I’m lucky that Bill loves a good entrée salad as much as I do, and one of our favorites is Mandarin Orange and Almond Chicken Salad. I’ve been making it since we were first married so it’s definitely a tried-and-true recipe. My college roommate first shared the dressing recipe with me, however, I’ve altered it slightly over the years. At some point I added the barbecue chicken, and voila, we had a delicious dinner salad.
I recently discovered Smart Chicken at Harris Teeter, and it makes my life so much easier. Smart Chicken is both hormone and antibiotic free, it’s air-chilled (no water added), and has been trimmed of all fat, skin, and connective tissue. Chicken is one of those meats that I have trouble eating after I’ve worked with it raw, and the less I have to mess with it the better I can stomach the finished product. Yes, Smart Chicken is more expensive, but for me, it’s worth the extra cost.
Once the chicken is clean and ready to go, I place it in a large skillet covered with a thin layer of smoke-flavored barbecue sauce. Next I turn the chicken to cover both sides or add a little more barbecue sauce on top. I pour about a cup of water around the chicken, bring it to a slight boil, cover it, and then immediately turn the temperature down and simmer on low for about 30 minutes until tender.
While the chicken simmers, I make the salad dressing and prep the other items for the salad.
Salad Dressing Ingredients:
- Rind of 1 orange, grated
- 1/4 cup orange juice
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1/3 cup canola or avocado oil
- 1 tablespoon vinegar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 4 prepared chicken breasts
- 1 head green leaf lettuce, mixed greens, or baby spinach
- 1 small cucumber
- 2 bunches scallions
- 1/2 cup slivered almonds
- 2 15-ounce cans mandarin oranges
While the chicken cools, I arrange the lettuce/spinach on the plate, followed by cucumbers and scallions. Once the chicken cools, I slice it on the diagonal and arrange it on the bed of veggies. I top it off with mandarin oranges and slivered almonds.
For your convenience, I’ve made a recipe card for you to print out and file with your other favorite recipes. Enjoy!
- What is your favorite chicken recipe?
- Do you enjoy entrée salads?
- Have you tried Smart Chicken?