Asian Chicken Cranberry Salad (Video!)
Do you love a good Asian Chicken Salad? Try the flavors of this Asian Chicken Cranberry Salad; delicious potluck, holiday salad or main dish! WATCH THE VIDEO.
Friends, this Asian Chicken Cranberry Salad has been on my blog for years. We love this coleslaw salad recipe because it’s light, fresh, and the first to be devoured at a party! Of course it’s delicious for any holiday–or as simple as a weeknight meal. This recipe if a must for Asian salad lovers.
Asian Chicken Cranberry Salad
This Asian Chicken Cranberry Salad is so good, I think you might be adding this to your monthly rotation, if you are a menu planner! We call this our “anytime salad” because it’s literally good for any season. But if you love a good summer slaw, try this Sweet Asian Slaw with Apple and Corn.
So good, this Asian Chicken Cranberry Salad is packed full of flavor. We love this served with grilled chicken, potato salad or macaroni salad. For a quick weekend barbecue, this is the first salad to be gobbled up by our guests!
It’s super easy to make as well. Oh, and by the way, this recipe was posted here on Reluctant back in January 2015, so it’s been around for awhile.
Think ahead to Mother’s Day, Memorial Day, Father’s Day, and the summer months ahead! The ingredients of this Asian Chicken Cranberry Salad are so versitile, but the real flavor is in the dressing!
Ingredients for Asian Chicken Salad
- Coleslaw mix
- Rotisserie chicken
- Toasted sliced almonds, or cashews
- Dried cranberries, we use Orange Cranberries from Trader Joe’s
- Red onion
- Sesame sticks (found in the bulk aisle at grocery store – optional)
- Chopped cilantro
- Mandarin oranges (optional)
- Black sesame seeds (or regular)
- Extra-virgin olive oil
- Balsamic vinegar (regular or white)
- Low-sodium soy sauce
- Minced garlic
- Honey or brown sugar
- Minced ginger
- Toasted sesame oil (or more to taste)
Asian Salad substitutions and TIPS:
The beauty of this Asian salad recipe is that you can modify it to your liking. A guest has a nut allergy? Drop the almonds.
Don’t have any sesame seeds on hand? You can leave them out. If you dont’ have black, use the regular sesame seeds. Optional to add poppy seeds, too.
Don’t like dried cranberries? Substitute for dried cherries or other dried fruit.
Change up the nuts: We’ve made this salad with slivered almonds, toasted almonds, toasted pecans, and cashews.
Toast almonds by laying on a paper towel and microwaving for 1 minute, turning once. Or, toast the sliced almonds under low broil for 2-3 minutes, until golden brown. You can also make your own cabbage mix with green and purple cabbage with a tiny bit of carrots.
You can use white balsamic or dark. The dark combined with soy will make the salad darker.
Another tip is to buy rotisserie chicken at Costco for this salad. Or, if you have time, boil or grll up a few chicken breasts, chop, and mix into the salad.
Change up the cabbage (use more red cabbage, or Nappa cabbage.)
Remember, chicken is optional.
Make the dressing up and store it in a canning jar.
How to make Asian Chicken Cranberry Salad
- Layer the salad: Add the cabbage in a large bowl with chicken, almonds (or cashews, or both), cranberries, red onion, sesame seeds, sesame sticks (optional), and fresh cilantro.
- Make the dressing: Combine the olive oil, balsamic vinegar, soy sauce, garlic, honey, ginger, and sesame oil in a blender. Add water and process until smooth.
- Right before serving: Lightly pour the dressing over the salad mixture, according to how moist you like the salad. Gently toss and serve. (You may have a little dressing left over:)
Make entertaining moments happen
Here’s an easy way to host. Have you ever thought of hosting a salad potluck? You provide the beverages and dessert, and everyone brings a salad. I’ve hosted salad parties for years, and usually make this salad (double the recipe), which gets eaten quickly!
Make entertaining moments happen, work on relationships, and spend time with people who will help you become a better person! I think our world could use more of bringing people together, or “eating together.
An example might be instead of doing casual pizza every Friday night, maybe invite 2 or 3 people over for a sit-down meal. Or making an Epic Charcuterie Board and make this the main dish. Remember you don’t have to do it all; ask guests to bring a dish!
I want to be one of those people who lives a rich life, surrounded by love and people.
Perfect occasions to serve Asian Chicken Cranberry Salad
Recently at a party I offered to help by bringing one of my favorite salads that everyone loves, Asian Chicken Cranberry Salad.
It’s the perfect dish to take to a party, especially if you double the recipe and serve it in a giant bowl (feeds a crowd).
- Baby or bridal shower
- Any holiday gathering
- Potluck or party
- Picnic (have you bought my new travel board?)
- Working lunches
- Salad for dinner (eat your veggies!)
How to serve Asian Slaw Salad
The sweet and tangy dressing with a hint of sesame combined with crisp, thinly chopped cabbage, crunchy, salty sesame sticks, mandarin oranges cranberries, chicken, toasted almonds and plenty of fresh cilantro, makes every bite sensational.
It can be served as a main dish, or a side salad, and I promise, it’s always the first to go. It’s just that good! You can bring the salad to a party in a large bowl, or serve it at home in individual bowls.
Even with the dressing on, if you’re lucky and you have leftovers, it makes for a good leftover wrap the next day.
You can toss right before serving, or even a bit in advance. The cabbage does not get soggy! But even as leftovers, and it’s a little soggy, that is not a bad thing. It’s very tasty leftover.
For more great recipes like this one, I suggest you check these recipes out:
Asian Marinated Cucumber Salad [The Food Charlatan]
Asian Cabbage Salad with Sriracha and Sesame [Kalyn’s Kitchen]
Blue Cornbread Asian Pear Sausage Stuffing
Get the Recipe:
Asian Chicken Cranberry Salad
- 2 small bags of coleslaw mix, about 12 cups
- 4 cups rotisserie chicken, finely chopped
- 1 ½ cups toasted sliced almonds, or cashews
- 1 ½ cup dried cranberries, I used Orange Cranberries from Trader Joe’s
- ¾ cup red onion, finely diced
- 1 cup sesame sticks, found in the bulk aisle at grocery store – optional
- 1 ½ cups chopped cilantro
- 1-2 small cans mandarin oranges, drained
- ¼ cup black sesame seeds, or regular sesame seeds
- 1 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- ½ cup balsamic vinegar, regular or you can use white
- 4 Tbsp. low-sodium soy sauce
- 3-4 cloves garlic, chopped
- 4 Tbsp. honey or brown sugar
- 4 Tbsp. minced ginger
- 2 tsp. toasted sesame oil
- Layer the cabbage in a large bowl with chicken, almonds (or cashews, or both), cranberries, red onion, sesame seeds, sesame sticks (optional), and fresh cilantro. Add the mandarin oranges (optional).
- Combine the olive oil, balsamic vinegar, soy sauce, garlic, honey, ginger, and sesame oil in a blender. Add 3 tablespoons of water. Blend until smooth.
- Lightly pour the dressing over the salad mixture, according to how moist you like the salad. Gently toss and serve. (You may have a little dressing left over.)
Love this salad! Reminds me of my favorite salad from Cheesecake Factory (Sheila’s chicken salad). For this reason, we added avocado. So delicious! Making it the second time this month tonight! This time I am adding a little peanut butter to the dressing to make it even more like the salad from cheesecake factory.
I am definitely going to make this. I will likely use those salad wonton strips (added right before serving) instead of sesame sticks… just my preference. Might sub out rice wine vinegar for balsamic, or at least use the white balsamic. I LOVE that you opt for the orange cranberries from TJ. They are my favorite. Will make a portion of this sans onion for my neighbor. For me? Bring on the onions!
Can I make dressing a day ahead?
Asian chicken Cranberry Salad.
Oh yes! Easy to do.
So tasty! I used fresh pineapple instead of the mandarins and added a few cucumber slices for more crunch. Got a “wow” out of my husband after the first bite! Will definitely make this again. Thank you!
You can use soy sauce, which won’t be the same but still good! :)
Would this still be good if I eliminate the cilantro? Or maybe substitute parsley for it. I just can’t eat cilantro.
You can add parsley, or even fresh basil would be great.
This recipe looks delicious!
This looks amazing! I am going to try this for lunches.