Chicken/Chickpea Salad

By Gina Caputo

Chicken/Chickpea Salad

When I was living in Kansas City, my favorite place to eat was a luncheonette called Happy Gillis. Mismatched s&p shakers, tablecloths you could draw on, great sandwich bread, epic chocolate chip cookies and the world's greatest chicken salad. I do not consider myself a chicken salad person. At all. But I love to ask what the staff loves and someone recommended this and I've never looked back. Before I moved away (and before they closed), they graciously gave me their recipe. I've tweaked it to my liking, naturally, but I hope my version honors the source. If you're even a little curious, don't balk at any ingredient you see. Try it first. Everyone I've ever fed it to or shared the recipe with me says the same. It's the BEST.


  • 3 ½ cups poached chicken breast or rotisserie chicken, cooled and chopped into large dice – Option to swap out chicken for rinsed and drained chickpeas.
  • 2-3 celery stalks (depending on size), chopped into small dice
  • 2 carrots, peeled and chopped into small dice
  • 1 medium apple, cored and chopped into small dice
  • 1 cup red or green grapes, halved
  • ½ cup cashews, chopped
  • ½ - 1 bunch fresh cilantro leaves (depending on how much you like cilantro)


  • 1 Tbsp mild yellow curry powder (or more to taste)
  • 2 Tbsp sweet chili sauce (or more to taste)
  • ½ cup non-fat Greek yogurt
  • ½ cup mayonnaise (your favorite or avocado oil mayo or double the yogurt and switch to 2-5% if you're anti-mayo)
  • Sea salt
  • Fresh cracked black pepper


  1. In a small bowl, mix mayo and Greek yogurt with curry powder, sweet chili sauce, a pinch of salt and a couple cracks of black pepper.
  2. Taste and adjust if you desire more curry or sweet chili flavor.
  3. In a large bowl, combine all the other ingredients, toss with a big spoon.
  4. Add half of the mixture from the small bowl, toss to combine.
  5. If desired, add the second half (or part of it) of the mixture from the small bowl and toss to combine until your chicken salad basically holds together and is the right consistency for your liking.
  6. Taste and add salt and pepper as needed.
  7. Serve on a bed of butter lettuce (or other) greens, as a sandwich on fresh bread or with crackers like Crunchmaster