Grilling up a batch of chicken breasts, or grabbing a rotisserie chicken can be a great way to make a quick meal, but if you’re looking to mix things up, here are 3 variations on chicken salad that are fast, nutritious, and delicious!
Whole Foods Sonoma Chicken Salad Makeover
Key swap-outs: calcium- and protein-rich Greek yogurt in place of mayo, and Swerve Sweetener to replace honey.
1- 1/2 cups plain lowfat Greek yogurt
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
5 teaspoons Swerve Sweetener
2 teaspoons poppy seeds
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts
3/4 cup pecan pieces, toasted
2 cups red seedless grapes
3 stalks celery, thinly sliced
In a bowl, combine Greek yogurt, vinegar, Swerve Sweetener, poppy seeds, salt and pepper. Refrigerate dressing until ready to make the salad. This can be prepared up to 2 days ahead.
Preheat oven to 375°F. Place the chicken breasts in one layer in a baking dish with 1/2 cup water. Cover with foil and bake 25 minutes until completely cooked through. Remove cooked chicken breasts from pan, cool at room temperature for 10 minutes, then cover and refrigerate.
When the chicken is cold, dice into bite-size chunks and transfer to a large bowl. Stir in pecans, grapes, celery and dressing. Makes 6 servings.
Per serving: 320 cals, 12 grams fat, 2 grams sat fat, 12 grams carbs, 2 grams fiber, 9.5 grams sugar, 39 g protein
Original recipe: 610 cals, 43 g fat, 5 grams sat fat, 17 grams carbs, 2 grams fiber, 13 grams sugar, 33 g protein.
Heart-Smart Chicken Salad
Key swap-outs: calcium- and protein-rich cottage cheese & Greek yogurt, & heart-smart avocado in place of mayo
1/2 cup low fat cottage cheese-preferably low sodium
1/4 cup plain Greek yogurt
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon salt (optional)
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 clove garlic, minced
4 cups (about 20 oz) cooked chicken breast, shredded
3 green onions, chopped
1/2 cup cilantro, chopped
Mash avocado in bowl to a chunky consistency. Set aside.
Add cottage cheese, Greek yogurt, lemon juice, salt, pepper and garlic to food processor or blender and process until smooth. Add mixture to avocado. Stir in chicken, green onions and cilantro. Taste and season as needed. Keep refrigerated and tightly covered. Makes 6 servings.
Per serving: 195 cals, 7 grams fat, 1.8 grams sat fat, 5.5 grams carbs, 2 grams fiber, 1.5 grams sugar, 27 grams protein.
Inflammation-Busting Curry Chicken Salad
Adapted from www.allrecipes.com, submitted by Karen Baker
Standout anti-inflammatory ingredients: turmeric-rich curry powder, garlic, onion, & cherries
4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves – cooked and diced
1 stalk celery, chopped
1/2 onion, chopped
1 small apple – peeled, cored and chopped
1/3 cup dried cherries
1/2 cup chopped toasted pecans
1 clove garlic, minced
¼ onion, finely diced
1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon curry powder
3/4 cup plain 2% Greek yogurt
In a large salad bowl combine the chicken, celery, onion, apple, raisins, grapes, pecans, pepper, curry powder and mayonnaise. Mix all together, tossing to coat. Salad is ready to serve! Makes 6 servings.
Per serving: 210 calories, 8 grams fat, <1 gram sat fat, 12 grams carbs, 2 grams fiber, 8.5 grams sugar, 22 grams protein.