Refrigerator Chicken Salad

It has been a bit warm the past week and the last thing I've wanted to do is turn on the oven, use a bunch of pans and actually cook something. So, I've decided to make a huge bowl of chicken salad. And by huge, I mean HUGE. Are you hungry? Do you want some chicken salad? Well, I've got some. Come on over, and bring chips!

Now, I BASE my chicken salad off of my Mom's recipe, meaning that both of the salads have chicken, hard boiled eggs and mayo. But other then that, I have veered way off many, many times. In fact, every time I make chicken salad, it turns out different because the recipe is pretty much based on what's in my fridge. Hence the name, "Refrigerator Chicken Salad." This time my chicken salad has quinoa, celery, kale, carrots, hard boiled eggs, cucumbers, onions, sprouts, canned chicken, mayo, mustard, salt, pepper and paprika. Directions: dice everything up, throw it in a bowl, mix and add spices until it tastes good. 

Here are some pictures!!

Okay so, I didn't get a picture before I added the carrots, celery and quinoa to the bowl. I like the shred the carrots when I add them to things because sometimes they are a bit strong in flavor. Don't get me wrong, I LOVE carrots, but I don't want them to overpower all the other flavors in the salad. So, there is about two cups of quinoa, three celery stalks and two carrots.

Kale! I love kale! I try to add a handful to things like turkey burgers, meatloaf, stirfry...and chicken salad! Trader Joe's has these awesome bags of chopped organic kale that you can just toss in things. I like to chop the pieces up finer pieces just so they don't cause messes while eating. Have you ever been in a situation that includes lettuce getting caught up in everything and causing a mess all over the place? Chopping them finer is so simple and just stops the mess! But be careful, the kale will leek and dye your cutting board. So use the cheap cutting board and not the expensive bamboo cutting board.

Three eggs! I like my eggs a bit chunky, but you do you.

Next is cucumber. This cucumber was one of those long, English ones so I used about three quarters of one...and ate the other quarter. I wanted thin pieces of cucumber so I broke out the mandolin. And didn't hurt myself!!

Why am I crying? Because of this darn onion! I only ended up using a quarter of the onion this time because I just wanted the taste. This one was a really strong one and made my eyes hurt, a lot. It could have used more to be honest, but I wasn't about to cut any more!

Sprouts! These are micro-greens from Trader Joe's. They don't need to be chopped. I just liked how the knife looked in the shot.

The chicken I had was canned chicken. I like the chicken in the broth better then the chicken in water. I feel it has a better taste and is not as dry. Add two cans to the bowl.

Pro tip! Before you add the chicken to your bowl, take a fork and "fluff" the chicken. Doing this will insure that the chicken doesn't end up in large, dried out chunks on the third day of left overs.

Last is the mayo, mustard, salt, pepper and paprika. Paprika? Yes! It adds a little bit of the flavor of deviled eggs. Add all these to bowl until it looks about right. Then add a little more. Trust me. I don't know why, this works. Then, mix it all up and taste. Add more spices, mayo or mustard to taste.

Here is the yummy chicken salad! I know, it doesn't look that great, but it tastes and smells amazing! My husband, Paul, and I like to eat it with salty potato chips or between two slices of toasted bread. It's also even better the second and third day after the flavors have marinated in the fridge at least overnight.

I know what I'll be having for lunch tomorrow. :)

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