Toasted sesame seeds and almonds give this Toasted Sesame Chicken Salad a nutty crunch. An easy, light dinner salad that makes a complete meal!
Today I have a Toasted Sesame Chicken Salad recipe for you, which will be light and refreshing for these hot summer nights. My mom made this often when we were growing up. I’m not sure where the original recipe came from….but it is one we still enjoy today!
Why you’ll love this recipe:
- The homemade dressing with oil and vinegar has toasted sesame seeds and sliced almonds in it, which gives a unique taste, different from other lettuce salads.
- Great idea for using leftover chicken of any kind.
- Perfect for summer nights and for lunches as well.
What is the best chicken to use for salad?
There are several different options you can use for the chicken in this salad.
- Store bought rotisserie chicken. This is quick and easy!
- Leftover grilled chicken.
- Boiled chicken breasts.
- Or you can swap out the chicken breasts and use boneless skinless chicken thighs. Chicken thighs are higher in fat, but
Make Ahead Salad
For this recipe, you’ll want to plan ahead just a little bit by making the dressing and chicken ahead of time. I toasted the sesame seeds and almonds, and boiled my chicken in the morning.
While the chicken is cooking (if it needs cooked), you can mix up the dressing. Chop up the chicken, add the dressing, and then you’ll the mixture into the fridge. This way the chicken will be nice and cold, and the flavors of the dressing will be well blended in by the time you want to eat it.
When it comes time for dinner, you can quickly chop some lettuce and green onions, put your chicken & dressing on top, and you’ve got yourself a nice, cool dinner!
Is this salad good as leftovers?
Not really. Once you add the dressing to the lettuce, the salad will start to wilt. So you can eat it the next day if you’d like, but it won’t be as crunchy and fresh. If you want to meal prep for lunches, wait to add the chicken and dressing until right before serving.
What goes with chicken salad for dinner?
Although this can be a meal all on its own, you may want some sides to go with it. Here are a few of our favorite:
Toasted Sesame Chicken Salad
For the Toasted Seeds and Almonds:
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1/4 cup sesame seed toasted
- 1/3 cup sliced almonds toasted
For the Salad
- 1 1/2 pounds cooked chicken breasts either grilled or baked, cut into bite-size chunks
- 3 green onions with tops chopped
- 1 tablespoon poppy seeds
- 3 ounces chow mein noodles
- 1 head lettuce cut into small pieces
- 4 tablespoons sugar
- 4 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 1/2 cup light-tasting olive oil
- In a small skillet, heat a tablespoon of oil over medium low heat. Add the almonds and sesame seeds. Allow them to lightly cook and brown, stirring them often and watching them closely so that they don’t burn. Once they are golden brown, scoop them into a small bowl to cool.
- Cut the cooked chicken breasts into bite-size pieces. We like using leftover grilled chicken for this recipe. You can also use a rotisserie chicken. The chicken should not be hot.
- In a large bowl, add the chicken, almonds, sesame seeds, poppy seeds and green onions. Set aside.
- For the dressing, add the sugar, vinegar, salt, pepper and oil to a jar and shake to mix well. Pour the dressing over the chicken mixture and refrigerate until serving.
- Right before serving, mix the chicken in with the chopped lettuce and top with chow mein noodles. Serves 6.
Other Favorite Salad Recipes
Salads are some of our favorite recipes to make! Whether they are loaded with meat, potatoes, veggies or a combination of all three, you’re sure to find a new one to love.