Chicken Apple Arugula Goat Cheese Salad

Gluten-FreeLow CarbArugulaChicken

Chicken salad with arugula, goat cheese, and apple slices.

Photography Credit: Elise Bauer

Once, many years ago, my mother decided to plant some arugula in the garden. What she didn’t know at the time is that arugula will reseed itself, and if left untended, will take over any arable surface within range.

My mom is more of a “visionary” when it comes to gardens, which explains why, when I took over the garden beds, they were completely covered with arugula, anything else being choked out years before.

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Chicken Apple Arugula Goat Cheese Salad

In the fall, after the first rains, the first baby leaves of arugula start making an appearance. The apples are ripening and the walnuts falling from the trees around the same time, so it just makes sense to pull them all together in a salad!

This is a simple fall salad. The creaminess of the goat cheese pairs beautifully with the peppery arugula, chicken, apples, and walnuts.

For more information on apple varieties, check out our Guide to Apples.

Chicken Apple Arugula Goat Cheese Salad Recipe

  • Prep time: 10 minutes
  • Cook time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 4


  • 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil, plus more for dressing
  • 1 large shallot, peeled and sliced
  • 1 1/2 lb skinless, boneless chicken breast, cut into 1 inch cubes
  • Salt
  • 1 tart green apple, thinly sliced and roughly chopped
  • Baby arugula leaves - enough for a salad for four
  • 1/4 cup toasted walnuts, roughly chopped
  • 1/4 cup goat cheese - broken up into little pieces
  • Lemon juice
  • Salt and pepper


1 Sauté shallots: Heat a tablespoon of olive oil in a stick-free frying pan on medium heat. When the oil is hot, add the shallot slices and lightly sauté them until translucent. Remove shallots from pan and set aside.

2 Sauté chicken pieces: Heat another tablespoon of olive oil in the pan and when the oil is hot, add the chicken breast pieces. Cook, stirring occasionally, until just cooked through, 5 to 10 minutes. Sprinkle some salt on the chicken while you are cooking it. Remove from pan and chill.

3 Assemble salad: When chicken has cooled, toss together in a serving bowl the shallots, chicken, sliced green apple, arugula, toasted walnuts and goat cheese.

4 Dress with olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper to taste.

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Elise Bauer

Elise Bauer is the founder of Simply Recipes. Elise launched Simply Recipes in 2003 as a way to keep track of her family's recipes, and along the way grew it into one of the most popular cooking websites in the world. Elise is dedicated to helping home cooks be successful in the kitchen. Elise is a graduate of Stanford University, and lives in Sacramento, California.

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13 Comments / Reviews

No ImageChicken Apple Arugula Goat Cheese Salad

Did you make it? Rate it!

  1. Jonathan

    Great recipe to convert into a chicken salad sandwich: add mayo; adjust ratios as necessary; and layer the greens on some beautiful bread and youre good to go!


  2. Susana

    Delicious recipe. I did not have some of the ingredients so replaced some, and it still tasted great:

    – Used small reddish apples (Limbertwig)
    – Raw mixed nuts, toasted on a pan
    – Round lettuce (british lettuce)
    – White onion, which I finished with a few spoons of balsamic vinegar and a dash of honey on the pan.
    – Added a teaspoon of honey to the vinagrette


  3. Janine

    Dried cranberries! Now that I am eating this salad and reading the comments, I think that this sounds like a perfect addition. And I just bought some the other day so I will add them tomorrow when I make this salad for lunch again.
    I had been eyeing this salad on your website for some time. Always on the hunt for a healthly and quick lunch that I can take to work I finally printed the recipe and tried it. I actually also made your spicy zucchini soup and am eating both of these wonderful dishes today. I used Queso Fresco instead of goat cheese knowing that goat cheese is pretty rich in calories. I added some more spices to the chicken to make it a bit more flavorful – paprika and cayenne pepper. The salad is better that I thought it would be – all the incredients come together nicely making this a flavorful, light but filling dish.

  4. Cristina

    This salad is super delicious! My husband and I couldn’t get enough of it! The goat cheese is a very good compliment to it!

  5. Terry

    I love this! I eat it at least once a week. I sometimes add dried cranberries too. Great salad…thanks!

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