Grilled Balsamic Chicken Salad with Spiced Pecans

You may just want to make more of the spiced pecans in this recipe to have as a nutritious snack. Feel free to substitute blueberries or nectarines for the raspberries.

Grilled Balsamic Chicken Salad.jpg


  • Cooking spray
  • 4 6-oz skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp kosher salt
  • 6 tbsp pecan halves
  • 2 tbsp light brown sugar
  • 2 tsp butter
  • 1/2 tsp hot sauce
  • 8 tsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 tsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp minced garlic
  • 6 cups arugula leaves
  • 1 cup fresh raspberries


  1. Heat a grill pan over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Sprinkle chicken evenly with pepper and salt. Add chicken to pan; cook 5 minutes on each side or until done. Remove chicken from pan; let stand 5 minutes. Cut across the grain into 1/4-inch-thick slices.
  2. Place pecans in a small, dry skillet over medium heat; cook 4 minutes or until lightly toasted, stirring frequently. Stir in sugar, butter, and hot sauce; cook 4 minutes or until coated, stirring frequently. Remove pecan mixture from pan; cool. Coarsely chop.
  3. Combine oil, vinegar, mustard, and garlic in a bowl, stirring with a whisk. Divide arugula between 4 plates. Top evenly with chicken, pecan mixture, and raspberries. Drizzle balsamic mixture over top. Serves 4 (serving size: 2 1/2 cups salad and 1 1/2 tbsp dressing).


The contrast of funky blue cheese with the balsamic vinaigrette in the salad is incredible. If you prefer a milder topper, try crumbled feta or goat cheese.


  • 4 oz whole-wheat French bread baguette, cut diagonally into 1/2-inch-thick slices
  • Cooking spray
  • 2 oz blue cheese
  • 2 tsp minced fresh chives
  • 1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper


  1. Preheat broiler to high.
  2. Coat both sides of bread slices with cooking spray; arrange on a baking sheet. Broil 1 minute on each side or until toasted.
  3. Spread blue cheese over bread slices. Broil 1 minute. Top with chives and pepper. Serves 4 (serving size: 2 toasts).

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