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Cilantro Chicken Salad

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This easy chicken salad recipe is made with scallions, cilantro with a hint of lime. It’s a tasty twist on traditional chicken salad with some Latin flavor!

cilantro chicken salad with avocado
Cilantro Chicken Salad

I often keep chicken salad on hand for quick weekday lunches, and I like to play around with the flavors so that it never gets boring. For this Cilantro Chicken Salad, I added lime juice, garlic powder, cumin, and chili powder for a Latin twist. Some other favorite chicken salad recipes are this Classic Chicken Salad, Dill Chicken Salad and Ranch Chicken Salad.

Cilantro Chicken Salad in a bowl

Chicken salad is also a great way to use up leftover chicken breast from a whole roasted chicken. You can also poach the chicken in chicken broth or use my air fryer chicken breast, to make this salad.

How to make Chicken Salad

This cilantro lime chicken salad recipe is super easy to make and takes only about 15 minutes if your chicken is already cooked. I typically buy supermarket rotisserie chicken or use leftovers from when I roast a chicken myself. It makes for a juicy, tender chicken salad with minimal effort. If you don’t want to use a rotisserie chicken, you can also cook the chicken breasts in the slow cooker or poach them on the stove.

How to Serve Chicken Salad

The great thing about chicken salad is that there are so many ways that you can eat it. Just another reason why it’s one of my favorite easy lunches!

  • Wrap: Wrap it in a whole-wheat tortilla or lettuce leaf for a low-carb alternative.
  • Stuffed: Stuffed into avocado or fresh summer tomatoes
  • Salad: Serve over lettuce and add some tomatoes and avocados for extra veggies.
  • Open-Faced Melt: Put some chicken salad and a slice of Monterey jack cheese on a slice of wheat bread and warm in the oven until the cheese melts.
  • Veggie Bowl: Scoop the chicken into a hollowed-out tomato or half of an avocado.
  • Chips: Eat the chicken salad with tortilla chips.


  • Sub the chicken for canned tuna.
  • If you don’t want to use mayo, try it with Greek yogurt or light sour cream.
  • Add celery or bell pepper for crunch.
  • Swap the scallions for red onions.
  • Add a serrano or jalapeño pepper for an extra kick.

chicken salad ingredientsCilantro Chicken AvocadoChicken Salad Recipe

More Chicken Salad recipes you may like:

Cilantro Chicken Salad

4.97 from 31 votes
This easy chicken salad recipe is made with scallions, cilantro with a hint of lime. It's a tasty twist on traditional chicken salad with some Latin flavor!
Course: Lunch
Cuisine: American
Cilantro Chicken Avocado
Prep: 10 mins
Cook: 0 mins
Total: 15 mins
Yield: 2 servings
Serving Size: 1 /2


  • 7 oz cooked chicken breast, shredded or diced
  • 2 tbsp light mayonnaise, full fat for Keto
  • 1 small scallion, chopped
  • 2 tsp lime juice
  • 2 tbsp chopped cilantro
  • kosher salt and pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/8 teaspoon chile powder
  • low sodium chicken broth, check labels for Keto or use bullion


  • Combine cooked chicken, mayonnaise, scallions, lime juice, and cilantro.
  • Season to taste with salt, pepper, garlic powder, cumin, and chile powder.
  • Add a little chicken broth if chicken seams too dry, 1 tbsp at a time.

How to Poach Chicken Breast:

  • Cover chicken breast in broth in a small pot, add water if it doesn't cover the chicken.
  • Add salt and pepper, a piece of celery and it's leaves (you could add herbs like parsley, garlic, onion, or whatever you want) and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and cook 5 minutes.
  • Remove from heat, cover tight and let it sit for 15-20 minutes or until thickest part of the breast registers 160 degrees.
    poached chicken breast
  • Chicken will be cooked through. Let it cool and cut into small cubes.

Last Step:

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Serving: 1 /2, Calories: 160.5 kcal, Carbohydrates: 3 g, Protein: 23 g, Fat: 6 g, Saturated Fat: 0.5 g, Cholesterol: 61.5 mg, Sodium: 151.5 mg, Fiber: 0.5 g, Sugar: 1 g


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136 comments on “Cilantro Chicken Salad”

  1. This chicken salad is really perfect, can’t go wrong with it and surprisingly full of flavor with few ingredients. Love putting it in halved avocados, but might try as a wrap tonight instead. 

  2. Welcome to my website specialized in health, healthy nutrition and weight loss

  3. Avatar photo
    Jennelle Zajac

    Made double this batch and when seasoning, I DUMPED about 1/4 cup of garlic salt into it! Tried to salvage it as best I could. It was delicious – even though I oversalted it. I will definitely make this WW Personal points-friendly dish again, but next time more carefully. Thank you for making WW easy with your delicious recipes!

  4. I had to double the spices and add some lime zest, was bland as written for me. My spices are not old so that wasn’t the issue but I did forget to salt my water before poaching the chicken. Made it in advance to let the flavors blend better – delicious!

  5. Made this today with leftover rotisserie chicken.   I added some diced celery for extra crunch.   Delicious!

  6. A friend had us over for dinner last night and served this dish. Absolutely delicious! It will become one of our favorite chicken salad recipes!

  7. Avatar photo
    Madeline Theis

    We love chicken salad; and I love the idea of using coconut yogurt. I haven’t seen it yet at the stores that I frequent, but I bet it might be at Sprouts?

  8. I just got my ingredients at Sprouts, going to make this for next weeks lunches. I got spinach wraps for it too! Cant wait to try it!

  9. I used canned chicken breast. (I know, I know…) This was such a quick and easy recipe — absolutely delicious. Perfect summer time dish when you don’t want to turn the stove or oven on! 

  10. Avatar photo
    Donna Gilreath

    Mayonnaise is not healthy.  It’s calorie dense, made with preservatives, and high proportion of Omega-6 fatty acids.  

    1. That’s why she gives all the alternatives. If you think her recipe is too fattening, why bother commenting at all? Why not just scroll on by? It’s just that easy!

  11. Quick, easy, and delicious. Used for lettuce wraps. I will be making this recipe again for sure.

  12. This was excellent, with a few tweaks as I found the suggested measurements to be a bit sparing. 

    -I eyeballed the Mayo and probably used WAY more than 2 tsp. 
    -juiced one lime and added lime zest (gave it a lovely tang)
    -Added way more cumin for flavor 

    So fresh! Definitely a new favorite. 

  13. Cilantro is one of my favorite herbs! I like the many different recipes out there. And this one was easy and delicious!!!!

  14. Gina, I have made a number of your recipes over the years, but this is the first time I’m commenting. I just made this cilantro chicken salad, and it’s delicious! So simple, yet so very, very tasty. I’ll be making this over and over again for sure. Thanks for all you do!

  15. How much ratio for chicken to steamed halibut. I have a freezer full of halibut from Alaska, We had this in Mexico as a dip with Tortilla chips and want to create it myself.

      1. It would be impossible to answer every question asked. I’m smart and cook, so I will answer… the ratio of chicken to halibut is the same, however the halibut is not as firm so you may need less of the dressing. You can figure out any point difference if needed.

  16. This is such a perfect summer meal. It’s fresh, but has layers of flavor. So good. It’s also good with canned tuna.