Tarragon Chicken Salad

Inspired by, but better than, a coffee shop tarragon chicken salad sandwich, this tarragon chicken salad is made with dried cranberries for a touch of tangy sweetness.

Two Plates of Tarragon Chicken Salad with Lettuce, Surrounded by a Glasses, Table Napkins, and Utensils

Simply Recipes / Annika Panikker

Inspiration for good food can be found anywhere, even Starbucks, where I had a delicious chicken salad sandwich recently.

The key ingredients other than chicken?

Sweetened dried cranberries and tarragon.

French tarragon is a distinctive herb, with a slight anise or licorice aroma. We don't use it that often; I grew some last year and don't think we used it more than once or twice the whole season. But it does pair well with chicken.

The dried cranberries add some sweetness to the chicken salad, and the lemon juice adds just enough acidity to brighten all the flavors.

Plate of Tarragon Chicken Salad

Simply Recipes / Annika Panikker

What Is Tarragon?

Tarragon is an aromatic green herb that's in the sunflower family. It has aromas and flavors of licorice, eucalyptus, vanilla, and pepper. The herb is commonly used with fish — like in Fish Cakes With Tarragon Mayo — and poultry — like in Herb Roasted Chicken Thighs and Potatoes. It's also the seasoning in the classic Béarnaise Sauce.

The flavors of fresh tarragon become concentrated in the dried herb so you shouldn't substitute them 1:1 in a recipe. When substituting dried for fresh, use a 1:3 ratio. Use 1 teaspoon of dried tarragon if the recipe calls for 1 tablespoon fresh.

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From the Editors Of Simply Recipes

Tarragon Chicken Salad

Prep Time 10 mins
Total Time 10 mins
Servings 4 servings


  • 2 cups finely chopped, cooked chicken meat

  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries, finely chopped

  • 1 rib celery, finely chopped

  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice

  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise

  • 1 to 2 teaspoons dried tarragon or 1 to 2 tablespoons chopped fresh tarragon

  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste


  1. Make the dressing:

    In a large bowl mix the mayonnaise, lemon juice, and tarragon.

    Ingredients for Tarragon Chicken Salad Dressing

    Simply Recipes / Annika Panikker

    Bowl of Dressing for Tarragon Chicken Salad

    Simply Recipes / Annika Panikker

  2. Add the remaining ingredients:

    Add the chicken, dried cranberries and celery. Add salt and pepper to taste.

    Serve with lettuce for a simple salad, in a tomato that has been cut open for a stuffed tomato, or with slices of bread for a chicken salad sandwich.

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    Tarragon Chicken Salad in a Bowl

    Simply Recipes / Annika Panikker

    Plates of Tarragon Chicken Salad Next to a Glass and Forks

    Simply Recipes / Annika Panikker

Nutrition Facts (per serving)
247 Calories
13g Fat
10g Carbs
22g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4
Amount per serving
Calories 247
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 13g 17%
Saturated Fat 2g 12%
Cholesterol 65mg 22%
Sodium 223mg 10%
Total Carbohydrate 10g 3%
Dietary Fiber 1g 3%
Total Sugars 7g
Protein 22g
Vitamin C 1mg 7%
Calcium 36mg 3%
Iron 1mg 8%
Potassium 265mg 6%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate. In cases where multiple ingredient alternatives are given, the first listed is calculated for nutrition. Garnishes and optional ingredients are not included.