Chicken Salad ~ Fresher Tasting and Lightened-Up

A lightened up version of chicken salad ~

Healthier with more flavor and texture than before. :)

This one is a combination of a couple of recipes I've made for a very long time. This time I peeled a sweet, juicy cantaloupe, cut it into thick rings to contain the mounded chicken mixture.

I loaded the dish with plenty of other healthy things ~

blueberries (high in anti-oxidents, and with a low glycemic index rating),

lots of crispy celery for crunch,

walnuts; rich in fiber, B vitamins, magnesium, and antioxidants such as Vitamin E.

Generally nuts are also high in plant sterols and fat - but mostly monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, omega 3 fatty acids - (the good fats) which have been shown to lower LDL cholesterol. Walnuts, in particular, have significantly higher amounts of omega 3 fatty acids as compared to other nuts.

I also lined the plate with baby spinach leaves (stems removed) before building the remainder of the salad.

The French tarragon is doing really well in the herb garden this year, so I snipped some up and tossed it with the chicken, as well as a garnish.

Probably the most notable change to make this chicken salad more healthful is the dressing. I use plain, organic, non-fat yogurt, mixed with a bit of quality mayonnaise (reduced fat, or regular) in the ration of about 4:1 , and sometimes about a 1/2 to 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard.

When using boneless, skinless chicken breasts for a salad I gently poach them with a bay leaf, whole black pepper corns and aromatic herbs, until just done so they remain moist and flavorful. Allow them to cool then cut the breasts into the desired size chunks (I just don't care for shredded chicken in this kind of salad.)

I love limes, and a squeeze piques the flavor of this salad perfectly.

If you try this lightened up version of Chicken Salad, I hope you love it!


  1. This looks wonderful!

  2. Looks delicious! I love it...and may be trying it in the very near future!

  3. I know I would like this,..I make a similar mayo mix and we love it.The colors are so beautiful Mary..Yumyum..Jacques eats a lot of almonds and pistachios:)All for health.

  4. This looks like the perfect dish for those Summer nights when I want something light. I look forward to all of your lighter recipes.

    I hope the hubs feeling well!

    Praying for you both.

  5. This is beautiful, Mari, and a perfect reminder of how delicious it is to eat healthy foods! :)

  6. This is a great summer salad! I love using non-fat yogurt in chicken and pasta salads.

  7. This looks delicious! I love chicken salad and your idea to lighten it up is a great one!

  8. Hi Mari! Your blog is like a little bit of heaven. I enjoy your pictures so much!

  9. Oh yeah!
    Thats what I am talkin about...
    You go girl!

  10. First of all great presentation!!!!!

    I also love to use yogurt in my "salad" recipes! Thanks!

  11. That's a beautiful summer plate, especially for lunch in your beautiful garden. I, too, use no-fat yogurt in lieu of mayo and I like the idea that you put lime on the plate...I love a squeeze of lime on fruit!

  12. Hi Everybody!

    Thank you so much for your comments and encouragement ~ thanks for not giving up on my blog as I go "lighter". I really appreciate your support. ((hugs)) xoxo

  13. It's on our table tonight! Looks so good.

  14. This dish looks beautiful and perfect for summer! Found you through Tastespotting, I always love to come across other Pacific NW food bloggers. Glad I found you!

  15. I love that it is served in a ring of cantelope. It fills up the space on the plate nicely.


Thank you for your comments, friends ~ they make my day!

A Sampling of my food . . .


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