Sunday, June 21, 2015

Recipe Ahoy! Low-Fat Chicken Salad

Summer is upon us here in the Pacific Northwest. Hot afternoon sun leaves me craving something cool to nibble on for lunch. Normally that looks something like: salad, salad with chicken, salad, salad, salad. Sometimes I want a little something different.

Sandwiches have a ton of bread and tend to leave me sleepy but the afternoon.
Mayo salads - like chicken, egg, or potato salad, are well, loaded with mayo! (talk about sleepy afternoon...)
Wraps are sneaky calories and can be more calories and saturated fat than most breads. Plus there is often way too much wrap to filling ratio - so what's left for your intrepid heroine to do?!

Enter the Low-Fat Chicken Salad.

Let the mise en place begin!

To start - chicken. I got a family pack of chicken thighs and had made up some chicken tandoori and peppered chicken the day before for dinner. The next day, we shredded the leftovers and I started with 3/4ths of a cup of that for the base of the dish.

Next - the secret!
(Want to know the secret of recipes that call for mayo? Just don't use it!)
So, if I'm not using mayo, what am I going to use? Well, I need something with tangy flavor, lubricating abilities, something that can mingle flavors, and something thick enough it won't go straight through the bread.
Any ideas yet?                  Low-Fat plain yogurt.
Yes, yogurt.
Its tangy, thick, lubricating, and even though it is low fat - it isn't full of crazy ingredients!
Try it.
No...just try it.
If you are nervous about it - cut it in half - for any salad recipe you are planning to use mayo for swap half of the required amount with low-fat plain yogurt.

Because I'm slowly switching over - I'm using 3/4ths yogurt in any mayo recipe. For this recipe you'll need two big tablespoons yogurt and one regular tablespoon of mayo.
I know, not so pretty at the moment...

Next up - all the tasty bits!

1/4 cup thinly sliced fresh carrots -

1/4 cup thinly sliced celery - 

1/2" slice of raw yellow onion, minced into tiny bits -

A spoonful of grated Parmesan. Actual cheese please!

A handful each of orange flavored (or regular) dried cranberries and raw sliced almonds -  

Getting much prettier!
A 1/4 cup of quartered green grapes (yes grapes) and a 1/2 teaspoon of freshly ground black peppercorns -
Be adventurous! 

Mix thoroughly and let sit for at least an hour (way better overnight) so the flavors can meld a bit. Add in a pinch or two of dill if that suits your taste.

Next - stuff into a low-fat pita pocket with some spinach and mixed greens and enjoy for a flavorful, guilt free and sleepy-feeling free lunch!



Recipe Summary:

Combine in a medium mixing bowl -

3/4ths cup cooked chicken
2 tbsp low-fat plain yogurt
1 tbsp mayo
1/4th cup carrots - thinly sliced
1/4th cup celery - thinly sliced
1/4th cup onion - minced fine
1 tbsp parmesan cheese
1/4th cup grapes - quartered
Handful each of dried cranberries and raw sliced almonds
10 peppercorns - grated
dill to flavor

Let sit covered overnight in the fridge.
Remove and enjoy!


1 comment:

  1. Love it, what about flavoring the dressing for salads.

    ReplyDelete