If you love crunchy Asian salads, this Asian chicken salad will make you swoon! Loaded with crunchy fresh vegetables, tender chicken, sweet mandarins, Asian ginger dressing and topped with crispy chow mien noodles, this healthy summer meal is flavorful and filling.
You know how convenient those rotisserie chickens are? Just stop into the market and pick up a ready-cooked bird. Well, Costco has one-upped the rotisserie chicken! They are selling cooked and shredded rotisserie chicken — breast meat — in cryovacked packages! Now you don’t even have to pick the meat from the bone to make a quick and easy dinner and first on your list should be this Asian chicken salad with ginger lime dressing.
This is so freakin’ convenient. I think I’ve figured out their strategy. Whatever chickens didn’t get sold that day, they break them apart and use the dark meat in their soups and chicken pot pies etc. Kind of like how I approach my leftovers (what can I make with that???) And they package the tender, juicy breast meat for even more convenience for us! I love that!
Now, the size of the package is a bit daunting for a household of two — but by breaking it down into manageable quantities and wrapping the portioned chicken in freezer paper, I’ve always got just the right amount for Asian chicken salad in minutes. Perfect for a healthy summer meal.
My Asian chicken salad is special because it’s actually got two sauces working together — that may sound like a lot of extra work, but trust me, it’s not difficult and doesn’t take long at all. The first sauce is a thick, creamy, slightly sweet, hoisin-lime sauce. It gets drizzled over the crunchy Asian salad at the end.
Just mix the ingredients together and whisk until smooth and emulsified. Set aside.
The second sauce is the ginger-lime dressing. These flavors are so punchy and bright, you’ll want to douse all your summer veg in a bit of it.
The additions of honey, garlic and wasabi powder take this Asian ginger dressing in a whole new direction… Trust me, this ginger lime dressing is a keeper.
Now, let’s get to this total-flavor-explosion salad. Aside from the crispy, crunchy veg, you get a tangy sweetness from sweet mandarin oranges and a bit of heat from serrano peppers.
I like to julienne the carrots into long strands — and this julienne peeler makes it really easy to turn out uniform cuts. (I’ve included an affiliate link below if you want one too).
Chop the vegetables and add them to a large bowl.
Add the mandarins, serranos and herbs and give them a toss with the Asian ginger dressing.
Asian chicken salad makes a gorgeous main plate dish. For added crunch and flavor, finish it with roughly chopped cashews and those fun, crispy chow mien or rice noodles. You can add black sesame seeds too for extra drama.
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Asian Chicken Salad
for the asian vinaigrette
- 3 tablespoons grapeseed oil
- 1 large clove garlic minced
- 1 teaspoon ginger juice from 1 knob of ginger about 2 1/2" long instructions below
- 1 lime zested and juiced
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1 tablespoon unseasoned rice wine vinegar
- 1 teaspoon wasabi powder or several dashes of hot sauce to taste
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
for the hoisin-lime sauce
- 2 tablespoons grapeseed oil
- 1 large clove garlic minced
- 1 teaspoon ginger juice
- 6 tablespoons hoisin sauce
- 2 tablespoons lime juice
- pinch of kosher salt
for the salad
- 4 cups cooked chicken breast shredded or diced
- 3 scallions thinly sliced on a bias
- 1 red bell pepper cut into 1" matchsticks
- 1 large carrot peeled and julienned or grated on a box grater
- 6 mandarin oranges supremed or 1 11-oz. can mandarin oranges, rinsed and well drained
- 1/3 cup cilantro roughly chopped
- 2 tablespoons mint leaves chopped fresh
- 1 6- ounce package baby arugula
- 1/3 cup cashews roughly chopped, plus additional for garnish
- sprinkle crispy chow mien or rice noodles for garnish and crunch
- black sesame seeds optional
For the Ginger Juice
- Using a microplane grater, grate the knob of ginger until it has been reduced to pulp. Scoop up the pulp into a fine mesh sieve. Hold the sieve over a bowl and press on the solids with the back of a spoon. Extract as much of the ginger juice as possible, rolling the pulp back onto itself and pressing. Discard the solids. You should have about 2-3 teaspoons of juice. Divide the juice into two small bowls. One is for the hoisin-lime sauce, the other is for the asian vinaigrette.
For the Vinaigrette
- Combine the grapeseed oil, ginger juice, lime zest and juice, honey, garlic, vinegar, wasabi powder, salt and pepper into a small bowl. Whisk to combine. Taste for seasonings, adjust if necessary and set aside.
for the hoisin-lime sauce
- In a small bowl combine the grapeseed oil, garlic, ginger juice, hoisin sauce, lime juice and a pinch of kosher salt. Whisk to combine - sauce will be thick and creamy. Taste for seasonings and adjust if necessary.
For The Salad
- In a large bowl combine the scallions, bell pepper, carrot, orange segments, cilantro and mint leaves. Toss to combine. Add the chicken and toss to combine. Add the cashews and spoon 2-3 tablespoons of asian vinaigrette over the salad and toss well to coat. You can add more dressing if necessary, but don't overdress the salad.
- Divide arugula onto four plates. Top the arugula with mounds of the chicken salad. Drizzle scant amount of hoisin lime sauce over the salad and dot along the rim of the plate. Sprinkle the salad with additional cashews, chow mien or rice noodles and black sesame seeds, if desired. Enjoy.