Smoked Chicken Salad with Grapes

Close up of a croissant filled with smoky chicken salad.

Smoked Chicken Salad with Grapes is the most delicious way to enjoy leftover chicken. So quick and easy to make, this smoky twist on classic chicken salad makes the perfect lunch or dinner. 

This post first appeared over at Noshing With The Nolands where I’m a contributor.

I’ve made the basic chicken salad recipe for YEARS whenever I have leftover Roast Chicken handy. However, one day I had the idea to use some of our leftover Smoked Chicken Thighs instead. Wow! What a flavour boost!

Close up of a croissant filled with smoky chicken salad.

I absolutely love how the smoky flavour contrasts with the sweetness of the grapes while the creamy dressing counteracts the crunch of the celery. There’s so much flavour packed into one little sandwich! 

Smoked Chicken Salad with Grapes

If you have cooked chicken in the fridge, you have the start of something great for lunch, dinner, or a picnic in the park. There’s no need to turn on the stove, just chop and mix your way to the perfect no fuss meal.

I love how the red grapes add a bit of sweetness and visual appeal to the smoked chicken salad. They are one of my favourite sweet ingredients to use in savoury cooking. Try roasting them with pork tenderloin or in a sweet and spicy fruit salsa.

Three croissants and a lettuce lined bowl filled with chicken salad.

How to Serve Chicken Salad with Grapes

For the most decadent lunch, this smoked chicken salad is outstanding on croissants. However, it is also delicious on your favourite sandwich bread, buns, wraps, pitas, and in crisp lettuce cups (try using Iceberg, Butter or Bibb lettuce). Nothing beats a simple chicken salad sandwich! 

Ingredients for smoky chicken salad on croissants.

How to Make Smoked Chicken Salad

It’s your lucky day! This salad is so easy to whip up and it takes mere minutes. Take the leftover chicken from your fridge and chop it up (removing any skin or bones) into 1/2 inch pieces.

Previously shredded chicken would work also work in this recipe. To make 6 servings, use the equivalent of four chicken thighs or two small chicken breasts. 

Next, finely dice a red onion until you have enough to fill 1/4 cup. Keep on dicing, and this time use celery. If you prefer a larger cut, feel free to go for it. 

Lastly, halve the grapes and toss all the chopped ingredients into a bowl. Season with salt and pepper to taste and add a generous 1/2 cup of mayonnaise. With one quick mix, the chicken salad is done! 

Three croissants, a bunch of red grapes, and a lettuce lined bowl filled with chicken salad. A made up chicken salad croissant sits on a green plate.

Other Ways to Update Chicken Salad

Though this salad seems quite simple, there are almost countless ways to enjoy it. Try these additions/substitutions to find a chicken salad that works for you.

Grapes – Use red or green grapes or go all out and reach for raisins. Not everyone is a fan of grapes in savoury applications so feel free to leave them out.

Dried Fruit – Again, raisins make a wonderful addition to this salad as do dried cranberries. They add a wonderful tart flavour that complements the mayonnaise.

Chicken – Use dark or white meat and if you only have plain leftover roast chicken, that works too!

Side view of a croissant filled with smoky chicken salad.

Fresh Fruit or Vegetables – Use chopped apples or pears in place of the grapes. Go tropical and add chopped pineapple. Avocado or finely chopped carrots would be great too. 

Herbs – So many herbs would work well in this chicken salad. Try adding parsley, dill, mint, rosemary, or thyme for an extra savory flavor. Also, don’t throw away those celery leaves…add them in if you have them.

Onions – In addition to the red onions, chopped green onions or chives are a great way to finish off this salad. 

Mayonnaise – If you are watching your saturated fats, feel free to substitute Greek Yogurt or Sour Cream for half or all of the mayonnaise in this recipe.

Spices – This salad is as plain as it gets but if you’d like to spice things up a bit, consider a touch of smoky paprika or chili powder. Adding curry powder and lemon juice makes it ‘Coronation Salad’ and you will love that bright yellow color it turns, very British!

Three croissants, a bunch of red grapes, and a lettuce lined bowl filled with chicken salad. A made up chicken salad croissant sits on a green plate.

How to Store Smoked Chicken Salad

Once refrigerated, this chicken and grape salad will only last for a day or two. As it contains mayonnaise (and leftover chicken) it must not be left out at room temperature (or higher) for extended periods of time. To be safe, two hours at room temperature is the limit of food safety in this case.

For picnics or barbecues, be sure to store the chicken salad with plenty of ice and toss any leftovers. This recipe does not freeze well. It is best to make it, refrigerate it, and then serve and eat.

Three croissants, a bunch of red grapes, and a lettuce lined bowl filled with chicken salad. A made up chicken salad croissant sits on a green plate.

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Pinterest image of three croissants and a lettuce lined bowl filled with chicken salad.
Yield: 6 servings

Smoked Chicken Salad with Grapes

Close up of a croissant filled with smoky chicken salad.

Smoked Chicken Salad with Grapes is the most delicious way to enjoy leftover chicken. So quick and easy to make, this smoky twist on classic chicken salad makes the perfect lunch or dinner.

Prep Time 15 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes

Ingredients

  • 2 cups smoked chicken; cubed
  • 1 cup grapes; halved
  • 1/4 cup celery; finely diced
  • 1/4 cup red onion; finely diced
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • salt and pepper
  • 6 croissants, buns, or bread
  • 6 lettuce leaves
  • chopped fresh chives for garnish

Instructions

  1. Place first five ingredients in a large bowl and season. Stir to combine.
  2. Split croissants or buns and add a lettuce leaf for each.
  3. Spoon 1/6 of chicken salad on top of each lettuce. Scatter chives over all.

Notes

Use smoked chicken or leftover roasted chicken.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

6

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving:Calories: 555Total Fat: 34gSaturated Fat: 12gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 20gCholesterol: 95mgSodium: 578mgCarbohydrates: 43gFiber: 3gSugar: 13gProtein: 18g

Nutritional calculation was provided by Nutritionix and is an estimation only. For special diets or medical issues please use your preferred calculator.

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24 comments

  1. Gloria

    I LOVE chicken salad sandwiches. The combination of chicken and grapes are so delicious. This is perfect for lunch or dinner any day of the week.

    Reply

    1. Bernice Hill

      Yep!! Huge fave in this house too. Thanks for stopping by Gloria.

      Reply

  2. Chef Dennis

    Never really had this before! But this Smoked Chicken Salad looks really delicious and satisfying!

    Reply

    1. Bernice Hill

      The flavours are incredible!!

      Reply

  3. Meena Agarwal

    I remember having something similar in a small cafe downtown Toronto years ago – the addition of sweet grapes to a creamy chicken salad is a definite winner in my books. Looks delicious!

    Reply

    1. Bernice Hill

      Yes!! It’s a classic. Glad you enjoyed it Meena.

      Reply

  4. Colleen

    This looks similar to a coronation chicken salad that we love, but I love the fresh crisp grapes that you added, Bernice! My husband is the sandwich guy here, and I will use the rest in lettuce wraps as you suggested. Delish! (Beautiful photos!)

    Reply

    1. Bernice Hill

      Thank you Colleen, it’s just as delicious in lettuce wraps as in a croissant.

      Reply

  5. Nicoletta De Angelis Nardelli

    Sweet and smoky go so well together! Plus, served with croissants makes this chicken salad a wonderful lunch!

    Reply

    1. Bernice Hill

      They sure do…just like sugar and spice!! 🙂

      Reply

  6. Kelly Neil

    Oh man you are killing me over here with all the smoked posts!! I love smoked food but don’t have a smoker.😩I love the idea of the crunchy grapes in there! nice recipe!

    Reply

    1. Bernice Hill

      Hey Kelly, I’ve heard that those wood chip holders work really well for smoking using a regular bbq. It might be worth checking out.

      Reply

  7. Lori | The Kitchen Whisperer

    I’m all about chicken salad with grapes. I love the brightness they bring to a recipe. I’m drooling over your pics and seriously cannot wait to make your version!

    Reply

    1. Bernice Hill

      Wonderful! I hope you really enjoy the chicken salad Lori.

      Reply

  8. Sharon

    This chicken salad was given a major upgrade by using smoked chicken. I also love the sweet grapes in it too.

    Reply

    1. Bernice Hill

      Ah…me too. What a treat! Thanks for stopping by Sharon.

      Reply

  9. Marisa F. Stewart

    I love the idea of sweet grapes with chicken. We tend to buy a lot of rotisserie chicken — so economical and good. Now with that extra chicken I can make a delicious luncheon sandwich. I can add a touch of smokiness with paprika. So yummy. Thank you.

    Reply

    1. Bernice Hill

      Paprika would be delicious!

      Reply

  10. Jo

    I love smoky meat! And this salad looks absolutely delicious! The brightness this salad brings makes it perfect meal for hot summer noon.

    Reply

    1. Bernice Hill

      It truly is a flavour favourite. I hope you get to try it.

      Reply

  11. Cynthia Priest

    I have had chicken and grapes together before though not with smoked chicken as I don’t have a smoker. My kids would love this salad especially with grapes in it. Ah, you should totally be an affiliate marketer for the smoker you have, lol.

    Reply

  12. Jagruti's Cooking Odyssey

    I just love the addition of grapes in salad! Your smoked chicken salad looks so delicious!

    Reply

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