Topped with sriracha almond-encrusted chicken and a sriracha ranch dressing, this Sriracha Almond Chicken Salad makes for a tasty summer lunch! This post is sponsored by Blue Diamond Almonds.
Ah, I love this time of the year! We spent the weekend working in our garden. We usually plant about half the garden from starter-plants and half from seeds. For some reason our seeds didn’t really come up well this year, so we hopped over to a local greenhouse on Sunday afternoon and grabbed some pole beans and snap peas. I popped those bad boys into the ground just in time for an evening rain shower. Hopefully they have better luck than the seeds!
There’s something so incredibly awesome about homegrown fruits, veggies and herbs. Maybe it’s the fact that you planted them and watched them grow. Maybe it’s the fact that produce from your own backyard does indeed taste better. One of our favorite activities in the summer is to walk outside and ‘tour’ the garden when my wife gets home from work. While it’s still too early here in upstate New York for most of our plants, we do have some fresh arugula and lettuce ready to be picked already. Give it another month or so, and we’ll have loads of tomatoes, zucchini and peppers ready to go, too.
We eat a lot of salads around here for lunch in the summer. In the winter, we’re all about soups for lunch…but summer is completely opposite! We’ll grab what we can from the garden and add in other ingredients from the store. Then we pack up a bunch of containers of salad for quick and easy (and healthy!) summer lunches.
The inspiration for this salad actually came from a dish I discovered at an awesome restaurant back when I lived in Louisiana. This dish featured catfish coated in ground almonds, and of course it was topped with an amazing sauce. (Louisiana cuisine is heavily influenced by French cooking…and the French really know how to make a delicious sauce!) And on a side note, how is it that I can remember I meal I ate 10 years ago, but I can’t remember where I put my keys this morning?
Instead of catfish, I used chicken for this salad. I grabbed a can of the new Sriracha Blue Diamond Almonds, and those became the coating for this chicken. Of course, since it’s summer, I decided to go with a fresh salad rather than a heavier meal. So I sliced that chicken into strips and tossed it on top of some fresh greens. But good salads require good dressings, so I whipped up a quick and easy Sriracha Ranch dressing. All together, this salad ranks up there pretty high on my list of favorite summer salads.
The sriracha almond-encrusted chicken was an awesome topper for this salad, but I couldn’t stop there! I added in some crispy chow mein noodles, shelled edamame and of course some additional Sriracha Blue Diamond Almonds. Oh, and baby corn. How could I forget the baby corn!? My wife is straight obsessed with baby corn. I personally find it a little strange (both the baby corn as well as my wife’s addiction to it), but hey it made for a fun topping on this salad!
On a side note, I found these Sriracha Blue Diamond Almonds to be incredibly tasty just by themselves. And incredibly addicting. I was crunching on these almonds pretty much the entire time I was taking these photos. See that photo of the almonds on the serving tray? Well, let’s just say that photo started out with more almonds, but they
mysteriously disappeared. These bad boys are definitely loaded with sriracha flavor, but they weren’t overly spicy at all. It took a good but of willpower, but I was able to save at least a few for the salad!
What is your favorite summer salad? Are you as obsessed with baby corn as my wife?