatile recipe and your tweaks sound great! Thank you so much for letting us know, and please stay in touch! xoxo Kris & Wesley

  • I just made this today, and I am SO pleased! It is delicious. Will be taking it for a beach picnic! Thank you!

  • Just made this for a friend recovering from surgery. I am not a fan of grapes and nuts in chicken salad but this is delicious. Dressing was a little tart for my liking (I may have used too much lemon juice) so I added a couple of tablespoons for Miracle Whip and it was perfect.

    • That is great to hear, Sarah! We hope your friend is having a speedy recovery, and that friend has a good friend in you, that’s clear! We love hearing from people like you that make tweaks to this recipe to fit their own liking. We think that’s why this recipe is so popular, it’s a fantastic base, but yet very adaptable. Thanks so much for letting us know, and please stay in touch. And give our best to your friend!! xo Kris & Wesley

      • Hey guys! The chicken salad was a hit. (And so was my strawberry shortcake btw) Do you have a trout recipe you can post on FB or here? Something other than the usual “stuff his belly with lemon and herbs” or my go to “Cajun blackened any kind of fish”. Hope all is well.

        • Awesome! Let me go back into my archives! I haven’t cooked trout since I lived in Texas many years ago. I’ll let you know what I come up with! Hope you are great, as well!! Best, Kris

  • Love this recipe! I use 1/2 cup of full-fat Greek yogurt instead of the mayonnaise and about 3 tablespoon of minced red onion instead of scallions. I might try adding some diced red apple next time I make this.

  • I just found you guys on my tablet and read all the wonderful comments that were shared. I plan to make this Chicken Salad today, as I have a rotisserie chicken ready to be dismantled. Can’t wait to see many of your delicious recipes pop up on the screen. Thank’s to you, for sharing.
    We had paired loons on our lake side property, only they didn’t cook!

      • I just say OMG it was delightful. I followed u our entire recipe, to the bottom of your page, and WHAT LA, instant gratification to our taste buds. My husband said this recipe topped any of, even his grandmother’s, so guess what, it goes in our favorite recipe file for near future use. We thank you for sharing. Can’t wait for more receipe’s to come.

  • Hands down, the best chicken salad I’ve ever used. I was in a hurry and just opened canned chicken (sigh), but even THAT was fantastic! The fresh dill TOTALLY popped in it. I’ll be making this for quite a while!

  • I just made this for a Father’s Day luncheon for a full house. I was so nervous to try a new recipe when I was hosting my boyfriend’s parents and my family all together for the first time, but this is hands down the best chicken salad I’ve ever had. I prefer toasted walnuts to almonds, so I made a substitution there, and I used grilled chicken breasts. Otherwise made it exactly as specified and served it on fresh croissants. It was fantastic, and I’m eating it again already, only two hours after the last guest departed. You won’t be disappointed.

    • Melinda! You just made our day!! So very glad you liked this salad. That is a bit of a stressful situation to being trying out a new recipe, but you can’t go wrong with this one. So happy!! Stay in touch, all the best, Kris & Wesley

    • The great thing about this recipe is you can adjust anything to your own liking. We think all the flavors blend together just right, but try it and pull back a tad on the dill and see what you think. One of our producers from our show doesn’t like dill, but he loves this salad!! Let us know what you think. Thanks!

  • Just wondering if adding cream cheese would enhance the flavor. Not instead of mayo, but in addition too. Perhaps cut down on the mayo? Haven’t tried the recipe yet.

    • Hi Terri! I’ve never tried adding cream cheese to a chicken salad, but sounds interesting. I’m all for trying new things, and this recipe is very adaptable. I don’t like salads, like chicken or potato, that have too much mayo, and we think this ratio is pretty good, but give it a go and let us know how it turns out!! Thanks!! Kris & Wesley

  • This recipe is very similar to one I got from my Aunt Virginia many years ago only hers did not have dill or mustard in it. I want to try your version too! Sounds yummy!

    • Hi Karen! I must say I think the dill is key, and the mustard gives it depth. I’d hate to compete with Aunt Virginia! But, give it a shot, I think you’ll like it…and let us know if you do and what you think. All the best, Kris & Wesley

  • OMG this is amazing! I made this and am making them into pinwheels stuffing for a party. Will let you know how it turns out like that. I can eat this for days. My 13 year old couldn’t stop eating it lol

    • Love. It! So glad you and your family like it!! Totally want to hear about the pinwheels stuffing…sound awesome! Let us know and thanks so much for letting us know!! xoxo Kris & Wesley

      • The pinwheels were a hit!!! I also put the left over dressing in a dipping bowl if anyone wanted extra. Definitely making this tonight again for a bbq. So glad I found you guys and this amazing recipe! Thank you!!!

  • This recipe looks perfect for the Bunco party I’m hosting next week! I usually like chicken salad on a crossaint, so will likely do that. Do you have any suggestions for sides and/or desserts that go well with it?

  • I hope your comment can be deleted as it has no bearing whatsoever on the recipe. So why you had to comment to begin with is ridiculous. I will pray for you that God helps you find more constructive things to do in your life then to make an awful comment on a chicken salad recipe.

  • Hi Kris and Wesley,

    I just made the chicken salad and I took a taste and it is delicious. I have it in the fridge getting chilled for dinner later. So the only thing I did not do is add the dill. And that is because I went to two stores and no fresh dill. So when I got home I realized I had some Marzetti dill dip and so I added a tablespoon to the chicken salad. I was getting dill in there one way or another. So now I am debating on what I want to serve it with. This awesome tea house I go to puts the chicken salad in won ton cups. I have never tried this so going to look up if I can by them or if I have to make them. The chicken salad tasted great in them. It gave it a nice crunch. Well have a great evening an thanks for a great recipe.

    • Hi Mary!

      Don’t you hate that when the store is out of an ingredient! Well, sounds like you found a good solution. I do have to say I think the dill is one of the key herbs that makes this salad sing, but it sounds perfect what you did. And, the won ton cups sound wonderful. Love it! This salad is quite versatile, so I think it will be awesome served that way! Thanks for letting us know, and let us know what you and your loved ones think of it! Have a great meal and evening!! Kris & Wesley

  • Our family has been making this for the past 35 years; the only thing different is we add 1 or 2 Tablespoons Capers and do not use the dill. We also use this as a salad and then we add 1-1/2 cups of cooked/rinsed/drained shell macaroni and serve on a leaf of lettuce, a slice or 2 of tomatoes and a couple slices of avocado (marinated in lime juice and black pepper). Amazing that our recipe is almost identical.

  • This really is the best chicken recipe salad! My husband and I absolutely LOVE it. It’s delicious fresh but it is even better the next day. Thank you so much for sharing this awesome recipe!

    • Thank you so much, Amy!! We agree, it really is great just as it all comes together, but the next day…even better!! We are so glad you guys like it! Please stay in touch! All the best, Kris & Wesley

      • Do you have the nutritional breakdown for this recipe? I cannot wait to try it. I had Bariatric Surgery and am always looking for new ways to eat healthy food. This looks REALLY good.

  • Which is right? Your video calls for 2 ribs of celery and 3 scallions. Your printed recipe calls for 1 rib of celery and 4 scallions. Pretty big change in flavor.

    • Thanks Carolyn!! Great catch. I am always tweaking recipes over time. We did this video about a year after I first developed this recipe. When I make it now, I go with the 2 ribs of celery and 3 scallions. I decided to pull back on the scallions, even though I love them. I was looking for the perfect blend of flavors. Thanks again, and let us know how it turns out!! Best, Kris (& Wesley).

  • Well it really is the best!! I have made this for our family when we go to bible conventions. I look for something that will taste great and keep nicely. This is golden!! Last time I made it, it was for a family that was new to our congregation and the kids loved it!! Thanks for helping me be not a peanut butter and jelly mom all of the time

  • Wish I could get TimHortons to use this recipe in their Canadian stores! It is so much better than their current chicken salad sandwich, which I ordered yesterday because there was no egg salad! This is a lovely recipe!

    • HI Lynn! Thank you so much. We kinda agree…I haven’t found a chicken salad recipe that beats this one. Took me a while to get it just right, but now it’s a favorite of ours and we really get a lot of positive feedback when good people like you give it a try. Thank you so much for letting us know, and please stay in touch! Kris & Wesley

  • Hello!

    I was wondering how many calories would be in a typical serving size for the chicken salad by itself (no bread). Thanks!

  • Simply amazing! My first time making chicken salad and so glad I chose this recipe. Made it for my boyfriend for the work week but I can’t stop eating it myself! Delish.

  • This really is the BEST chicken salad ever! I made this last week while I was on vacation, using leftovers from another recipe where I had made crock pot Rotisserie Chicken and had leftover chicken meat. I pretty much ate the whole bowl by myself it was soooo good! I did let me 10 year old try some when he came home from school and he’s always skeptical about new things and he was like WOW mom! That’s really good! But I must admit that little bowl I gave him was all he got! The rest I ate through the week with wheat thin crackers, yum! I made as directed with the exception of I didn’t have any Dijon mustard so I substituted it with Chardonnay Mustard and I used my left over chicken from the previous meal mentioned. Thanks sooo much for sharing this recipe! I can’t wait to make this again!!

    • Thank you, Deanna! We are SO thrilled to hear that you liked this chicken salad. It is definitely our favorite! And how awesome that your 10 year old son gave it a big thumbs up!! Thanks again for letting us know how it turned out! And do stay in touch! Kris & Wesley

    • HI Julia! This salad will keep in the fridge for 4 to 5 days. I think it’s best when it sits over night and then you eat it the next day…the flavors really meld, yet everything is still very fresh. You could make it tomorrow and then head out camping the next day, and it will be perfect. You’ll just need to keep it in a cooler, obviously. Let us know how it turns out…and have a GREAT weekend camping. We’re jealous! :) Kris & Wesley

      • Thank you so much for getting back to me so quickly!! I am going to make it today then. I will let you know how it turns out and how everyone likes it! Thanks again :)

  • Wow! I just made your Best Ever Chicken Salad and it is! It’s very different from the chicken salad my mom always made with boiled eggs and sweet pickle relish. I had mine on a croissant. It was so good I had seconds. I’ll be making it again soon. Thanks for sharing.

  • Can’t wait to make & try your chicken salad recipe- it sounds great!! I love chicken salad with fruit & nuts in it- this sounds perfect on bread or just crackers for a snack!! Yummmmmmm!will make tomorrow for lunch!! With a rotisserie chicken for sure!!

  • Hey I really wanted to make this chicken salad it looks so healthy j was wondering how many calories in this whole batch love your recipes!
    Thank, Abby

    • Hi Abby!

      I don’t have the exact calorie count for this salad. You’ll run into some calories in the mayo, but not too much…I’d say less than 100 calories per serving. I don’t like my chicken salad to be too heavy with the mayo. All in all, this is a pretty healthy recipe. You could go with a low-cal mayo, but in my opinion, it will alter the taste too much. Hope you try it, though, and if you do…let us know what you think! Thanks, Kris & Wesley

  • I love your chicken salad and would like to get more recipe from you both. I’d especially would like you potato and pasta salads. Thank you. Just general information I’m 81 years young.

    • Hello Allene! Thank you so much for your note and we are thrilled that you enjoyed the chicken salad. It was on of our favorites, for sure! We do have a pasta salad and potato salad on the site, too. Just do a search in the search box in the upper right corner, and you’ll see them. Let us know if you can’t locate them. Thanks so much, and stay in touch! Best, Kris & Wesley

  • I detest mustard in all forms! Can you taste it in the salad? If so, can it be omitted without changing it from the Best-Ever to just Almost the Best-Ever?

  • I made this using rotisserie chicken and it was delicious! I was hoping for leftovers, but everybody had seconds. LOL Which I definitely prefer to people not liking my food. I will definitely be making this again.

    • That’s so funny, Marci! Well, I couldn’t agree more…I love leftovers…but when it’s because people aren’t eating what you made them…it’s not so great! So very happy that you and your guest enjoyed it. And thank you for letting us know. Please stay in touch! Best, Kris & Wesley

  • Made this for a luncheon today. I used a large rotisserie chicken and I chopped almonds because I couldn’t find the slivered almonds. It still came out great! Everything is so balanced. I added a couple tbsp plain Greek yogurt because I like it extra creamy.

    • Emily…aren’t those rotisserie chicken’s the best?! I do that often as well, when I’m in a pinch for time, and it turns out amazing. Love the addition of Greek yogurt. I bet that was amazing…will have to try that next time. Thanks for letting us know how it turned out…and stay in touch!

  • A lot of different recipes say “the best”, but I am really amazed at how good this recipe is. I believe that it can be called the “The Best”!

    • Thank you, Kristen!! That word does get thrown around a lot, but we have to agree…we think this chicken salad really is the best! It means the world to us that you agree. Please stay in touch! All the BEST, Kris & Wesley

  • I’m taking a friend to the hospital for a back procedure Tuesday and I wanted to take her lunch/dinner when I picked her up to have when she got back home. This is perfect!! I can add some good crackers or bread, a fruit salad perhaps and have a great little meal. Thanks.

    • Perfect! I have made this for a very finicky eater neighbor a few times when she had been in the hospital…and she can’t stop raving about it. I think your friend will thank you very much. Let us know how it turns out, Jan! All the best. Kris

  • I can’t wait to try this! To save time I may need to use rotisserie chicken. Could you tell me how many cups of cooked chicken I should use? Thank you!!

    • I used 3 1/2 – 4 cups of cooked, diced chicken per recipe. I hope you enjoy it as much as we did. I’ve made it twice so far and have shared the recipe numerous times. It’s delicious!

    • Hi Lara! I use rotisserie chicken often with this, too, and still love it. One chicken should give you about 3 cups which is just right. Just keep an eye on the dressing to chicken ratio…don’t overdue it with the dressing. Add a little, then mix, until it just coats the chicken. Perfection!! Let us know how it turns out! Thanks!

  • This was a big hit at my daughter’s baby shower. There were approx 80 guests so I 8x the recipe. I poached 15 lbs of boneless chicken breasts which yielded about 32 cups of cubed chicken. There was LOTS left over (I didn’t dare shirk on my only responsibility) so I divided up the leftovers into takeaway containers and put them out on the table next to the party favors as guests were leaving. There was not one container left! I received many requests for your recipe during and after the party and shared your website with them all. I love your videos and look forward to making more of your delicious-looking dishes.

    • Susan! You just made our day!! That sounds FANTASTIC!! Wow! 15 lbs of boneless chicken breasts!! You weren’t taking any chances, for sure! And how incredible that you gave everyone their own container of the chicken salad. I’m so thrilled that everyone liked it. Sounds like you did it perfectly. That’s just wonderful. Thank you so very, very much for sharing. Keep coming back and please stay in touch. All the best! Kris (& Wesley…the Loon).

  • Hi I want to make this for a wedding shower this weekend. Could you tell me about how many this will serve?
    Thank you!
    Annie

    • HI Annie! It depends on how you’re serving it. I say 4 – 6 people, but that’s if you making a nice-sized sandwiches. If you serve with slider buns, or just as a salad, this recipe could easily feed 10 – 12. In the video, you’ll see that we doubled-the recipe, and you’ll see how much it made. We fed it to an audience of approx. 40 people, and had enough. Let us know how it turns out! Thanks so much!!

  • I just LOVE you guys – You are awesome! My kids (8 & 9) will eat about anything the loon comes up with with makes me love you MORE! They love this!

    One question – We are about to road trip – Which recipes do you think will work best for the 20 hour 2-day car ride? (Besides mojitos for Mommy :-) )

    • Hi Teddie!! That is so awesome to hear! And so glad your kids like the Loon Approved recipes! That really makes so happy. Well, for a road trip, this chicken salad is great…you’d just have to keep cool in a cooler, if that’s an option. I have a couple pasta salads, and a potato salad that would be nice, too. But again, would need to keep them in a cooler. You could make some fried chicken, but that’s kind of involved. I have a recipe for Lemon Bars, that are really nice. Plus, I’ve got several cookie recipes that are Loon favorites, too. All of these are on the site, just search for them in the search bar. I’ll have to think some more on it, it’s a good question, maybe we’ll start a new category on the site called ‘Food to Take on the Road!”:)

    • That’s so great to hear, Christina! I am thrilled that it turned out good, and that your guests enjoyed it. I’m sure you prepared it perfectly! Exciting news about the baby, too. That’s always such an exciting time for a family. Stay in touch. Cheers! Kris (& Wesley)

  • I just finished making your chicken salad recipe & it’s phenomenal!

    I was concerned with 2T of dill & almost decreased it but so glad I didn’t. Chicken salads I have made in the past, I sample prior to refrigerating to see if I need to adjust anything then I put them into the fridge to allow the flavors to marry because it’s not very tasty prior. Your chicken salad? I’m surprised I had any to put into the fridge! Delicious even before having a chance to sit.

    Thank you for my go-to chicken salad recipe!

    • Hi Lizbeth! Thank you so much for the note! I couldn’t be happier that you enjoyed this chicken salad. I played with the ingredients and measurements for quite a while until I thought it was just right. Both Wesley and I love dill, and think it compliments the salad just perfectly. Thank you again, come back often, and stay in touch! All the best! Kris (& Wesley).

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