Basic Chicken Salad Recipe
Easy to Make and Fun to Eat

Transform a basic chicken salad recipe into many healthy variations. It's a great recipe to have in your collection.

basic chicken salad recipe

Basic Chicken Salad Recipe

  • 2 cups chicken, cooked and shredded
  • 1 celery stalk, chopped
  • 1/4 cup onion, diced
  • Juice from 1/2 lemon
  • Salt & pepper to taste (approx. 1/4 t. each)
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise

This recipe is very easy. Dice the vegetables and mix everything in a medium bowl. Serve immediately or chill.


Tips for Great Basic Chicken Salad Recipe

First, how are you going to cook your chicken? There are many successful options.

  1. Buy a rotisserie chicken. Remove the meat and shred. Delicious!
  2. Gently boil (or poach). Bring a pot of water to boil. Add chicken; bring back to a boil; turn down heat to simmer until chicken is done, about 15-20 minutes. I'd typically use frozen chicken breasts for this method.
  3. Make chicken broth. Put a whole chicken in a stock pot with carrots, celery, onions, salt & pepper. Boil gently. Remove chicken; take meat off the bones and shred. I like this method because you get very moist white and dark meat.
  4. Roast the chicken. Place whole chicken (preferable cut up) or frozen chicken breasts or thighs on a greased cooking sheet. Roast at 350° F until done - about 30 minutes.

The onion. If you like raw onion flavor, simply dice it and add to your recipe. If you like the crunch of onion but a much milder flavor, here's a super trick: soak the onion in a bowl of cold water. Either slice and/or dice it, soak, then drain. You'll love how crunchy and "not-oniony" it tastes.

Celery. I like to use a chopper which cuts the celery into nicely small but irregular shapes. This somehow disguises the celery enough (who really likes the taste of celery that much?), and it still adds nice crunch to your chicken salad. Hey, it works for me.

Mayonnaise. Don't be scared of it. You won't gain 5 pounds just because you ate chicken salad made of mayonnaise - remember, you're eating balanced meals and exercising. Put just enough in to hold the chicken salad together well. I prefer Miracle Whip because I think it gives a better flavor; real mayonnaise will be more mild.

My Favorite Add-ins

You can add many different flavor and vegetable combinations to make your chicken salad different. This is the one I usually do:

  • 1/2 cup grapes, diced
  • 1/4 cup slivered almonds
  • dash of curry powder

We ate chicken salad like this in the Carribean on our honeymoon.

More ideas:

  • cherry or grape tomatoes and fresh herbs
    for a summer flavor
  • shredded carrots
  • Italian seasoning blend
  • cumin and chili powder for a mexican taste
  • dried cranberries and diced apples for an autumn flavor


Enjoy a full, delicious life with this Basic Chicken Salad Recipe.

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