Chicken-and-Quinoa Salad with Pepper Jelly Dressing


This red pepper jelly vinaigrette is one of a kind.

Chicken-and-Quinoa Salad with Pepper Jelly Dressing
Photo: Victor Protasio; Food Styling: Rishon Hanners; Prop Styling: Audrey Davis
Active Time:
15 mins
Total Time:
15 mins

"This salad is something to keep in your fridge at all times." That's what our Test Kitchen Professionals wrote about this salad, and if that doesn't convince you to give this recipe a try, we don't know what will. Our Chicken-and-Quinoa Salad with Pepper Jelly Dressing stands alone as a main course; with a total prep time of just 15 minutes, dinner will be on the table before you know it.

This salad has a little Southern secret, and its name is pepper jelly. Homemade dressing truly elevates any salad, and this red pepper jelly vinaigrette is one of a kind: Subtly sweet and the slightest bit spicy, it coats all the other ingredients to create a cohesive main dish. Gradually whisking oil into the vinaigrette helps it emulsify; for a slightly more Southern technique, shake it vigorously in a mason jar.

For this salad, use the best veggies you can find—feel free to add tomatoes, cucumbers, asparagus, or anything that's in season. The briny feta keeps you coming back for more. The quinoa brings a bit of heft to this salad, making it filling enough to stand on its own, and the rotisserie chicken is a bonus protein add (to make this salad vegetarian, simply leave out the meat). Once plated and tossed together, the chicken absorbs some of the dressing as well, keeping it moist and succulent.

This salad holds up extraordinarily well in the fridge—it's a great make-ahead dinner or meal prep option. With this salad, we can guarantee that you'll be looking forward to leftovers.


  • 1 medium bunch scallions 

  • ¼ cup fresh orange juice (from 1 medium orange)

  • 3 tablespoons red pepper jelly

  • ½ teaspoon black pepper

  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided

  • ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil

  • 3 cups cooked, cooled quinoa

  • 4 ounces fresh sugar snap peas, thinly sliced (1 ½ cups)

  • 4 small radishes, sliced (1 cup)

  • 4 ounces feta cheese, crumbled (about 1 cup)

  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint, divided

  • 2 cups shredded rotisserie chicken


  1. Slice white parts of scallions to measure about 1 cup, and set aside. Chop green parts of scallions to measure about 3 tablespoons, and set aside. (Reserve remaining scallions for another use.) Whisk together juice, jelly, pepper, and ¼ teaspoon of the salt in a bowl. Gradually whisk in oil until emulsified, 30 seconds; set aside.

  2. Stir together quinoa, snap peas, radishes, white parts of scallions, feta, 1 ½ tablespoons of the mint, and remaining ¾ teaspoon salt in a bowl. Pour ½ cup dressing over quinoa mixture; toss to combine. Transfer to a platter; top with chicken. Drizzle with remaining ¼ cup dressing. Top with remaining ½ tablespoon mint and green parts of scallions.

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