This Chinese Chicken and Walnut Salad is a great main-dish salad recipe!
It’s nice to be able to have a few recipes on hand in the summer that are easy to make and are nice and light for dinner. This Chinese Chicken and Walnut Salad is the perfect solution for a simple summer meal. We enjoy it all on its own with a glass of crisp white wine… and popsicles for dessert. I note the popsicle part because we live in Arizona and have to deal with extreme summer heat. Popsicles are so refreshing and light to enjoy after eating a healthy dinner like this one!
What ingredients are needed for this Chinese Chicken and Walnut Salad?
It starts with a really great homemade dressing! Walnut or corn oil is combined with hoisin sauce, soy sauce, red wine vinegar, sesame seeds, garlic and ginger. The dressing is so good!
Fresh spinach and Napa cabbage make up the greens in this salad. Carrots and green onions are tossed in. And toasted walnuts and cooked chicken finish it off.
It’s a simple and delicious salad. My son doesn’t normally like salad all that much, and he came into the kitchen and gobbled up two bowls!
How to toast walnuts:
It’s easy! Just take out a nonstick skillet and place it over medium heat. Add the walnuts and move them around with a wooden spoon until they’re fragrant and toasted. Don’t skip this part because toasted walnuts are much more delicious than raw walnuts!
How to cook chicken for salads:
Nowadays, you can probably pick up some already cooked chicken at your market. I don’t usually like how that cooked chicken tastes, so I make my own. Pound out your chicken to an even thickness. Give it a sprinkle of salt and pepper on both sides. Sometimes I add a little garlic powder too. Heat a nonstick skillet over medium heat and add a little cooking spray or olive oil. Sauté your chicken about 3 to 5 minutes on each side, depending on the thickness of your chicken. Cook it just until it is cooked through. Let it cool, then slice it or chop it to enjoy in salads!
Here are a few more Asian-style salad recipes you might enjoy:
- Chinese Grilled Chicken Salad
- Asian Chicken Salad
- Asian Turkey Salad
- Mandarin Chicken Spinach Salad
- Asian Quinoa Salad
Chinese Chicken and Walnut Salad
- ¼ cup corn or walnut oil
- 2 tablespoons hoisin sauce
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 2 tablespoons sesame seeds
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- 1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
- One 10-ounce bag baby spinach
- ½ head Napa or Chinese cabbage
- 2 large carrots, peeled and julienned
- 4 whole green onions, thinly sliced
- ½ cup chopped walnuts, toasted (see NOTES below)
- 2 cups cooked chicken, shredded or chopped
PREPARE THE DRESSING:
- Combine the oil, hoisin sauce, soy sauce, vinegar, sesame seeds, garlic and ginger. Blend well and refrigerate.
ASSEMBLE THE SALAD:
- Wash the spinach . Slice into ½-inch strips. Wash and core the cabbage. Slice into 1/2-inch pieces. Dry the spinach and cabbage thoroughly.
- In a large bowl, combine the greens, carrots, green onions, walnuts and chicken. Toss well. Add the dressing a little at a time (to taste) and toss again. You may wish to not use all of the dressing.
- *To toast walnuts: add walnuts to a nonstick skillet over medium heat. Stir often until walnuts become slightly fragrant and toasted. Remove walnuts to a paper towel or cutting board to cool.
- *Try substituting beef and toasted almonds, or shrimp and toasted pine nuts for the chicken and walnuts.
- *Extra dressing may be stored in a covered glass container in the refrigerator.