Healthy Chicken and Arugula Salad


Healthy has never tasted this good. Here, peppery arugula is studded with roasted pecans and juicy chunks of poached chicken and drizzled in a tart lemon vinaigrette. Slideshow:  Salads with Chicken 

Healthy Chicken and Arugula Salad
Photo: © Todd Porter & Diane Cu
Total Time:
45 mins


Poached Chicken

  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts

  • 4-5 sprigs Italian parsley, thyme or oregano, tied together

  • 1 bay leaf

  • 1 garlic clove

  • 1 tablespoon kosher or sea salt

  • 1 teaspoon black peppercorns


  • 4 cups arugula

  • 1/2 cup chopped roasted pecans

  • 1 medium bell pepper, chopped

  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

  • 1 medium clove garlic, minced

  • 1 teaspoon brown sugar

  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher or sea salt, or to taste

  • Fresh cracked black pepper


Poach the Chicken

  1. Rinse off the chicken breasts. Fill a medium stockpot with water and add the herbs, bay leaf, garlic, salt and peppercorns. Bring the water to a boil and add the chicken breasts.

  2. Return the water to a boil and then lower heat to medium. Simmer for 5 minutes. Remove the pot from the heat, cover with a lid and keep the chicken in the hot water for another 15 to 20 minutes or until cooked through.

  3. Remove the chicken from the water and cut into large bite-size pieces. Set aside to cool.

Make the Salad

  1. In a large bowl, combine the arugula, pecans, bell pepper and chicken. Set aside.

  2. In another bowl, whisk together the olive oil, lemon juice, balsamic vinegar, Dijon mustard, garlic, brown sugar and season with salt and pepper.

  3. Pour the dressing over the salad ingredients and toss to coat. Chill and serve.

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