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A large oval white platter holding a Chinese chicken salad.

Chinese Chicken Salad

Course: Appetizer or Entree
Cuisine: American
Keyword: entree salad recipe, how to make Asian peanut dressing, how to make Chinese chicken salad
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Marinating time in the fridge: 30 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour
Servings: 4
Calories: 457kcal
Chinese Chicken Salad is perfect for a family meal any time of the week. But, it's also great for serving to guests, or bringing to a potluck dinner, baby/wedding shower, or any event. Simply prep everything ahead of time, and then assemble just before serving. Add the almonds, mandarins, and wonton strips on top at the last moment.
Print Recipe


For the Chicken

  • 2 chicken breasts boneless, skinless, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 tbsp ginger fresh, minced
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp orange juice
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp Sriracha sauce optional
  • ¼ cup honey
  • ½ Kosher salt

For the Salad

  • 3 cups Napa cabbage chopped
  • cup red cabbage chopped
  • 3 cups iceberg lettuce chopped
  • 2 large carrots shredded, about 1½ cups
  • ½ cup scallions chopped
  • 2 mandarin oranges peeled and slices pulled apart
  • cup almonds sliced
  • 1 cup fried wontons see NOTES

For the Peanut Dressing

  • 4 cloves garlic minced
  • ¼ cup soy sauce
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • ½ cup peanut butter creamy
  • 5 tbsp olive oil


  • Mix the marinade ingredients (except the salt) together in a jar. Place the chicken pieces in a freezer baggie (or bowl) and place in the refrigerator for 30 minutes or up to overnight. Move the chicken around in the baggie (or bowl) occasionally.
  • Heat a large skillet, preferably cast-iron, over high heat. Drain the marinade from the chicken and add the chicken to the skillet. Add 1/2 tsp of salt and stir until cooked through and dark in color. Add a squirt or two more of the sriracha during the cooking process to add a little more coating to the chicken. Once cooked, removed from skillet and set aside.
  • Place all of the salad vegetables in a large bowl. Leave the almonds, mandarins, and wontons for topping the salad.
  • Mix together the peanut dressing ingredients in a jar. Stir, or shake, until fully mixed. You may need a spoon to help mix it all together.
  • Pour the dressing over the vegetables and then use two large wooden spoons (or your hands) to mix it all together, completely coating the salad with the dressing. Transfer to a platter, or individual serving plates, and top with almonds, mandarins, and wonton strips.


See our video near the top of the blog post for a visual (and fun) guide.  If you liked the video, please subscribe to our YouTube channel.  
To make the fried wonton strips, purchase wonton wrappers and cut them into strips (usually 3 strips per wrapper).  Heat vegetable oil in a sturdy skillet.  Fry until golden, only a couple of minutes.  Drain on paper towels. 
If you are in a pinch for time, you can skip marinating the chicken and poach the breasts in simmering water for 15 to 20 minutes, or until cooked through.  Don't chop until after the chicken is cooked.  A rotisserie chicken from the supermarket will work, too. 
All of the components of the salad can be made up to 24 hours in advance.   Assemble the salad just before serving, remember to top the salad with the almonds, mandarins, and wonton strips. 


Calories: 457kcal | Carbohydrates: 59g | Protein: 40g | Fat: 31g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 9g | Monounsaturated Fat: 26g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 72mg | Sodium: 978mg | Potassium: 1322mg | Fiber: 8g | Sugar: 45g | Vitamin A: 7309IU | Vitamin C: 57mg | Calcium: 181mg | Iron: 3mg