This recipe is one of our favorite uses of leftover chicken, especially for lunch. Â It doesn’t necessarily sound like it would be as good as it is (nor does it photograph particularly well), but it’s a tangy and creative twist on the typical mayo-based chicken salad. Â And it has a chipotle pepper in it, which adds a nice smoky / spicy flavor. Â In addition to being delicious, it is really easy to make with just a few ingredients.
In a small bowl, mix up the ingredients for the dressing first — barbecue sauce, mayonnaise, and a chopped up chipotle pepper. Â You can find chipotles in the Mexican food section of the grocery store. Â They typically come in a small can labeled “chipotle in adobo sauce.” Â Fun facts — a chipotle is a smoke-dried jalapeno and adobo is a type of hot sauce. Â And it is definitely hot. Â The recipe calls for one chipotle, which we found to be plenty spicy enough for our taste.
Dice the chicken into bite-sized pieces. Â One of the great things about this recipe is that it gives roasted or baked chicken a whole new flavor profile.
Add the dressing to the chicken. Â The original recipe called for adding the chicken to the dressing, but we ended up having way more dressing than we needed. Â So we recommend mixing small spoonfuls of the dressing with the chicken until all the chicken pieces are covered with dressing, but the mixture isn’t too soupy.
Add the other salad ingredients — chopped red onion, red bell pepper and cilantro — and a little more dressing if you need it. Â Salt and pepper to taste (mostly salt.)
We served the salad with an Asian slaw (the slaw was good, but not great and took a long time and a lot of chopping to prepare.) Â We made this chicken salad another time and had it for lunches — it’s delicious on its own, served with crackers, or in a sandwich.
Finally, did you notice the new pretty pink mixing bowl in the salad photos above? Â For my birthday this year, my dear friends gave me a gift card from Williams-Sonoma (one of the greatest foodie shopping venues ever.) Â Among other things, I got these awesome mixing bowls. Â I love the pastel colors and the fact that each bowl has a handy little spout shape on the end, in case you need to pour the contents out. Â Thanks Paula and Lindsay!