Chinese Chicken Salad
With homemade salad dressing, marinated Grilled Chicken, roasted peanuts and wonton crisps, this crunchy lite slaw like Asian salad is loaded with ton of flavor.
Posted By Savita
Chinese Chicken Salad with grilled marinated chicken, cabbage and pack-a-punch Chinese salad dressing. This is one of the most popular Chicken Salad in my town. On specials in every Chinese eatery in summers. The heart of salad is crunchy veggies (specially cabbage and carrots) and Chinese sweet and sour mustard salad dressing. With crunch of peanuts, cashews, and fried wonton crisps, this salad is so amazing.. It is Must try once in life time.
Please note that Chinese Chicken Salad also travels well. Great to pack for summer picnics. Veggies such as cabbage, carrots are sturdy and hold on dressing very well. I recommend packing nuts, and wonton crisps separately.
I love crunchy salads with sweet and sour flavors. Like my other salad recipes, I love to make salad full of texture, sweet and sour flavor, and top with a serving of protein and hide-in a serving of fruit to make salad delicious. Seriously, this is The best way to make a salad delicious.
1. Bold Dressing: Pick bold flavor dressings. Dressing makes salad delicious.
2. Texture: Bring texture to a salad bowl. Like in this salad, I used two kinds of crunchy cabbage, carrot strings, and toasted crunchy peanuts and cashews.
3. Natural Sweetness: Add natural sweetness to contrast the savoury. You don't need to open bag of sugar for this. And fruit in reach such as thin shaved apple, grapes or even orange segments, Or add honey, agave to bring balance of flavors.
4. Protein: Instead of serving salad on side, add a serving of protein in salad to make a complete meal.
Try these and you will never have to eat a wimpy salad again. I also follow this rule when I'm trying to control diet. This way I load salads with lot of flavor and eat small portion to keep my goal in check.
Addition of protein is such a great idea. It really fills you up without weighing you down.
Good news is, my Chinese Chicken Salad recipe combines all this amazing flavors - bold dressing, crunchy veggies and nuts, protein and sweet n sour flavors in every forkful. It is kinda salad which can convert anyone to a Salad Lover.
1. Salad Dressing: This dressing, by far is the best Chinese Chicken Salad Dressing ever. I mean, seriously! Sweet, sour, sharp and nutty, this dressing has everything you want from a good Chinese-flavor dressing. Plus it takes 5 minutes to mix a batch. Ingredients for dressing will be in your pantry right now. Mustard, honey, rice vinegar, garlic, sriracha, and sesame oil. Are these not pantry staples? I'm sure you can make a batch right away.
To give you more idea of flavor, if you like honey-mustard, consider this a Chinese Honey-Mustard dressing with scrumptious flavor of nutty sesame oil and hint of garlic. Honestly, I'm addicted to this dressing. Not just this Chinese cabbage salad, I even love serving it over Arugula or Spinach salad.
Oh, and it is also a very good marinade. I often make an extra batch just to leave 1/2 a cup in refrigerator. Dressing lasts more than a week. I often marinate chicken breast in dressing overnight. Next day, cook or grill and delicious juicy Sesame Chicken is ready to go in stir-fry, salads, even over a bowl of rice.
2. Cabbage Salad Lover's Dream Salad: This salad speaks cabbage. In crunch, it is that healthy cousin of coleslaw which you will love with barbecue. (hint hint) I can hardly find Chinese cabbage, so I use what I always have in refrigerator - a red and a green cabbage. When cabbage is on our weekly menu, you know for a lite Cabbage Soup, or Cabbage Stir-fry, I always have one or two in refrigerator. Cabbage lasts longer than most veggies in fridge. After main course, remaining always go to a crunchy salad or slaw.
Note: You can also use a pack of coleslaw or cabbage salad from your grocery store. It works best when I'm not planning to use cabbage in any other recipe.
3. Sweetness: This is one of my favorite salad to load with sweet and savory. Cabbage is perfect to marry sweet-sour and so are the carrots.
This salad gets sweetness from orange segments, and little bit of honey in dressing. I highly recommend adding these two. These compliment the sharp Chinese salad dressing flavors deliciously.
4. Protein: There are two kinds of protein in this. 1) - Peanuts, 2) Chicken
I wanted chicken to compliment the cabbage salad. So, I marinated chicken breast in portion of dressing. Remember I told you, this dressing is a great marinade. Even if you not trying salad. I recommend trying dressing as chicken marinade.
Stay with me and you will never eat a boring salad again. This Chinese Salad is a proof, salad CAN be delicious. Many more and still counting, checkout my Salad collection for more ideas.
Chinese Chicken Salad
- 1 lbs Chicken (boneless chicken breast, or use pre-cooked rotisserie chicken )
- 6 Cup Cabbage (shredded purple and green cabbage)
- 1 Bell Pepper (orange or yellow pepper, thin sliced)
- 1/2 Red Onion (thin sliced half moons)
- 2 Carrots (cut into strips)
- 1/2 Cup Cilantro (fresh leaves, rough chopped)
- 2 Cup Clementine Orange (packed in low-sugar syrup, drained)
- 1/3 Cup Cashew (roasted salted )
- 1/3 Cup Peanuts (roasted and salted)
- 1/4 Cup Rice Vinegar (unseasoned)
- 1 tbsp Mustard (dijon)
- 1 tsp Garlic (2-3 cloves, minced)
- 1 tsp Sriracha
- 1 tbsp Soy Sauce
- 3 tbsp Honey (1 tbsp sharp, 2 tbsp medium high, 3 tbsp medium, 4 tbsp mild)
- 3 tbsp Olive Oil
- 1/4 tsp Salt
- 1 tsp Sesame Oil
Chinese Chicken Salad
Chinese Chicken Salad Dressing
1. To make the dressing, in a food processor (or bowl with whisk), add all the ingredients and pulse until dressing is smooth and oil has emulsified. Start with 2 tbsp honey. Taste and adjust honey and salt as per taste. Re-pulse if adding more honey to combine quickly.
2. To cook chicken, sliced chicken breast half lengthwise, place in a bowl. Pour 1/4 cup of dressing from step 1 on to chicken. Coat chicken in marinade. Set aside for at least 30 minutes.
3. You can either grill the chicken on an outdoor gas grill until chicken is fully cooked or Heat a skillet, add 1 tbsp of oil. When oil is hot, take chicken out of marinade (discard marinade). Season chicken with salt. Place season side down in hot skillet and let it cook until brown, season top side and flip. Cook until chicken is fully cooked and register 375 on an instant read thermometer on thickest part of thigh. Once cooked, set chicken aside. When cool to handle dice or shred to add to salad.
4. To assemble salad, in a wide salad bowl add all chopped salad ingredients: cabbage, carrot, bell pepper, and red onion. Add half of remaining dressing. Add generous pinch of salt and black pepper. Gently fold salad in dressing to coat everything evenly.
5. Fold in orange segments and cilantro. Top with cooked, cooled diced chicken. Garnish with roasted cashews and peanuts. Serve and enjoy!
Additional NotesWhen packing for potluck, pack chicken and nuts separately.
To make Wonton Crisps: Heat 1/4 cup oil in a shallow skillet. Cut wontons into thin 1/3 inch strips. Fry in oil in small batches until golden from both sides. Remove in a plate lined with paper towel to absorb extra oil.
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