Closeup of Ginger Sesame Chicken Salad on a glass plate with a glass of white wine

Grilled Ginger-Sesame Chicken Salad

A stress-free chicken salad

This Sesame Chicken Salad recipe was shared with us by Chef Curtis Stone. It’s from What’s For Dinner? delicious recipes for a busy life. (We can all relate!)

Recipes based in reality

The book is Stone’s answer to how one can eat well when living a busy life. Although most of us can assume that we don’t have quite the same demands as a tv star/author/restaurateur/first time dad, most of us have schedules that often make it feel impossible to get a vibrant, healthy meal on the table. But according to Stone, we can and his book serves up recipes to make it possible without added equipment or a sous chef.

We’re featuring this chicken salad recipe because it epitomizes that ideal. True, it isn’t a recipe guaranteed to get from raw ingredients to the table in 30 minutes or less. But you’ll find that much of the cooking time is actually inactive. Meaning? You can chop your veggies, read your mail or make out with your significant other while your chicken is cooking and cooling.

A bold rush of flavor sensations

Of course, I’m not about to feature a recipe just because its practical. (Although any recipe that allots make out time always gets an extra mark in my book.) We’re featuring this chicken salad for its bold flavor and use of spice. Instead of the chicken salad staple of a mayonnaise dressing, the recipe’s lightened up with a tangy, chile-spiked, Asian vinaigrette. Best of all, it combines the aphrodisiacs of sesame, chile, ginger and almonds with protein-rich chicken. (Learn more about my favorite aphrodisiac ingredients.) So, whether your goal is just to get a well-rounded meal on the table or you want to see how to transform chicken salad into an event, I think this recipe will get your vote.

4 from 1 vote
Closeup of Ginger Sesame Chicken Salad on a glass plate with a glass of white wine
grilled ginger-sesame chicken salad
Prep Time
15 mins
Cook Time
30 mins
Resting Time
30 mins
Total Time
45 mins
Course: Main Course
Dish Type: Salad
Cooking Style: Easy
Diet and Health: healthy-ish, low carb
Seasonal: summer
Ingredient: chicken
Servings: 4
Created by: Curtis Stone
For the Ginger-Sesame Marinade/Dressing:
  • 1/4 c reduced-sodium soy sauce
  • 3 tbsp very finely chopped peeled fresh ginger
  • 3 tbsp canola oil
  • 2 tbsp Hoisin sauce
  • 1 tbsp toasted sesame oil
  • 1 tsp Sriracha sauce
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 2 oz boneless skinless chicken breast halves {about 9each)
  • 1/4 c red wine vinegar
  • 1/4 c minced scallions {white and green parts)
For the salad:
  • 1 lb napa cabbage halved lengthwise and very thinly sliced crosswise
  • 2 carrots cut into matchstick-size strips
  • 3 scallions {white and green parts) thinly sliced on a sharp diagonal
  • 2/3 c lightly packed fresh cilantro leaves
  • 1/2 c slivered almonds toasted*
  • 1 tsp white sesame seeds toasted
  • 1 tsp black sesame seeds optional
  1. To make the marinade: In a medium bowl, whisk the soy sauce, ginger, canola oil, hoisin sauce,sesame oil, Sriracha,and salt to blend. Transfer 3 tablespoons of the mixture to a baking dish, then add the chicken and turn to coat it. Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes, turning after 15 minutes, or up to 1 day, turning occasionally.
  2. To make the dressing: Whisk the vinegar and scallions into the remaining marinade. Set aside.
  3. Heat a grill pan over medium-high heat. Remove the chicken from the mari­nade, add to the grill pan, and cook for about 4 minutes per side, or until the chicken shows no sign of pink when pierced in the thickest part with the tip of a small sharp knife. Transfer to a cutting board and let cool for 15 minutes.
  4. Cut the chicken crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick slices.
  5. To assemble the salad: In a large bowl,toss the chicken, cabbage, carrots, scal­lions, and cilantro with enough dressing to coat lightly.
  6. Mound the salad in the center of four plates. Re-whisk the dressing and driz­zle a little over and a round the salad. Sprinkle the almonds and sesame seeds over and serve.
  7. *TOASTING NUTS: To toast walnuts, pecans, or almonds, spread them on a large, rimmed baking sheet. Bake in a 350°F oven, stirring occasionally, until lightly toasted and fragrant, about 10 minutes. Transfer to a plate and let cool before using.

For more of Curtis’ fast and easy recipes, check out What’s for Dinner?

Amazon.comGrilled Ginger-Sesame Chicken Salad 1



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