My-oh-my has it been a long time since I have posted a recipe on the blog! I have definitely been creating new recipes, but I always forget to take quality pictures. This weekend while I was walking through Trader Joes to pick up some produce, and I felt the craving for chicken salad. However, I wanted more than just some shredded chicken breast and mayo mixed together.
I’ve never actually had a chicken waldorf salad, but I vaguely remembered seeing it on the web and various cooking shows. I knew that there would be veggies, nuts, and fruit involved, all of which I had at home, so I started working on my own version.
I usually add red peppers and sweet onions to my chicken salad, so this time to make it different, I added craisins and chopped pecans. I used about 1/4 cup of each. (Note: I used a 100 calorie packet of craisins which turns out to be about 1/4 cup.)
Before I mix the fun stuff in, I combine the shredded chicken with spicy brown mustard and light mayo. Years ago, before I got into healthy eating, I only used mayo (and probably full fat mayo too). Now, I’ve learned that the spicy mustard adds flavor and moisture so less mayo is needed. I also used a 12.5 oz can of premium chunk white chicken in water from Trader Joes. Yes, I could have baked and shredded my own chicken breasts, but this is so much easier. If you used canned chicken, make sure you buy a can that packs the chicken in water only. Just like tuna, there are other options in the grocery store but that means you will be taking in more calories and more sodium.
Once the chicken, spicy brown mustard, and mayo are combined, I add in the craisins, pecans, red pepper and onions. I find that it is easier to make sure that the chicken is well coated with the mayo and mustard if I mix those first, and then add in the extras. I like to avoid having dry pieces of chicken anywhere in the salad.
Lately, I have also been working hard to eliminate gluten and dairy from my diet. I could probably devote a whole post to why and how, but the short version is that it helps with my digestion. I have horrible digestion, and I notice that when I stop eating gluten and dairy, I have significantly less bloat and less digestive issues. No, I do not have celiac disease but I am lactose intolerant. I was diagnosed as an infant… but then I grew out of it. However, as I get older, my body is not processing dairy as well anymore.
I say all this because normally I would have this salad with cheese on a slice of whole wheat toast or on a cracker. But to stay on top of my gluten and dairy free goals, I opted to use plantain chips as my “cracker” and it was so good.
- 12.5 oz can of white chunk chicken in water
- 1.5 TBS light mayo
- 1 TBS spicy brown mustard
- 1/4 cup chopped sweet onion
- 1/4 cup chopped red bell pepper
- 1/4 cup craisins
- 1/4 cup chopped pecans
- Drain and shred canned white chunk chicken in large bowl.
- Add light mayo and spicy brown mustard to chicken and mix well.
- Add remaining ingredients and mix well.
- Serve with crackers, plantain chips, or eat plain.
- Feel free to substitute your favorite nuts into this recipe if you do not like pecans.
- If you feel that the chicken is still dry, I recommend adding in more mustard.