This Grilled Chicken Salad recipe is exactly what we want to eat on a warm summer day! With just a few simple ingredients, you get great flavor, great texture, and a healthy and satisfying salad, all served over a crisp bed of lettuce with our cool, Creamy Garlic Dressing.
Here’s why we love it so much:
*This post was sponsored by Little Leaf Farms. All opinions are my own. I only support and promote brands that I believe in and use in my own kitchen – I hope you’ll check them out! Thank you for supporting the brands that make Well Seasoned possible.
Ingredients You’ll Need
For the grilled chicken:
- Boneless, skinless chicken breasts: If you prefer, you can use boneless chicken thighs. While bone-in chicken has a lot of flavor, we find it much easier to use boneless. Plus, the chicken has a delicious marinade that adds a ton of flavor!
- Homemade chicken marinade: extra virgin olive oil, Kosher salt, dried oregano, garlic powder, and freshly ground black pepper.
For the salad:
- Little Leaf Farms Baby Crispy Green Leaf Lettuce:
- Cherry tomatoes or grape tomatoes, halved: We love how they hold they shape!
- Cucumbers: If you can find the small Persian cucumbers, we love those!
- Pickled red onions! These are great to have on hand in the fridge. They add so much flavor to salads, sandwiches, tacos — really so versatile! You can, of course, use raw red onion if you prefer.
- Tarragon: This is the secret ingredient that takes this from an ordinary salad to something extra special.
How To Grill Chicken
- Marinate the chicken. Place chicken breasts in a large resealable bag or mixing bowl, then add olive oil, Kosher salt, dried oregano, garlic, and black pepper. Toss to thoroughly coat. Let this sit for 30 minutes if you’ve got the time. Longer is better, but if you need to skip entirely that’s ok.
- Preheat the grill. Heat a grill over medium-high heat until it reaches about 425-450F. Coat the grates with nonstick grill spray or a little oil so the chicken doesn’t stick.
- Cook the chicken. When ready, add the chicken. Just be sure to let the excess marinade drip off before placing on the grill so you don’t get any flare ups. Cook for 4-5 minutes per side, flipping once, or until the chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165F.
- Rest, then slice. Allow the grilled chicken to rest for at least 5 minutes, then cut into slices about ½-inch thick.
We recommend the Thermapen MK4 to check for doneness on all meats!
Assembling the rest of the chicken salad recipe takes minutes! Just pile the remaining salad ingredients on top of a serving tray or large salad bowl, then toss with dressing and tarragon!
The grilled chicken can be cooked in advance — it keeps in a fridge for 3-4 days. You can prep the tomatoes, cucumbers, and quick pickled red onions a few days in advance as well. Just make sure not to dress the salad or toss with Creamy Garlic Dressing until just before serving.
Yes! We like boneless chicken breasts or thighs because they cook quicker than bone-in and you don’t have to remove the bone. But you can use any type of chicken you like. Turkey breasts work too, they’re just often much larger!
Of course! We love the crisp texture of Little Leaf Farms, but use any variety of lettuce that you love.
- If making in advance: do not toss with dressing until ready to serve! Prep everything and store separately until assembling.
- Red onion: If you don’t have pickled red onions, you can soak thinly sliced onion in ice water for 10-20 minutes to temper their heat a bit.
- Salad dressing: Try drizzling the salad with a tablespoon or two of extra virgin olive oil, a tiny bit of balsamic vinegar, then sprinkling with flaky sea salt. Make sure to use an aged balsamic vinegar that is thick and rich for a fuller flavor!
Variations and Substitutions
This grilled chicken salad is incredibly versatile — feel free to use any veggies or even fruits that sound good to you! We love simple salad recipes because they’re a great way to use leftovers about to go bad.
- Mix and match add-ins: ripe avocado, grilled corn, kalamata olives, homemade croutons or pita chips
- Cheese: such as goat cheese, feta, Parmesan,
- Fruit: we LOVE adding fruit to salads! A few ideas for testing out: blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, apple, peaches, or fresh figs when in season!
- Nuts: pecans, almonds, marcona almonds, walnuts, or pistachios are all great in salads!
If you make this easy Grilled Chicken Salad recipe, please let us know by leaving a review and rating below!
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Tender, Juicy Grilled Chicken Salad
For the Grilled Chicken
- 2 chicken breasts boneless, skinless, about ¾ lb, or boneless chicken thighs
- 3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tsp Kosher salt
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- ¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper
For the Salad
- 4 oz Little Leaf Farms Baby Crispy Green Leaf Lettuce
- 1 pint cherry tomatoes halved
- 2 small Persian cucumbers thinly sliced
- ¼ cup Quick Pickled Red Onions or very thinly sliced raw red onion
- 1 batch Creamy Garlic Dressing or your favorite salad dressing
- 2 Tbsp fresh tarragon roughly chopped
- Flaky sea salt for serving
- Marinate the chicken. Place chicken breasts in a large bowl, Tupperware, or resealable bag. Drizzle with 3 Tbsp olive oil, 1 tsp Kosher salt, 1 tsp dried oregano, 1 tsp garlic powder, and ¼ tsp black pepper. Use your hands to thoroughly mix, then seal or cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes. You can skip this step if need be, but the longer it sits the better!
- Preheat a grill. When ready, heat a grill over medium-high heat until it's about 425F. Coat the grates with nonstick grill spray, then carefully add chicken breasts, allowing any excess oil and marinade to drip off before placing on the grill. Cook for about 4-5 minutes per side, or until the internal temperature of the chicken reaches 165F. Transfer to a cutting board, then rest for at least 5 minutes before slicing.
- Assemble the salad. Place Little Leaf Farms Baby Crispy Green Leaf Lettuce on a large serving plate, then scatter with halved tomatoes, thinly sliced cucumbers and pickled red onions. Toss with our Creamy Garlic Dressing or serve with the dressing on the side. Sprinkle with 2 Tbsp chopped tarragon and a sprinkle of flaky sea salt, then serve immediately!
- Grilled chicken will keep for 3-4 days in a fridge.
- Our Creamy Garlic Dressing will keep for up to 1 week in a fridge.
- Make ahead: If prepping ahead of time, keep all ingredients separate, then toss just before serving, either with dressing or served on the side.
- Variations and add-ins. Consider adding or substituting with any of the following: avocado, corn, croutons, pita chips, nuts, cheese, or fruit.