This week I had some chicken breasts that I needed to bake, but no idea what to make. I phoned my sister for ideas and she suggested chicken salad – YUM! So she sent me her mother-in-law’s recipe which was – in true family recipe fashion – a laundry list of ingredients with no measurements or proportions whatsoever. I used the list as a starting point, and came up with the following…
4 C shredded chicken (~3-4 chicken breasts; see below)
1 C mayonaise (plus more to taste)
1/4 C pickle juice
1/2 C dried cranberries
1 diced Granny Smith apple
2-3 stalks celery, chopped
salt and pepper to taste
1/4 C chopped dill pickles
1/4 C chopped pecans
Simply stir all of the ingredients together and enjoy! Serve on bread, with water crackers, as a sandwich, or on its own.
Tip: Start with 1 cup mayo, and after you’ve added all of the other ingredients, if additional mayo is desired, add more mayo one or two tablespoons at a time. It’s much easier to add more mayo than it is to try to take it out.
Re pickles: Some people love pickles in chicken salad, so I’ve included them as an optional add-in. For me, a bit of pickle juice is plenty for taste and consistency. Too many pickles and it starts to feel more like a tuna salad.
chicken breasts (boneless/skinless)
Place the chicken breasts in a slow cooker and sprinkle with garlic powder, salt, and pepper. Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours, depending on the size and number of chicken breasts being cooked. Remove the chicken with tongs and place on a cutting board or large plate. Cut the chicken into pieces (roughly 1-2 inch squares), then shred those pieces using two forks. Use immediately, or freeze in ziplock bags for later use!
I cooked up 5 chicken breasts, because that’s what I had. For 4 cups of shredded chicken, you really only need 3-4 chicken breasts, depending on their size.