03.12.19

Chopped Asian-Inspired Chicken Salad with ‘Peanut Dressing’

A chopped asian-inspired chicken salad is one of those salads that everyone has had before and loved. I remember growing up, one of my best friends mom’s made this recipe for an Asian Chicken Salad that had dried ramen noodles (from the package) in it. As young kids who didn’t much care for salads, we loved this recipe. I found out later in life why when I asked her for the recipe… the dressing had a sh$#t ton of sugar in it. 

This recipe is nothing like the chopped chicken salad from my memory, to be honest. But it’s still *really yummy*. I love that the cabbage, carrots, and almonds give it a fabulous crunch while the mandarin oranges give it a touch of sweetness and zing. And the best part? The creamy ‘peanut dressing’ that will blow you away!

This dish is Whole30 compliant, but if you’re buying the canned mandarin oranges beware of added ingredients! A lot of brands sneak in sugar. I bought mine at Whole Foods and it was perfectly clean. You can also use a regular mandarin orange and squeeze the juice out of another if necessary.

This dish is perfect for meal prep but I do recommend dressing the salad as you go to keep it alive and well throughout the week and prevent it from getting soggy! 

Chopped Asian Chicken Salad with 'Peanut Dressing'

Serves: 2
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Prep Time15 mins

Ingredients

For the Chopped Asian Chicken Salad:

  • 4 cups romaine, chopped about 1 large head of romaine
  • 1 cup matchstick carrots
  • 1 cup red cabbage, diced small
  • 1/2 cup slivered almonds
  • 2 cups shredded, cooked chicken
  • 10.7 oz mandarin oranges, canned and drained *Reserve 2 tbsp of the juice for the dressing
  • 1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
  • 3/4 cup green onions, sliced thin on the diagonal about 4 green onions
  • 1/2 tsp black sesame seeds
  • 1/2 tsp toasted white sesame seeds

For the 'Peanut Dressing':

  • 2 tbsp mandarin juice from the can *see notes if using fresh
  • 2 tbsp coconut aminos
  • 1 tsp fish sauce
  • 1 tbsp creamy cashew butter or creamy nut butter of your choice
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 1/4 tsp ground ginger powder
  • 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes (optional)
  • 1/2 tsp toasted sesame oil
  • kosher salt, to taste
  • black pepper, to taste

Instructions

For the Chopped Asian Chicken Salad:

  • In a large bowl, combine the romaine, carrots, red cabbage, slivered almonds, chicken, mandarins, cilantro,  green onions, black sesame seeds and white sesame seeds. Set aside.

For the 'Peanut Dressing':

  • In a food processor or blender, combine the mandarin juice, coconut aminos, fish sauce, cashew butter, garlic, rice vinegar, ginger powder, crushed red pepper flakes (if using) and toasted sesame oil. Blend until well-combined. 
  • Drizzle dressing over the salad and very gently toss to combine so that the mandarin oranges do not get smashed. Taste and add salt and pepper if needed to taste.

Notes

If you can't find canned mandarin oranges without junk added to it, you can use fresh. I would dissect 2 mandarin oranges and place the slices in the salad. Use a 3rd and juice 2 tbsp. of juice for the dressing.

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