When mandarin oranges are in season, a great way to enjoy them is in salads. While I don’t tend to eat mandarins (or “Mandy’s”, as they are nicknamed, here in Australia) on their own, I do love them in this zesty Mandarin Chicken Salad. The sweet, juicy mandarins and fresh veg, along with simply prepared chicken breast and an amazing dressing combine to make a really delicious salad recipe.
If you cannot find fresh mandarins, feel free to use ones preserved in juice (not sweetened). Or, you could use Valencia orange slices. As you can see, I included avocado in the recipe but didn’t actually use them, when I photographed the salad. That’s because Hass avocados aren’t in season now, and I really don’t prefer the kind that are available (although they’re fine for guacamole). It’s tasty with or without avocados, but I do like to add them, when possible, for their creamy texture.
I’ve made this salad several times, with variations in the way I prepared the chicken. Feel free to make the chicken in other ways. Grilled and baked breaded/ crumbed chicken both work very well in this salad, as does cold or warm shredded roast chicken.
To me, the element of the salad that really sings is the dressing. It’s so good! Every time I’ve made this salad, I have adjusted the ingredients in the dressing a little, until the flavours balanced out perfectly. If you like honey, lime, soy sauce, and ginger, then you are going to love this dressing! Of course, if you are not a fan of one of the ingredients, then you could easily adjust the dressing to your own taste. It would also work well on lots of other sweet-and-savory salads, too, I’m sure.
Here’s the recipe. Enjoy!
Mandarin Chicken Salad
This recipe was inspired by the recipe for Sesame Chicken Tangerine Salad by Season with Spice.
- 2 chicken breasts, cut into bite-sized pieces
- 1 tbsp vegetable oil
- Kosher salt and black pepper, to taste
- Mixed salad greens and/or baby spinach
- 2 mandarin oranges, peeled and segmented
- 1 ripe avocado, diced
- 1/3 seedless cucumber, thinly sliced or diced (peeled first, if you prefer)
- ½ small red onion, thinly sliced into rings (or 2-3 spring onions, white part only, cut into short pieces)
- 2 Tbsp honey
- 2 Tbsp low-sodium soy sauce
- 3 tsp lime juice
- 1-2 dashes of chili powder
- 2-3 dashes of toasted sesame oil
- 1/2 tsp freshly grated ginger
1. To make the dressing, put all the dressing ingredients in a clean jam jar. Put the lid on and give it a good shake. Taste and make adjustments to dressing, if you like. Refrigerate dressing until ready to use.
2. Heat a frying pan over medium-high heat. Heat the oil in the pan until sizzling a bit. Then fry the chicken, cooking for 1-2 minutes on each side until golden, seasoning with salt and pepper, to taste. Be careful not to overcook the chicken. Remove chicken from pan and set aside on a plate. Cover with foil.
3. Place salad greens on plates or in bowls. Arrange mandarin orange, avocado, cucumber, and onion on greens. Top with chicken pieces and drizzle with dressing (or serve dressing on the side). Serve salads immediately.
This recipe was created by Kim Sequoia for a delicious moment.
All written content and photos are copyright Kim Sequoia 2018 for a delicious moment.