Healthy Chicken Salad
This healthy chicken salad is made with dried cranberries, celery, almonds, chicken and Greek yogurt. It’s an easy, tasty, low calorie version of classic chicken salad. Creamy, cool, and crunchy! This quick + easy recipe is full of fabulous flavor and it’s sure to please a crowd!
This post was originally posted on 1/26/2015. It was republished on 3/21/20 with new content.
This healthy chicken salad recipe is one of my very favorite things to eat as a meal or snack throughout the day. If we’re hosting, this chicken salad is my go-to for an easy and DELICIOUS appetizer or light meal.
Chicken salad is a favorite in my family and this lightened-up version is the BEST! Crunchy almonds (or pecans), crisp celery, super flavorful chicken, and chewy cranberries all tossed in a Greek yogurt dressing. It makes for such a yummy salad and it’s SO good we even enjoy it as a dip with crackers or chips!
How Do You Make Healthy Chicken Salad?
This recipe is extremely easy which is perfect for busy weekdays or even to prep before a gathering! You can whip it up in 10-15 minutes and serve it right away!
To make this Greek yogurt chicken salad, simply shred some leftover chicken and toss it in a bowl with all of the other ingredients. Feel free to use rotisserie chicken – I love the flavor that it adds to the salad. You could even use canned chicken to make this in a pinch. I used nonfat Greek yogurt to keep the calories low, but if you want to make this recipe Paleo and nondairy, you can use a whole food mayo. I like the one from Primal Kitchen.
What Are The Ingredients In Greek Yogurt Chicken Salad?
There are only six ingredients (not counting the seasoning) in this salad:
- Almonds or pecans
- Dried cranberries
- Greek yogurt or mayo
The “secret” to having the best chicken salad is using really tender and flavorful chicken. I personally love using a pre-made rotisserie chicken. Have your favorite bread or crackers on-hand for serving.
Tip For Shredding Chicken
Shredded chicken is the base of this salad recipe, but I hate the inconvenience of trying to shred chicken with forks. There’s a quicker way! Once you have your chicken cooked, use the paddle attachment on any electric mixer to shred the chicken. Set your mixer to high speed and let it do all the hard work for you in less than a minute!
Not only is this chicken salad delicious, it is so easy to customize. This recipe has almonds and dried cranberries, but you can sub these ingredients or add in more according to your preferences. Here are some mix-in ideas:
- Hard boiled eggs
- Fresh or dried fruit: Diced apples, dried cherries or grapes
- Nuts: Cashews or walnuts would be a delicious alternative to almonds or pecans.
- Avocado: Add mashed avocado to your salad just before serving.
So many tasty options. Choose your favorites and enjoy!
How Do You Serve This Chicken Salad?
- I absolutely love chicken salad served on croissants, but to keep lunch light, I usually opt for a thin-sliced whole grain bread.
- Serve as a dip: place the chicken salad mixture in a bowl and surround it with chips, crackers, veggies, and thinly sliced apples.
- Serve on top of thinly sliced apples (or make a low carb “sandwich” with apples as the bread).
- To keep this meal low carb use lettuce wraps to serve your chicken salad.
How To Store Leftovers
Chicken salad will keep well for about 5 days. Store the salad in an air-tight container in the refrigerator. Stir it well when you ready to eat and season with salt and pepper to taste.
Can I Freeze Chicken Salad?
I would not recommend freezing chicken salad. It tends to get watery after thawing out. If do you choose to freeze it, place it in a freezer-safe storage bag for up to two months. When you’re ready to serve it, thaw it out in the refrigerator for 24 hours. It will be best to add more mayo to the salad to thicken it up.
No matter how you choose to serve this healthy chicken salad, you’ll find yourself making it on the regular. It’s just that good!
Other Favorite Lunch Salad Recipes To Try:
If you try this healthy chicken salad recipe, let me know! Leave a comment and if your family loves it as much as mine does, be sure to give it a five star ⭐️ rating! Also, tag @kimscravings on Instagram with a picture of your creation. It’s so fun to see what you’re cooking! Be sure to subscribe to our mailing list to receive more healthy delicious recipes straight to your inbox.
This healthy chicken salad is made with dried cranberries, celery, almonds, chicken and Greek yogurt. It's an easy, tasty, low calorie version of classic chicken salad. Creamy, cool, and crunchy!
- 2 to 2 1/2 cups shredded or cubed chicken*
- 1/4 cup dried cranberries, craisins, or other dried fruit
- 1/4 cup (about 1 stalk) celery, diced
- 1/4 cup red or white onion, diced
- 1/4 cup chopped almonds or pecans
- 6 ounces (about 3/4 cup) plain nonfat Greek yogurt**
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- salt and pepper to taste
To cook chicken for this recipe, salt & pepper chicken and bake at 375ºF. for 15 minutes on each side for a total of 30 minutes. Alternatively, pan-fry in a medium skillet over medium-high heat, turning after about 8-10 minutes on each side and until chicken is thoroughly cooked. Feel free to use rotisserie, canned or precooked chicken too.
Shred or chop chicken and combine with dried cranberries, celery, onion and chopped almonds in a medium sized bowl. Stir in Greek yogurt, garlic powder, salt and pepper.
Serve chicken salad with your favorite bread or crackers. Or wrap the salad in lettuce wraps or a tortilla.
Store the salad in a tightly sealed container in the refrigerator for 3-5 days.
*I love using rotisserie chicken if I don't have leftover chicken on-hand. It really adds a lot of flavor to the salad.
**I typically use nonfat Greek yogurt, but feel free to use your favorite variety. I even added a couple of tablespoons of mayo to give this salad less of a tang and more of that classic flavor without adding too many calories. If you don't eat dairy or want to stick to a Paleo diet, use a healthier mayo, like Primal Kitchen brand.
Photos by Erin at The Almond Eater.