This Tarragon Chicken Salad is simple, flavorful, and just might be my favorite chicken salad ever!!!
If you never buy tarragon and use it in recipes– you gotta start getting it! Tarragon is a leafy green herb widely used in French cooking (and the French know how to cook!!!) Its flavor is strong and has an anise/licorice taste to it. But don’t let that deter you if you hate licorice (because I hate licorice). Adding fresh tarragon to a dish can immediately elevate it and take something typically mundane and transform it into something magnificent. For example, this simple chicken salad is restaurant worthy– and I give all the credit to the tarragon!
If you are from Dallas or San Antonio and have had the Chicken Salad from Bird Bakery— that is where the inspiration for this salad came from. It’s savory, yet the touch of dried cranberries gives it a bit of sweetness and tartness that leaves you wanting MORE!
It may seem odd, but the key to making this salad mix so well to become so creamy and delicious is using a mixer. You can certainly just stir the heck out of it if you don’t have a mixer– but I love throwing mine in my Kitchen Aid mixer and letting that do the work. It makes the chicken shred ultra-fine and the end results are just so delicious!
Tarragon Chicken Salad
- 4 cups cooked chicken, loosely shredded I use rotisserie chickeen
- 1/2 cup finely diced celery
- 1/2 cup finely diced sweet onion yellow onion is ok, too
- 2 tbsp finely chopped fresh tarragon leaves
- 1/2 cup unsweetened dried cranberries
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 2 tbsp fresh squeezed lemon juice
- 4 tbsp homemade mayo
- 1 tsp dijon mustard
- kosher salt, to taste
- black pepper, to taste
- Place all ingredients in the mixing bowl of a stand mixer and using a paddle attachment, mix until very well combined and the chicken is finely shredded. Taste and add salt and pepper, according to your taste buds!*If you do not have a stand mixer no worries! Just be sure to shred the chicken really fine using your hands and then mix it *really well* when you stir to combine.
- Refrigerate to chill and serve as desired! I love to serve mine over a bed of lettuce with veggies for dipping!
KatyAugust 24, 2022 at 2:46 am
Another home run!! This is a keeper and I’ve shared it with several people. I love the addition of the mustard. I’m a huge fan of tarragon chicken salads and so glad I tried this.
Susan FarleyApril 29, 2022 at 5:17 pm
Didn’t have fresh tarragon so I subbed basil from the garden with a little dried tarragon and it was delicious!
CLVJanuary 31, 2022 at 4:38 am
Amazing recipe !!! I made this recipe last week for my husband and I ( I doubled it) and it was gone within 24 hrs lol I’m planning on doing it again this week.
I just can’t help but ask what are the yellow looking things I see in your salad? Lemon zest ???
AlexJanuary 31, 2022 at 6:43 pm
yes, correct!! lemon zest! 🙂
AmandaDecember 13, 2021 at 6:31 pm
What would you sub for chicken to make vegan (aleks you have vegan mayo)?
AlexDecember 14, 2021 at 12:46 pm
I don’t cook Vegan much, so I am not a huge help here I am sorry; however, perhaps you could drain and rinse some chickpeas and mash them up with the recipe and use vegan mayo?
SarahOctober 27, 2021 at 8:51 pm
Love this recipe! Always a favorite in our house. The recipe is very open for customization. Sometimes we throw in chopped jalapeño or dried cherries instead- whatever we have on hand!
DebiAugust 29, 2021 at 11:28 am
Can I use miracle whip ? Also dried tarigon if so how much
AlexAugust 29, 2021 at 9:14 pm
I don’t recommend using Miracle Whip, as it has such a different taste than most mayo. But if you like the flavor of it, than it should be fine to use. As far as dried tarragon– I really recommend using fresh here to liven up the chicken salad! But if you use dried, I think 1 tsp. should be good. 🙂
LizAugust 23, 2021 at 9:10 pm
I order a $23 tarragon chicken salad with watermelon a couple of days a week b/c it is delicious. Clearly this is too much so I decided to fill my addiction at home by trying this recipe. Oh my lord, this salad (ex celery, which is the devil) + baby kale + homemade lemon dressing + cubed watermelon + feta + sliced almonds = dead, so good! I had it for two out of 3 meals today. YAAAAASSS
AlexAugust 23, 2021 at 11:30 pm
haha, i’m so happy to hear– Except the celery is the devil part (hahaha) i am a celery LOVER!
CynthiaJuly 12, 2021 at 10:49 pm
Soooooo good! I had to sub canola mayo and sweetened cranberries, but it was so delish!
Bethany GrahamJune 2, 2021 at 1:01 am
Would this recipe freeze well?
AlexJune 2, 2021 at 11:54 am
I don’t think that recipes that use mayo freeze well.
JohnMay 22, 2021 at 10:01 pm
I had some zante currants I threw in in place of the cranberries. Great substitute! This was awesome!
Alyse TuckerMarch 22, 2021 at 5:39 pm
Any idea the nutritional information for this? I’m mostly curious how many calories are in a serving.
AbbyMarch 22, 2021 at 1:11 am
This is DELICIOUS! I love the finely shredded style at Chicken Salad Chick, but have had trouble replicating it. I also HATE shredding chicken, so this is an amazing hack that will be helpful for many recipes.
AllieMarch 12, 2021 at 6:05 pm
Wow wow wow! This was SO good, Alex! The tarragon adds such an interesting flavor and everything works together well. I’m not sure serves 4 people is accurate though because my husband and I could eat this in one sitting between the two of us haha. I will practice self restraint and save the rest for tomorrow’s lunch ;). Thanks as always for an amazing and creative recipe!
kariFebruary 10, 2021 at 8:16 pm
loved this so much!!! added to the lunch rotation for sure. thanks, alex!
RobynFebruary 6, 2021 at 5:30 pm
This is so delish and comes together quickly! Will be going in the regular rotation!
Brittany KJanuary 31, 2021 at 5:29 pm
This was my first time making chicken salad and my husband and I are obsessed!! We have made it three weeks in a row. We serve it over spinach with Simple Mills crackers. Or we scoop it up right out of the container 🙂 Insanely delicious!!
CatherineJanuary 26, 2021 at 8:31 pm
SO GOOD! This is my first time making chicken salad and I was surprised at how easy it was. I do not have a mixer so I used my vitamix which shredded it perfectly. I also subbed halved grapes for the cranberries!
rmcJanuary 26, 2021 at 5:58 pm
Such a delicious chicken salad! I’ve been making one like this for years from an old recipe I found in Southern Lady magazine, it’s a favorite! I added sliced almonds to your recipe, so good! Thank you Alex 🙂
LeeshJanuary 25, 2021 at 2:39 am
My faith in humanity is restored.
MichelleJanuary 4, 2023 at 6:51 pm
Can you sub yogurt vs Mayo? Thanks!!
AlexJanuary 4, 2023 at 7:21 pm
Yes!! Yogurt works well here.
Monica S.January 20, 2021 at 10:10 pm
Amazing! Ive already made it twice. Great with crackers, in a wrap or on a bed of greens. Don’t skip the fresh tarragon. Sooo good!
AlexJanuary 20, 2021 at 11:20 pm
Yes!!! so glad, and NEVER skip that delightful tarragon. it’s just so good.
Stephanie MastaJanuary 19, 2021 at 5:38 pm
I made this (along with the homemade mayo) and it is amazing! So so good. And it feels very light and healthy. Thank you!
Ellie HeidornJanuary 18, 2021 at 11:56 pm
DANG SO GOOD. I did 2 chicken breasts in the oven and shredded them with my mixer before making! I ate it wrapped in lettuce and with carrot sticks. I also used Primal Kitchen Garlic Mayo (they were out of the regular at my store) and surprisingly loved it! 10/10 will make this dish again! Super easy to meal prep too- I made it Monday and kept it in the fridge until it was gone on Friday!
HannahJanuary 14, 2021 at 2:26 am
Wonderful! My little family loved it, even my picky 8 year old! Thank you Alex! Also, cranberries with no sugar added are REALLY hard to find!
Ellie HeidornJanuary 18, 2021 at 11:53 pm
I had to specialty order them from Thrive Market!! So tough to find no sugar added. I did recently find them at Trader Joes however!
AlexJanuary 19, 2021 at 12:30 pm
it is so tough to find dried cranberries without added sugar! I also find them at Natural Grocers in their bulk section.
EJJanuary 12, 2021 at 9:06 pm
How many calories would you say one serving of this is?
AlexJanuary 12, 2021 at 10:40 pm
I am not sure but someone may have calculated already and can share!
PamJanuary 12, 2021 at 5:52 pm
I’m not normally one to comment on recipes, but HOLY $#!&$^ this is good! Can’t wait to add it to my normal meal prep rotation.
KatherineJanuary 11, 2021 at 6:11 pm
super delicious and actually really light amount of mayo for how much it makes which is awesome
KelseyJanuary 9, 2021 at 5:18 pm
Can you use dried tarragon? Apparently Raleigh is either having a tarragon shortage or everyone already bought it all to make this recipe.
AlexJanuary 10, 2021 at 3:24 am
haha, yes I am sure you can!! I am not sure how much, I haven’t really cooked with dried tarragon much to be honest.. But i’d start off with 2-3 teaspoons and you can always add more if it’s not coming through.
AlisonJanuary 7, 2021 at 1:09 am
Made this recipe for dinner tonight and it was absolutely delish! I love your recipes and cookbook! ❤️
Wendy ZoggJanuary 6, 2021 at 11:21 pm
Just made this and the Mayo! Delicious 😋
Kate DejanaJanuary 6, 2023 at 2:54 am
Any store bought mayo substitution you can recommend?
AlexJanuary 6, 2023 at 7:45 pm
I recommend Sir Kingsington Avocado Oil mayo
ErikaJanuary 5, 2021 at 3:12 am
Where can I find the homemade mayo recipe?
AlexJanuary 6, 2021 at 3:09 pm
Alex T.January 5, 2021 at 2:39 am
Think it would taste equally as good using Primal Kitchen Mayo, or do you recommend home making it? Love ALL your food so want to do it right 🙂
AlexJanuary 5, 2021 at 2:40 am
You can totally make it with PK mayo– i just love the clean taste of homemade. The PK mayo is a great option, but I find it has a unique after taste that can be strong!
JulieJanuary 4, 2021 at 10:08 pm
Where do you find unsweetened cranberries?
AlexJanuary 5, 2021 at 2:41 am
I have bought mine from both Thrive Market + Natural Grocers!
KristenJanuary 4, 2021 at 6:27 pm
Can you make it without the tarragon?
AlexJanuary 4, 2021 at 8:44 pm
yes, but it wouldn’t taste near as delicious.
Lauren SerraJanuary 4, 2021 at 5:49 pm
How do you think this would work with Tuna?
AlexJanuary 4, 2021 at 8:43 pm
yes for sure!
AnnJanuary 4, 2021 at 5:41 pm
Do you have the nutrition information?
AlexJanuary 4, 2021 at 8:43 pm
I do not!
DaniJanuary 4, 2021 at 5:03 pm
Where do you find whole30 compliant rotisserie chicken?
LeslieJanuary 4, 2021 at 8:53 pm
Whole Foods Original rotisserie chicken is compliant -just salt, pepper and chicken. And on sale every Saturday!