Pecan Chicken Salad
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4
  • Chicken:
  • 1 cup pecan halves
  • ½ cup plain Panko bread crumbs
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • ¾ pound chicken tenders
  • 4 tablespoons oil for the skillet
  • Balsamic Vinaigrette:
  • ¼ cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1½ teaspoons light corn syrup *see note*
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon coarse ground black pepper
  • a pinch of garlic powder
  • ¼ scant cup olive oil
  • Salad:
  • 12 ounces mixed salad greens
  • 1 carrot, peeled and shredded
  • 2 ounces crumbled blue cheese
  • 1 cup candied pecans
  • ½ cup dried cranberries
  • sliced cucumbers
  • sliced strawberries
  1. Place the pecan halves and Panko bread crumbs in a food processor and pulse until even coarse crumbles have formed. (If you do not have a food processor buy the little pecan pieces and then chop them further with a sharp knife) Spread the pecan bread crumbs out on a plate.
  2. Dip the chicken tenders in the beaten egg. Then coat the chicken with the pecan bread crumbs.
  3. Heat the oil in a large skillet and place the chicken pieces in the oil. Cook for about 3 minutes and then turn them. Cook for another 3 minutes on the second side. The outside of the chicken should be crisp and brown and the inside should be cooked all the way through. Internal temp should read 165 on a meat thermometer. Larger chicken pieces will take longer. Remover the cooked chicken pieces to a cutting board to cool slightly.
  4. To make the dressing whisk together the vinegar, corn syrup, kosher salt, black pepper, and garlic powder. Drizzle in the olive oil. Whisk well (or use a carafe and SHAKE!!!)
  5. Assemble the salad buy dividing the ingredients between 4 plates. Slice the chicken, add it to the salads and serve with the dressing.
The corn syrup add sweetness and thickens the dressing so that it more closely resembles the restaurant version. I tried honey, which is a good substitute if you do not have light corn syrup, but the results were not quite as thick and the honey didn't sweeten the vinegar enough for me. Use what you have on hand and go with what you like!
Recipe by Sugar Dish Me at