Chinese Chicken Salad


During the heat of summer, it is nice to have a recipe that doesn’t have to be cooked and can last through the weekend to for lunches and dinners. This is my mother’s recipe. I’ve made a couple variations from some tricks I’ve picked up and also because I can’t completely comprehend the handwritten recipe she passed down. In any case, this is delicious, light and perfect for summertime.


 Salad Ingredients:

  • 3 split chicken breasts
  • 1 head iceberg lettuce
  • 1 half English cucumber, chopped
  • 6 scallions, chopped
  • 4 celery stalks, chopped
  • sesame seeds
  • sliced almonds


  • 4 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 half cup rice wine vinegar
  • 1/4 tablespoon white pepper
  • 1/4 tablespoon Chinese five spice powder
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup olive oil


Roast the split chicken breasts at 350 degrees on a baking sheet with a splash of olive oil, salt and pepper for about 30 minutes or until cooked through. My mom’s original recipe calls for steaming the chicken. Not only is that a pain, but roasting the chicken is more flavorful (or so Ina says).

Meanwhile, whisk all the salad dressing ingredients (except the olive oil) together until everything has dissolved. Then whisk in the oil until emulsified. Taste the dressing. Adjust the seasoning as desired.

Once chicken breasts are cooked through, let them rest until cool and then shred the chicken with your hands. Combine with the shredded iceberg and chopped celery, scallions and cucumbers. Dress the salad and sprinkle with sliced almonds and sesame seeds. If it’s a special occasion, take the time to toast the almonds and sesame seeds.

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