In the South, we experience heat and humidity like no others during the summer months, but that doesn’t stop true Southerners from backyard grilling or making their favorite side dishes and salads.

Since it’s so hot, I try to prepare, cook and eat lighter meals because heavy comfort foods make me feel sluggish during this time of year. I don’t like turning on my oven unless it’s absolutely necessary and we all could stand to lose a few pounds we picked up this past winter indulging throughout the holidays.

Growing up, I thought my mother and grandmother made the best chicken salad in the world. It was a typical Southern recipe with all of the fattening ingredients and extra yumminess to go along with it, but I wanted to put my own unique flavor and healthy spin on it hence my recipe for curried chicken salad.

The Healthy Budgetnista’s Fun Food Fact:

Did you know curry powder, which usually contains coriander, mustard, cumin, fenugreek, paprika, cayenne, cardamom, nutmeg, cinnamon, turmeric and cloves may offer a variety of health benefits like the 10 listed here?

1. Reduces inflammation

2. Helps fight cancer

3. Promotes digestive health

4. Helps lower blood sugar

5. Contains powerful antioxidants

6. Helps combat Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease and multiple sclerosis

7. Promotes bone health

8. Aids in weight loss

9. Boosts your immunity system and metabolism

10. Improves heart health

There are so many recipes and ways you can make a quick, affordable and healthy chicken salad this summer or anytime throughout the year. I used a store-bought rotisserie chicken to save a few steps in this recipe or you can use leftover chicken you may already have in your fridge.

I hope you will replicate and enjoy this delicious recipe this summer for your next gathering with your family and friends.

Until next time. Stay happy and healthy. Live and Be well!

August lifestyle

Ingredients:

3 cups chopped rotisserie chicken breasts and thighs, deboned and skinless

1/2 cup carrots grated

1/2 cup red onions diced

1/3 cup reduced sugar

dried cranberries

1/2 cup celery diced

1/3 cup sliced almonds

2 tbsp curly parsley chopped

5 oz plain Greek yogurt

1/3 cup olive oil mayonnaise

1 tbsp honey

3 tbsp fat free half & half

1 tsp lemon juice

1 tbsp curry powder

1/2 tsp kosher salt

1/2 tsp onion powder

1/2 tsp garlic powder

Green onions and parsley as garnish (optional)

Directions:

In a small bowl, mix the mayo, honey, half & half, lemon juice, yogurt and seasonings until well blended. Set aside.

Debone and remove the skin from the chicken breasts and thighs.

Chop and shred chicken into bite size pieces and place in a separate mixing bowl.

Add the almonds, red onions, parsley, celery, dried cranberries, and carrots to the chicken bowl.

Gently toss the mayo and yogurt dressing in with the chicken ingredients until well blended.

Garnish with chopped green onions and parsley.

Season to taste.

Serve with whole wheat entertainment crackers, croissants, pita bread, or as a wrap, inside of lettuce cups, crustless whole wheat triangle sandwiches, or on top of sliced English cucumbers as an appetizer.

Enjoy!

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