Curried Chicken Salad (no mayo)

Curried Chicken Salad

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print


– Solids

  • 1 apple, finely diced
  • 2 or 3 celery stalks, finely diced
  • 1/2 to 1 cup onions, diced
  • 1 to 2 cups dried cranberries
  • 1 to 1 1/2 cups cashews, whole, halved, or chopped, preferably without salt.
  • 5 cooked and diced chicken breasts or 2 12.5 oz cans premium chunk chicken breast

– Sauce

  • 16 oz sour cream
  • 3 tablespoons curry powder
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons mango chutney
  • 2/3 cup white wine

Mix all solid ingredients thoroughly in a large bowl.

Combine all sauce ingredients in a medium sized bowl.

Thoroughly combine solids and sauce. Add pepper to taste.


Even though it may seem tempting to substitute almonds or some other type of nut for the cashews, don’t do it. Cashews are an integral component for this dish to taste proper. I used slivered almonds once and, although it wasn’t inedible, I had to promise several family members I would never do it again. You may enjoy substituting 1/2 cup of cashews with pine nuts.

This recipe contains no mayonnaise. Every other curried chicken salad recipe I’ve tried contains mayo. And lots of it. I cannot imagine why. I admit that I’m not a big fan of mayo anyway, but I think it really overpowers the delicate nuances of flavor in this recipe. If you’ve used salted cashews and mayo, the result is a sodium overload. Even if you would normally use mayo instead, consider trying the sour cream at least once. It’s possible you could substitute yogurt or tahini, but I haven’t become that adventurous yet.

Lastly, regarding sauce substitutions, I tried using coconut cream, rather than sour cream. The sauce was so bizarre I converted it over for use as a satay and had my husband bring home a container of sour cream to use in the curried chicken salad. They can’t all be winners, I guess.

Here’s a fascinating video on cashew production. If you’ve ever wondered why cashews were so expensive, this is why. Bet you’re glad the recipe didn’t call for cashew apples!


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