Chicken To Beat The Heat | The Source Weekly - Bend, Oregon

Chicken To Beat The Heat

Rotisserie chicken makes for two easy salads

This week’s recipe isn’t really a strict recipe but rather a couple of suggestions on how to make good use of one of those mighty fine rotisserie chickens. Grocery stores and supermarkets have been carrying these tasty birds for years now and I’ve been a fan for a long time. The prices are usually quite reasonable and the chickens are juicy and delicious and make for a quick high-protein, no oven necessary meal. I especially like to pick up a rotisserie chicken on a hot day to make a summer dinner without heating up the kitchen.

Chicken To Beat The Heat
Donna Britt
Shredded rotisserie chicken makes an easy base for a fresh salad with avocado and tomatoes.

While I’m not opposed to eating them just as they are, straight out of the bag, I also like to use them as a base for other dishes. A couple of my favorite rotisserie chicken recipes include chicken salad and another version of chicken salad. In both cases you’ll be getting your hands dirty. I hope you don’t mind.

For either of these salads I start by pulling the chicken meat off the bone and either shredding it or chopping it (this is the dirty hands part). Then I generously salt and pepper the pile of shredded chicken and discard the carcass (or freeze it to make chicken stock at a later time).

From there the chicken is ready for mixing into a creamy, more traditional chicken salad with poppyseed dressing (use your favorite bottled dressing to make it super simple). Or you can use the chicken for layering with lettuces and other fresh veggies into a modified Cobb salad. I’m suggesting an easy make-at-home lemon vinaigrette for that salad version.

Poppyseed Chicken Salad

4 servings

  • 3 cups rotisserie chicken, diced into bite-sized pieces or shredded
  • Kosher salt & black pepper, to taste
  • 1 cup red or green grapes, halved
  • 1/4 cup pecans or walnuts, chopped
  • 1 green onion, sliced thin
  • ½ cup diced celery
  • ½ + poppyseed dressing, to taste

Combine chicken, salt, pepper, grapes, nuts, onion and celery in a large bowl. Drizzle with dressing and stir to coat. Add more or less dressing to suit your taste.

Serve in sandwiches or wraps, with crackers or atop lettuces or other greens.

Chicken To Beat The Heat
Nuts give crunch to a chicken salad tossed with a homemade lemon vinaigrette.

Shredded Chicken Salad with Avocado & Tomato

 4 servings

For Salad:

  • Lemon vinaigrette (see recipe below)
  • 3-4 cups shredded rotisserie chicken
  • Kosher salt & black pepper, to taste
  • Romaine or other lettuces, torn into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 avocado, cut into bite-sized chunks
  • A handful of cherry tomatoes, cut in half (or any size tomatoes cut into bite-sized pieces)
  • A handful of pecans or walnuts, chopped small
  • Pecorino, asiago (or other cheese of your choice)
  • Lemon slices, for garnish

Lemon Vinaigrette

  1. Squeeze ¼ cup fresh lemon juice into a glass measuring cup.
  2. Add ½ cup olive oil to the cup.
  3. Sprinkle in a nice pinch of kosher salt and a ½ teaspoon black pepper.
  4. Whisk until combined.

Add lemon vinaigrette to the bottom of a large salad bowl. Once you’ve shredded the chicken sprinkle salt and pepper on top and mix into the chicken. Be generous with the salt and pepper to give your roasted bird extra flavor. Layer lettuce leaves, seasoned chicken, avocado, tomato and nuts into the bowl. Toss gently to coat with the vinaigrette. Add more olive oil or lemon juice to taste. Grate cheese of choice on top of salad. Garnish with lemon slices if desired.

About The Author

Donna Britt

Food writer, food stylist, recipe tester, cookbook editor, podcast producer/host are a few of the creative hats Donna Britt wears. Donna loves to hike, paddle board and spend quality time with family and friends. Oh, and she also collects cookbooks and cast iron cooking vessels.
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