The BEST Chicken Salad
Hello friends! I realize that’s a pretty big claim to say that my chicken salad is the BEST chicken salad, but I feel confident enough to make that claim.
This is one of those recipes that came together without much thought or planning. We’ve all been there, right? You’ve got people coming over and it’s a weeknight, so the night before you’re in the kitchen trying to get all of the food prepared along with getting tables and chairs set up and making sure the house is in order. I know I’m not the only one!
Such was the case when this chicken salad recipe came together. I was having a wine party. If you haven’t had a wine party or been to a wine party, you need to rectify that! They are so much fun! A friend held a wine party that I attended and to help her out, I agreed to throw one of my own. The wine “tour guide” gave me a list of food pairings to have ready for my guests. She provided the wine and the glasses and I was in charge of the food. Food is my thing, right? After all, I am a food blogger! I had purchased all of my ingredients the weekend prior to the party, but the night before I had to take care of last minute details, like putting shrimp and cheese cubes and grapes and lemon slices and salami on toothpicks. The living room had to be set up with tables and linens and chairs and TV trays. The paper plates and napkins needed to be set out. Due to a full work day the day of the party, everything needed to be prepped in advance.
The only real food I had to “make” was the chicken salad. All of the other food was pretty much already prepared. Since it was a weeknight, I wanted to make it really easy on myself. To be honest, I sort of forgot that I needed to make chicken salad. I had no recipe and really had no idea what I was going to use to prepare it other than the chicken, but I knew I needed to get it done, so I opened the fridge and went for it.
To my surprise, the chicken salad was absolutely delicious! My guests all raved about it and asked me for the recipe. Recipe? I threw this together at the last minute! My guests asked me to blog about it and let them know when the recipe was up so that they could download it. I finally got around to re-creating it for the blog and my husband hasn’t stopped raving about it and keeps asking me when I’m going make it again. Chicken salad is nothing spectacular, but I’m pretty sure it’s my secret ingredient that makes this the BEST chicken salad.
First of all, I think one of the keys is to use a roasted chicken. A lot of chicken salad is made with canned chicken. Yuck! I don’t ever use canned chicken for anything. Grilled chicken is so much better and roasted chicken is even a step up from that. I removed the skin from the chicken (as I always do) skin and shredded all of the breast meat. I’m not a fan of dark meat, so I save that for my hubby. He likes the dark meat and I like the white meat, so we can divide up a roasted chicken pretty well! Just one of the many ways we are compatible.
King Soopers, the market that we shop in, always has roasted chickens warm and convenient to grab at the last minute. The meat is very tender and flavorful and fresh. On many occasion I have stopped on the way home and picked up a roasted chicken in a pinch.
I checked my produce drawer and found green onions and celery. Onions and celery would go well in chicken salad, right? Right! Perfect, actually. I grabbed both and washed them, gave them a quick chop and threw them in. Everything is better with fresh produce.
I added some mayo and then decided to toss in some Beau Monde seasoning. Never heard of Beau Monde Seasoning? I hadn’t either, until my step mom shared her Shrimp Macaroni Salad recipe with me. I remembered that I had it in the spice cabinet, gave it a smell and decided to toss it into the chicken salad.
What is Beau Monde Seasoning? Basic versions are composed of salt, onion powder and celery powder. Some versions include additional ingredients such as garlic, clove, bay leaf, nutmeg, allspice, mace and others.
Beau Monde Seasoning is my secret ingredient, and I’m pretty sure that’s what makes this the best chicken salad! This recipe has only five ingredients and comes together in less than 10 minutes, but the flavor combination makes it taste like it took a lot more effort. I like serving my chicken salad on crackers as an appetizer or snack when guests come over.
Seriously, you have got to try this recipe! I promise you won’t be disappointed. Please come back after you’ve made it and leave me a comment and let me know how you liked it. Don’t forget to subscribe to the blog to be notified whenever I post a new recipe! I promise I will never spam you.
I’m off to share the recipe with my wine party friends. Thanks for stopping by my kitchen, where everything, without exception, is made from the ♥