Asian Chicken Salad is a colorful, healthy salad recipe with fresh, crisp vegetables and crunchy noodles that create a perfect light and refreshing salad with crunch! This recipe comes together in 10 minutes, and can be made ahead, making it the perfect addition to a party or potluck.
Easy Asian Chicken Salad Recipe
This Asian Chicken Salad is all that when it comes to texture. It’s filled with chopped cabbage (coleslaw), sliced almonds, juicy chicken, crunchy carrot sticks, crisp bell peppers, and more. Top it with an easy homemade Asian Salad Dressing and you’ll be obsessed in no time!
If you’re looking for a healthy, veggie-packed lunch that will fill you up every time you make it, this chicken salad recipe is perfect. It has bold flavors and bright colors, and it can be made ahead, which is great for meal prepping and planning. You can even switch up the vegetables, nuts, and other ingredients so that you don’t become bored with the recipe.
To summarize, this Asian chicken salad can be an easy lunch, a light dinner, or even a flavor-packed side salad at your next barbecue or summer get-together. Whatever works best!
What Makes This Chicken Salad So Good?
This Chinese-inspired salad is a household favorite for many reasons. Besides the fact that it’s super tasty, here’s why we enjoy this meal so much:
- Terrific Texture: Fresh, crisp vegetables combine with tender chicken and sliced almonds so that every bite of this salad is a crunchy delight.
- Super Quick: This salad comes together in just 10 minutes. All you really have to do is chop the chicken and the veggies and then you’re practically done!
- Make Ahead: Asian chicken salad stores well for a few days in the fridge, so if you want to make it ahead of time and eat it later in the week, that’s definitely an option!
- Healthy: Made with loads of fresh vegetables, this salad is healthy and light, but it will still leave you feeling satisfied and well-fed.
Let’s talk briefly about the main ingredients in this chicken salad. Note that the exact amounts for each ingredient can be found in the recipe card below.
- Coleslaw: I bought pre-shredded cabbage (coleslaw mix) for quick and easy preparation. If you’d rather, you can buy green and purple cabbage and chop it, or use a mandolin for extra-fine cut cabbage.
- Chicken: This recipe calls for cooked and shredded chicken – any leftover chicken you have in the fridge (chicken breast, chicken thighs, etc.) will do. You can also make your own easily at home with this Crockpot Shredded Chicken or Instant Pot Shredded Chicken!
- Vegetables: Veggie options can vary, but we like to include julienned bell pepper, julienned cucumber, fresh bean sprouts, carrot sticks, and green onions.
- Cilantro: We love the citrusy flavor that fresh cilantro adds to this salad, but you could substitute with parsley if you prefer something milder.
- Sliced Almonds: These add a bit of crunch. Feel free to use other nuts if almonds aren’t your thing (see suggestions below).
- Chow Mein Noodles: Fried wonton strips can be used instead if you like.
- Asian Salad Dressing: Homemade Asian Salad Dressing is perfect for this salad, or you can use a store-bought version.
How to Make Asian Chicken Salad
Once all of the vegetables and the chicken have been chopped, this Asian chicken salad comes together in a snap. All you really have to do after that is mix everything:
- Combine the Ingredients: Add the coleslaw, chicken, bean sprouts, bell pepper, cucumber, carrot sticks, half of the green onions, cilantro, and almonds to a large salad bowl. Toss everything until it is well combined.
- Add the Dressing and Garnishes: When you are ready to serve, add the Asian salad dressing and toss again. Garnish with more chopped green onions and crunchy noodles, and serve immediately!
Tips & Recipe Variations
There are tons of ways to customize this crunchy chicken salad. You can switch up the vegetables, swap out the chicken, etc. Here are a few ideas along those lines that you might want to try:
- Customize This Salad With Your Favorite Vegetables: Try adding drained water chestnuts or drained baby corn, for example.
- Add Sesame Seeds: Topping this salad with sesame seeds adds a bit of extra crunch and a touch of sweetness.
- What Color Bell Pepper Should I Use? Use whatever bell pepper you like. Red, green, orange, yellow… each one works in this salad.
- Substitutes For Almonds: Switch out the sliced almonds for peanuts, or skip the nuts completely. It’s up to you!
- Substitutes For Chicken: Feel free to switch up the protein by adding shrimp or some grilled fish instead of chicken.
What Goes With Asian Chicken Salad?
Not sure what to serve with this Asian salad? We usually just enjoy it as-is, but there are a couple of different sides that you could make to go with it, if needed:
- Fried Rice: A serving of pork fried rice (or your favorite variation of fried rice) would pair really nicely with this salad!
- Soup: You can’t go wrong with soup and a salad! This Chinese-inspired Easy Potsticker Soup, for example, is just right when served alongside a plate of Asian chicken salad.
- Lettuce Wraps: Chicken Lettuce Wraps are light, easy to throw together, and they fit in perfectly with this Asian-inspired salad.
How to Store This Salad
We recommend storing this salad, without dressing, in an airtight container in the fridge. It should keep for up to 3 days, after which point the cabbage may become slightly soggy. The homemade salad dressing can be stored separately in another airtight container in the fridge, and should keep for a few days longer.
More Simple Salad Recipes
On the lookout for more easy salad recipes that you could bring to your next barbecue? We’ve got some suggestions!
- Cherry Tomato Caprese Salad
- Chickpea Salad
- Shaved Brussels Sprouts Salad with Bacon
- Broccoli Salad
- Cucumber Tomato Salad
- Arugula Salad with Fried Goat Cheese
- Mexican Corn Salad
- Creamy Cucumber Salad
Asian Chicken Salad
- Add the coleslaw, chicken, bean sprouts, bell pepper, cucumber, carrot sticks, half of the green onions, cilantro, and almonds to a large salad bowl. Toss until well combined.
- When you are ready to serve, add the Asian Salad Dressing and toss again. Garnish with more chopped green onions and crunchy noodles and serve immediately.
- To Store: Store salad, without dressing, in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.