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Apple Tarragon Chicken Salad is an easy lunch recipe that’s full of fresh flavors. Scoop onto a bed of lettuce, between two bread slices, or make into a mason jar meal!

Apple Tarragon Chicken Salad is an easy lunch recipe that's full of fresh flavors. Scoop onto a bed of lettuce, between two bread slices, or make into a mason jar meal! | iowagirleats.com

We’ve got a few fun weeks coming up that I’m really looking forward to!

My brother’s getting married in Colorado next month so we’re heading west for a week beforehand on our first Official Family Vacation as a foursome. If you’re a long time reader you know we visit Colorado at least once a year to visit my bro and do all the outdoorsy things. Last year we stayed in Vail and fell in love. This year we’re going the VRBO route and planting ourselves in Steamboat Springs for a few days. That said, give me all your Steamboat + surrounding areas recommendations! Also feel free to send prayers in regards to flying with my human fidget spinner, Cameron. He was such a disaster on the last flight we took that even the flight attendants were giving me “the look”. HELLO!

A few weeks after that, Cam turns ONE! I know every parent says this but truly, I have no idea where the last 11 months have gone with our jolly fellow. I don’t post a ton about the kiddos on IGE – the Internet makes me paranoid, I guess – but I’ll be sure to share a little recap of his party. Thinking I’ll go the Halloween-themed route, muwahaha!

After that it’ll be Thanksgiving, and Christmas will be here before we know it, then boom – welcome, 2018!

Before I start talking about the season that shall not be named though, let me pause and concentrate on what’s in front of us. Fall. Glorious, glorious fall! With its flowering mums, crunchy leaves and cool breeze (I mean…eventually, right? It was 92 degrees today!) Pumpkins, football, and chili too. Plus all the apples you can eat.

I mentioned last week we went apple picking over Labor Day weekend and came home with 6lbs of some of the best Honeycrisp apples I’ve ever tasted. Crisp, snappy, and so, so sweet. Lincoln and I have been eating them with peanut butter for a mid-day snack, and I also tossed a few into the Apple Tarragon Chicken Salad I’m sharing with you today.

Apple Tarragon Chicken Salad is an easy lunch recipe that's full of fresh flavors. Scoop onto a bed of lettuce, between two bread slices, or make into a mason jar meal! | iowagirleats.com

Nothing makes me happier than having lunch pre-made and ready to go in the fridge. What that says about me I’m not sure. But seriously, to have to think up two lunch ideas for the boys then turn around and decide what I’m going to make myself gives me a serious case of decision fatigue. I’m pretty sure that’s how it works.

Anyway, that’s why I always aim to have leftovers, egg salad, and/or chicken salad in the fridge to grab and gobble for lunch, and this fall-inspired Apple Tarragon Chicken Salad is my new fall favorite!

Baked chicken, sweet apples, green onions and fresh tarragon are mixed with mayo and tart lemon juice for a seriously quick and easy chicken salad recipe that’s fresh and filling. I like to roll mine inside a GF wrap (love Mission GF tortillas!) though it’s also fantastic scooped into mason jars then topped with mixed greens for an instant healthy salad when lunch time rolls around. Just dump, mix, and eat.

Like I said, I have a ton of Honeycrisp apples on hand so that’s what I’ve been using in this recipe, but of course use whatever apple you love. And if you’ve never tried tarragon, it’s a wonderful fresh herb. Every time I eat it I think, why don’t I use this more often?? You’re gonna love it!

Apple Tarragon Chicken Salad is an easy lunch recipe that's full of fresh flavors. Scoop onto a bed of lettuce, between two bread slices, or make into a mason jar meal! | iowagirleats.com

Start by cooking 2 chicken breasts (14oz) any way you like – you could even use leftover roast chicken or rotisserie chicken. My favorite, easy cooking method is to pound the chicken to an even thickness, season both sides with salt and pepper, then place on a silpat or nonstick sprayed foil-lined half sheet pan. Spray or mist the tops with extra virgin olive oil or cooking spray then bake for 15-17 minutes, or until cooked through. Chop into cubes or shred once cool. EASY. You can even do this a day ahead of time.

Add the cooled chopped chicken to a large bowl with 1 chopped red apple, 2 chopped green onions, 1 Tablespoon chopped fresh tarragon, salt, and pepper.

Next add 1/3 cup mayonnaise and a squeeze of fresh lemon juice then mix to combine. Taste then add more mayo, lemon juice, salt and/or pepper if needed. I really think the addition of lemon juice makes this chicken salad taste more like a chicken salad with dressing versus chicken mixed with mayo. You’ll see what I mean!

That’s all she wrote, my friend! Like I said, I usually scoop the Apple Tarragon Chicken Salad on top of greens or use it to make a wrap, though chicken salad is of course great as a sandwich or stuffed inside a pita. Plus, don’t forget about that handy mason jar idea! However you eat it – enjoy!

Apple Tarragon Chicken Salad is an easy lunch recipe that's full of fresh flavors. Scoop onto a bed of lettuce, between two bread slices, or make into a mason jar meal! | iowagirleats.com

Apple Tarragon Chicken Salad

Description

Apple Tarragon Chicken Salad is an easy lunch recipe that's full of fresh flavors. Scoop onto a bed of lettuce, between two bread slices, or make into a mason jar meal!  

Ingredients

serves 4

  • 2 chicken breasts (14oz), pounded to an even thickness (see note)
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 red apple, chopped
  • 2 green onions, chopped
  • 1 Tablespoon chopped tarragon
  • squeeze fresh lemon juice
  • 1/3 - 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • salt and pepper
  • bread, wraps, or lettuce, for serving

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees then line a half sheet pan with a silpat or nonstick sprayed foil. Season chicken on both sides with salt and pepper then place on prepared sheet pan and spray or mist tops with extra virgin olive oil or nonstick spray. Bake for 15-17 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through, then let cool. Once cool, chop into bite-sized pieces. Can be done a day ahead of time.
  2. To a large bowl add chopped chicken and remaining ingredients then stir to combine. Taste then add more lemon juice, salt, and/or pepper to tate then refrigerate until chilled. Serve between bread slices, in a wrap, or on a bed of lettuce.

Notes

  • Rotisserie chicken would be a great substitute in here.
  • This chicken salad makes a great mason jar meal. Scoop the chicken salad into the bottom of a mason jar then top with the lettuce of your choice. Will stay fresh in the refrigerator for 3-4 days.

This recipe is courtesy of Iowa Girl Eats, http://iowagirleats.com.

Apple Tarragon Chicken Salad is an easy lunch recipe that's full of fresh flavors. Scoop onto a bed of lettuce, between two bread slices, or make into a mason jar meal! | iowagirleats.com