Sesame Chicken Salad – With tender sesame marinated chicken, colorful veggies, and a delicious sesame dressing, this sesame chicken salad is one of our favorite healthy dinners! (Gluten-Free, Paleo-Friendly)
FOR THE SESAME DRESSING & MARINADE:
- 1/4 cup rice vinegar
- 1/4 cup gluten-free tamari (I recommend low-sodium) or coconut aminos or soy sauce
- 3 Tbsp. olive oil or avocado oil
- 1/2 tsp. toasted sesame oil
FOR THE SESAME CHICKEN SALAD:
- 1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breast, pounded out to 1/2″ thickness
- 4 cups shredded romaine lettuce
- 1 1/2 cups coleslaw mix or shredded green cabbage
- 1 1/2 cups purple cabbage
- 1 cup grated carrots
- 15–16 oz. mandarin oranges packed in juice, drained
- 1/2 cup toasted sliced almonds
- 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
- 2 green onions, sliced
- 1 Tbsp. sesame seeds
- 1 Tbsp. black sesame seeds
- Optional: 1 avocado, diced
FIRST, MIX UP YOUR SESAME DRESSING:
- In a small bowl or jar, combine rice vinegar, tamari/coconut aminos, olive oil, and sesame oil.
- Whisk to combine.
- Store in the refrigerator until you’re ready to use it.
NEXT, MARINATE YOUR CHICKEN:
- If you haven’t already, pound out the chicken to 1/2″ thickness.
- Place chicken in a zip-top bag or container, and pour half of the marinade over the chicken. (Chill remaining dressing to use on the salad later)
- Seal the bag, pressing out any excess air, and place the bag on a plate in case of spills.
- Chill the chicken in the marinade at least 30 minutes, up to 24 hours.
COOK THE CHICKEN:
- When you’re ready to cook the chicken, heat a drizzle of olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat.
- Remove chicken from marinade, allowing excess marinade to drip off. Discard any remaining marinade from the bag or container (it’s no longer safe to eat).
- Add chicken to your heated pan and cook 5-7 minutes per side, or until the inside of the chicken has reached 165 degrees F.
- Transfer the cooked chicken to a clean plate or cutting board and allow it to rest fort 5-8 minutes to allow the juices to redistribute. Slice or dice the chicken to use for your salad.
ASSEMBLE THE SALAD:
- In a large bowl, combine cooked, cubed chicken, romaine lettuce, coleslaw mix/green cabbage, purple cabbage, grated carrots, mandarin oranges, toasted almonds, cilantro, green onion, and sesame seeds.
- Drizzle with the remaining dressing and toss to coat with the dressing. Serve immediately.
MAKE AHEAD TIP: FREEZE YOUR CHICKEN IN THE MARINADE! One easy way to save yourself some work is to mix up a half-batch of the dressing and add it to chicken right when you get home from the store. Pop it in the freezer with the marinade and it’ll marinate as it thaws later!
- Category: Salad
- Method: Stovetop
- Cuisine: American
Keywords: sesame chicken salad, gluten free sesame chicken salad, paleo sesame chicken salad, healthy sesame chicken salad, sesame avocado chicken salad