Dress up your everyday chicken salad with fresh tarragon and sliced almonds for a slightly fancy feel. Perfect for baby or bridal showers, served in lettuce cups or on croissants, or made in advance for easy meal prep lunches. Naturally Whole30, paleo, low carb, and keto.
🍗 What Makes This Recipe So Good
- I can’t lie. I’m absolutely OB. SESSED. with this tarragon chicken salad. We go way back, this salad and I. My obsession started during one fateful beach trip. There we are, standing in Publix. Searching for easy snacks and lunches we could munch on the beach with minimal prep. Suddenly, I saw it. Deli tarragon chicken salad. Now it’s a staple, a must-get for every beach vacation. Sadly, we don’t have a Publix near us when we’re not at the beach, but with this quick & easy copycat recipe, I can have my favorite chicken salad anytime I want it.
- The textures in tarragon chicken salad are so incredible. Traditional chicken salads don’t typically have much crunch, unless you add celery or something like that. That means the salad itself is a creamy, kind-of mushy mixture that really relies on your vessels of choice for contrast. Crackers, celery sticks, lettuce, tortilla chips, crostini. With this salad, though, the sliced almonds take care of that crunchy element. They’re a beautiful compliment to the creaminess of the mayo and the tenderness of the chicken.
- This recipe has a light, earthy, slightly sweet flavor that’s super refreshing. Since it fits a variety of dietary needs, and isn’t spicy or too bold, it’s a perfect dish to serve at any event. Baby shower, bridal shower, potluck… Basically any gathering where you need to account for a bunch of different preferences. It feels a little elegant, too, which is really nice if you’re trying to make an impression.
👩🏼🍳 Chef’s Tips
- I highly recommend making up a batch of tarragon chicken salad in advance. You’re welcome to serve it immediately, of course, and it will be delicious. Making it ahead, though, gives the ingredients time to meld, resulting in a deeper, more intense flavor.
- If you don’t have or can’t find fresh tarragon, you can use dried tarragon instead. Be careful not to overdo it, though. Dried tarragon will be much more potent after the salad rests. Start with just 1 tablespoon, and incorporate it really well. Taste the chicken salad after that and add more tarragon 1 teaspoon at a time only if needed. Remember – you can always add more, but you can’t take it back out!
- Not sure how to serve tarragon chicken salad? The possibilities are seriously endless. Scoop it into lettuce cups. Halve a croissant to make a chicken salad sandwich. Set it out in a bowl with buttery crackers, apple slices, pretzels, or crostini. It’s a super versatile dish, so you can’t go wrong with any option you choose!
💬 Frequently Asked Questions
3-5 days as long as it’s stored in an airtight container!
The best general rule of thumb is to use ½ teaspoon of dried tarragon for every 1 tablespoon of fresh tarragon.
That means, for this recipe, you’d use approximately 1 tablespoon of dried tarragon to replace 6 tablespoons of fresh tarragon.
Tarragon has a light, soft flavor that’s reminiscent of licorice. It adds a bit of elegance and springtime to any dish.
🥘 Other Recipes You’ll Love
- Herb Roasted Sweet Potato Salad
- Sous Vide Chicken Breast
- Lemon Pepper Chicken
- Whole30 Steak with Bearnaise Sauce
- Poppy Seed Chicken
- The Best Shredded Chicken
- Honey Garlic Lemon Pepper Chicken Thighs
- Achiote Chicken
- Chicken Almondine
- Large mixing bowl with lid, or plastic wrap to cover
- large mixing spoon or silicone spatula
- Add 6-7 cups diced or shredded chicken breasts, 1 ½-2 cups mayonnaise, 1 ½ teaspoons salt, 1 cup sliced almonds, 1 ½ teaspoons onion powder, 1 ½ teaspoons garlic powder, and 6 tablespoons minced fresh tarragon leaves to large mixing bowl.
- Gently stir ingredients together until mixture is fully incorporated and chicken is well coated in mayonnaise and spices.
- Serve immediately, or cover bowl with lid or plastic wrap and refrigerate 30 minutes or until ready to serve.
- Chicken: Use a store-bought rotisserie chicken, leftover chicken from another recipe, or cook chicken specifically for this chicken salad. To get 6-7 cups of cooked & diced (or shredded) chicken, you’ll want to use 4 large boneless, skinless chicken breasts, weighing approximately 3-3 ½ pounds total.
- Almonds: I prefer sliced almonds over slivered. Sliced almonds are thinner a blend with the other textures of the salad a little better.
- Tarragon: To use dried tarragon instead of fresh, start with 1 tablespoon. Taste the chicken salad and add more tarragon in 1 teaspoon increments, incorporating the tarragon fully and tasting the salad before adding more. Note: the flavor of the dried tarragon will intensify as the chicken salad sits, so keep that in mind.
- Make it Whole30/Paleo: Use a compliant store-bought or homemade mayonnaise. My one-minute mayo works really well here.
Number of total servings shown is approximate. Actual number of servings will depend on your preferred portion sizes.
Nutritional values shown are general guidelines and reflect information for 1 serving using the ingredients listed, not including any optional ingredients. Actual macros may vary slightly depending on specific brands and types of ingredients used.
To determine the weight of one serving, prepare the recipe as instructed. Weigh the finished recipe, then divide the weight of the finished recipe (not including the weight of the container the food is in) by the desired number of servings. Result will be the weight of one serving.