Southern Fried Chicken Salad with Homemade Honey Mustard Dressing

I am of the opinion that food is one of the best things in life. I love to eat, and now that I’m getting older I actually have to pay attention to what I eat or I will gain weight. Gone are the days I could eat anything and not feel it later. They warned me that my metabolism would catch up with me, and now it’s definitely starting to. But eating healthy doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy what you’re eating anymore. I’d say this is relatively healthy, and can easily be adapted to improve it. 
For my first recipe to share, I figured it was best to do one that is in my Top 5 All Time Favorite Meals. I used to make this salad as a kid with my dad. It was one of the only times I would willingly eat leafy greens, so we made it often because he knew I’d eat it. I was a very picky child. 
 
This salad has a lot of great flavors, and Jake and I both agree that the dressing is really what makes this particular salad so great. Don’t try to substitute it!
 
The only thing different from how I used to have it is that I use a baby kale and spinach blend for the salad instead of romaine or just spinach alone.
 
What you need:
 
For the chicken:
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon Old Bay Seasoning
  • ¼ teaspoon Ground Mustard
  • ¼ teaspoon chili powder
  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (I use tenderloins because they’re quicker to dice)
  • 2 cups buttermilk
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 ¼ cup cooking oil (I use coconut oil, but you can use Olive or Canola)
  • 2 cups all-purpose flower
 
For the salad:
  • Salad of your choice; I use baby kale and spinach
  • 1 bell pepper, cored, seeded, and sliced thin
  • ½ red onion, sliced very thin
For the dressing:
  • 5 tablespoons honey
  • 3 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
Directions:
The first thing I do in preparation is turn the stove on low-medium (a 4 on the dial) heat to start to warm up. I don’t put the oil in yet, just get the pan warm. It will take the oil much longer to heat up otherwise.
 
Next, cut the chicken into bite-sized pieces. 
 
 
 
In a medium sized ziplock bag, add the spices and the buttermilk. Pour the cut-up chicken into the bag and seal it to marinate. Shake the bag and make sure everything is thoroughly mixed together. Set aside.
 
 
 
 
Cut and core the pepper. Slice it into thin strips, as big as you’d want in your salad. I slice them in half once I’ve cut them all. Place them in a large salad bowl and set aside.
 

 

 
 
Slice up the onion very thin and add to the salad bowl. (I sometimes don’t use the onion because I don’t like them, but Jake loves them and says it adds a lot of flavor) Add the salad to the pepper and onion and toss. Set aside.
 
 
Pour the honey, Dijon mustard, and rice wine vinegar into a small bowl and mix thoroughly. Set aside.
 

 

 
Turn the stove up to medium-high heat (a 7 on the dial) and add the oil. It should be enough to have a thin layer across the pan.
 
Pour 2 cups of flour into a small bowl. Pour the chicken and mixture into another bowl. Using tongs or your hands, move the chicken into the flour and coat it thoroughly. (*should you want a healthier option, skip the breading and grill the chicken!)
 
 
 
Move the chicken in the pan, and be careful not to splatter yourself with the oil. Cook the chicken until it’s 160 degrees. The outside will be a crispy brown color. Be sure to flip the chicken often and cook it evenly. Do this until all of the chicken is done.
 
 
 
Some pieces will cook faster than others. Place the finished pieces in a separate bowl. Don’t add them to the salad yet or the heat will wilt the leaves.
 
Once the chicken has cooled, either mix it into the salad bowl, or add it directly to your bowl. I prefer to keep them separate so that I can heat up the left over chicken and have it the next day for lunch.
 
Add a generous amount of dressing, and enjoy!!
 
 

 

If you try this recipe, be sure to tell me what you think of it in the comments below! 

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  • Simple is always better. I tried so hard to figure out what I was going to wear for Easter. I spent a good hour trying things on the week before. I sent my sister tons of pictures asking her thoughts. In the end, I wasn’t really satisfied with any of them for some reason so I decided to just go with an outfit I know I love and feel good in. For some reason wearing white just makes me feel super put together. And I managed to not spill anything on myself or get chocolate on my pants which is a major win y’all. .

We don’t need to overthink things so much. It just causes unnecessary stress. I do like to plan ahead because it saves me time, but I also should have realized sooner that the dress I was trying to make work just wasn’t working. Even though I love that dress, it doesn’t flatter me how I want it to and it might be time to let it go. Don’t be afraid to let go of things that don’t give you exactly what you need. You don’t have to settle, something else will always come along. Or you probably already have something else in your closet (or life, this isn’t limited to clothes!) that’s even better than what you’re trying to make work!
  • Happy Easter 🐰❤️
  • Casual Good Friday ❤️ this was yesterday’s work outfit but I jazzed myself up before we went to church with Jakes mom and stepdad last night. I cried like a baby. Good Friday always both kicks my ass and reminds me how blessed we all are. 
The beautiful KC weather this weekend is so exciting!! I’m so happy when it’s Spring weather 😍 Have a beautiful Saturday!!
  • “There is beauty in simplicity”
My simple wardrobe makes me so happy and I love the seemingly endless possibilities I have with it. Having a love of neutrals really works well for me with this! 
Happy Good Friday ❤️
  • The only things in my life these days are the things I really want there. This isn’t limited to the stuff in my house and the clothes in my closet. This includes my job, relationships, hobbies, everything. I’ve even started eating better as a by-product of simplifying my life and I just feel better over all. .

By removing the things and people that don’t make me happy, I have more time and energy for the things that do that I used to put off and not prioritize like I should have. We spend so much of our lives being “busy”. But what are we busy with? Most of it is actually unimportant when you break it down. .

I say no to things much more now and that allows me to spend more of my time relaxing and enjoying life. I used to constantly feel rushed or like I should be doing something. If I wasn’t moving, I felt like I was wasting my time. But the truth is, resting and just being home with Jake and the boys is my happy place. It brings me so much joy, so that’s what my priority is. .

Having more time to just BE has been amazing. Being more picky in my relationships has helped me really value the ones I hold most dear and has brought me to an amazing new job because I wasn’t willing to settle for anything less. Respect yourself and your time and prioritize the things that matter most to you. Life’s too short to live any other way.
  • “When you love what you have, you have everything you need.” So many wonderful things have happened since I simplified my life. Changing my outlook on life wasn’t really intentional, but I’m so thankful it happened when it did. I was kind of at a breaking point. Fed up with where I was and how things were going with my old job. Struggling with depression and comparison. I knew something had to change but I had no idea what. Simplicity was that thing. .
.
Now, I spend way less time on social media. I deleted Facebook off my phone and haven’t  looked at it in weeks. I’m much happier without it. I read a lot more. I’m getting much better at ignoring the impulse to pick up my phone and when I am on it, to compare my life to the perfect pictures people post. I even cut a few inches off my hair! 💇🏻‍♀️ I want things as easy as they can be right now. It takes a lot of stress out of my life. Try to go a whole weekend without social media and see how awesome it feels!

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