Skip to Content

Oriental Chicken Salad

This copycat Applebee's Oriental Chicken Salad is a "main dish" kind of salad with comforting yet energizing fresh flavors that tastes even better than the restaurant version.

In just minutes you can be enjoying bite after bite of this salad with juicy grilled chicken on a bed of fresh, crunchy salad greens with sliced almonds, shredded carrots, and topped with a mouthwatering oriental dressing.

And this 5-star salad recipe comes with an easy to assemble 5 ingredient dressing. As a matter of fact, we love this dressing so much we use it on other homemade salads too.

A large salad in a serving platter. The salad has cuts of romaine lettuce, purple cabbage, light green napa cabbage, chunks of grilled chicken, shredded carrots, and lots of sliced almonds. There is even a few strips of wonton strips.

Prior to eating gluten and dairy free, this salad was my favorite dish on Applebee's popular menu. You could easily say I had an addiction to the delicious salad flavors and crunch.

A few years ago I was thrilled to find a similar Oriental Chicken Salad recipe here by Kristyn on her blog, "Lil' Luna." Needless to say it was a must to adapt our own recipe using only gluten and dairy free ingredients including the homemade wonton strips to replace the chow mein noodles.

Speaking of which-- had you already noticed the gluten free wonton strips topped on this gorgeous salad? While they are an optional part of the salad, they add another delicious layer of crunch to each bite.

This homemade salad tastes even better than I remember from so many years ago.

A large salad in a serving platter. The salad has cuts of romaine lettuce, purple cabbage, light green napa cabbage, chunks of grilled chicken, shredded carrots, and lots of sliced almonds. There is even a few strips of wonton strips. Over the top of the salad is a dressing being poured onto it.

Why you'll love this gluten free salad

  • We love this dressing so much we use it on other homemade salads too
  • It's the perfect salad to enjoy at home without having to leave the comfort of your own home.
  • No need to whip out the salad spinner, but you can if you want to
  • Easy way to get in for crisp greens and other vegetables

oriental chicken salad ingredient notes

Get more information on these basic ingredients in the recipe card at the bottom of the post. 

  • honey
  • rice vinegar-- we use the Marukan brand in our home. Here is their allergen statement. This can be purchased online at their website or on Amazon here.
  • mayonnaise-- well-known gluten and dairy-free brands are the Hellmann's Real Mayonnaise for purchase here, Sir Kensington's Mayonnaise available to purchase here.
  • Dijon mustard-- we use Annie's Dijon mustard
  • sesame oil-- this oil is naturally gluten free. However, there can be concerns about the manufacturing process of some brands. Joyce Chen Sesame Oil is manufactured in a gluten free facility.
  • grilled chicken breast-- baked chicken or gluten free breaded chicken works well too
  • romaine lettuce
  • red cabbage
  • napa cabbage
  • shredded carrots-- we cheat and keep a big bag of pre-shredded carrots in our refrigerator. You can also use 3 hand washed and shredded carrots.
  • sliced almonds-- omit if needed
  • deep fried wontons strips (optional)-- We order a prepacked Egg Roll and Wonton Wrapper kit of dry ingredients from Mom's Place Gluten Free. Prepare the wonton strips according to the package direction for wrappers. After the dough has been rolled out to 1/16 inch thick, cut into very small rows about 1/16 inch wide and 1 ½ inch long. Then place in a large skillet with the oil heated to 375° F. Fry for 1 minute on each side and remove to a paper towel. Top salad with wonton strips. This mix will make a couple hundred wonton strips. Place leftovers in an airtight container and freeze or refrigerate. Top leftover strips on stir-fry and other Asian-influenced dishes.
  • side dish-- serve this salad alongside warmed baguettes or garlic breadsticks. Here are our two favorite brands, Udi's French Baguettes and MY BREAD Gluten Free Bakery Breadsticks and Dinner Rolls. If you want Italian Breadsticks, we like to use the Schar Italian GF Breadsticks.
A platter with a small bowl of sliced almonds, a grouping of shredded carrots next to a cutting of light green napa cabbage, and to the left of that is small cuttings of purple cabbage next to large strips of romaine lettuce. To the right of the serving platter is a small spoon and a glass container of dressing.

How to Make Applebee's Oriental Chicken Salad

Here are the step by step instructions on making a gluten and dairy free version of this restaurant style Applebee's Copycat recipe.

Oriental Salad Dressing

  1. In a small bowl whisk together the dressing ingredients. Transfer to a mason jar and refrigerate until ready to serve. This dressing can be made several days in advance and stored in the refrigerator up to a week.

Oriental Chicken Salad

  1. In a large bowl, combine the romaine lettuce, red cabbage, napa cabbage, and carrots.
  2. Then add in the chopped chunks of chicken on top of the lettuce and other veggies.
  3. Top with sliced almonds and wonton strips to finish off the top of the salad.
  4. Drizzle the Applebee's salad with your homemade creamy dressing and serve.

Optional Wonton Strips

  1. We order a prepacked Egg Roll and Wonton Wrapper kit of dry ingredients from Mom's Place Gluten Free. (These taste just as good as the real thing in our opinion) Prepare the wonton strips according to the package direction for wrappers. 
  2. After the dough has been rolled out to 1/16 inch thick, cut into very small rows or long strips of about 1/16 inch wide and 1½ inch long. 
  3. Then place in a large skillet with the oil heated to 375° F. Fry for 1 minute on each side and remove to a paper towel. 
  4. This mix will make a couple hundred wonton strips. Top salad with wonton strips. Place leftovers in an airtight container and freeze or refrigerate. Top leftover strips on stir-fry and other Asian-influenced dishes.
A large salad in a serving platter. The salad has cuts of romaine lettuce, purple cabbage, light green napa cabbage, chunks of grilled chicken, shredded carrots, and lots of sliced almonds. There is even a few strips of wonton strips.

Storage

Leftover salad can be stored in its own airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. Be sure to consume the leftovers within this timeframe, as they may spoil if kept longer. 

To maximize freshness and taste, store the salad in shallow containers and keep the dressing stored separately. 

I don't recommend keeping this easy recipe very long because it will start to wilt and change texture. 

Can I prepare this salad ahead of time?

Yes and no. You can wash, dry, and cut the salad greens ahead of time and refrigerate. And the oriental dressing is best when made a day or two ahead of time and refrigerated.

However, it's suggested to assemble the salad when ready to enjoy.

As a suggestion we'll oftentimes meal prep a large batch of this salad for a week's worth of lunches too.

To do this-- meal prep the dressing and salad greens, carrots, and chicken. Store refrigerated in individual containers for freshness. Each day you'll just need a few minutes to assemble a fresh salad to enjoy over the lunch time.

Do I need to use sliced almonds?

No. Feel free to omit the almonds or substitute with another desired nut.

more gluten + dairy free meals for you

  • sweet and sour meatballs-- you will fall in love with this family favorite meal of homemade meatballs with tender bell peppers and flavorful pineapple in a thick, gooey mouthwatering sauce
  • burrito bowl-- all your taco favorites in a healthy bowl without the extra calories, yet with yummy taste
  • cowboy hamburger soup-- this hearty soup boasts tender potato chunks, ground beef, and veggies in a filling soup everyone raves about
  • lasagna soup-- enjoy all the amazing flavors and textures of lasagna without the mess. This one pot meal is absolutely delicious, fresh, and loved for its tender lasagna noodles, ground beef, and Italian sausage.
2 small salad serving plates with cuts of romaine lettuce, purple cabbage, light green napa cabbage, chunks of grilled chicken, shredded carrots, and lots of sliced almonds. There is even a few strips of wonton strips.

Tips and Variations

  • This is a meal-worthy lunch or dinner for the whole family or food prep for a week’s worth of several meals.
  • When washing your lettuce and cabbage, be sure to pat them dry with a paper towel to remove any excess moisture before using.
  • You can turn this into many small salads with crisp oriental greens, or you can serve it as one of those entree salads served in a large salad bowl like they do at your local Applebee's restaurant.
  • We use grilled chicken, but if you have a safe breaded chicken that you prefer, you can use crispy chicken. 
A large salad in a serving platter. The salad has cuts of romaine lettuce, purple cabbage, light green napa cabbage, chunks of grilled chicken, shredded carrots, and lots of sliced almonds. There is even a few strips of wonton strips. Over the top of the salad is a dressing being poured onto it.

Oriental Chicken Salad

Here is a gluten, dairy, and soy free version of Applebee's Oriental Chicken Salad with Oriental Dressing.
3.67 from 3 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Lunch, Main Course, Salad
Servings: 4 servings

Ingredients

Oriental Dressing

  • 6 tablespoon honey
  • 3 tablespoon rice vinegar suggestion in post
  • ½ c mayonnaise
  • 2 teaspoon Dijon mustard suggestion in post
  • ¼ teaspoon sesame oil suggestion in post

Oriental Salad

  • 6 c romaine lettuce, chopped
  • 1 c red cabbage, finely chopped
  • 1 c napa cabbage, finely chopped
  • ½ c shredded carrots
  • 2 grilled chicken breasts seasoned with salt and pepper, cut into bite size pieces baked and gluten free breaded chicken works too
  • ½ c sliced almonds, optional add more or omit if needed
  • 2 grilled and chopped chicken breast seasoned with salt and pepper baked chicken works too
  • 1 c optional-- deep fried gluten free wonton strips see notes in post

Instructions

Oriental Dressing

  • In a small bowl whisk together the dressing ingredients. Transfer to a mason jar and refrigerate until ready to serve. This dressing can be made several days in advance and stored in the refrigerator up to a week.

Oriental Chicken Salad

  • In a large salad bowl, combine the romaine lettuce, red cabbage, napa cabbage, and carrots.
  • Then add in the chopped chicken.
  • Top with sliced almonds and wonton strips.
  • Drizzle with dressing and serve.

Optional Wonton Strips

  • We order a prepacked Egg Roll and Wonton Wrapper kit of dry ingredients from Mom's Place Gluten Free. Prepare the wonton strips according to the package direction for wrappers. After the dough has been rolled out to 1/16 inch thick, cut into very small rows about 1/16 inch wide and 1½ inch long. Then place in a large skillet with the oil heated to 375° F. Fry for 1 minute on each side and remove to a paper towel. This mix will make a couple hundred wonton strips. Top salad with wonton strips. Place leftovers in an airtight container and freeze or refrigerate. Top leftover strips on stir-fry and other Asian-influenced dishes.

Notes

To prepare this delicious salad ahead of time-- wash and cut lettuce and cabbage greens. Place into individual containers and refrigerate. Assemble salad just prior to serving. 

Nutritional Disclaimer

These Nutritional Facts are ESTIMATED. Your actual nutritional info with this recipe may vary depending on the brands you choose. “Eating Gluten and Dairy Free” is not a registered dietician or nutritionist. The provided nutritional info above is based on a generic calculator, if you want more accurate info, use your nutritional calculator of choice where you can choose brands and get more info that way.

Make sure to follow us on Instagram and Pinterest to keep up with all our new recipes. Tag us if you make the recipe on IG or share your thoughts by commenting on the pin on Pinterest. If you try this recipe, feel free to give it 5 🌟 below

Eat Well and Feel Well

Pin It For Later

Share for others and save for later!

3.67 from 3 votes (3 ratings without comment)
Recipe Rating