If you want a quick and refreshing meal, try these chicken salad recipes

Chicken is such a versatile meat, and there are lots of ways to change the flavors in chicken salad. (Betsy Crisp)

Sometimes you just want to make something simple, quick and delicious — and chicken salad is just that thing.

Here’s a little stash of chicken salad recipes to keep on hand for when you need them.

Enjoy!

First, to prepare the chicken.

Ingredients:

  • 4 chicken breasts, boneless and skinless
  • 2 low-sodium bouillon cubes (granules or liquids can be used), along with water to make 2 cups

Optional: Bay leaves, carrots, garlic, onions, parsley, peppercorns, thyme and salt may be added. (Note, they will change the flavor of the chicken).

Instructions:

  • Place chicken in saucepan.
  • Add enough water with bouillon to cover the chicken by 1-inch.
  • Bring water to boil, on medium high, then reduce heat to medium low and cover.
  • Simmer for 10 minutes to 15 minutes until the chicken’s internal temperature has reached at least 165 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Strain the liquid and save for a soup base.
  • Let the chicken breasts cool, then cut as desired (sliced, cubed, shredded).
  • Refrigerate until ready to use. Freeze if chicken won’t be used within three days.

Now, let’s make some chicken salad. Here are three options.

Betsy Crisp is a Professor Emeritus, UF/IFAS Extension – Family & Consumer Sciences.

Southern chicken salad
Ingredients:

  • 2 cups chopped chicken breasts (about four boneless breast halves/12 ounces)
  • ½ cup low-fat mayonnaise
  • 1 Tablespoon dill pickle relish (or finely chopped dill pickles)
  • 3 Tablespoons red onion, finely chopped
  • 1 large hard-cooked egg, peeled and chopped
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon fresh ground pepper

Directions
In a medium bowl, combine all ingredients. Stir with fork and mix well. Taste and adjust seasonings to your preference. Refrigerate at least two hours, or overnight, for the flavors to blend.

Each recipe makes approximately four servings, to serve on top of lettuce or mixed greens for a lighter lunch or on plain bread, a croissant or wrap.

Sweet chicken salad
Ingredients

  • 2 cups chopped chicken breasts (about four boneless breast halves/12 ounces)
  • ¼ cup low-fat mayonnaise
  • ¼ cup vanilla yogurt
  • 1 green/spring onion, including green top, chopped
  • 2/3 cup, thinly sliced celery
  • 16 seedless grapes, cut in half or ¼ cup dried cranberries
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
  • ¼ cup almonds, sliced or walnuts, chopped

Directions
In a medium bowl, combine all ingredients. Stir with fork and mix well. Taste and adjust seasonings to your preference. Refrigerate at least two hours, or overnight, for the flavors to blend.

Each recipe makes approximately four servings, to serve on top of lettuce or mixed greens for a lighter lunch or on plain bread, a croissant or wrap.

Savory chicken salad

  • 2 cups chopped chicken breasts (about four boneless breast halves/12 ounces)
  • 2/3 cup chopped celery
  • ½ cup unpeeled red apple, diced and 2 Tablespoons raisins
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon fresh ground pepper
  • ¾ teaspoon curry powder
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • ¼ cup pecans, or peanuts, chopped

Directions
In a medium bowl, combine all ingredients. Stir with fork and mix well. Taste and adjust seasonings to your preference. Refrigerate at least two hours, or overnight, for the flavors to blend.

Each recipe makes approximately four servings, to serve on top of lettuce or mixed greens for a lighter lunch or on plain bread, a croissant or wrap.

Editor’s Note:
Betsy Crisp has shared her expertise and recipes with readers of The Laker/Lutz News, as a community service.

She retired from her role as food and consumer sciences agent for the University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences — Pasco Cooperative Extension in February of 2017, but continued to provide a monthly heaping of her knowledge about cooking, food and nutrition.

Here is her final column — featuring chicken salad recipes. It was a bonus column, intended for us to use whenever we might need it.

We thought it appropriate to publish it as we make the transition to our new What’s Cookin’ columnist Shari Bresin, whom Betsy recommended.

Shari has assumed Betsy’s former position, and we looking forward to publishing her columns, beginning in March.

Meanwhile, we’d like to extend our gratitude to Betsy, for so generously providing columns on such a wide range of interesting topics, and for her delicious recipes, too.

By B.C. Manion, editor of The Laker/Lutz News

Published February 20, 2019

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