If you’re looking for the best herbs and spices to add to your chicken salad, then you’ve come to the right place.
I’ve rounded up 10 of my favorite herbs and spices that take chicken salad to the next level.
From rosemary and thyme to cumin and paprika, these herbs and spices will give your chicken salad a flavor boost that you’re sure to love.
So go ahead and give them a try the next time you make chicken salad!
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10 Best Herbs and Spices for Chicken Salad
Chicken salad surely is a tasty and healthy dish.
See Also: What to Serve with Curry Chicken Salad? 17 Best Side Dishes
But, did you know that there are some herbs and spices that can make it even tastier?
Yes, there are! In fact, these herbs and spices can help to bring out the natural flavors of the chicken and make the salad even more flavorful.
Here are 10 of the best herbs and spices for chicken salad:
Parsley has a clean and peppery taste that can help to brighten up any dish, especially chicken salad.
This herb is also very versatile and can be used in a number of different ways.
Here are a few tips on how to use parsley in your chicken salad recipe:
- Chop the parsley finely so that it evenly distributes its flavor throughout the salad.
- Add other complementary flavors like lemon juice, mustard, or garlic to enhance the taste of the parsley.
- Use fresh parsley if possible, but if you must use dried parsley, make sure to rehydrate it first by soaking it in water for 10 minutes.
- Add parsley at the end of cooking so that its flavor is not cooked out.
Thyme usually has a sharp, almost minty flavor (though it’s not related to mint at all).
It’s a great way to add a little zing to chicken salad, and it pairs especially well with mayonnaise, sour cream, and yogurt-based dressings.
A little goes a long way with thyme, so start by adding just a teaspoon or so to your recipe.
You can always add more later if you want more flavor.
Another thing to keep in mind is that thyme can lose its flavor quickly when heated, so it’s best to add it near the end of cooking or after the dish is done.
This lemony-pine-like herb is a classic for chicken salads, and for good reason!
Rosemary has a fragrant, slightly bitter flavor that can really liven up a dish.
When using rosemary in your chicken salad, it’s best to use fresh rosemary if you can find it. If not, dried rosemary will work just fine.
I would recommend using about 1 teaspoon of dried rosemary for every 2 tablespoons of fresh rosemary called for in the recipe.
Another thing to keep in mind is that a little goes a long way with this herb.
You don’t want to overdo it or your salad will end up tasting like soap! I would start by adding a small amount and then taste as you go, adding more until you reach the desired flavor.
Finally, when chopping fresh rosemary, be sure to remove the tough stems before adding it to your salad.
These stems can be really woody and tough to chew, so it’s best to just get rid of them.
Now that you know how to use this delicious herb, give it a try in your next chicken salad! I’m sure you’ll love the results.
Sage is earthy, slightly peppery taste with hints of mint (some say it tastes like eucalyptus).
It’s a great way to flavor chicken salad, and here are a few tips on how to use it:
- start with a small amount and add more to taste. A little goes a long way with sage!
- if you’re using dried sage, rub it between your fingers before adding it to release the oils and maximize the flavor
- pair sage with other complementary flavors like lemon, thyme, or rosemary.
Oregano has a slightly bitter, pungent taste (some say it tastes like a cross between mint and lemon) that can really liven up a dish.
It’s often used in Italian and Mexican cooking, and goes particularly well with chicken salad.
Here are a few tips for using oregano:
- If you’re using dried oregano, be sure to crush the leaves before adding them to your dish. This will help release their flavor.
- A little goes a long way with this herb, so start by adding just a pinch or two. You can always add more if you want more flavor.
- Add oregano towards the end of cooking so that its flavor doesn’t have a chance to dissipate.
Basil is a balance between sweet and savory (think: the perfect amount of anise), and it’s one of my favorite herbs to use in chicken salad.
I love its flavor so much that I also add it to other dishes like pasta salad and omelets.
If you’re using dried basil, rehydrate it by soaking it in water for about 10 minutes.
You can also use fresh basil, but you’ll need to use more since it’s not as potent as the dried form. Add the basil a little at a time until you get the desired flavor.
Here are a few tips for using basil in your chicken salad:
- Use dark meat for your chicken salad if you want more flavor. Dark meat has a higher fat content, which will help carry the flavor of the spices and herbs.
- If you’re using a store-bought rotisserie chicken, remove the skin before adding the meat to your salad. The skin can make the salad greasy and affect the overall texture.
- Chop the chicken into small pieces so that the flavors have a chance to evenly distribute throughout the dish.
7. Garlic Powder
How could I almost forget about garlic powder?
This is such a great way to flavor chicken salad, or any salad for that matter.
You could even use it to top off your salad once it’s already mixed together.
I would start with a teaspoon and work my way up from there.
You don’t want to add too much garlic powder, or else the flavor will be overwhelming.
Another tip would be to add the garlic powder towards the end of mixing everything together.
This way, you can taste as you go and better gauge how much you need.
And lastly, if you’re using this recipe for meal prep, I would recommend waiting to add the garlic powder until right before you eat it.
This way, the flavor won’t be as strong after a few days in the fridge.
8. Onion Powder
Onion powder has a way of bringing out the flavors in other ingredients while also adding a bit of savory depth to a dish.
It’s perfect for chicken salad because it can help to round out the flavors of the chicken and other ingredients without adding any additional moisture (which can make chicken salad soggy).
Here are a few tips for using onion powder in your chicken salad recipe:
- Start with a small amount and add more to taste. Onion powder can be strong, so you don’t want to overdo it.
- Add onion powder early on in the recipe so that it has time to blend with the other ingredients.
- If you’re using fresh onions in your recipe, you may not need as much onion powder since the fresh onions will also add flavor.
- Be sure to taste your chicken salad before serving to adjust any seasonings as needed.
9. Curry Powder
Curry powder is usually a blend of several different spices, such as turmeric, coriander, cumin, and chili pepper.
The combination of these spices gives curry powder its characteristic yellow color and warm, earthy flavor.
When using curry powder to flavor chicken salad, start by adding a small amount and then taste the salad before adding more.
You don’t want to end up with a salad that’s too spicy or overwhelming.
10. Smoked Paprika
Smoked paprika has a smoky and spicy flavor (just like its name suggests) that can really elevate a dish.
It’s perfect for adding depth of flavor to chicken salad.
Here are a few tips for using smoked paprika:
- Start with a small amount and add more to taste. You can always add more, but you can’t take it away once it’s added.
- If you’re using smoked paprika as a garnish, be sure to use a light hand so that the flavor doesn’t overwhelm the other ingredients.
- Smoked paprika pairs well with other bold flavors like garlic, cumin, and chili powder. So if your recipe is lacking in flavor, try adding one or more of these ingredients along with the smoked paprika.
10 Best Herbs and Spices for Chicken Salad
- Garlic Powder
- Onion Powder
- Curry Powder
- Smoked Paprika
- Choose your favorite herbs or spices from this list to add to your chicken salad recipe.
- Prepare the rest of your dish.
- Enjoy in no time!