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Classic Chicken Salad Sandwich

A Classic Chicken Salad Sandwich recipe with a creamy and rich chicken filling with red grapes, celery, green onions, pecans, and lettuce. Stacked on toasted crusty rustic bread and served with a fruit salad. You’ll want to savor this delightful chicken salad sandwich recipe all summer long. A no bake protein rich lunch or dinner recipe made in 15 minutes. Chicken salad is a quick and easy last minute meal and can be made with leftover chicken. Of course, from time to time, I make a whole rotisserie chicken for dinner and shred the leftovers for this delicious salad sandwich.

Chicken salad is a quick and easy last minute meal and can be made with leftover chicken. Of course, from time to time, I make a whole rotisserie chicken for dinner and shred the leftovers for this delicious salad sandwich.

A chicken salad sandwich on a plate. The filling in the middle is showing in a creamy mayo and sour cream filling with grapes, celery, and green onions on sandwich bread.

There are many ways this recipe can be eaten. It can be enjoyed on lettuce cups if you’re trying to kick bread to the curb. However, if you do indulge in bread once in awhile or have to reservations to eating bread, I highly recommend a crusty rustic bread. Not only is it delicious and crafty, but the filling tends to hold onto the texture of the bread more than regular bread. Another option is to serve it in a flour tortilla or a low-carb tortilla wrap. When I really crave classic chicken salad sandwiches, I serve it toasted on rye, pumpernickel, sourdough, or a croissant.

Sometimes, I’ll add a sliced tomato and my sister always adds cheese. One of the more popular things to add is a bed of lettuce on the bottom. This way, it won’t wilt in the filling while it’s stored in the refrigerator. Pickles are another tasty addition and bacon is a must for added flavor.

How do you make a classic chicken salad sandwich recipe that tastes good? It all comes down to the dressing. I have tried my hands tirelessly over the years trying to create the best chicken salad sandwich. The inspiration for much of this comes from my favorite bistro “up north” in Crandon, Wisconsin where we have a summer home. Tricia’s Treasures serves the best homemade sandwich I have ever had. They even make their own mayonnaise which makes all the difference. It’s light and refreshing.

Every time we visit our summer home on Lake Lucerne, we stop by for lunch at this one of a kind boutique and have lunch. Over the years I have tried a lot of different ingredients and vinegars but I found the magic in substituting half of the mayo for sour cream. It’s magical. It’s delicious. I could eat it for days. I’ve also been known to make a double batch a few times a year because I love it that much.

Chicken Salad Sandwich Recipe served on a plate with toasted bread and a delicious creamy filling.

How to Make Chicken Salad Sandwiches

  1. Chop celery, and green onions.
  2. Shred chicken into bite size pieces.
  3. Mix mayonnaise and sour cream.
  4. Whisk in lemon juice.
  5. Mix in salt, pepper, red pepper flakes, and sugar.
  6. Combine vegetables, grapes, pecans, and chicken to mixing bowl.
  7. Toss chicken salad together until well coated in the creamy mixture.
  8. Toast bread.
  9. Layer lettuce on bottom of the sandwich bread.
  10. Top with chicken salad filling.

A Healthy Chicken Salad Recipe Alternative

  • use low-fat sour cream or replace with low fat Greek yogurt
  • use an egg-free mayo such as avocado mayonnaise
  • add additional vegetables or fruit such as broccoli, chopped apples, berries, or carrots
  • replace sandwich bread with lettuce to make chicken salad lettuce wraps
  • skip the added sugar
Chicken salad sandwich served on a plate with toasted rustic bread. The filling of the sandwich is showing with grapes, celery, and green onions.

Ingredients in Chicken Salad

Chicken: I like to get a whole rotisserie chicken and just shred it by hand. You can also cook chicken breasts or thighs and shred the meat as well. If you have leftover chicken, that works really well or even canned chicken will work.

Mayonnaise: The base of this mixture is half sour cream and half mayonnaise. There are a dozen brands and flavor varieties to experiment with but I prefer to use Hellmann’s or and avocado mayo. Of course, if you have extra time on your hands and want to try something new, try making your own mayonnaise. The taste is in the pudding and it makes all the difference.

Sour Cream: To keep this recipe light on the overwhelming taste of mayo, I like to use sour cream. It has a rich, thick creaminess and slight tang that melds well together.

Lemon: The acidity in the lemon adds a depth of flavor that is undeniably delicious. Add a little bit of granulated sugar or brown sugar to make it slightly sweet. It helps to stabilize the flavors.

Spices: Classic and traditional spices like salt, pepper, and a little red pepper flakes for some heat.

Grapes: It wouldn’t be a classic chicken salad sandwich without grapes. I prefer red grapes to green grapes. If the grapes are very large, slice them in half. If they are smaller, leaving them just as they are should be fine.

Celery: Adds a nice texture to the mixture and well as green onions which have a lighter onion flavor.

A Classic Chicken Salad Sandwich. A sandwich loaded with grapes, celery, lettuce, green onions, and mixed in mayonnaise and sour cream. Sandwich is cut in half and shown on plate. Text in center reads chicken salad sandwich - a classic 15 minute recipe. Second image shows the full sandwich on a plate.

Reader Questions and Tips

What other things can I add to my chicken salad?

Apples are a must. I love the taste of apple in chicken salad. Other options include bacon crumbles, cheese, and even olives. In addition, I love to drizzle a balsamic reduction glaze on top for a little sweetness. I also occasionally add sliced avocado.

How long can I store this for?

For the best quality this should be only be kept in the refrigerator for 3-5 days. Due to the mayonnaise and sour cream in this recipe, ensure you keep the dish cold if taking it outside for a picnic or potluck.

Can I make my own chicken using chicken breasts or frozen chicken?

Yes. Instead of using the oven, simply place fresh or defrosted chicken in a skillet with a little bit of water and cook it that way. Then shred the chicken.

Other Chicken Recipes You’ll Love

Classic Chicken Salad Sandwich

Classic Chicken Salad Sandwich

A Classic Chicken Salad Sandwich recipe with a creamy and rich chicken filling with red grapes, celery, green onions, pecans, and lettuce. Stacked on toasted crusty rustic bread and served with a fruit salad. You'll want to savor this delightful chicken salad sandwich recipe all summer long. A no bake protein rich lunch or dinner recipe made in 15 minutes.
No ratings yet
Prep Time 15 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Servings 6 servings
Calories 475 kcal

Ingredients
 
 

  • 1 rotisserie chicken shredded
  • ½ cup mayonnaise
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • 1 medium-small lemon juiced
  • 1 tbsp granulated sugar
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • ¼ tsp red pepper flakes
  • 3 cups red grapes
  • 3 celery stalks chopped
  • 5 green onions chopped
  • ½ cup pecans
  • lettuce

Instructions
 

  • Shred rotisserie chicken; set aside.
  • In a large mixing bowl, whisk together mayonnaise, sour cream, lemon juice, salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes.
  • Chop celery, and green onions.
  • Stir celery, green onions, grapes, chicken, and pecans in mixing bowl.
  • Toss until well coated in creamy mixture.
  • Toast bread.
  • Layer lettuce on the bottom of the toast.
  • Scoop chicken salad mixture onto the bread.
  • Serve on crusty bread, wraps, or lettuce.

Notes

A Healthier Chicken Salad Recipe
  • use low-fat sour cream or replace with low fat Greek yogurt
  • use an egg-free mayo such as avocado mayonnaise
  • add additional vegetables or fruit such as broccoli, chopped apples, berries, or carrots
  • replace sandwich bread with lettuce to make chicken salad lettuce wraps
  • skip the added sugar

Nutrition

Calories: 475kcalCarbohydrates: 20gProtein: 30gFat: 32gSaturated Fat: 7gPolyunsaturated Fat: 10gMonounsaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 115mgSodium: 672mgPotassium: 267mgFiber: 2gSugar: 16gVitamin A: 324IUVitamin C: 14mgCalcium: 48mgIron: 1mg

Nutritional information is only an estimate and it’s accuracy is not guaranteed to be exact.

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I'm Jessica. Our approachable and enjoyable recipes aim to encourage people to cook and find joy in the kitchen. We believe that cooking should be a pleasurable experience. Thank you for joining us, and we hope you'll find inspiration and happiness in our recipes.

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