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Crispy Chicken Nicoise Salad

Get ready for a refreshing and satisfying salad that celebrates the vibrant flavors of the Mediterranean. We’ve replaced the classic tuna with Just Bare Lightly Breaded Chicken Breast Fillets, perfectly complementing the hard-boiled egg, crunchy green beans, juicy grape tomatoes, briny olives, and a simple Dijon vinaigrette that ties it all together.

Greek Crispy Chicken Salad

Juicy and crispy chicken, creamy feta and crunchy vegetables will have you thinking that you’re dining at a waterfront restaurant in Mykonos, Greece!

Puff Pastry Chicken Croque Madame

Croque Madame is a traditional French sandwich composed of thick crusty bread layered with ham, Gruyere cheese and topped with a creamy bechamel sauce. This version adds a unique twist by using Just Bare Chicken Tenderloins, crispy pancetta and topped with an oozy poached egg.

Unpacking Chicken Salad

A fresh take for the great outdoors.

Picnic season is here, and blankets and baskets are emerging from hibernation. The big question is, what’s going in those baskets this summer? Chicken salad is a time-honored favorite, but if the usual path approach to making it is starting to feel more like a rut instead of a getaway, good news. There’s a lot of new terrain to explore. After all, general consensus traces chicken salad as it’s known in America to the 1860s. That’s a lot of history, but instead of looking back, it’s time to look ahead. 

There’s just one essential ingredient: chicken.

According to legend, the chicken salad created by a meat shop owner named Liam Gray in 1863 included chicken, mayonnaise, grapes and tarragon. Creamy and delicious, his instant classic led to new options as time passed that featured other ingredients — hard-boiled eggs, celery, pickle relish, onions, nuts, cayenne pepper and more. But the starting point is always chicken, leftover or newly prepared, cubed or shredded, all white meat or a combination of dark. From there, your journey begins.

Served cool, often with a crunch.

Mr. Gray chose mayonnaise for the binder in his chicken salad. You could choose mustard, ketchup, sour cream or a blend of ingredients. Greek yogurt with gorgonzola cheese? Why not. Throw in some chickpeas. A big part of the appeal of chicken salad is contrasting textures and flavors, and all kinds of fresh veggies work perfectly, from radishes to sugar snap peas. Keep everything chilled until just before serving, and your picnic table or blanket becomes a refreshing outdoor dining experience.

Endless summer.

Need some inspiration? A quick and easy recipe is Parisian Chicken Salad, which can be served with mixed greens or as a sandwich. An option for a complete meal is Chicken Pasta Salad with Broccoli & Grapes. The more you variations you try, the more new combinations you’ll discover. 

Picnic season may not last forever, but chicken salad offers infinite potential for creating healthy, delicious meals in the great outdoors or at home sweet home.

Turning to Veggie Noodles

Lighter and full of flavor.

Hello, zucchini. You look so different. Same for you squashes, beets, daikon and other garden favorites. All it takes is a few quick strokes or turns of a knife, peeler or kitchen appliance, and even the most common vegetable can be completely transformed. Suddenly, they’re standing in for pasta. Who’s hungry for healthy light meals that even kids will like piling up on forks? Let’s open the knife drawer or kitchen cabinet, and get to work.

You probably already have what you need.

All it takes to cut veggies into ribbons or long shreds is a sharp knife or hand peeler. Depending on the produce, you’ll find that certain tools work better with certain veggies. A hand peeler works well to remove the outer skin of a softer, moister vegetable like a cucumber, but a sharp knife might be better suited for slicing produce that’s harder and denser such as daikon radish. The key is uniformity with the finished product. A consistent finished size means the veggies cook quickly and evenly for just the right flavor and texture.

Crank up the volume.

There are several popular appliances on the market that cut veggies into spirals, and no matter which one you use, all it takes is a few minutes to create mounds of veggies that rival conventional pasta in terms of shape and length. Veggie noodles — called zoodles when they’re made from zucchinis — are an ideal substitute for reducing carbs and boosting fiber and plant-based nutrients. A quick sauté is an ideal approach for busy weeknight meals. Veggie noodles are also perfect in salads or used in place of pasta in a dish such as a mozzarella baked spaghetti.

Presto pesto.

Here’s a 35 minute recipe that makes use of abundant summer produce and can be modified in colder months to use with fall and winter squash. Chicken with Veggie Noodles & Basil Pea Pesto is as delicious as it is healthy and family-friendly. Note, in particular, the pesto. It’s made with peas (frozen for convenience) plus fresh basil leaves, garlic and lemon for a creamy, well-balanced dressing to mix in with the veggie pasta.

Love noodles but looking for alternatives? Start slicing, shredding and spiraling. Veggie noodles tie together great flavor and creative new ideas for healthy meals.

Spring Awakenings

Local, fresh produce returns.

Patience may be a virtue, but that doesn’t mean it’s easy. Take winter, for example. It can test anyone’s patience and sometimes feels like it will never end. Yes, if you’re a gardener, there are seed catalogs to browse and plans to make. And in the kitchen, there’s always another nourishing, hearty stew to simmer and savor. But the arrival of spring is a true cause for celebration. A new growing season has arrived and with it comes fresh, local produce.

3, 2, 1 … grow!

The best news about gardening is you don’t need a lot of space to do it. Even apartment dwellers can use patios, balconies and windowsills. You can also start seeds indoors, and some veggies can be planted outdoors in temperatures as low as 35° F. Rest assured, your favorite farmers market growers will be ready when your local market re-opens outdoors for the summer because they started their growing season long ago in greenhouses. The biggest question is simply, what’s for dinner tonight?

The essence of the season.

Many veggies are at their freshest and most tender in the spring. The Just Bare® Chicken website has an extensive recipe library, and here’s a preview of what you’ll find browsing the collection. Asparagus? Morel mushrooms? Kale? Yes, yes, yes and more. You’re sure to find what you’re looking for this spring and throughout the year.

Wraps At The Ready

A wrap by any other name is a …

Is a sushi roll a wrap? Is a burrito a wrap? Is a wrap a sandwich? So many questions, such philosophical intrigue. The definitive answer to all of the above is, well, all of the above. One person’s wrap is another person’s pita sandwich. What makes wraps so special is literally what you put into them. Each is a present waiting to reveal its wonder.

Roll with the good stuff. 

The idea of wrapping food in other food is close to genius. Functional, portable, delicious — there are countless starting points to get the ingredients, flavors and nutrition you want. Leafy greens appeal to veggie lovers. Tortillas are classics, and corn tortillas provide a gluten-free option. And what about nori, the thin sheets of seaweed often used in sushi? Think of nori as a blank canvas for capturing new masterpieces in the making.

Fusion by addition. 

This new recipe for Nori Sushi Burritos has it all. Here, you’re taking cues from California, home to both Japanese and Latin food traditions. Why not make a burrito with nori instead of tortillas? It’s fusion by addition and combinations all your own. The crisp saltiness of the nori pairs well with the mild flavors of the poached chicken, rice and other fresh ingredients within. You can even add a dash of sriracha for a burst of heat. Or try Hoisin sauce, spicy mayo, hot mustard/wasabi or gochujang.

Rapt and delighted.

Wraps are always at the ready and go where you go. Put Nori Sushi Burritos on your dinner menu this week at home. Or take a couple to work for lunch. Or roll up a feast for a picnic with family and friends. And for more variety, consider Barbecue Chicken WrapsLettuce Wrapped Asian Chicken or Chicken Sweet Chili Spring Rolls.

Try them all, and discover new combinations all your own. This is a technique that offers endless possibilities. It’s made for it. Because after all, that’s a wrap.

Chicken and Spring Veggie Quiche

This light and flaky quiche includes leeks, mushrooms and baby spinach making it the perfect Spring inspired dish! The chicken is poached in a flavorful liquid called court bouillon which adds a layer of depth to the protein.

Spicy Chicken Cobb Salad with Honey Mustard Dressing

This salad has layers of different textures and flavors making it hearty enough to eat any time of the day! Honey mustard adds a light and tangy flavor which highlights each individual component perfectly.