This crispy Asian chicken salad, inspired by Applebee's Oriental Chicken Salad, is a great dinner or make-ahead lunch.
Crispy Chicken Tenders
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 large egg
- 1/4 cup buttermilk
- 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- 1/4 cup canola oil or vegetable oil, divided
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (from 1 large lemon)
- 1 tablespoon unseasoned rice vinegar (or soy sauce, if rice vinegar isn't available in your supermarket; use a low-sodium version as the flavor will be saltier and less tangy with soy sauce)
- 2 tablespoons powdered sugar
- 1/4 cup canola oil or vegetable oil
- a splash of toasted sesame oil (optional)
- 1 head romaine lettuce, rinsed and torn into bite-size pieces
- 1 cup bagged coleslaw mix or 1 cup shredded cabbage
- 1/2 cup crispy chow mein noodles
- 1/4 cup sliced almonds
ADVANCE PREP — Up to 3 days ahead
Make the chicken:
- Preheat the oven to 375˚F. Place a wire cooling rack on a rimmed baking sheet.
- Whisk the flour, salt and pepper together in a wide, shallow bowl. Whisk the egg and buttermilk together in a second shallow bowl.
- Dredge the chicken breasts in the flour, then dip to fully coat in the egg mixture. Return the chicken to the flour for a final coat, patting the flour on generously.
- Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add the chicken breasts and cook until the coating is browned and crunchy, adding the remaining 2 tablespoons oil when you flip the chicken if needed.
- Transfer the chicken breasts to the baking sheet and bake for 15-20 minutes, until completely cooked through (a meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the chicken will register 165˚F).
- Cool to room temperature before slicing.
Make the dressing:
- Whisk the lemon juice and soy sauce or vinegar together in a small bowl, then whisk in the sugar until dissolved.
- Briskly whisk in the oil(s) until the dressing thickens.
ASSEMBLE AND SERVE
For each serving of salad, toss a large handful of romaine with about 1/4 cup shredded coleslaw. Top with 2 tablespoons chow mein noodles and 1 tablespoon almonds, and 4-5 slices chicken (about half a chicken breast). Drizzle with dressing and serve.
Want to get your salad ready the night before? Layer the chicken, then almonds, then slaw and romaine in a to-go container. Keep the chow mein noodles and dressing separate until ready to serve so they don't get soggy.