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Basic + Awesome Chicken Quinoa Salad

9 reviews / 5 average
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Hello. Meet your new salad crush.

She’s a tasty one, full of happy little grape tomatoes and shredded bits of artichoke (!!) all snuggled in nicely between bites of tender chicken and fresh spinach, with quinoa and a yummy Greek-style vinaigrette clinging to all the little salady spaces in between.

What You’ll Need To Make This Salad Happen

The ingredient list is going to make all of us SOS-ers feel very good:

  • rotisserie chicken
  • grape tomatoes
  • artichokes (canned or jarred! easy)
  • spinach
  • pre-cooked quinoa
  • store-bought dressing

Now that I’ve got your salad wheels spinning, I would like to also tell you the other important thing which is that – surprise! – you can actually pick and choose whatever you like because, in addition to freshness and crunch and tang, versatility might be the very greatest thing about salads.

Ingredients for chicken quinoa salad in a bowl

Swap In Whatever You’d Like Here

Substitutions that might make you happy:

  • use chickpeas instead of chicken
  • use a different grain, or cook your own
  • use a different dressing – something lemony, herby, more or less sweet, whatever you like
  • add capers for extra briney-ness
  • add roasted vegetables of any sort – sweet potato, bell peppers, zucchini
  • add cheese
  • add nuts or seeds
Dressing being poured on chicken quinoa salad

The world is your salad!

Whether you go my direction with the quinoa / chicken / artichokes / Greek dressing, or go your own way with a spin-off of this combination, you will be eating well.

She is beautiful, colorful, flavorful, nutritious, family-friendly, and everything good that your SOS spring + summer heart could ever want.

Chicken quinoa salad in a bowl with a fork

Chicken Quinoa Salad: FAQs

Can this salad be made vegetarian?

It can! For a vegetarian version, just use white beans or chickpeas!

Can I meal prep this salad or make it ahead of time?

Yes! This can be made ahead and will last in the fridge for 1-3 days. The part that doesn’t last very well is the spinach, so I would suggest waiting to add the spinach to until just before serving, or make a big batch for the fridge and then just add spinach to individual servings.

I have a little bit of extra time to make my own dressing. Any recommendations?

The dressing from this pasta salad recipe or this LA Chop would be so, so good!

Should I eat this warm or cold?

Honestly, it’s great either way!


Prefer To Watch Instead Of Read?

Source notes: I based this off of a salad I used to make a lot from an old Cooking Light cookbook called Fresh Food Fast. Three cheers for old favorites!

Print
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Basic + Awesome Chicken Quinoa Salad


  • Author: Lindsay
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 10 minutes
  • Yield: 46 servings 1x

Description

Spin those salad wheels with this Basic + Awesome Chicken Quinoa Salad that’s easy to customize. Cherry tomatoes, shredded bits of artichoke, tender chicken, and fluffy quinoa all snuggled between pieces of fresh spinach. 


Ingredients

Scale
  • 2 cups cooked chicken, shredded or diced (I use pulled rotisserie chicken)
  • 1 cup cooked quinoa (I buy this pre-packaged, usually comes in 810 ounce packages)
  • 12 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
  • one 14-ounce can chopped artichokes, drained and rinsed
  • 1/2 cup vinaigrette of choice (I used the Panera at Home Greek dressing)
  • a handful of spinach or other fresh greens of choice
  • salt, pepper, garlic powder to taste

Instructions

  1. Mix all the ingredients in a large bowl until well-combined.
  2. Season to taste. YOU’RE DONE!
  • Category: Salad
  • Method: Toss
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: chicken quinoa salad, quinoa salad, chicken salad

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More Fresh Spring Recipes

Want more veggie-forward recipes? Checkout our Plant-Powered series!

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16 Comments

  1. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Katie

    If you have a Wegmans near you, the Lemon Vinagrette is PERFECT for this! I make a similar version and add corn, too!

  2. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Haylee

    Just made this for lunch and YUM. So easy but packed with flavor!!! Used marinated artichokes and Newman’s Greek dressing. Added some pepitas I had on hand. Next time I’m thinking feta or goat cheese. A KEEPER!!!






  3. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Lorrie

    Hi Lindsay,

    Can you be more specific as to the amounts of salt, pepper, and garlic powder you add?

    I am planning on making this for family on Saturday. Thanks it sounds delicious!

    1. Pinch of Yum Logo
      Krista @ Pinch of Yum

      Hi Lorrie! You could try 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teaspoon pepper, and 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder to start. Enjoy!

  4. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Brittany

    This was great! I could also this recipe being a good one to use up veggies or greens in the fridge that need to be used up ASAP. I subbed the chicken for a can of chickpeas, and subbed the quinoa for a bag of Aldi’s 7-grain mix (prepackaged mix of quinoa, rice, millet, etc.) and used Aldi’s version of the Olive Garden copycat Italian dressing and it tasted amazing!






  5. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Kate

    Just made this for dinner. It was delicious & so easy! I added corn, cucumbers and feta with some homemade Greek dressing. I will definitely be making this again. Yum!






  6. Pinch of Yum Logo
    LaReesa

    This was so good!! I used all Aldi imgredients (knockoff Olive Garden vinaigrette, frozen protein burgers, premade quinoa garlic basil mix) and it was delicious and easy. These SOS meals are saving my butt right now in a very busy season of my life. Thank you for keeping me on track making healthy, homemade meals 💖 and encouraging me to buy the freaking premade dressing to make my life easier! I don’t always have to make my own freaking vinaigrette!!!






    1. Pinch of Yum Logo
      Krista @ Pinch of Yum

      So glad the SOS recipes have been helpful for you! Thanks so much for the comment, LaReesa!

  7. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Kristine

    Made this for lunch today and it was delicious! I used champagne vinaigrette that I had in the fridge and added some croutons for a little crunch. I didn’t tell my picky husband there were artichokes in it. He could see them but wasn’t sure what they were. He loved the salad and gobbled his all up but now that he knows there were artichokes in it he doesn’t want any leftovers. 🙄