Recently I posted my Cilantro Lime Hummus recipe, which I make as an alternative to traditional bean-based hummus. Instead of the usual legume-fest, my Cilantro Lime Hummus uses raw zucchini – but you can’t really tell, I promise! Someone asked me what I eat it with usually and, honestly, there’s nothing crazy exciting about my raw veggies and “hummus” dip habit. But I did mention that it makes a great dressing for a chicken salad: that’s one way I will use up the last of a batch if I have roasted a chicken in the same week.
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The problem was, however, that I usually make that recipe with tahini which, while delicious, doesn’t fit into the Autoimmune Protocol I’m doing right now because it is made from sesame seeds. Bummer. So I did what I usually do – played around with the recipe until it worked without the tahini so that I could use it in place of mayo for my Cilantro Chicken Salad.
I didn’t miss the flavor of the tahini when making up this dressing for my Cilantro Chicken Salad, but the consistency was a little off. The tahini added an amount of body to the sauce that needed to be replaced. I didn’t want to add too much more liquid, though, as that would have made it too thin. So I skimmed some coconut cream from the top of a chilled can of coconut milk. I don’t know about you, but my kitchen is cold enough now that all of my coconut milk is inadvertently “chilled”! I added that to my mini food processor, gave everything a whizz together and now had a much thicker sauce that could double as a mayo replacement.
So why is this (tahini free) dressing so awesome for my Cilantro Chicken Salad? It’s egg, nut & seed free – making it suitable for those who are following an Autoimmune Protocol or just avoiding those things. It’s also a little bit sneaky in that the zucchini base means that what your body tastes as creamy Cilantro Chicken Salad is also giving you the extra boost from a not-so-visible added vegetable! Woop!
- 4 cups cooked chicken, chopped
- 2 cups zucchini, peeled and chopped
- ⅓ cup coconut cream (from the top of a chilled can of coconut milk)
- 1 tsp dried garlic
- ½ cup of fresh cilantro
- Juice of ½ lemon
- Salt to taste
- Add all ingredients except the chicken to a food processor or blender. Process until combined. If the sauce is a little thick, add a splash of water or extra lemon juice.
- Place the chopped chicken in a bowl and add approximately 1 cup of the sauce; stir through until coated. Add more sauce until the salad is your preferred consistency.
- This is best eaten straight away as the zucchini will release water into the mixture that will make the salad separate. If you're making this ahead of when you'll serve it, pop the processed zucchini mixture into a sieve over a bowl in the fridge and leave there until chilled. Discard the liquid that drains through the sieve before folding the chicken into the zucchini mixture.
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