chicken zoodle salads
Add a twist to vegetables by turning them into fun noodles to complement lean chicken and bright dressings
Zoodles have taken the world by storm, and we’re not just talking about zucchini! Bright curls of nourishing vegetables bring a fresh twist to meals and add fun to these easy chicken salads.
With fibre, potassium and vitamin A, golden butternut pumpkin is perfect in this vibrant warm salad. The strands are quick to cook – gently heated to retain their texture and colour, then tossed with zesty orange, crunchy almonds and poached chicken.
yoghurt marinated chicken with beetroot, radicchio and pickled onion
4 x 180g chicken thigh fillets, trimmed
2 cloves garlic, crushed
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 cup (280g) natural Greek-style (thick) yoghurt sea salt and cracked black pepper
2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
2 tablespoons honey
1 white onion, thinly sliced into rounds 350g beetroot, peeled and spiralised ( see note, below) 12 radicchio leaves, trimmed
6 watermelon radishes+, thinly sliced
¼ cup (35g) hazelnuts, toasted and chopped 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil micro (baby) purple basil, to serve
Place the chicken, garlic, lemon juice, yoghurt, salt and pepper in a large bowl and toss to coat. Set aside for 30 minutes to marinate.
While the chicken is marinating, place the vinegar and honey in a medium bowl and mix to combine. Add the onion and set aside for 10 minutes or until softened. Remove the onion, reserving the vinegar mixture.
Preheat a lightly greased chargrill pan over high heat and cook the chicken, turning halfway, for 8–10 minutes or until cooked through. Slice the chicken. Divide the beetroot, radicchio, radish, hazelnut, chicken and onion between bowls. Add the oil to the vinegar mixture and mix to combine. Drizzle over the salads and top with basil to serve. SERVES 4.
+ You can find watermelon radishes at greengrocers. If unavailable, use standard radishes.
pumpkin and orange salad with almond poached chicken
2 x 250g chicken breast fillets, trimmed
1 litre unsweetened almond milk
3 cloves garlic, crushed
2 tablespoons finely grated ginger
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
800g butternut pumpkin, peeled and spiralised ( see note, below) sea salt and cracked black pepper
2 oranges, peeled and thinly sliced into rounds ½ cup (40g) toasted natural flaked almonds
⅓ cup (80ml) orange juice purple shiso leaves, to serve
Place the chicken, almond milk, garlic and half the ginger in a medium saucepan over high heat. Bring to just below the boil. Reduce heat to low and cook for 12–15 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through. Set aside to cool slightly in the pan. Transfer the chicken to a large bowl and shred using 2 forks (discard the almond milk liquid).
Heat 1 teaspoon oil in a large non-stick frying pan over high heat. Add the pumpkin, salt and pepper and cook for 1 minute or until just softened. Divide the orange and pumpkin between plates. Top with the chicken and almonds. Place the orange juice, salt, pepper and the remaining ginger and oil in a small bowl and mix to combine. Drizzle over the salad and top with shiso leaves to serve. SERVES 4.
lemon oregano chicken with zucchini noodles and kale buttermilk dressing
2 x 250g chicken breast fillets, trimmed 1 tablespoon finely grated lemon rind
2 cloves garlic, crushed
6 sprigs oregano, plus extra to serve
½ teaspoon dried chilli flakes, plus extra to serve sea salt and cracked black pepper
⅓ cup (10g) finely grated parmesan
½ cup (125ml) buttermilk
4 cups (80g) ghost kale+ or baby kale 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
3 zucchini (courgette), spiralised ( see note, page 94)
¼ cup (40g) smoked almonds, chopped lemon wedges, to serve
Place the chicken, lemon rind, garlic, oregano, chilli, salt and pepper in a large bowl and toss to coat. Set aside for 15 minutes to marinate.
Place the parmesan, buttermilk, salt, pepper and 1 cup of the kale in a small food processor and process until well combined. Set aside.
Heat the oil in a large non-stick frying pan over medium heat. Add the chicken and cook, turning halfway, for 10–12 minutes or until cooked through. Slice the chicken. Divide the zucchini between plates and top with the chicken, almond, remaining kale and extra oregano. Drizzle with the kale buttermilk dressing and serve with lemon wedges and extra chilli. SERVES 4.
+ Ghost kale is a small variety which works really well in salads. You can find it at farmers markets and selected greengrocers, or if unavailable, use baby kale.
chipotle roasted chicken with zucchini slaw and jalapeño dressing
¼ cup (80g) chipotle chillies in adobo, roughly chopped 4 x 180g chicken thigh fillets, trimmed
2 teaspoons smoked paprika
2 cloves garlic, crushed sea salt and cracked black pepper
¾ cup (210g) natural Greek-style (thick) yoghurt 1 jalapeño, sliced, plus extra to serve
1 cup coriander (cilantro) leaves
1 stalk celery, finely chopped
2 zucchini (courgette), spiralised ( see note, page 94)
2 cups (160g) shredded green cabbage
2 green onions (scallions), finely shredded micro (baby) coriander (cilantro), to serve
Place the chilli, chicken, paprika, garlic, salt and pepper in a large bowl and toss to combine. Set aside for 30 minutes to marinate.
Preheat oven to 240°C (475°F). Place the chicken mixture on a large greased oven tray and cook for 18–20 minutes or until dark golden brown and cooked through. Slice and set aside.
Place the yoghurt, jalapeño, coriander, salt and pepper in a small food processor and process until well combined. Place the celery, zucchini, cabbage and onion in a large bowl with half the yoghurt mixture and toss well to combine. Divide between plates and top with the chicken, micro coriander and extra jalapeño. Serve with the remaining dressing. SERVES 4.
The original ‘zoodle’, zucchini is ideal for a lighter alternative to pasta or noodles. Its mild f lavour adapts to a variety of cuisines, plus it’s packed with vitamins, fibre and antioxidants. Here, the green noodles add freshness to each of the salads.