Mediterranean Chicken Salad

I’m recovering from the “visit with all of my favorite paleo people mania” of PaleoFX this weekend by cooking and typing while still wearing my pajamas (camo flannel bottoms and a black t-shirt, in case you’re curious). I keep meaning to get dressed and maybe even workout, but it’s 4:00 p.m. and it still hasn’t happened and Jeopardy! is on in 30 minutes, so…

I knew PaleoFX weekend would be busy and disruptive — in the very best way, of course — so I pre-cooked a bunch of ingredients so I could make lunches and snacks on the fly. The “recipe” below isn’t really a recipe at all. It’s a list of ingredients you can toss together to make a delicious, satisfying salad that I decided to call Mediterranean Chopped Chicken Salad because that sounded better than “a bunch of stuff I tossed in a bowl that ended up tasting really good.” You can happily eat this salad cold, hot, or room temp; it’s very flexible. I liked this combination so much, I ate it cold for lunch, two days in a row. (If you eat it hot, it would be yummy for breakfast with an egg on top — or room temp on top of a bed of hot zucchini noodles for dinner.)

The photo is not so glamorous, but it gives you the idea. If you guys like this recipe, maybe I’ll make it again and have Dave give it the official, super-model photography treatment. Until then, here’s documentation of the lunch I packed for PaleoFX:

Mediterranean Chopped Chicken Salad
Mediterranean Chopped Chicken Salad

Just eyeball the quantities of the vegetables to make the salad the way you want it; there's no wrong way!
  • grilled eggplant, diced*

  • hearts of palm (from a jar), diced

  • black olives, halved

  • fresh or roasted red bell pepper, diced

  • grilled chicken breast, diced*

  • cider or red wine vinegar, extra-virgin olive oil**

  • Italian herb mix***

  • salt and ground black pepper


Throw everything together in a large bowl and toss with two wooden spoons for two minutes, until the veggies and chicken are evenly coated with dressing. Eat!

*I grilled the eggplant and chicken at the same time: hot grill, all burners on high. Brushed both the chicken and eggplant with a little melted coconut oil, then sprinkled them with salt, pepper, and garlic powder. Grilled with the lid closed on high, 5 minutes, then removed the eggplant. Flipped the chicken and grilled another 5 minutes or so. If it’s not grilling season where you are, you can do this in the oven: 400F, 20 minutes or so.

**I used about 2 teaspoons vinegar and 1 teaspoon olive oil for my dressing because I like it to have a vinegar-y bite; you might want to add more olive oil if you prefer it to be more luscious and less assertive.

***I used about 1 teaspoon of Italian herb blend; you could also just use dried oregano, if you prefer.

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  • Lisa says:

    Sounds delicious and simple! The best combo for a busy working mom and student (or anyone else for that matter.)

  • Catlady says:

    Looks like the way I often “cook” -what combination of what I have will go together. Also, I too like more bite than oil in my dressings so almost always reverse proportions of oil to vinegar in standard recipes – so 2 vinegars to 1 oil sounds right to me.

  • AustinGirl says:

    I made this last night, but subbed marinated artichoke hearts for the hearts of palm. SO GOOD!!! Oh, and even better for lunch today, once the flavors had had time to meld. This is going into heavy rotation this summer. Thank you!!

    • Mel says:

      Right on! Glad you liked it! I bet the artichoke hearts tasted really good. I found out this year that I’m allergic to them — how weird is that?! Such a strange thing to be allergic to.