Sonoma Chicken Salad
Have you ever had a dish that you crave and love to eat, but know you shouldn’t eat it? I hate when that happens. For those of you that follow my blog you know I enjoy going to Whole Foods Market. Oftentimes, during the afternoon when I’m running around I’ll go there to pick up lunch. A favorite is their Sonoma Chicken Salad, although if I purchase any, it’s a small amount. Why?
Typically chicken and tuna salads purchased in stores or restaurants are high in fat. They almost always use full fat mayonnaise and oftentimes combined with full fat sour cream. I mean, what’s not to love? Let’s face it, fat tastes good and flavorful but it’s not so great for the heart, cholesterol and our waistlines.
Yet, I broke down this weekend and bought a small container of their Sonoma Chicken Salad. However, before I had a chance to eat much, my family tried it. Of course, they loved it as well, leaving me only a bite – which was fine, since I didn’t want to over indulge.
That’s when I decided to make a fat free or low fat version for myself.
Scouring the internet I found Whole Foods recipe for Sonoma Chicken Salad. I knew this was it since the ingredient list matched what was on my container. With recipe in hand, I duplicated it, substituting Fat Free Miracle Whip. Quite frankly, I couldn’t tell the difference. (Of course feel free to use full fat mayo, light mayo, canola mayo, full fat or light which I enjoy or fat free mayo). I was in heaven and apparently so was my husband since he ate almost the entire bowl.
You are aware, that’s the drawback of eating fat free? Less fat doesn’t fill you up or satisfy you as much as full or low fat – which often means eating more of the dish. In turn, you often consume more calories than if you’d eaten full fat.
That said, portion control can be an issue and has to be maintained.
This Sonoma Chicken Salad is the perfect spring dish. Great for a women’s luncheon, bridal, wedding or baby shower, outdoor lunch on the terrace, afternoon brunch or even for dinner like we had this evening.
Served with fresh fruit, popovers or muffins, ice cold lemonade or iced tea and you’ve got a perfect meal. Then top it off with some smooth homemade Mango Sorbet – which I’ll be posting later this week.
From now on I’ll be making this weekly to keep on hand, and I’m sure you will as well once you try it!
Sonoma Chicken Salad
1 cup fat free mayonnaise
4 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
5 teaspoons honey
2 teaspoons poppy seeds
Salt and freshly ground pepper to tasteSalad
2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts
3/4 cup pecan pieces, toasted
2 cups red seedless grapes
3 stalks celery, thinly sliced
When the chicken is cold, dice into bite-size chunks and transfer to a large bowl. Stir in pecans, grapes, celery and dressing.