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Rosemary Chicken Salad

Updated on August 21, 2017
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Exploring food facts, folklore, and fabulous recipes... one ingredient at a time.

Not Another Chicken Salad!

I invited a dear friend over for lunch today. I knew that I would not have much time to prepare a meal, so came up with something I could make the night before. Toni loves chicken and fresh veggies so why not a chicken salad?

Traditional chicken salads, the ones you buy at the deli counter at your supermarket typically consist of chopped cooked rubbery chicken, a bit of celery, and a LOT of mayonnaise. Yes, creamy is dreamy, but I'd rather be able to actually taste the chicken.

How Do You Make It Memorable?

  1. Use white-meat chicken (dark meat isn't pretty and the flavor is a bit too rich for a delicate salad.
  2. Use crisp celery and dice it fine.
  3. A bit of chives adds some zip.
  4. Dried cranberries provide a sweetness that contrasts with the other savory flavors.
  5. Rosemary is an aromatic herb that will surprise (and please). Most people won't recognize it, but they'll ask "what is that interesting flavor in the salad?"
  6. Mayonnaise is good, but the tang of Greek yogurt makes this salad even better, and reduces the total amount of fat.
  7. Still not sure? I have lots of suggestions at the end of this recipe for substitutions and other ingredients you can add.

Cast your vote for Rosemary Chicken Salad


  • 3 cups cooked chicken, diced (I think white meat is best in this recipe)
  • 1/2 cup celery, diced
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1 tsp. fresh rosemary, minced
  • 2 tablespoons fresh chives, minced
  • 1/3 cup mayonnaise, (I used non-fat)
  • 1/3 cup plain Greek yogurt
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/8 tsp. freshly ground black pepper


  1. Combine all ingredients in large mixing bowl. Cover and chill at least one hour to allow flavors to blend. Spread on bread of your choice. My personal favorite is honey oatmeal.

Here Are Some Suggested Changes

This is such a versatile recipe. Here are a few suggestions on how to adapt it to what you have on hand:


  • use fresh minced tarragon in place of the rosemary


  • sliced seedless grapes
  • diced apple
  • chopped fresh pitted cherries


  • pumpkin seeds
  • chopped smoked almonds


  • crumbled bacon
  • shredded Cheddar
  • shredded Swiss cheese

© 2011 Linda Lum


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    • The Dirt Farmer profile image

      Jill Spencer 6 years ago from United States

      Yum! Thanks for sharing.