Quick and easy smoked chicken salad and pesto with a lot of flavor! The perfect side dish for the BBQ, dinner party or for lunch.
A delicious salad with smoked chicken, pesto, cucumber, sun-dried tomatoes and roasted pine nuts. Flavored with a delicious creamy yogurt mayonnaise dressing. Summer on your plate.
You can eat this salad at the BBQ, for lunch or as a side dish with dinner. It will be on the table within 10 minutes and is easy and simple to make.
You do not get smoked chicken from the deli department. It is chicken fillet that is seasoned and salted and then cold or hot smoked. This gives the meat a delicious salty taste with a smoky smell. You cut the chicken fillet into cubes afterwards.
Unlike many recipes, red pesto is used here instead of green pesto. This variety, which originates from Sicily (Italy), uses tomatoes and almonds instead of basil and pine nuts. In many recipes that you come across nowadays, paprika is also added and the almonds are replaced by pine nuts. This pesto allows all that and remains tasty.
📖 Variations and substitutes
Here I share the recipe for a delicious salad with smoked chicken and pesto, but you can vary endlessly. Here are a few ideas:
- For a vegetarian variant, add cubes of smoked cheese instead of smoked chicken fillet. Really delicious.
- Instead of using red pesto, use green pesto or make your own by mixing a leafy vegetable with cheese, pine nuts and olive oil. For example a delicious kale pesto, carrot hazelnut pesto or arugula pesto.
- For a light version, use low-fat yogurt and light mayonnaise.
🎥 Cooking video
💭 Top tips
- Scrape the seeds from the cucumber with the back of a spoon. The seeds contain a lot of moisture. A salad quickly becomes mushy from too much moisture and that is a pity.
- Roast the pine nuts in a dry frying pan for 2 to 3 minutes. They then smell nutty and have an even more intense flavor. Remember to stick with it otherwise they will burn.
- First mix the salad and only then add the pine nuts. When the pine nuts get too wet they lose their bite.
- If you have any leftover lettuce, keep it in the refrigerator with a slightly damp paper towel. This keeps it fresh longer.
⏲️ What to do with left overs?
Salads are difficult to store, but these tips make it easier to assemble the salad:
- Roast the pine nuts up to 2 days in advance and store them in an air-tight container at room temperature.
- Make the marinade up to 2 days in advance and store in an air-tight container in the refrigerator.
- You can mix the solid ingredients: lettuce, chicken breast, cucumber and sun-dried tomatoes up to 2 hours in advance. Store covered in the refrigerator.
🥘 Other delicious recipes
- Arugula salad with pistachio
- Tagliatelle with shrimp salad
- Pasta salad with roasted tomatoes
- Edible flower salad
How to make it
Smoked chicken salad and pesto
- ½ cup yogurt
- 2 tablespoons mayonnaise
- 1 tablespoon red pesto
- salt and pepper to taste
- ½ cucumber English
- 1½ cups mix salad
- ½ cup smoked chicken
- 3 tablespoons sun-dried tomatoes
- 1 tablespoon pine nuts roasted
- Mix the yogurt, mayonnaise and pesto together.
- Taste and season with salt and pepper.
- Peel the cucumber and cut in half lengthwise.
- Scrape out the seeds with the back of a spoon.
- Cut the cucumber in half moons.
- Cut the smoked chicken fillet into cubes.
- Halve the sun-dried tomatoes (if they are large).
- Mix the lettuce with cucumber, chicken fillet and sun-dried tomatoes.
- Pour in the dressing and mix until each lettuce leaf has a layer of dressing.
- Sprinkle the pine nuts over the salad.
- Serve immediately.