Mayo-Free Chicken Salad With Kimchi, Ginger, and Scallions Recipe

Mayo-Free Chicken Salad With Kimchi, Ginger, and Scallions Recipe

You don't need mayo to make a great chicken salad sandwich. [Photographs: Daniel Gritzer]

Mixing mayonnaise into chicken salad is the most common way to add moisture, but it's not the only way. Vinaigrette works well too, like this tangy Korean-inspired rendition with kimchi, pine nuts, and lots of fresh ginger.

Why this recipe works:

  • A tart vinaigrette that includes sesame oil and kimchi pickling liquid adds flavor and moisture, minus the mayo.
  • Plenty of fresh ginger, scallion, and celery adds texture and flavor to the salad.
  • Yield:Makes about 8 cups of chicken salad, serving 8 as a small side or sandwich
  • Active time: 10 minutes
  • Total time:10 minutes


  • 4 cups shredded cooked chicken meat (from about a 3-pound roast chicken)
  • 1 cup drained kimchi, chopped
  • 1/2 cup diced celery (about 1 large rib)
  • 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts or sesame seeds
  • 1/4 cup thinly sliced scallion, white and light green parts only (about 2 scalions)
  • 3 tablespoons kimchi liquid
  • 3 tablespoons distilled white vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger
  • 1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Sliced bread and frisee, if serving as a sandwich


  1. 1.

    In a large bowl, toss together all ingredients to combine thoroughly. Season with salt and pepper and serve as a light salad or on bread as a sandwich. Salad can be refrigerated in an airtight container overnight.