I initially set out to write about purchasing half a cow. And I will. It has just been too long since I’ve shared a proper recipe and I need to get back into the groove with my photography.
That aside, the other reason I’m writing about chicken as opposed to beef is simply that I am burnt out on rotisserie chicken! See I’ve been wanting to share this recipe for a good three weeks now. So every week I’ve bought a rotisserie chicken with the intentions of making and shooting chicken salad. Well life happens and sometimes you need to eat said chicken, or other projects take priority and and you eat said chicken so it doesn’t go bad. Then there are the instances of “it’s chicken or eating out” and you actually say “no” to eating out and eat said chicken. Needless to say, I am kind of done with rotisserie chicken. It does not though change how much I <3 homemade chicken salad.
Let’s talk a little about the ever classic chicken salad. So classic I almost want to argue that you really don’t need a recipe for it. Almost.
One of the greatest things about changing my diet over the last year has been incorporating and embracing healthy fats. For the longest time, probably dating back to college, I had pretty much cut mayonnaise out of my diet seeing it as an easy way to cut calories. I still had it on occasion for things like big deli sandwiches, BLT’s, and ranch dressing made from the packets. But now, with no longer being concerned about calories and needing healthy fat in my diet, mayo was back on the table. Homemade mayo, that is.
Homemade mayo was one of those things I had never made but was pretty certain I would never go back on once I made it. Like many of the things I now make from scratch, I can honestly say I am never going back to store bought mayo! It isn’t hard to make either. With my food processor I can have a batch ready in 5 minutes. I encourage you to give it a try. I make a modified version of this recipe from The Clothes Make the Girl. It is a good place to start and if you do run into trouble she provides some good troubleshooting.
Now that you have your mayo you can gather your ingredients and make some chicken salad. For the most part I tend to keep mine simple: cooked, shredded chicken, green onions, toasted walnuts, golden balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper.
With chicken and mayo as your base, the variations are endless. You can customize based on your preferences or what you have in the kitchen. And of course there are the optionals. Things like avocado, pomegranate seeds, cucumber, etc. I’ve even been known to add a poached egg on top too. I had a pomegranate on hand so I decided to add some in. The seeds add such a bright burst of flavor and simply make it visually appealing.
Serve however you like. Wrapped in some kind of leafy green thing, topping for a salad or straight out the container. It’s all good.
Recipe by: Elisabeth Norris
- 2 cups, shredded cooked chicken
- 1/4 cup homemade mayo
- 2 green onions, finely chopped
- 1/4 cup walnuts, toasted and chopped
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/8th teaspoon black pepper
- 1-2 tablespoons golden balsamic vinegar
- 1/4 cup pomegranate seeds (optional)
- Lettuce for wrapping (optional)
Combine all the ingredients together in a medium size bowl. Mix well. Adjust seasonings as needed.
Makes 2 cups. Or 4 – 1/2 cup servings.