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Cherry Chicken Salad

5.0 from 1 vote

It’s the end of August, and I know lots of us have fall on the mind. But I can’t just ignore those red, juicy cherries staring at me when I walk into the grocery store. It got me thinking of a summer spin on my favorite lunch: a yummy Cherry Chicken Salad over lettuce cups.

Why This Recipe Works

I love a good chicken salad, and especially love changing it up each season. No matter what, for me, that means it has to have both a sweet and a crunch, using what’s fresh that time of year for a seasonal twist.

This recipe works beautifully because the cherries are so abundant and ripe, and when you put it together with the chicken, mayonnaise, and a few other key ingredients, you get a deliciously creamy meal. It also stores well, so you’ll have a fresh lunch you can eat for several days.

The Ingredients

ingredients needed for the Cherry Chicken Salad

Here are some of the key ingredients you’ll need to make this Cherry Chicken Salad:

  • protein: cooked chicken
  • fruits and veggies: cherries, celery, lettuce
  • liquids: lime juice, mayonnaise
  • herbs and spices: mint, thyme

Add your salt, pepper, garnish, and you’re on your way to a yummy lunch 🙂

How to Make Cherry Chicken Salad

Once you have your ingredients ready this chicken salad takes literally minutes to put together. Simply place everything into a large mixing bowl (or oversized measuring cup, like I do):

all ingredients placed in a large bowl

Mix together with a spoon:

Cherry chicken salad mixed together

And you’re done! Now you can add it to whatever it is you’re craving for lunch: on lettuce cups (as I show here), over a large chopped salad, on slices of toasted gluten-free bread, or just eat it straight out of the container – it’s that good.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I substitute ingredients?

Definitely. That’s the beauty of this chicken salad: it’s highly adaptable. If you aren’t a fan of cherries or don’t have any, you can substitute grapes, apples, or pears. You can also use different herbs, such as parsley, cilantro, oregano, or dill.

How long will this last?

You can store your Cherry Chicken Salad in an airtight container in your refrigerator for 3-5 days.

What are some other ways I can enjoy this recipe?

I show lettuce cups in this recipe, but also love putting scoops of this chicken salad over a giant chopped salad, in a wrap, or over slices of gluten-free toasted bread. I also just straight-up eat this right out of the container.

How do you cook the chicken?

I usually do one of two things to get my cooked chicken: I either cook a whole chicken in the instant pot (super easy and not time consuming), OR, to save time and mess, I purchase a cooked plain rotisserie chicken from the grocery store. HUGE time saver!

Cherry Chicken salad served over lettuce cups


If you’re looking for some other great summer recipes, try my Caprese Salad, my Halloumi Cheese Salad, my Chilled Cucumber Soup, Paleo Summer Slaw, or Crispy Zucchini Fritters. For a winter spin on chicken salad, try my Winter Chicken Salad.

And if you make this recipe, please rate it and let me know what you think in the comments!

Cherry Chicken Salad

Recipe by Alessandra Macaluso
5.0 from 1 vote
Difficulty: Easy


Prep time


Cooking time



This Cherry Chicken salad uses all those fresh and ripe summer ingredients. I hope you enjoy!

Cook Mode

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  • 2 cups cooked chicken, cubed

  • 1/2 cup celery, chopped

  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise

  • 1 cup dark summer cherries, pitted and loosely chopped

  • juice of 1/2 lime

  • 2 tbsp. fresh mint

  • 1 tbsp. fresh thyme

  • salt & pepper

  • 3-4 lettuce cups

  • 1/4 cup pumpkin seeds, for garnish


  • Add cooked chicken to a large mixing bowl along with all other ingredients except for the pumpkin seeds and lettuce cups. Mix with a spoon until thoroughly blended.
  • Scoop chicken salad onto lettuce cups (or over a salad, or over toasted bread).
  • Garnish with pumpkin seeds. Enjoy!


  • Feel free to substitute the cherries for other seasonal fruit, such as apples, grapes, or pear. You can also substitute the pumpkin seeds for another crunchy ingredient such as walnuts or pistachios.

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Alessandra Macaluso is the author of What a Good Eater! , Lucy the Bee and the Healing Honey, and The Real-Deal Bridal Bible. She’s also a Qigong and Tai Chi instructor, and overall wellness advocate. Her work has been featured in several anthologies which can all be found on her Amazon author page, and she has contributed to The Huffington Post, Scary Mommy, TODAY Parents, and many other online publications.

Alessandra is a northerner-turned-southerner, enjoying the south with her children, Penelope and Ciro, and her husband, Greg.

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