Chinese Chicken Salad

Chinese chicken salad is just like those salads you get at the restaurants with the oranges and cashews and the lovely balance of crunchy and tender and sweet and savory.

A bowl filled with greens, chicken, cilantro, and mandarin orange segments with chopsticks on the side

This Chinese chicken salad is described by the author, Joanne Chang, as “crunchy, tart, healthy, filling, spicy, and sweet with a complex and savory charm.” We couldn’t agree more. We’d also like to add “just like those restaurant versions of Chinese chicken salad” and “addictive as heck” and “easy to toss together on a weeknight.”–Angie Zoobkoff

Chinese Chicken Salad

  • Quick Glance
  • Quick Glance
  • 1 H
  • 1 H
  • Serves 4
Print RecipeBuy the Myers + Chang at Home cookbook

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  • For the Chinese chicken salad
  • For the dressing


Make the Chinese chicken salad

Place the garlic and chicken in a medium saucepan and add enough water to cover. Place over high heat and bring to a boil. Immediately turn off the heat, cover the pan, and let the chicken poach until cooked through and no trace of pink remains when you cut into the thickest part, 12 to 15 minutes. Remove the chicken from the water, let it cool and then shred or cube it into bite-size pieces. (The cooled chicken can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 2 days in advance.)

In a large bowl, combine the chicken, romaine, celery, cashews, scallions, and cilantro. Season with the salt and pepper.

Make the dressing

In a small bowl, whisk together the soy sauce, olive oil, brown sugar, Sriracha, vinegar, and ginger.

Serve the Chinese chicken salad

Pour about 3/4 of the dressing over the salad and toss well to combine. Divvy the salad among 4 serving bowls. Top with the orange slices and serve immediately, passing the remaining dressing on the side.

Print RecipeBuy the Myers + Chang at Home cookbook

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    *How to Supreme an Orange

    • To supreme oranges, first cut the skin and pith off the fruit and then use a small sharp knife to cut between the flesh and the membrane on each side of the orange segment. Each orange segment should fall away from the membrane easily. Repeat until all of the orange flesh has been removed.

    Recipe Testers' Reviews

    This Chinese chicken salad is good. The bright mixed greens of romaine, cilantro, and celery had me wanting to dive right in even before adding the remaining ingredients. This salad has a perfect balance of everything you want: crunchy lettuce, chewy cashews, sweet oranges, lovely tender chicken, and a spicy flavorful dressing. The dressing is a great combination of flavors with the ginger and soy sauce and then a nice kick from the Sriracha. Depending how hot you like things start adding the sriracha a bit at a time. The dressing does have a kick to it and I did reduce the amount of sriracha to 1 tbsp. This gave the dressing just the right amount of heat for my family.

    I’ve paid upwards of $15 for a restaurant salad similar to this but this one was more fresh and just as tasty. What a fun way to make a restaurant-quality dish at home and save money on top of it! Do splurge on the cashews, they are well worth it and if you are trying to save, you can always buy a small amount from the bulk bin of your grocery store. While I loved this recipe, I would not make it again unless I took some shortcuts such as: using bagged rinsed and chopped romaine lettuce, using canned mandarin oranges, and a store-bought rotisserie chicken. Next time I would use a scant unpacked 1/4 cup brown sugar.

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