Oriental Chicken Salad Recipe

Savor the flavors of East Asia with this Oriental Chicken Salad recipe. It's a delightful mix of hearty chicken, crunchy savoy cabbage, and water chestnuts, all tossed in a deliciously tangy sesame dressing. This salad is served in a pita for added texture and to make it a complete meal on its own.

Oriental Chicken Salad Recipe
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The recipe calls for some ingredients that you might not be familiar with. The savoy cabbage, which has a more tender texture and sweeter taste than regular cabbage, might not be readily available in every supermarket. Similarly, water chestnuts, which add a refreshing crunch to the salad, are usually found in the Asian aisle or in a can. Finally, chow mein noodles, also typically found in the Asian section of supermarkets, add an extra level of crunchiness.

Ingredients for Your Oriental Chicken Salad

Savoy cabbage: A variety of cabbage with a sweet taste and tender texture.

Chicken: Should be cooked and shredded before adding to the salad.

Water chestnuts: These add a refreshing and satisfying crunch.

Pita rounds: Used to serve the salad, adding an interesting texture contrast.

Mayonnaise: Adds creaminess to the salad.

Mustard: Adds a kick of tangy flavor.

Chow mein noodles: Add right before eating to maintain their crunchiness.

Sesame dressing ingredients: These come together to create a flavorsome and tangy dressing.

One reader, Larry New says:

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This oriental chicken salad recipe is a game-changer! The combination of savory chicken, crunchy water chestnuts, and the flavorful sesame dressing is simply divine. The addition of chow mein noodles adds a delightful crunch. It's a must-try for anyone looking for a refreshing and satisfying salad option.

Larry New

Techniques for Making Oriental Chicken Salad

How to prepare the sesame dressing: Whisk together the sesame oil, rice or white wine vinegar, sugar, soy sauce, dry mustard powder, garlic powder, ginger, and sesame seeds in a bowl until well combined.

How to store the sesame dressing: Once prepared, store the sesame dressing in a sealed container in the refrigerator for up to a week.

How to combine the salad: In a large bowl, combine the savoy cabbage, chicken, water chestnuts, and sesame dressing. Stir well to ensure all ingredients are evenly coated.

How to prepare the pita rounds: Spread mayonnaise and/or mustard inside the pita halves.

How to incorporate the noodles: Just before serving, stir the chow mein noodles into the chicken salad mixture.

How to assemble the salad: Stuff the prepared chicken salad into the pita rounds.

How To Make Oriental Chicken Salad

This Asian-inspired chicken salad has cabbage, water chestnuts, and noodles tossed in a dressing of sesame oil, soy sauce, ginger, and rice vinegar.

Preparation: 10 minutes
Total: 10 minutes



  • half a small head of savoy cabbage
  • cupchicken,diced cooked
  • 1canwater chestnuts,sliced
  • 4pita rounds
  • mayonnaise,optional
  • mustard,optional
  • 1containerchow mein noodles

For Sesame Dressing:

  • ¼cupsesame oil
  • 3tbsprice vinegar,or white wine vinegar
  • 2tbspsugar
  • 1tbspsoy sauce
  • ½tspdry mustard powder
  • ¼tspgarlic powder
  • ½tsppowdered ginger
  • 1tbspsesame seeds


  1. Whisk the dressing ingredients in a bowl.

  2. Combine the cabbage, chicken, water chestnuts, and dressing.

  3. Stir well.

  4. Spread mayo and/or mustard inside the pita halves.

  5. Just before eating, stir the noodles into the chicken salad.

  6. Stuff the salad in the pitas.


  • Calories: 614.76kcal
  • Fat: 22.58g
  • Saturated Fat: 4.79g
  • Trans Fat: 0.09g
  • Monounsaturated Fat: 8.53g
  • Polyunsaturated Fat: 7.31g
  • Carbohydrates: 79.90g
  • Fiber: 9.14g
  • Sugar: 8.67g
  • Protein: 25.80g
  • Cholesterol: 91.35mg
  • Sodium: 466.80mg
  • Calcium: 81.72mg
  • Potassium: 590.60mg
  • Iron: 5.21mg
  • Vitamin A: 73.16µg
  • Vitamin C: 26.03mg

Helpful Technique for Making Oriental Chicken Salad

When preparing the savoy cabbage, it's best to slice it thinly to ensure it absorbs the sesame dressing well. This will give your oriental chicken salad a more flavorful and enjoyable texture. Additionally, when adding the chow mein noodles, make sure to do it just before serving. This will keep the noodles crunchy and add a delightful contrast to the softness of the other ingredients.

Time-Saving Tips for Oriental Chicken Salad Recipe

Prep ahead: Chop and store the cabbage, chicken, and water chestnuts in advance to save time when assembling the salad.

Use rotisserie chicken: Save time by using pre-cooked rotisserie chicken instead of cooking and shredding your own chicken.

Multi-task: While the dressing is chilling in the fridge, you can prepare the other components of the salad to save time.

Buy pre-made dressing: If you're short on time, consider using store-bought sesame dressing instead of making it from scratch.

Batch cooking: Cook a larger quantity of chicken at once and store the extra for future use in salads or other dishes.

Prep pita pockets: Prepare the pita pockets in advance and store them in an airtight container until ready to use.

Substitute Ingredients For Oriental Chicken Salad Recipe

  • Savoy cabbage - Substitute with Napa cabbage: Napa cabbage has a similar crunchy texture and mild flavor, making it a great substitute for savoy cabbage in salads.

  • Chicken - Substitute with Tofu: Tofu can be used as a plant-based alternative to chicken, providing a similar protein-rich component to the salad.

  • Water chestnuts - Substitute with Jicama: Jicama offers a similar crisp texture and mild, slightly sweet flavor, making it a suitable replacement for water chestnuts in the salad.

  • Pita rounds - Substitute with Wonton strips: Wonton strips can add a crispy element to the salad, similar to pita rounds, and provide a delightful texture.

  • Mayonnaise - Substitute with Greek yogurt: Greek yogurt can be used as a healthier alternative to mayonnaise, adding a creamy texture to the dressing while reducing the overall fat content.

  • Mustard - Substitute with Honey: Honey can add a touch of sweetness to the dressing, balancing the flavors and providing a different dimension to the salad.

  • Chow mein noodles - Substitute with Crunchy chow mein noodles: Crunchy chow mein noodles can be used as a substitute for regular chow mein noodles, adding a delightful texture to the salad.

  • Sesame oil - Substitute with Avocado oil: Avocado oil offers a mild flavor and a high smoke point, making it a suitable substitute for sesame oil in the dressing.

  • Rice vinegar - Substitute with Apple cider vinegar: Apple cider vinegar can provide a slightly tangy flavor similar to rice vinegar, complementing the other ingredients in the dressing.

  • Soy sauce - Substitute with Tamari: Tamari, a gluten-free alternative to soy sauce, can be used to maintain the savory, umami flavor in the dressing.

  • Sesame seeds - Substitute with Sliced almonds: Sliced almonds can provide a similar nutty flavor and crunchy texture, serving as an alternative to sesame seeds in the salad.

Presentation Ideas for Oriental Chicken Salad

  1. Elevate the plating: When presenting the oriental chicken salad, focus on creating an elegant and visually appealing plate. Use clean lines and carefully position the pita rounds to showcase the vibrant colors and textures of the salad.

  2. Incorporate microgreens: Add a touch of sophistication by garnishing the dish with delicate microgreens. Their fresh, subtle flavors and vibrant colors will enhance the overall presentation and provide a refined, restaurant-quality finish.

  3. Utilize contrasting textures: Create a harmonious balance by incorporating crunchy chow mein noodles for a textural contrast against the tender chicken and crisp cabbage. This will add depth to the dish and elevate the dining experience.

  4. Emphasize symmetry: Arrange the components of the salad with precision, paying attention to symmetry and balance. This meticulous approach will demonstrate attention to detail and elevate the overall visual appeal of the dish.

  5. Highlight the sesame dressing: Drizzle the sesame dressing strategically around the plate to add a touch of artistry. The glossy sheen and rich aroma of the dressing will enhance the presentation and entice the senses.

  6. Incorporate edible flowers: Introduce a touch of elegance by incorporating edible flowers as a sophisticated garnish. Their delicate beauty will add a pop of color and elevate the visual allure of the dish, creating a memorable dining experience.

Essential Kitchen Tools for Making Chicken Salad

  • Cutting board: A flat surface used for cutting, slicing, and chopping ingredients.

  • Chef's knife: A versatile knife used for various kitchen tasks such as chopping, slicing, and dicing.

  • Mixing bowl: A bowl used for combining ingredients and mixing them together.

  • Whisk: A kitchen tool used for blending, whipping, and beating ingredients.

  • Can opener: A tool used to open cans and tins.

  • Measuring cups: Used for accurately measuring dry and liquid ingredients.

  • Measuring spoons: Used for precise measurement of small amounts of ingredients.

  • Saucepan: A deep cooking pan with a handle, used for making sauces, boiling liquids, and cooking small quantities of food.

  • Skillet: A flat-bottomed pan used for frying, searing, and browning ingredients.

  • Tongs: A kitchen tool with two arms and a pivot used for picking up and manipulating food.

  • Spatula: A flat kitchen tool used for lifting, flipping, and spreading ingredients.

  • Grater: A tool used for grating cheese, vegetables, and other foods.

  • Salad spinner: A kitchen tool used to wash and dry salad greens.

  • Food processor: A kitchen appliance used for chopping, blending, and pureeing ingredients.

  • Can opener: A tool used to open cans and tins.

  • Baking sheet: A flat, rectangular metal pan used for baking and roasting.

Storage and Freezing Tips for Oriental Chicken Salad

  • This oriental chicken salad can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days. However, to maintain the crunchiness of the chow mein noodles, it's best to store them separately and add them to the salad just before serving.

  • If you want to prepare the salad ahead of time, mix the cabbage, chicken, and water chestnuts together with the dressing and store in the refrigerator. Add the chow mein noodles and stuff the mixture into the pita rounds when you're ready to serve.

  • The sesame dressing can be stored in a sealed container in the refrigerator for up to a week. Give it a good shake or whisk before using to ensure the ingredients are well combined.

  • While it's not recommended to freeze the entire salad, you can freeze the cooked chicken for up to 2-3 months. Thaw it in the refrigerator overnight and then mix it with the other ingredients when you're ready to assemble the salad.

  • If you have leftover pita rounds, you can freeze them for up to 1-2 months. Wrap them tightly in plastic wrap or aluminum foil and place them in a freezer-safe bag. To thaw, leave them in the refrigerator overnight or at room temperature for a few hours.

How To Reheat Leftover Chicken Salad

  • To reheat leftover oriental chicken salad, start by removing the chow mein noodles and setting them aside. The noodles will lose their crunch if heated, so it's best to add them back in after reheating the salad.

  • Place the remaining salad mixture in a microwave-safe bowl and cover it with a damp paper towel. This will help prevent the chicken and vegetables from drying out during the reheating process.

  • Microwave the salad on high power for 30-45 seconds, or until it reaches your desired temperature. Be careful not to overheat the salad, as this can cause the ingredients to become mushy and unappetizing.

  • If you prefer, you can also reheat the salad in a skillet over medium heat. Add a small amount of sesame oil to the pan to help revive the flavors and prevent sticking. Stir the salad constantly until it's heated through, which should take about 3-4 minutes.

  • Once the salad is warm, transfer it to a serving bowl and toss in the reserved chow mein noodles. This will help maintain their crunchy texture and add a delightful contrast to the soft, warm ingredients.

  • If the salad seems a bit dry after reheating, you can drizzle a small amount of the sesame dressing over the top and toss to combine. This will help refresh the flavors and keep the salad moist.

  • Serve the reheated oriental chicken salad immediately, either on its own or stuffed inside warm pita pockets for a satisfying and flavorful meal.

Interesting Fact About Oriental Chicken Salad

The Oriental Chicken Salad recipe is a delicious fusion of flavors, combining the crunch of water chestnuts, the savory taste of chicken, and the nuttiness of sesame seeds. This salad is a great source of protein and fiber, making it a healthy and satisfying meal. It's a perfect dish for a quick and easy lunch or dinner, and the sesame dressing adds a delightful touch of sweetness and tanginess to the salad. This recipe is a great way to enjoy a taste of the Orient right in your own home!

Is This Chicken Salad Recipe Budget-Friendly?

This oriental chicken salad recipe is quite cost-effective for a household. The ingredients, such as cabbage, chicken, and water chestnuts, are affordable and readily available. The use of simple pantry staples like mayonnaise and mustard further adds to its cost-effectiveness. The versatility of this recipe allows for easy substitution of ingredients based on availability, making it budget-friendly. The approximate cost for a household of 4 people is around $15-$20, making it a pocket-friendly and satisfying meal. Overall Verdict: 9.

Is Oriental Chicken Salad Healthy?

The oriental chicken salad recipe has both healthy and unhealthy aspects. On the positive side, it includes nutrient-rich ingredients like savoy cabbage, chicken, and water chestnuts. The sesame dressing contains healthy fats from sesame oil and beneficial spices like ginger and garlic. However, the recipe also includes less healthy components, such as mayonnaise and sugar in the dressing. The chow mein noodles and pita rounds are sources of refined carbohydrates, which can contribute to blood sugar spikes and weight gain if consumed in excess.

To make this recipe healthier, consider the following suggestions:

  • Reduce the amount of sugar in the dressing or replace it with a natural sweetener like honey or maple syrup
  • Use whole wheat pita rounds or lettuce wraps instead of regular pita to increase fiber content
  • Opt for a low-fat or avocado-based mayonnaise, or replace it with Greek yogurt for a protein boost
  • Add more vegetables to the salad, such as shredded carrots, bell peppers, or cucumber, to increase nutrient density
  • Limit the amount of chow mein noodles or replace them with a healthier crunchy topping like toasted almonds or pumpkin seeds
  • Use a lean protein source, such as grilled chicken breast, instead of potentially high-fat chicken options like fried or skin-on chicken

Editor's Opinion on This Chicken Salad Recipe

The Oriental Chicken Salad recipe is a delightful fusion of flavors and textures. The combination of savory chicken, crunchy water chestnuts, and crisp cabbage, all tossed in a delectable sesame dressing, creates a harmonious balance. The addition of chow mein noodles adds a satisfying crunch, while the pita pockets provide a convenient and portable vessel for this delicious salad. The sesame dressing, with its perfect blend of sweet, tangy, and nutty flavors, ties the dish together beautifully. Overall, this recipe offers a delightful and satisfying culinary experience that is sure to impress.

Enhance Your Oriental Chicken Salad Recipe with These Unique Side Dishes:

Garlic Roasted Asparagus: Toss asparagus in olive oil, garlic, and seasonings, then roast until tender and slightly crispy.
Honey Glazed Carrots: Cook carrots in a honey glaze until they are caramelized and tender, then sprinkle with fresh herbs for a pop of flavor.
Grilled Pineapple Spears: Brush pineapple spears with a sweet and tangy marinade, then grill until they have beautiful grill marks and are caramelized on the edges.

Alternative Recipes Similar to Oriental Chicken Salad

Spicy Beef Stir-Fry: Marinate the beef with a mixture of soy sauce, ginger, and garlic. Stir-fry with bell peppers, onions, and chili peppers for a spicy kick.
Mango Avocado Salsa: Combine diced mango, avocado, red onion, and cilantro. Add lime juice and a pinch of salt for a refreshing and tangy salsa.
Coconut Curry Soup: Simmer coconut milk with curry paste, chicken or vegetables, and a variety of spices. Garnish with fresh cilantro and serve with naan or rice for a comforting meal.

Appetizers and Desserts to Complement Oriental Chicken Salad

Stuffed Mushrooms: Delight your guests with these savory stuffed mushrooms, filled with a flavorful mixture of herbs, cheese, and breadcrumbs. The perfect bite-sized appetizer to kick off any meal.
Spinach and Artichoke Dip: Indulge in this creamy and cheesy spinach and artichoke dip, served with crispy tortilla chips or warm bread. A crowd-pleasing appetizer that will leave everyone coming back for more.
Chocolate Mousse: Indulge in a rich and creamy chocolate mousse, topped with a dollop of whipped cream and a sprinkle of cocoa powder. This elegant dessert is perfect for special occasions or a decadent treat after dinner.
Strawberry Cheesecake: Savor the sweet and tangy flavors of a classic strawberry cheesecake, topped with a luscious layer of fresh strawberries. The smooth and creamy texture of the cheesecake pairs perfectly with the juicy burst of ripe strawberries, creating a delightful dessert that's sure to impress.

Why trust this Oriental Chicken Salad Recipe:

This recipe offers a delightful combination of flavors and textures, making it a delightful addition to any meal. The chicken is tender and flavorful, while the savoy cabbage adds a satisfying crunch. The addition of water chestnuts provides a unique texture, and the chow mein noodles bring a delightful crispiness. The homemade sesame dressing is a perfect balance of sweet and savory, elevating the dish to a whole new level. With the freshness of the ingredients and the delicious blend of flavors, this recipe is sure to impress and satisfy anyone who tries it.

Share your thoughts on the Oriental Chicken Salad Recipe in the Recipe Sharing forum section and let us know if you have any tips or variations to this classic dish!
What is the best way to cook the chicken for this salad?
I recommend grilling or roasting the chicken for this salad. You can marinate the chicken with some soy sauce, garlic, and ginger for added flavor before cooking.
Can I make this salad ahead of time?
Yes, you can prepare the salad ahead of time, but I suggest adding the chow mein noodles just before serving to maintain their crunchiness.
Can I substitute the savoy cabbage with a different type of cabbage?
Absolutely! You can use Napa cabbage or regular green cabbage if you prefer. The key is to have a crunchy and slightly sweet cabbage for this salad.
Is there a way to make the dressing less sweet?
If you prefer a less sweet dressing, you can reduce the amount of sugar or substitute it with honey to balance the sweetness to your liking.
Can I make this salad vegetarian?
Yes, you can easily make this salad vegetarian by substituting the chicken with tofu or adding more vegetables like bell peppers, snap peas, or edamame for protein and crunch.

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