The Best Chicken Salad

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This is the Best Chicken Salad EVER! Perfect for summer picnics, festive lunches and anytime in between!

I love a great sandwich, especially when it’s more than just turkey and cheese. You have to try these other tried and true sandwiches, Egg Salad, Grilled Cheese, and French Dip, definitely something special!

Chicken salad on a croissant with chips on a plate.

The Best Chicken Salad

This Chicken Salad is truly divine. At first glance you might balk at the grapes, but trust me, they make the salad exquisite. The sweet crunch of the grapes combines beautifully with the chicken and richness of the mayo. The celery and pecans create nice crunch to the chicken salad that elevates it to the next level.

I love using this for picnics and special lunches. It is so easy to make but it is so fancy at the same time. Chicken Salad comes together in a flash so you can have this on the table in no time. And you will love how it is so versatile as well, serve it as a wrap, on a croissant, on some rye bread, or in a lettuce bowl. However you serve it, just make it! You are going to love it, it is so divine!

What You Need For Ultimate Chicken Salad Recipe

Simple and fresh, this chicken salad will come together quickly. Cook your chicken ahead of time or purchase an already cooked chicken to save on time. This chicken salad will become a favorite to make! The total amounts of ingredients is located in the recipe card.

  • Cooked Chicken: chopped or shredded chicken is best.
  • Grapes: I used red grapes, they are a bit sweeter than green. Slice in half or cut into cubes.
  • Pecans: You can purchase chopped pecans for this salad.
  • Green onions: I like to finely chop the green onions for a bit of a kick in each bite.
  • Celery: Finely diced using a knife or a shredder.
  • Mayonnaise: Do not use salad dressing, it will alter the taste.
  • Juice from ½ lemon: Yes, you can use bottled.
  • Dijon Mustard: Adds the perfect amount of zippy flavor to this chicken salad.
  • Salt and pepper: Add to taste!

How To Make Quick and Easy Chicken Salad

Letting this sit in the fridge for a bit, helps meld the flavors together. Shoot for at least an hour. In a medium sized bowl combine the chicken, grapes, pecans, green onions, celery, mayonnaise, lemon, and mustard. Salt and pepper to taste. Serve with croissants, romaine, or with crackers. This chicken salad is always so fun for everyone to make their own sandwich or add it on top of green lettuce.

Pecans, grapes, celery, onions and chicken on a cutting board.

Tips and Variations For The Best Chicken Salad

Crunchy, savory, sweet, and a bit creamy chicken salad is the perfect dish.

  • Chicken: Use any type of chicken you have on hand. You can use rotisserie, leftover BBQ, roasted, or even broiled chicken. Whatever you use, chop it up or shred it so it is easy to spread, spoon, and eat.
  • Grapes: You can use red or green grapes or a combination of both. Green grapes can be a bit tart sometimes and the red grapes add color.
  • Nuts: Pecans are a classic but you can substitute them for walnuts, almonds, or cashews. Roast them for a bit of extra flavor.
  • Mayonnaise: If you are not a fan of mayo, you can use sour cream or non-fat Greek yogurt.
  • Different Fruit: Try chopped apples or dried cranberries.

All the ingredients with the dressing ingredients in a bowl ready to stir.

What to Serve with Chicken Salad Sandwich

There are a few ways to present this amazing chicken salad. Spread it on a flakey croissant, (the best way), serve with ritz crackers and a vegetable tray, or serve in lettuce cups for a low carb option. Salty potato chips, in my opinion, are a must, but there are other options that will still make a satisfying meal, whether it’s lunch or dinner. Serve with a wonderful cup of soup, some fruit, and vegetables with this incredible dip and you’ve got it made!

Can You Store Cold Chicken Salad Recipe

  • Make-Ahead: I enjoy this even more after it has sat in the fridge for a bit, so it’s perfect for making it ahead.
  • Store: Keep this in the fridge tightly covered for up to 4 days.
The chicken salad in a bowl.

Chicken Salad

4.82 from 11 votes
This is the Best Chicken Salad EVER! Perfect for summer picnics, festive lunches and anytime in between!
Prep Time 15 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Author Alyssa Rivers
Servings: 8 servings


  • 2 1/2 cups cooked chicken chopped
  • 1 cup grapes quartered
  • 1 cup pecans chopped
  • 4 green onions chopped
  • 1/2 cup celery finely diced
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • Juice from ½ lemon
  • 1 Tablespoon dijon mustard
  • salt and pepper to taste


  • In a medium sized bowl combine the chicken, grapes, pecans, green onions, celery, mayonnaise, lemon, and mustard. Salt and pepper to taste.
  • Serve with croissants, romaine, or with crackers.



Serves: 8

Calories366kcal (18%)Carbohydrates6g (2%)Protein13g (26%)Fat33g (51%)Saturated Fat5g (25%)Trans Fat1gCholesterol45mg (15%)Sodium238mg (10%)Potassium228mg (7%)Fiber2g (8%)Sugar4g (4%)Vitamin A145IU (3%)Vitamin C2mg (2%)Calcium26mg (3%)Iron1mg (6%)

All nutritional information is based on third party calculations and is only an estimate. Each recipe and nutritional value will vary depending on the brands you use, measuring methods and portion sizes per household.

Course Dinner, Main Course, Salad
Cuisine American
Keyword chicken salad, chicken salad recipe, chicken salad sandwich
Tried this recipe?Mention @alyssa_therecipecritic or tag #therecipecritic

Alyssa Rivers

I am Alyssa and the blogger behind The Recipe Critic. I started my blog in June of 2012 as a place to share my passion for cooking. I love trying new things and testing them out with my family.

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    1. Mine is very similar but I use drained pineapple tidbits and cashew nut pieces. I put mine on croissants or make cream puff shells.

  1. 5 stars
    I made small cream puffs and filled them with this chicken salad recipe for a bridal shower. They were a huge hit. Delicious!!

    1. 5 stars
      That would of looked fantastic and sounds also amazing!
      Def going to meet it, think the family will love and a nice change from what we usually put in.

  2. 5 stars
    This is the best chicken salad, I smoked a whole chicken on a my barrel smoker and it added a whole other level of flavor to the salad, will definitely be a staple from here on out!

  3. 5 stars
    I made this for a bridal shower and my guests raved about it. I used Sir Kensingtons mayo. I also made half with nuts and half without. Both taste wonderful. Thank you!

  4. 5 stars
    Iove your receipes, my GF, thinks I’m a wizard in the kitchen. But I try many of your recipes and have great sucess

  5. I make this way too much!!!! I make a big batch of this on Sunday and have it throughout the week for work lunches or a late night snack with crackers. It’s so delicious. It has a great flavor and is super easy to make. I roast my pecans before I put them in to add more flavor. But everything else is exactly as said.

    1. 3 stars
      growing up catholic in the friday meatless era we were flooded with tuna salad. as an adult i have ýet to eat it. i prefer the chicken version. no nuts, and i use red onion and a bit of hollendaise sauce as msyo is bland. always on soúrdough bread sometimes lightly toasted.

  6. 5 stars
    This IS absolutely the best chicken salad I have ever had. My wonderful neighbor offered to smoke the chicken, which also amped up all the lovely flavors from this recipe. Thank you.

  7. I haven’t used this recipe but it sounds very similar to mine. Omitting the grapes & green onions, I will mince/dice one medium/large Vidalia onion, along with some sweet pickle relish and a dash of buttermilk Ranch dressing. Uummm, uummm good.
    Monty S. Pittman
    Martinez, Georgia

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