Easy-Peasy Whole30 Chicken Salad

Posted by Karin on July 7, 2017
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This Whole30 Chicken Salad is the perfect introduction to a Whole30 diet that your whole family can enjoy! Full of lean protein, healthy fats, and tons of flavor, it’s the best easy lunch or quick dinner. Make it ahead of time for delicious meals in a pinch! 

If you’ve been around for a while, you’ll know how much I love the Whole30 diet. I’ve followed it for years now, implementing different rounds with breaks in between. Personally, I feel great and love the structure the diet gives me with my meals. There’s no longer any guesswork involved when it comes to my meals. I just follow the “rules” and know I’m set. 

My favorite part of implementing this diet approach is that it forces me to be creative with my meals. It’s a fun way to taste new foods and implement new cooking techniques or recipes! As a result, my whole family gets on board, too. I mean, I could create separate meals for myself, but who has time for that? As a result, we all eat a bit healthier, and my boys are introduced to all kinds of flavors and cuisines.

In an effort to make Whole30 a lifestyle and not feel restricted, I’m always creating (and sharing) new recipes. However, sometimes we just want to get back to the basics. Thus was born this Easy-Peasy Whole30 Chicken Salad! Made with convenient and common ingredients, this homemade chicken salad recipe has become a go-to for me when I need a healthy lunch or quick dinner! Even better, it can be made in bulk and prepped ahead of time for fast meals all week long. You’re not going to believe how easy it is to make! If you love this recipe and want more like it be sure to take a look at this Buffalo Chicken Salad, Whole30 Tuna Salad, and Whole30 Egg Salad.

How to Make Whole30 Chicken Salad

This homemade chicken salad comes together in minutes with just a few quick steps! 

To start, shred your rotisserie chicken if you have not done so already and chop your apple and celery. Then, add your chicken, grapes, walnuts, apple, and celery to a large bowl, and gently mix until well combined.

Next, in a small bowl, mix together your mayonnaise, salt, pepper, and apple cider vinegar using a fork or whisk. 

Pour your mayonnaise “dressing’ over the chicken mixture, and stir. Be sure to make sure everything is evenly coated with the dressing. 

Chill your chicken salad for at least 2 hours or overnight in the fridge, and enjoy! 

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Whole30 Chicken Salad Ingredients 

This Whole30 Chicken Salad is amazing because it’s made with simple ingredients you likely already have on hand! Even better, you can easily swap, substitute, or add foods to fit all your needs. Budget-friendly and tasty, it truly doesn’t get much easier than homemade chicken salad. To get started, you’ll need to gather the following ingredients. 

Rotisserie Chicken – Feel free to substitute canned chicken or tuna or chicken chunks.

Mayonnaise – To increase the protein content, swap Mayonnaise for Greek yogurt! For a dairy-free option, use a dairy-free yogurt or mayonnaise.

Apple Cider Vinegar – Apple Cider Vinegar adds a nice tang to even out the sweetness of the fruit.

Apple – Use red apples for added sweetness. I prefer Honeycrisp or Pink Lady!

Grapes – Feel free to use raisins or Craisins instead.

Celery – Celery adds an amazing crunch to this recipe but can be omitted if you prefer.

Pecans – Substitute pecans for any nut or seed you prefer! Walnuts, almonds, or Sunflower seeds would make great options, too.

Lettuce – Use large Romaine or Bibb leaves for easy wraps or chopped lettuce for a salad.

Salt & Pepper – Add as little or as much salt and pepper as you like.

Ingredient Add-Ins

This homemade chicken salad is amazing on its own. However, if you’re looking to have a little fun in the kitchen, feel free to experiment with additional ingredients and add-ins! Some examples include: 

Green or Red Onions – Onions can be used to add a bit of crunch and tangy flavor.

Avocado – Adding avocado to a chicken salad adds an extra element of creaminess and healthy fats to keep you full!

Cucumber – Similar to celery, cucumber adds a nice crunch and refreshing flavor to any chicken salad.

Garlic Powder – I find the flavors of the chicken salad enough on their own. However, if you’re looking to add a bit more punch, throw in a pinch of garlic powder to the mix. 

Dijon Mustard – Dijon mustard is a common ingredient in many traditional chicken salad recipes and can add tons of flavor with very few calories. 

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Serving Suggestions for Whole30 Chicken Salad

To keep this recipe healthy, Whole30, and low carb, I prefer to serve it either in lettuce leaves as wraps or over a bed of lettuce as a salad. Alternately, it makes a great dip for raw veggies or crackers. My boys also love it served in a wrap or as a sandwich. Load it up with all the goodies like lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, and pickles for a filling lunch or dinner! If you want to get really indulgent, stuff it in a croissant for the ultimate comfort food. 

Common Questions about Homemade Chicken Salad

How do you keep chicken salad from getting watery?

If your chicken salad becomes too runny, don’t panic! Simply add more chicken or place it in the fridge to allow the mayonnaise to solidify a bit more. 

How long does homemade chicken salad last?

When stored in the refrigerator in an airtight container, homemade chicken salad will stay fresh for 3-5 days. I recommend keeping it separate from any lettuce or bread you’re serving, and combine your meal just before eating. 

Can I freeze homemade chicken salad?

I do not recommend freezing chicken salad as the mayonnaise will separate and create a strange and unpleasant texture once thawed. 

How do I make rotisserie chicken for Whole30 Chicken Salad?

Do not feel like you have to make a rotisserie chicken from scratch for this recipe! They’re super easy to find in most grocery stores and make for an easy dinner. However, if you want to make your own rotisserie chicken, here is a great recipe I know you’ll love. 

Of course, if you make this or any of my other recipes, please tag me on Instagram! I’d love to see your creations, connect, and share your page. I hope you love this recipe as much as I do. Stay tuned for new recipes, easy meal plans, decoration tips, and more every week! 

In the meantime, enjoy!


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The Best Chicken Salad (Whole30 + Paleo)

Course: Main Course


  • 1 whole compliant rotisserie chicken (or 4-5 cups precooked chicken) I get the plain one from Whole Foods
  • ½ cup mayonnaise I use Primal Kitchen or Sir Kensington's
  • 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 1 apple (I like Honeycrisp or Pink Lady) diced; peel, if desired
  • 2 cups red seedless grapes sliced in half (you can also sub 1/2 cup raisins)
  • 1 1/2 cup celery diced
  • 1/2 cup pecans chopped
  • 1 tbsp poppy seeds
  • Bibb or Romaine lettuce for serving


  • In a large bowl, add chicken, grapes (or raisins), walnuts, apple, celery, gently mix
  • In a small bowl, mix together the mayonnaise, salt, pepper, and apple cider vinegar, and poppy seeds
  • Pour mayonnaise "dressing" over the chicken mixture, and stir, ensuring everything is evenly covered
  • Chill for 2 hours, to overnight for best flavor
  • Serve on Romaine, Bibb lettuce, or mixed greens. This is also insanely delicious as a wrap or sandwich. I also love with some grain-free crackers!

P.S. This page may contain affiliate links. Of course, you’re not obligated to use them, but I appreciate the love if you do!

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Karin with her first 2 boys

I’m Karin (Ka-Rin), a cooking, photography and interior design enthusiast sharing my love of delicious food, humor, pretty things and capturing beauty in everyday moments.

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