February 5, 2014

Protein Packed Mayo-Free Poppy Seed Chicken Salad

Hi everyone!

I have an addiction to the Food Network, I'll admit it. The Pioneer woman's Blackberry Cheesecake Squares look divine! And I have no doubt I could eat half the pan in one sitting. But as I keep reiterating, everything in moderation!

With that said, Trisha Yearwood demonstrated her homemade chicken salad with grapes and almonds on her show. It looked perfect, but I knew I could healthify (word? who cares!) it a bit so I could get the nutritional value without the fat and calories from mayo. To me, mayo = Greek yogurt! Greek yogurt is one of my favorite foods on earth. I absolutely LOVE it. As in, I eat it basically every single day. :-)

This recipe has a triple protein punch as it incorporates chicken, almonds, and 2% fat plain Greek yogurt, which is super high in protein. It's a great after workout meal you can feel great about eating. Eat without bread for a gluten-free, super low carb meal.

Another great feature of this recipe is you can adapt it to your taste. You can use walnuts or cashews in place of almonds, apples instead of grapes, and any combination of spices your heart desires. Personalize to your taste, but try to keep it healthy by leaving out mayo or flavored yogurt which can have up to 30g of sugar per cup.

Protein Packed Mayo-Free Poppy Seed Chicken Salad

1.5 lbs chicken breast
1 c 2% plain Greek yogurt
1 c sliced almonds
1 c red seedless grapes, halved
3-4 stalks of celery, diced
1 tbsp poppy seeds
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper

To keep your chicken really moist, boil in water for 30-45 minutes. Depending on the thickness of your chicken you may need to boil less or longer. I used thin sliced breasts, so I only boiled mine for 30 minutes. Be careful not to over cook so the chicken isn't chewy. Once it's done, use two forks or an electric mixer with the paddle attachment and shred chicken into bite size pieces, or dice chicken with a knife. Set aside to let it cool. I put it in the freezer for about 25 minutes because I was hungry. ;-)

When chicken is cooled, place in a large bowl and mix in the remaining ingredients. Use salt and pepper to taste.

Enjoy your super healthy, uber protein packed meal!


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