It's still technically spring, but it feels like summertime. During the summer, I love finding meals I can make without turning on the oven. We have A/C so I still do use the oven when I want/need to, but I love an easy meal I can whip up without heating up the house. Is anyone else with me on that?
This chicken salad is just that. I even made the soft wrap bread and guess what, no oven for that either (recipe for the soft wrap bread here). Double win! You can also serve this just plain, in a pita pocket or on a buttery croissant roll.
My mother-in-law made a recipe book for me (I've mentioned before) before my husband and I got married with lots of favorite recipes from their family. I've come to love so many of them and 8 years later, still haven't tried them all. This recipe was one from here book, it was one that my sister-in-law shared with the family. It's super yummy and there is no wonder why it keeps getting shared.
I hope you'll have time to enjoy it this summer!
Aloha Chicken Salad
For the Salad:
¼ cup canola oil
3 tablespoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 clove garlic or ¼ teaspoon granulated garlic
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon black pepper
2 chicken breasts
4 cups fresh pineapple, diced
¾ cup celery, chopped
½ cup shredded coconut (sweetened or unsweetened)
¾ cup pecans, toasted
2 green onions, chopped (white and green parts)
1 small can mandarin oranges, drained (juice reserved)
½ cup mayonnaise
1 teaspoon chicken base or 1 chicken bullion cube
¼ teaspoon nutmeg
2 tablespoons mandarin orange juice
Combine oil, lemon juice, soy sauce, garlic, salt and pepper in a bag or shallow container, add chicken and turn to coat - let marinate for 4-12 hours. Grill on BBQ until chicken is cooked through. Dice the chicken and add it to a large mixing bowl. If you prefer not to grill the chicken, just shred 3 cups of chicken.
Add chopped pineapple, celery, coconut, green onion (reserving the oranges to toss last) to the mixing bowl with the chicken.
In a separate small bowl, combine the mayo, chicken base/bouillon (stir til smooth - no lumps), add in nutmeg and orange juice. Pour dressing over the salad and toss to coat. Then gently fold in the mandarin oranges, they are more delicate so you add them last so they don't break up too much.
Serve as is or in soft wrap bread or pita bread.
If you don't want to use grilled chicken you can sub in shredded chicken. If you use shredded chicken you can skip the first 6 ingredients which are part of the marinade.
Also, I like my salads not overly dressed, so if you love dressing you might want to double or 1 ½ the dressing recipe.
Originally posted on Dessert Now, Dinner Later. This recipe was adapted from a recipe given to me by my sister-in-law, Jayna M., who got it from a friend.