Tzatziki chicken salad is the perfect make-ahead cold lunch recipe. Shredded rotisserie chicken is topped with a tangy tzatziki sauce that's filled with fresh flavors from cucumber, dill, and Greek yogurt.
Chicken salad is the perfect lunch when you're on the go and need to plan ahead. Served cold, this tzatziki chicken salad is filled with fresh, bright flavor - the perfect summertime lunch.
Rotisserie chicken saves you some major time in the kitchen - this chicken salad comes together in minutes and lasts for days in the refrigerator. Perfect for your lunch meal prep!
Serve your Greek chicken salad on pita or in a pita pocket, on sandwich bread, with crackers as an appetizer, or over a bed of lettuce as a salad.
Ingredients and substitutions
- Rotisserie chicken - Can be substituted with 16 ounces of cooked and shredded chicken or canned chicken. If cooking your own, lightly season your chicken with salt and pepper. Taste your chicken salad before serving and season more as needed.
- Red onion - Adds flavor and a bit of color to your chicken salad.
- Fresh dill - Can be substituted with fresh mint or parsley, or a combination of all three. However, I highly recommend fresh dill for the best flavor. However, dried dill can be substituted if needed (at ⅓ the amount).
- Greek yogurt - The base of your sauce, which adds creaminess and a tangy flavor. Reduced fat or full fat yogurt will work in this recipe. Make sure you're using plain, unflavored Greek yogurt - nothing that's sweetened or with added flavors.
- Lemon juice - Can be substituted with red wine vinegar.
- Cucumber - Adds a refreshing, light flavor to your tzatziki sauce. Make sure to squeeze the extra water out of the shredded cucumber before adding it to the chicken salad. Extra moisture will make your sauce runny.
- Garlic, salt, & pepper - Enhances the flavor of your chicken salad.
What is tzatziki?
Tzatziki (pronounced zaht-zee-key) is a creamy, mild, and tangy sauce that's commonly found in the cuisine of Southeast Europe and the Middle East. Cucumber and dill give it a refreshing and light flavor, making it perfect for spring and summer.
The T at the beginning is silent. By ignoring the first letter, the word becomes much easier to pronounce - (t)zat-ziki.
If you've ever had a Greek gyro, it is often filled with lamb, chicken, or pork, served with sliced vegetables and tzatziki sauce. The sauce is made with yogurt, cucumbers, garlic, olive oil, lemon juice, and fresh herbs like dill, mint, or parsley.
For more information: Wikipedia - Tzatziki
How to serve chicken salad
- On pita with fresh veggies
- On sandwich bread
- With pita chips
- On crackers
- As a salad (serve over a bed of lettuce)
- Make finger sandwiches to serve as an appetizer
- Spread onto tortillas and roll into pinwheels (like my pimento cheese pinwheels)
Make ahead and storage
Tzatziki chicken salad is excellent to make ahead for weekday meal prep and keep on hand for lunches all week.
Your chicken salad will keep for 3 to 5 days in a tightly sealed container in the refrigerator.
If your chicken salad has been sitting at room temperature for more than 2 hours, it should be discarded. If packing your chicken salad for lunch, store it in an insulated lunch bag with an ice pack.
Tzatziki Chicken Salad
- 1 medium cucumber, finely grated
- ¾ cup plain Greek yogurt
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- 1 cooked rotisserie chicken
- ½ red onion, diced
- Wrap grated cucumber in a paper towel (or a tea towel) and gently squeeze to remove excess moisture. Add grated cucumber to a bowl along with Greek yogurt, dill, lemon juice, garlic, salt, and pepper. Stir to combine.
- Shred rotisserie chicken into small, bite size pieces and add to your prepared sauce along with red onions. Toss until evenly coated.
- Serve on pita bread with fresh sliced tomato and red onion, on crackers, with pita chips, or over a bed of lettuce. Refrigerate leftovers.
- Chicken salad will keep for 3-5 days in a tightly sealed container in the refrigerator.
- Chicken salad that has been sitting out for more than 2 hours at room temperature should be discarded.
- Rotisserie chicken can be substituted with 16 ounces of seasoned, cooked, and shredded chicken, or canned chicken.
- 2 tablespoons of fresh dill can be substituted with ⅔ teaspoon of dried dill if needed (fresh herbs will add the best flavor).
I really loved this. I think if I had used Greek yogurt it might have had some of that “zing” I felt was missing. I used almond based yogurt. So next time I will add more cucumber, dill and lemon to off-set the non-dairy yogurt. Thank you!