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Welcome to The Sensitive Kitchen. Where home cooks are inspired to Cook to Enable Those You Love to Flourish.

I’m Cindy Sullivan, registered dietitian, passionate nutrition educator, and accomplished home cook. Whether you’re changing how you cook for food sensitivities, allergies, intolerances, or just trying to eat healthier on a budget, you’re in the right place. Most episodes, I will share favorite recipes as well as modification tips, and nutrition benefits. Occasionally I’ll have a guest or special episode like modifying holiday favorites.

My favorite foods? They’re raspberries and homemade chocolate chip cookies. My latest cooking project was long fermented sourdough bread.

Yesterday after a short memorial service for my dad at my parents’ church, we had my cousins over to my mom’s house for lunch. Salads were on the menu – tossed salad, marinated bean salad, and hot chicken salad. Hot chicken salad is an old fashioned, easy recipe that can be modified for many tastes. The only top 8 allergen it contains is nuts, and you can easily use a seed like pepitas or even pine nuts, which are really seeds, even though they’re called pine nuts.

It’s naturally gluten dairy, soy,and egg free as long as you use an appropriate mayonnaise. It has just a few simple ingredients: cooked chicken cut into bite sized pieces, chopped celery, almonds, pecans, or another nut or seed, mayonnaise, lemon juice, onion, or shallot, potato chips, or crispy flaked cereal for topping and under the casserole.

Let’s talk about how to make this – wait a minute – but first we want to talk about the ingredients. So for chicken, I have used chicken that I have poached, which is yummy. I’ve used rotisserie chicken from the store. I often use chicken leftover from soup. It’s not the texture – isn’t quite as good when you use it from soup, but as a waste, not want not cook, it’s one of the things I do with my chicken after I’ve made stock with it. I’ve also made it for a very large crowd and purchased frozen cubed, cooked chicken. So you can use a variety of chicken in this recipe.

I have used almonds and pecans in this recipe. The original recipe called for almonds, but any tree nut should work. Try your favorite. Let me know how it turns out. If you’re a tree nut free household try seeds. As I said earlier, I would try put pepitas, which are shelled, pumpkin seeds, or perhaps pine nuts, which are really a seed.

Now for mayonnaise remember to use a mayonnaise that suits your family’s needs. We use a canola based one is we avoid soy. Those of you avoiding eggs, you’ll want a vegan one, for example. So that’s one of the keys. You can also make your own mayonnaise.

Now you want something crunchy to put both on top of this casserole and underneath the casserole. Potato chips are the traditional favorite. However, I have used cereal with great success. Special K is my favorite in this recipe, but cornflakes work as well. I imagine any bland flaky cereal would work.

If you use potato chips,you’ll have to crumble them. But if you use Special, K, you can just pour it on. Yesterday we used salt and vinegar potato chips, and it was yummy. Use your imagination here.

My family likes this casserole as it is. However, for those of you whose family likes highly spiced dishes, you may want to add one or more of the following: you may want to use flavored potato chips, a pinch of cayenne or black pepper, fresh or dried herbs, like perhaps dill, Worcestershire sauce, flavored mayonnaise like Miracle Whip.

This casserole keeps well for several days of leftovers, but the potato chips will lose their crunch. Let me know how you modify it. I would love to hear the different ways you use this recipe and what you think about it.

This is an especially good casserole if you have someone in your life who needs a few extra calories. If you’re a person who wants to cut calories, however, make it with cereal instead of the potato chips and use a lower calorie mayonnaise.

So how do you make this? First, you’re going to preheat your oven to 350 degrees. You’re going to cut your cooked chicken into bite size pieces if it’s not already cut and chop your celery. Now this is an unusual salad recipe because it uses the same amount of celery is chicken, which is a lot of celery, but it works.

You want to chop your nuts if they’re not already chopped and then mince your onion, or in my case, shallot, very finely. Some people like to grate their onion. You just need a little bit. Squeeze the lemon juice and add the lemon juice and the shallot to the mayo and stir it well. If I were adding any herbs or others seasonings, I would put them right in with that sauce and mix it up well.

Combine all your ingredients except for the potato chips or cereal in a bowl and just mix it well.

In a nine by 13 pan, crumble the potato chips onto the bottom. You want them to cover the bottom loosely. If you’re using Special, K, just pour in the Special K and spread around. Spoon the salad mixture over the potato chips. Then top with more crumbled, potato chips or Special K.

Bake it for about 20 minutes. The casserole should be bubbly and the potato chips slightly browned.

Now let’s talk about nutrients in this recipe. This is a fairly nutrient dense recipe from the chicken and the nuts, especially.

It gives you about 50%, just over 50% of the DRI for vitamin K. This is for one eighth of the recipe. And so one eighth of the recipe contains about 20 grams of protein

about 20% of the potassium for men, and about 27% for women

for vitamin E it gives you three out of the 15 micrograms you need for a day for about 20%

It gives you four grams of fiber and that’s pretty good. You want about 25 to 30 grams of fiber a day.

For zinc, it gives you for men just under 20% and women about 25% of the zinc you need in a day.

And about 15% of the folate you need in a day. So it’s a pretty nutrient dense casserole.

It’s a good main dish. You can serve it as a potluck. It’s wonderful to have in your recipe repertoire. It’s great for feeding a crowd, or as I said, feeding a potluck or having leftovers for lunch the next day.

I hope you enjoy. Keep Cooking to Enable Those You Love to Flourish. Have a wonderful day. Email me, let me Know how you like it. Cindy@ and as always the entire recipe with lots of pictures and exact directions are at Have a wonderful day. Thanks so much. Bye bye.


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