Five small white bowls on a wooden board of Chicken Salad Your Way.

Chicken Salad Your Way

Spread the love

It’s chicken salad season! . . . well, not officially, but summer is the time for craving something cold and light with protein for satisfying on-the-go appetites. This Chicken Salad recipe is basic, but not bland, with lots of optional ingredients to suit your taste. It’s like that cute black dress you can dress up or down. By mixing and combining fruits, nuts, herbs, and cheese the basic becomes Chicken Salad Your Way!

Five small white bowls on a wooden board of different salads.

Please note that there are Affiliate Links in the content of Louisiana Woman Blog, and I will earn a commission if you purchase through those links. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. I have used these products that are highlighted below, and recommend them for your convenience. Thank you!

Chicken Salad Starts With One Thing


I give many thanks to Ina Garten for teaching me how to roast bone-in chicken breasts. This process makes easy preparation when needing cooked chicken. No more boiling water in a large pot on the stove. All you do is put the breasts on a baking sheet, rub with olive oil, sprinkle with salt, and bake skin side up at 350 degrees for 45 minutes.

I go a few steps further lining the pan with parchment paper and salting before and after rubbing on the olive oil. Right after it’s cooked I place foil over it and let it cool. This keeps the meat nice and juicy.

Four roasted bone-in chicken breasts laying on a piece of parchment paper on a sheet pan.
Roast more chicken than you need. Store it for later.
One large chicken breast equals about 1 1 /2 cups chopped chicken.

Dressing And Add-Ins

After the chicken breasts are cooked, cooled, and deboned it’s time to chop the celery and combine the two. Next, make the dressing with mayonnaise, cream, lemon juice, lemon zest, onion, relish, and seasonings.

A yellow bowl of chopped c chicken and dressing Your with a wooden spoon stirring ingredients together.

Then pour it over the meat and celery, stir together and enjoy this yummy, creamy salad that’s full of flavor just like it is.

A yellow bowl of Chicken Salad Your Way on a blue and whit cloth.

Or, add your favorite ingredients making it to suit your taste.

Six white bowls with fruit, nuts, and cheese on a wooden board with parsley and a cut avocado.

I’ve listed some delicious combinations in the recipe below, but the sky’s the limit on this one.

clock clock iconcutlery cutlery iconflag flag iconfolder folder iconinstagram instagram iconpinterest pinterest iconfacebook facebook iconprint print iconsquares squares iconheart heart iconheart solid heart solid icon
Five small white bowls on a wooden board of different chicken salads.

Chicken Salad Your Way

A delicious basic chicken salad recipe with lots of optional ingredients to suit your taste.

  • Total Time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: 6 cups 1x



Basic Chicken Salad Ingredients

4 cups cooked chicken, cubed

3/4 cup celery, chopped

3/4 cup mayonnaise

1/4 cup heavy whipping cream

1 tablespoon lemon juice

zest from half of a lemon

2 tablespoons grated onion

1/4 cup sweet pickle relish

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon white pepper

Optional Ingredients To ADD-IN

1 cup nuts, chopped

1 cup pepper jack cheese, shredded

11 1/2 cups fruit, any single or combination of sliced grapes, mandarin orange segments, blueberries, pineapple chunks, diced apple, avocado, and/or dried cranberries


Combine chicken and celery in a large bowl.

Combine the next 8 ingredients into a medium bowl and mix well to make the dressing.

Toss the chicken and celery with the dressing.

Add the combination of optional ingredients to suit your taste or leave as is then refrigerate.

Serve cold by itself or on bread as a sandwich.

Salad Combinations

Pecans, pepper jack cheese, and grapes

Mandarin oranges and blueberries

Pepper Jack cheese, avocado, and a sprinkle of chopped cilantro

Apples, dried cranberries, and nuts


Process the basic recipe in the food processor for a spreadable chicken salad.

  • Author: Louisiana Woman
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Category: Salads
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: chicken salad your way

Five small white bowls on a wooden board of Chicken Salad Your Way.

Here is another perfect dish for summer cravings, Chicken Salad With Green Peas. This savory salad has greek yogurt, pecans, black olives, feta cheese and of course, green peas. It’s so good and chicken salad stores well in the refrigerator for days.

Don’t forget to sign up above so you can receive an email letting you know when another recipe is posted on the blog. Be sure you confirm following the blog in the first email from us so you can start receiving them. Thanks!

Worry about tomorrow steals the joy from today.

Barbara Cameron

Spread the love


  1. My family is famous for old Fashioned chicken salad with the cooked chicken run through a grinder as well as the seasoning. With a little chopped egg and pickle relish on white bread. But this looks tasty.

    • Thank you! Your family’s way is similar to the way my grandmother and momma made their chicken salad, but without the egg. I tell about it in my Chicken Salad With Green Peas post. It was a process they went through before a wedding or shower. I’m so grateful for food processors!

      • I still grind mine the old fashion way for small batches but when making for a party -pull out the food processor.My sister actually like the chunky style(paneras way) better.

Leave a Reply