Chicken Salad with Pecans & Dried Cherries

July/August 2013

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This healthy chicken salad recipe is sweet and crunchy thanks to the addition of heart-healthy pecans and fiber-rich dried cherries. If you have cooked chicken breast on hand, skip Step 1 and use about 3 cups chopped chicken in Step 3.

Chicken Salad with Pecans & Dried Cherries

Makes: 4 servings, about 1 cup each

Serving Size: about 1 cup each

Active Time:

Total Time:


  • 1 1/4 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breast, trimmed
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 1/3 cup low-fat plain yogurt
  • 1/3 cup low-fat mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon honey mustard
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 1/2 cup thinly sliced celery
  • 1/2 cup pecans, toasted (see Tip) and chopped
  • 1/2 cup dried tart cherries, chopped
  • 1 head Boston or butterhead lettuce, trimmed


  1. Place chicken in a medium skillet or saucepan, cover with water and add 1/4 teaspoon salt. Bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to maintain a gentle simmer and cook until the chicken is no longer pink in the middle, 10 to 15 minutes. Transfer to a plate to cool.
  2. Meanwhile, combine yogurt, mayonnaise, mustard, pepper and the remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt in a bowl.
  3. When the chicken is cool enough to handle, cut into bite-size pieces. Add the chicken, celery, pecans and cherries to the bowl with the dressing and toss to combine.
  4. Divide lettuce leaves among 4 plates and top with about 1 cup chicken salad each.

Tips & Notes

  • Make Ahead Tip: Prepare through Step 3. Add pecans and cherries just before serving; refrigerate for up to 1 day.
  • Tip: Toast nuts before using in a recipe for the best flavor. To toast whole nuts, spread on a baking sheet and bake at 350°F, stirring once, until fragrant, 7 to 9 minutes. To toast chopped, small or sliced nuts, cook in a small dry skillet over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until fragrant and lightly browned, 2 to 4 minutes.


Per serving: 380 calories; 17 g fat (3 g sat, 8 g mono); 85 mg cholesterol; 23 g carbohydrates; 10 g added sugars; 32 g protein; 3 g fiber; 452 mg sodium; 428 mg potassium.

Nutrition Bonus: Vitamin A (26% daily value)

Carbohydrate Servings: 1 1 /2

Exchanges: 1 fruit, 4 lean meat, 3 fat

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Recipe Categories

Total Time
45 minutes or less
Main Ingredient
Preparation/ Technique

Type of Dish
Main dish, poultry
Ease of Preparation
July/August 2013
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