chickadee cottage chicken salad

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“I wish I were rich, and I could spend the whole summer in a hotel, eating ice cream and chicken salad.” ~Diana Barry Anne of Green Gables

There’s a sweet little restaurant and tearoom in Lake City Minnesota called The Chickadee Cottage that I visit at least a few times a year with family and friends. They’ve created a wonderful, quaint place to go for breakfast and lunch, and I especially like it in the summer. My favorite menu item is their chicken salad, but I bought their cookbook because they have a LOT of good recipes that I enjoy making over and over again.

~chickadee cottage chicken salad~

“The secret is out- We really make our chicken salad with turkey breast” ~from the Chickadee Cottage Cookbook

This makes a huge amount of salad. The recipe can easily be cut in half.

7-8 lb. turkey breast, baked in a roasting bag

1 Tablespoon dry onion

3 cups celery, fine-diced

3 cups real mayonnaise

4 oz. container Cool Whip

1-2 teaspoons salt

1/2 teaspoon white pepper

1 and 1/2 lb. green grapes

7 oz. box ring macaroni

1 cup slivered almonds

Cool and cube turkey. Bones, skin and juice can be cooked with water and vegetables to make soup broth.

Cook macaroni per box directions. Drain and cool.

Combine all salad ingredients, except the almonds which are sprinkled over the top just prior to serving. Stir well and taste. Adjust seasonings and add a little more mayo if needed. Pasta will absorb some moisture and seasonings. Chill. Serve on a bed of lettuce or on croissants.

20 servings

note: this salad can certainly be made with chicken

Happy Teatime Tuesday!



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  46 comments for “chickadee cottage chicken salad

  1. Jeanne Hedin
    July 28, 2013 at 7:30 pm

    Count me in! Adding to my recipes. πŸ™‚

    • Melissa
      July 28, 2013 at 7:32 pm

      Hi Jeanne! I’m so pleased you like the recipe! This stuff is addictive. Enjoy! XOXO ~M πŸ™‚

  2. Danielle
    July 29, 2013 at 2:25 pm

    Cool Whip? So intrigued and SO making it! Wheee!

    • Melissa
      July 29, 2013 at 4:04 pm

      Hi D! πŸ™‚ Not too much cool whip…just enough to make it light, slightly sweet and fluffy <3 I think you're going to love this! xoxo and thanks for visiting!

      • Alison
        February 17, 2014 at 12:48 am

        I love chicken salad and I am always looking for a new recipe, but Cool Whip is nothing but chemicals, do you think real whipped cream could be used?

        • Melissa
          February 17, 2014 at 8:48 am

          Hi Alison,

          I’ve never tried using real whipped cream but have thought of trying because Cool Whip is obviously not health food πŸ˜‰

          If you do try, what I would suggest is making only what will be eaten immediately. Real whipped cream is going to break down in your salad very quickly and turn watery. You could try making a little batch, putting it in the fridge and see how it holds up if you like… but I’m pretty sure I’m right.

          Have a lovely day! πŸ™‚ Enjoy!

          • Alison
            May 30, 2014 at 12:20 am

            I did try it with real whipped cream, but I mixed it in with the mayo it was ahuge hit with my friends, everyone wanted to know what was in the salad and when I told them whipped cream they were amazed.

            Everyone liked it so much that I have had requests to bring it to pot luck lunch’s three times.

            Thanks for the recipe,

          • Melissa
            June 1, 2014 at 9:26 am

            My pleasure, Alison! thanks for letting me know the whipped cream worked! Now I can tell that to all of my readers. πŸ™‚

          • kathy
            August 28, 2015 at 7:54 am

            Do you know how much real whipped cream to use if not using cool whip? Plus is the can of whipped cream ok to use?

  3. July 29, 2013 at 8:54 pm

    I live a few miles down the road from this place, it’s such a cute looking little place to eat, must go there now!

    • Melissa
      July 29, 2013 at 10:54 pm

      It’s such a great little lunch spot, Elsie! thanks for commenting! πŸ™‚

  4. Michele
    November 9, 2013 at 11:48 pm

    Do the grapes go in the salad or served on the side If in the salad, are they halved or chopped? Thanks…I want to try!

    • Melissa
      November 10, 2013 at 12:04 am

      Hi Michele! That is a judgment call. If I’m making the salad for a big crowd, and I know it’s going to all be eaten the same day that I make it, then I halve the grapes and add them to the salad. When I’m making a batch of this salad for my little family, I make the salad without adding the grapes and just serve the grapes on the side so the salad holds up longer and doesn’t get mushy. πŸ™‚ great question! thanks for visiting. Enjoy! XO

  5. Pam Winterrowd
    November 29, 2013 at 9:53 am

    Cool Whip???? This sounds just crazy enough to be good. ha

    • Melissa
      November 29, 2013 at 3:40 pm

      Hi Pam! Crazy-good is right πŸ˜‰ XO

  6. Ellen
    February 16, 2014 at 9:43 am

    I want to try this – always looking for a good salad. Since I’m gluten sensitive, I will use Gluten-free pasta and serve without the bread! Thanks for sharing!

    • Melissa
      May 18, 2014 at 6:02 pm

      My pleasure, Ellen! Enjoy πŸ™‚

  7. Cathy Price
    May 18, 2014 at 1:28 pm

    It sounds yummy but my weird little family wouldn’t try it because of the cool whip. Maybe I could sneak it in and see if they eat it

    • Melissa
      May 18, 2014 at 6:04 pm

      Hi Cathy!
      If you don’t tell them about the cool whip they won’t even notice it. It just tastes really creamy and good, not like cool whip specifically πŸ™‚ XO ~M

  8. Diane
    May 24, 2014 at 6:29 pm

    Just wondering ….do you cook the pasta rings before adding?

  9. Melissa
    May 25, 2014 at 7:34 am

    Hi Diane πŸ™‚

    Yes, you cook the pasta rings just as the recipe above indicates πŸ™‚ Otherwise that would be one crunchy sandwich (and not in a good way.) Hee hee.

    Thanks for stopping by!

  10. Ruth Cobb
    June 23, 2014 at 6:46 am

    Looks so pretty. Love chicken salad sandwiches with grapes. Many years ago I little restaurant called Star Cafe first served this salad. When they closed a couple more started doing it. I haven’t made one yet myself but now I can. I love the grapes particularly red.

    • Melissa
      June 30, 2014 at 8:14 am

      Yummy! I agree, grapes are an awesome addition to chicken salad πŸ™‚ Thanks for commenting, Ruth!

  11. Brandie
    July 16, 2014 at 7:46 am

    So ring macaroni? Like Ditalini? Just want the right texture. And I’m still stuck on the cool whip. But I won’t knock it till I’ve tried it.

  12. christina
    August 29, 2014 at 9:17 am

    This sounds great. I usually use rottisere chicken breasts in my salad. Could I do that without messing with the flavors? Thank you.

    • Melissa
      September 25, 2014 at 8:30 am

      You sure can, Christina! πŸ™‚ enjoy!

  13. September 1, 2014 at 1:35 pm

    This sound so good but do you season the turkey breast before cooking it?

    • Melissa
      September 25, 2014 at 8:31 am

      Seasoning the turkey prior to cooking it isn’t necessary for this recipe, Patricia. Great question! thanks for stopping by. I hope you enjoy the recipe! πŸ™‚

  14. September 2, 2014 at 1:18 pm

    This is good, just please not on a croissant, they are just too sweet for me even though the salad is sweet, give me a good crusty bread or just a chicken salad plate.

    • Melissa
      September 25, 2014 at 8:32 am

      Serve the salad on whatever you like, Jane. It won’t be the same, original taste if you don’t serve it on the croissant.

  15. Marjorie
    September 5, 2014 at 1:08 pm

    Chicken salad? First ingredient is Turkey? Just saying πŸ™‚

    • Melissa
      September 25, 2014 at 8:32 am

      I know, Marjorie! Funny, isn’t it? πŸ˜‰

  16. Mollie Schultz
    September 6, 2014 at 12:28 pm

    I want to do all chicken breast. Can you boil the chicken breast instead of oven.


    • Melissa
      September 25, 2014 at 8:33 am

      Hi Mollie! I’ve never tried boiling chicken for this recipe. I’d say to do whatever you can to cook the meat without doing anything to dry it out. πŸ™‚ Enjoy!

  17. Holly G
    September 7, 2014 at 12:23 am

    The cool whip sounds interesting, so I’m excited to try it! But ever since I tried pineapple in chicken salad, it’s the only fruit I’ll use. It is so so good! So I’ll definitely be trying this, except sub pineapple for the grapes, and pecans for the almonds. Yum!!

    • Melissa
      September 25, 2014 at 8:34 am

      Sounds yummy, Holly! Enjoy πŸ™‚

  18. Marie
    September 11, 2014 at 12:49 am

    Thanks so much for this recipe. It is so tasty. It makes a lot and only gets better after a couple of days

    • Melissa
      September 25, 2014 at 8:35 am

      My pleasure, Marie! It does get better after a few days, I agree πŸ™‚

  19. sherry
    November 11, 2014 at 7:21 am

    When it calls for dry onion is that onion powder?

  20. Carolann
    April 8, 2015 at 5:55 pm

    It says turkey breast in chicken salad? Other than that sounds great!

  21. Lisa
    October 20, 2015 at 8:10 am

    Do you think it would be just as good with out the pasta?

    • Melissa
      October 20, 2015 at 2:32 pm

      I think it would be wonderful, Lisa πŸ™‚

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