Make-Ahead Roast Chicken and Kale Salad with Tahini, Apricots, and Almonds Recipe

Make-Ahead Roast Chicken and Kale Salad with Tahini, Apricots, and Almonds Recipe

[Photograph: Suzanne Lehrer]

This is an extremely flexible recipe inspired by one of my favorite store-bought salads that I began making at home. It's a great way to use up leftover store-bought rotisserie chicken, but I included a poached chicken breast recipe here if you don't have leftovers. Absolutely sprinkle spices, herbs, and lemon juice onto your chicken if you have them handy. Butter under the skin never hurts, either. The tahini dressing is also a very basic version; you can add sumac, cumin, za'atar, parsley, or garlic as well (though I would blanch the garlic if it's going in raw).

Letting the dressing sit on the kale while you're bringing it to work is actually a good thing; it softens the kale a bit.

About the Author: Suzanne Lehrer is a writer and recipe developer in New York and a recipe editor for Cooking Channel. When not curating her budding hot sauce collection, she puts her French Culinary Institute education to good use in kitchens all around town. Follow her recipes and cooking adventures at and on twitter @the_suzchef.

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  • Yield:serves 2
  • Active time: 10 minutes
  • Total time:30 minutes


  • 12 ounces leftover roast chicken meat, or 2 bone-in, skin-on chicken breast halves, about 8 ounces each
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice from 1 lemon
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons tahini
  • 1 bunch kale, stems removed, leaves chopped
  • 1/4 cup dried apricots, chopped
  • 1/4 cup toasted almonds, chopped


  1. 1.

    If using leftover meat, skip to step 2. If using fresh chicken, place chicken in a large pot and cover with cold water. Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Cook at a bare simmer until thickest part of the chicken registers 155°F on an instant read thermometer. Transfer chicken to a medium bowl and allow to rest until cool enough to handle. Discard skin and bones and shred meat into bite sized pieces. Set aside.

  2. 2.

    Whisk together 3 tablespoons of hot chicken cooking liquid (if using leftover chicken use 3 tablespoons boiled water), lemon juice, and tahini with large pinch salt. Reserve in airtight container. Toss together chicken, kale, almonds, and apricots. Store separately from dressing until ready to eat. Toss together with dressing and then serve, or pack into container to eat on the go.