Healthy Chicken, Fennel and Apple Salad

Shaved fennel and sweet apple brighten up this healthy chicken salad. Be sure to allow enough time for the salad to fully chill so that all the flavors mingle together. Slideshow:  Make-Ahead Picnic Salad Recipes 

Healthy Chicken, Fennel and Apple 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 clove garlic

  • 1 tablespoon kosher or sea salt

  • 1 teaspoon black peppercorns


  • 1 large fennel bulb, thinly sliced

  • 1 medium apple, cored and sliced

  • 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

  • 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano


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 shred. Set aside to cool.

Make the Salad

  1. In a large bowl, combine the fennel, apple 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 topped with the Parmigiano-Reggiano.

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