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Need to feed a crowd with little effort? What about a quick, filling lunch sandwich? Chicken salad is the way to go.
Whether you are picking the bones off your whole roasted chicken or using leftover store-bought rotisserie chicken, chicken salad is a fantastic way to use up leftover chicken.
Before we talk about what side dishes go best with chicken salad, let’s make sure we are on the same page, ok?
What Is Chicken Salad?
Here in the south, traditional chicken salad is made with seasoned chopped or shredded chicken with some type of binder. This is usually mayonnaise and mustard.
In addition to the chicken and binders, add-ins often accompany chicken salad. These can include: hard-boiled eggs, bacon, chopped celery, onions, and relish (either sweet or dill).
Most often chicken salad will be served cold on a bed of lettuce or as a sandwich. It can be also used as a dip for celery and crackers.
In other areas, chicken salad may contain chopped chicken with binders other than mayonnaise and mustard such as Miracle Whip, salad dressing, Greek yogurt, or cream cheese.
Chicken salad can also contain other ingredients such as lemon juice, apples, grapes, dried cranberries, raisins, mandarin oranges, pecans, sliced almonds, or walnuts.
Seasoning can vary and may include cajun seasons, curry, or fresh herbs such as dill or parsley.
What Side Dishes Go With Chicken Salad?
Because chicken salad can be made with a variety of binders, your side dishes will vary widely. The type of binder used will help dictate what is best to serve with your chicken salad.
For example, if your chicken salad is made with a mayonnaise binder, you may want to avoid a cold pasta salad made with mayonnaise. Instead, you may choose to serve a cold pasta salad made with a vinaigrette.
Or if your chicken salad is made with grapes and nuts, you probably don’t want to serve a side dish of fruit salad containing grapes or nuts.
Due to the variations of chicken salads, there is an endless number of side dishes that go well with chicken salad.
The side dishes you choose will also depend on how your chicken salad is served.
What Is A Serving Size For Chicken Salad?
Usually, a serving size of chicken salad can range from 4 to 8 ounces, ½ cup to 1 cup per person, at a minimum.
How Much Chicken Salad Per Person?
When I am making chicken salad sandwiches, I plan on 6 to 8 ounces per person. And when I am serving the chicken salad on a bed of lettuce and with other sides, I will plan on 10 to 12 ounces.
When you make good chicken salad, it will get eaten up quickly. Trust me, err on the side of caution and make extra. The worst thing that happens is you have leftover chicken salad. Oh, and did I tell you, chicken salad is always better the next day!
The exact amount you make will depend on the event (dinner, lunch buffet, or baby shower), whether or not the chicken salad is the main entree, and if the chicken salad will be served as a sandwich, as well as what other sides you are serving.
What Soup Goes Well With Chicken Salad?
There are many soups that go well with chicken salad. Some of the best are:
- Potato Bacon
- Butternut Squash
- Cucumber Soup
- Mushroom and Rice-based soups
- Avocado Soup
What To Eat With Chicken Salad On Keto?
- Romaine hearts and butter lettuce to make a wrap
- Scoop out tomatoes or sweet peppers and fill with chicken salad
- Low-Carb Tortillas
- Cucumbers (slice and top with chicken salad)
- Spoon onto low carb crackers
- Cheese platter
What To Serve With Chicken Salad Sandwiches?
- Dill Pickle strips
- Cheddar Cheese Straws
- Green Side Salad with vinaigrette dressing
- Fruit Salad
- Raw Veggie Strips
Best Bread To Serve With Chicken Salad
There really isn’t a bad bread to serve with chicken salad. Some of my favorites are:
- Crusty baguette
- Pita Bread
- Toasted Sandwich bread (white or whole grain)
- Crunch multi-grain bread
- Croissants (make sure they are soft and fresh)
Best Side Dish For Chicken Salad Wraps
- Potato Salad
- Cold Pasta Salad
- Fruit Salad
- Green Salad
- Cold Marinated Vegetables (cucumbers, tomatoes, onions, etc. marinated in Italian dressing)
- French fries
- Chips (potato or veggie)
Serving Dish Ideas For Your Chicken Salad and Sides
Chicken salad finger sandwiches and other finger sides are perfect for parties and showers.
Below are a few of my favorite disposable and nondisposable serving dishes.
- Three Tier Rectangle Plate Set (white, minimalist with clean lines)
- Chilled 5 Compartment Condiment Server Caddy
- 7 Piece Geometric Round Stoneware Appetizer Set (perfect for olives, nuts, chips)
- Clear Plastic 9″ x 13″ Disposable Serving Platters
Related Informational Guides:
Chicken salad is a great way to stretch your leftover chicken. Whether it’s served on a bed of lettuce, used as a dip for veggies, or served as a sandwich, you can’t go wrong.
When choosing a side dish to accompany your chicken salad, remember to choose side dishes that vary in texture and flavors. As we mentioned previously, you may not want a heavy mayonnaise-based pasta salad along with your mayonnaise-based chicken salad.
Also, remember chicken salad is always better after it has melded together in the fridge for several hours. So, make it early in the day if you want it for dinner that night.
Oh, and if you have any suggestions not listed in this article, please let me know.