This grilled ginger-sesame chicken chopped salad recipe is great served as an appetizer or even a main dish. It's light, yet flavorful and packed full of protein. The salad base is a healthy alternative for serving chicken breast with pasta. Here's what you need to get started:
- 2 (9 oz) boneless skinless chicken breasts
- 1 lb napa cabbage, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced crosswise
- 1 1/2 - 2 cups matchstick carrots, or 2 medium carrots cut into matchsticks
- 2/3 cup slivered or sliced almonds, toasted
- 1/2 cup cilantro leaves, chopped
- 3 chopped green onions, green and white parts
- 1 tsp white sesame seeds, toasted
- 1 tsp black sesame seeds (or an additional 1 tsp white, toasted)
Dressing and Marinade
- 1/4 c low-sodium soy sauce
- 2 Tbsp finely minced ginger
- 3 Tbsp canola oil
- 2 Tbsp hoisin sauce
- 1 Tbsp toasted sesame oil (I used regular un-toasted since it's all I had)
- 1 tsp Sriracha (I didn't even notice it, so if you like heat add a little more)
- 1/2 tsp salt, then more to taste as desired
- 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
- 1/4 cup chopped green onions, green and white parts
For the marinade:
In a mixing bowl (or 2-cup liquid measuring cup), whisk together soy sauce, ginger, canola oil, hoisin sauce, sesame oil, Sriracha and 1/2 tsp salt (adding more salt to taste as desired, original recipe calls for 1 tsp salt, I added 3/4 tsp and I still thought that was too much, especially for a healthy salad). Add chicken breasts to a large resealable bag and add 3 Tbsp of the marinade mixture, reserving remaining. Seal bag and rub marinade over chicken, then transfer chicken to refrigerator and let rest at least 30 minutes, or up to 1 day.
For the dressing:
Add red wine vinegar and 1/4 cup chopped green onions to marinade mixture and whisk to blend. Set aside (chill in refrigerator if marinating chicken longer than 1 hour).
For the salad:
Heat a grill or grill pan over stove top over medium-high heat. Brush grill lightly with canola or vegetable oil, then place marinated chicken on grill and cook, about 4 minutes per side, or until chicken has cooked through (it should register to 165 degrees in center of chicken when tested with a meat thermometer). Transfer to a cutting board and let rest 10 minutes. Then, cut chicken crosswise into strips about 1/4-inch thick.
To assemble salad:
In a large bowl toss together cabbage, chicken, carrots, almonds, 3 chopped green onions, and cilantro with enough dressing to coat salad. Sprinkle top with sesame seeds and serve.