Cranberry Pecan Chicken Salad will soon become your favorite chicken salad, hands down! This easy-to-make recipe has loads of tender chicken, tart cranberries, crunchy pecans, and sweet apples. It’s great as a sandwich or a salad and so good for parties and potlucks.
This is my all-time favorite chicken salad recipe. Cranberry Pecan Chicken Salad is a simple recipe with the perfect combination of flavors and texture to make it super delicious. Whether I serve it for a quick dinner alongside a bowl of potato soup, or as an easy lunch side dish with Parmesan cheese staws, it’s always a welcome sight on my table.
What Makes This Cranberry Pecan Chicken Salad Special?
- Leftover chicken or rotisserie chicken is a great choice for this salad because it makes it so fast to put together!
- It’s great to eat throughout the week, particularly after a holiday when you are craving something a little lighter.
- A really, really good salad dressing recipe takes this chicken salad from good to great! It’s made in minutes with pantry and fridge staples.
Ingredients Needed For Cranberry Pecan Chicken Salad
- Cooked Chicken – white or dark meat are both great to use. I often use leftover chicken breast or chicken thighs.
- Dried Cranberries – take this salad, Family Favorite Chopped Salad, and Broccoli Cauliflower Salad to a new level with just the right amount of sweetness.
- Pecans – a classic Southern ingredient.
- Apple – I like to use Honeycrisp apples that have a tart sweetness.
- Green Onions
- Salt and Pepper
Variations And Substitutions
- Leftover turkey from Thanksgiving or the holiday works great in this recipe.
- Use nuts like walnuts, slivered almonds, or sunflower seeds for added crunch.
- Get a bit fancy and add Candied Pecans.
- Red onions are a great addition for a bit of savoriness.
- Add Dijon mustard to the mayo dressing for a bit of spice.
- Celery, grapes, or pears are also great to add.
- You can use plain Greek yogurt and lemon juice in a pinch instead of mayo.
How to The Best Chicken Salad With Pecans And Cranberries
- Remove the chicken meat from the bone and chop or shred it into bite-size pieces.
- Chop the pecans, apple, and green onion.
- Add all the ingredients to a large mixing bowl. Stir the ingredients for the dressing, then add it to the chicken mixture.
- Mix everything, taste it, and adjust the seasoning, and then you’re ready to enjoy.
- Store in the refrigerator in an airtight container for 3 to 5 days.
How To Make The Dressing?
- Good or homemade mayonnaise – not salad dressing.
- Kosher Salt
- Fresh cracked pepper
- Garlic Powder
- Chop the chicken so it’s bite-sized. Some recipes shred the chicken, but I’ve found chopping the chicken makes it easier to eat.
- Mix the dressing ingredients in a large bowl, then add everything else. This saves you from cleaning more dishes!
- Double the batch so you have meals for the whole week. The easiest way to meal prep is to double what you’re already making!
Questions And Answers
Yes, this chicken salad can be made two days before you are ready to serve it.
Yes, if you don’t have enough leftover chicken, you can supplement it with rotisserie chicken or fresh-made chicken. You can also use more apples in place of some of the chicken in a pinch.
Yes, I always recommend tasting the salad and adjusting it as needed. If you like more pepper, add more pepper, if you like fresh herbs, try adding some fresh herbs like dill.
This chicken pecan cranberry salad will last for 3-5 days stored in an airtight container in the fridge.
More Delicious Salad Recipes To Make
If you tried this Cranberry Pecan Chicken Salad Recipe or any other recipe, please leave a 🌟 star rating and let me know how it went in the comments below. Thanks!
- 3 – 3 ½ cups cooked chicken
- ¾ cup dried cranberries
- 1 apple – chopped
- ½ cup pecans – chopped
- ¼ cup green onions – chopped
- ¾ cup mayonnaise
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon pepper
- Add chicken, cranberries, pecans, apple and green onion to a medium-size bowl.
- Serve immediately. It can be stored covered in the fridge for up to 5 days.
- Leftovers – Store in the refrigerator in an airtight container for 3 to 5 days.