This Whole30 + paleo Chinese chicken salad is packed with flavor, thanks to a delicious sesame-ginger dressing, crunchy veggies, mandarin oranges, and almonds. It comes together super quickly and is a light but filling dinner or entree salad the whole fam will enjoy.
What Makes This Recipe So Good
- It’s a super healthy, restaurant-quality Whole30 + paleo chicken salad that’s way more interesting than your average bowl of lettuce and dressing.
- It’s light and refreshing, but also super filling. You won’t feel heavy and blah after eating, and you’ll be satisfied until your next meal!
- It’s so easy to make. While I always recommend fresh ingredients for the best flavor and quality, you can use rotisserie chicken and prepackaged shredded cabbage & carrots to cut way down on your prep time.
Paleo Chinese Chicken Salad Ingredients
Almonds – Most Chinese chicken salad variations use chow mein (fried noodles) for a little crunch, but those are a Whole30 no-no. Instead, we’re using almond slivers for a similar effect.
Shredded Cabbage – You can use prepackaged shredded cabbage if you want, but shredding your own is super easy, and that way you know you’ve got the freshest ingredients! Check out our post highlighting 3 Different Ways to Shred Cabbage.
How to Make Paleo Chinese Chicken Salad
The full recipe & ingredients list are below, but here you’ll find a quick overview for making this recipe perfectly, along with useful tips and info!
Constructing this salad literally could not be easier. First, mix all your salad ingredients together. Then, mix all of your dressing ingredients together. And last, mix everything together – then serve and enjoy!
The most time consuming part of this salad is prepping the ingredients – but even that really isn’t too bad!
If you’re following a Whole30 diet, be sure all of your Chinese chicken salad ingredients are compliant!
- Toast your almonds first to make them crunchier and bring out more of their nutty flavor. If you don’t have time or want a more subtle flavor, you can use raw almond slices.
- If you prefer a really crunchy paleo Chinese chicken salad, add the almonds and dressing literally right before you eat. When the salad mix sits in the dressing, it gets kind of soggy.
- Looking for a make ahead option? Just store the dressing separately! Keep it in an airtight container and pour a little over your salad when it’s time to eat. Store the salad mix in an airtight container, too, and you can refrigerate it up to 5 days without losing any of the texture.
- You can absolutely add more veggies to your paleo chicken salad. Kale and baby spinach make great additions, or even alternatives to the lettuce.
More Delicious Whole30 & Paleo Recipes
- Breakfast Egg Roll in a Bowl (Whole30, Paleo)
- Whole30 Hibachi Chicken and Veggies with Cauliflower Fried Rice and Mustard Sauce
- Whole30 Breakfast Meal Prep
- Egg Roll in a Bowl with Creamy Chili Sauce (Keto, Whole30, Paleo)
- Sweet Potato Rice
- Egg Roll in a Bowl Meal Prep (Whole30, Paleo, Keto)
- 40 of the Best Paleo Recipes Around
- Whole30 Beef Stroganoff
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Chinese Chicken Salad (Whole30, Paleo)
- 4 cups shredded lettuce
- 2 cups shredded red cabbage
- 2 cups shredded chicken see Notes
- ¾ cup jarred mandarin oranges drained
- ½ cup shredded carrot
- ⅓ cup sliced green onions
- ¼ cup sliced almonds raw or toasted
- In large bowl, toss together lettuce, cabbage, chicken, mandarin oranges, carrots, green onions, and almonds.
- In a small bowl, whisk together rice wine vinegar, coconut aminos, sesame oil, olive oil, garlic, ginger, and salt.
- Drizzle dressing over salad. Toss to combine, then serve.
- Rice Wine Vinegar: Make sure you’re not using a “seasoned” rice wine vinegar. Those almost always include sugar, which means they’re not Whole30 compliant.
- Shredded Chicken: Whether you cook your own chicken or use a precooked rotisserie chicken, the methods outlined in our Instant Pot Shredded Chicken post are the easiest ways to shred your chicken.
Cheryl Malik is the recipe developer, writer, and photographer behind the healthy, flavorful, family friendly recipes at 40 Aprons. She’s been a blogger for 10+ years and is known for her delicious recipes and detailed recipe instructions. Cheryl is a mom of three who lives in Memphis, TN.