Chopped Chicken Livers on Toast

While it might sound scary, this is basically chicken salad made with livers.

Chopped Chicken Livers on Toast
Photo: Peter Frank Edwards; Prop Styling and Floral Design: Sara York Grimshaw
Active Time:
30 mins
Cool Time:
15 mins
Total Time:
45 mins

Owner and culinary force behind FIG and The Ordinary restaurants in Charleston, South Carolina, chef Mike Lata and his wife Jenni Ridall have devised the perfect Christmas eve dinner menu. From Lowcountry Fish Stew to Oven-Roasted Oysters with Mushrooms and Watercress, their smart, seasonal menu is designed with plenty of do-ahead components.

Don't be scared off by this dish's star ingredient: Chicken Livers. "We convert a lot of our guests on livers," Lata says. "It's one of those things people think they don't we serve them at dinner parties, and everyone really enjoys them." This easy make-ahead dish is basically chicken salad made with livers. The dressing is well balanced with bite from the onion, acidity from the lemons, and sharp spice from the mustard; bacon and radish add a great crunch. The grated horseradish on top brings everything together, particularly complimenting the mustard. This dish is rustic and comforting, just what we crave around the holidays. We love to make it in cast iron, but a good quality nonstick pan, such as Le Creuset, will make very simple work of things.


  • 2 pounds chicken livers

  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt, divided, plus more to taste

  • 1 ½ teaspoons freshly ground black pepper, divided, plus more to taste

  • 8 center-cut bacon slices (8 oz.), chopped

  • 1 ½ cups mayonnaise 

  • ¼ cup minced red onion 

  • ¼ cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

  • 2 ½ tablespoons whole-grain mustard

  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

  • 4 large hard-cooked eggs, peeled and roughly chopped (1½ cups)

  • 2 - 3 dashes hot sauce (such as Tabasco), plus more to taste

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature

  • 1 (12-oz.) artisanal sourdough bread loaf, cut into ½-inch-thick slices (about 10 slices), toasted 

  • Thinly sliced radish 

  • Mustard microgreens (optional)

  • Grated fresh horseradish


  1. Clean chicken livers of any bruises, membranes, and connective tissue, leaving livers as whole as possible, and pat dry. Season with 1½ teaspoons of the salt and 1¼ teaspoons of the pepper on both sides, and set aside.

  2. Heat a large cast-iron or nonstick skillet over medium. Add bacon slices, and cook, stirring occasionally, until bacon is crisp and fat is rendered, about 5 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer bacon to a plate lined with paper towels, and set aside.

  3. Working in batches, add chicken livers to skillet with bacon fat. Cook over medium until browned on both sides and pink in the center, 3 to 5 minutes total. Transfer livers to a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, scraping all browned bits on top. Let cool to room temperature, about 15 minutes.

  4. Stir together mayonnaise, red onion, parsley, whole-grain mustard, lemon juice, and remaining ½ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper in a large bowl. Cut cooked livers into ½-inch cubes, and add to mayonnaise mixture. Add hard-cooked eggs and cooked bacon. Gently fold everything together with a rubber spatula until just combined. Season with hot sauce, and add additional salt and pepper, if desired.

  5. Spread butter over toasted bread, and top slices evenly with chopped chicken liver mixture. Garnish evenly with thinly sliced radish, mustard microgreens (if using), and freshly grated horseradish. Serve immediately.

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