Chinese Chicken Pasta Salad Recipe

Chinese Chicken Pasta Salad is a delicious and healthy dish that combines the best of both worlds – Chinese cuisine and pasta. This salad is perfect for those who are looking for a light and refreshing meal that is easy to make and packed with flavor. It is a great option for lunch or dinner, and can be served warm or cold.

A colorful bowl of Chinese Chicken Pasta Salad sits on a wooden table, surrounded by chopsticks and a bottle of soy sauce

The dish typically consists of cooked pasta, shredded chicken, and a variety of vegetables such as carrots, bell peppers, and green onions. The dressing is usually a combination of soy sauce, sesame oil, rice vinegar, and honey, which gives the salad a sweet and savory flavor. Some variations may also include peanuts, sesame seeds, or cilantro for added texture and flavor.

Whether you are looking for a quick and easy meal or a dish to impress your guests, Chinese Chicken Pasta Salad is a great option. It is a versatile dish that can be customized to your liking, and is sure to be a hit with anyone who tries it.

Origins and Cultural Significance

A large bowl of Chinese chicken pasta salad sits on a wooden table, surrounded by chopsticks and a traditional Chinese tea set

Historical Background

Chinese Chicken Pasta Salad is a dish that has become increasingly popular in recent years. While the exact origins of the dish are unclear, it is believed to have been created in the United States during the 1980s. The dish is a fusion of Chinese and Western cuisines, combining Chinese flavors with pasta, a staple of Western cuisine.

The dish is often associated with California cuisine, which is known for its fusion of different cultural influences. Chinese Chicken Pasta Salad is a perfect example of this fusion, as it combines the flavors of Chinese cuisine with the pasta and salad ingredients commonly found in Western cuisine.

Culinary Fusion

Chinese Chicken Pasta Salad is a dish that is rich in cultural significance. It represents the blending of different culinary traditions and the creation of something new and unique. The dish is a testament to the creativity and ingenuity of chefs who are willing to experiment with different flavors and ingredients.

The dish has also become popular because of its versatility. It can be served as a main course or as a side dish. It can be served hot or cold, making it a perfect dish for any occasion.

In conclusion, Chinese Chicken Pasta Salad is a dish that has become a staple of modern cuisine. Its origins are rooted in the fusion of different culinary traditions, and it represents the creativity and ingenuity of chefs who are willing to experiment with different flavors and ingredients.

Ingredients and Variations

A colorful array of ingredients: shredded chicken, noodles, carrots, bell peppers, and sesame seeds. Variations include adding peanuts or swapping out the chicken for tofu

Choosing the Right Pasta

When it comes to making Chinese Chicken Pasta Salad, choosing the right pasta is crucial. The ideal pasta for this dish is something that is sturdy enough to hold up to the other ingredients, while also providing a nice texture and flavor. Some good options include fusilli, rotini, and farfalle.

Chicken Preparation Techniques

The chicken is a key component of Chinese Chicken Pasta Salad, and there are a few different ways to prepare it. Some people prefer to use grilled chicken, which adds a nice smoky flavor to the dish. Others opt for poached chicken, which is more tender and juicy. Another option is to use rotisserie chicken, which is already cooked and can be easily shredded.

Vegetable and Herb Pairings

When it comes to the vegetables and herbs in Chinese Chicken Pasta Salad, there are many options to choose from. Some popular choices include carrots, bell peppers, scallions, and cilantro. These ingredients add a nice crunch and freshness to the dish. For a bit of sweetness, some people like to add mandarin oranges or pineapple. And for a bit of heat, you can add some sliced jalapenos or red pepper flakes.

Overall, the beauty of Chinese Chicken Pasta Salad is that it is a versatile dish that can be customized to suit your tastes. Feel free to experiment with different ingredients and preparation techniques to find the perfect combination for you.

Cooking Methods

Boiling Pasta

The first step in making Chinese Chicken Pasta Salad is to cook the pasta. To do this, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta and cook according to the package instructions until it is al dente. Once the pasta is cooked, drain it in a colander and rinse it under cold water to stop the cooking process and prevent the pasta from becoming too soft.

Cooking Chicken

The next step is to cook the chicken. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat and add a tablespoon of oil. Once the oil is hot, add the chicken and cook for 5-7 minutes on each side, or until it is cooked through. Remove the chicken from the skillet and let it rest for a few minutes before slicing it into bite-sized pieces.

Dressing and Seasoning Tips

To make the dressing, whisk together soy sauce, rice vinegar, sesame oil, honey, and minced garlic in a small bowl. In a separate bowl, mix together the cooked pasta, sliced chicken, shredded carrots, sliced scallions, and chopped cilantro. Pour the dressing over the pasta mixture and toss to coat.

For extra flavor, consider adding some toasted sesame seeds or crushed red pepper flakes to the salad. It is important to taste the salad and adjust the seasoning as needed before serving.

By following these simple cooking methods and seasoning tips, anyone can make a delicious Chinese Chicken Pasta Salad that is sure to impress.

Nutritional Information

A colorful bowl of Chinese chicken pasta salad with vibrant veggies, tender chicken, and a light, flavorful dressing

Caloric Content

Chinese Chicken Pasta Salad is a delicious and filling dish that can be enjoyed as a main course or as a side dish. One serving of this salad contains approximately 430 calories, which is a moderate amount of calories for a meal. However, the exact caloric content may vary depending on the specific ingredients used and the portion size.

Health Benefits

Chinese Chicken Pasta Salad is a nutritious dish that provides a variety of health benefits. This salad is a good source of protein, which is essential for building and repairing tissues in the body. The chicken in the salad is also a good source of vitamin B6, which helps to maintain healthy brain function.

The vegetables in the salad, such as carrots, cabbage, and bell peppers, are rich in vitamins and minerals. These vegetables are a good source of vitamin C, which helps to boost the immune system and protect the body against infections. They are also a good source of fiber, which helps to promote healthy digestion and prevent constipation.

The pasta in the salad provides a good source of carbohydrates, which are the body’s main source of energy. However, it is important to choose whole grain pasta, which is a healthier option than refined pasta. Whole grain pasta is rich in fiber and other nutrients that help to promote overall health and well-being.

Overall, Chinese Chicken Pasta Salad is a nutritious and delicious dish that can be enjoyed as part of a healthy and balanced diet.

Serving and Presentation

A bowl of Chinese chicken pasta salad is being served on a wooden table, garnished with fresh vegetables and sesame seeds, with chopsticks resting on the side

Plating Techniques

When it comes to plating Chinese Chicken Pasta Salad, there are a few techniques that can be utilized to make the dish look visually appealing. One way to plate the salad is by using a large white plate and placing a small amount of the salad in the center of the plate. The salad can be arranged in a circular pattern around the center, with the chicken and vegetables placed on top of the noodles. This will create an attractive presentation that is sure to impress guests.

Another technique is to use a shallow bowl and place the salad in the center of the bowl. The chicken and vegetables can be arranged on top of the noodles, with the dressing drizzled over the top. This will create a more casual presentation that is perfect for a family dinner or a casual gathering with friends.

Garnishing Ideas

Garnishing is an important element of presentation that can take the appearance of the dish to the next level. Some garnishing ideas for Chinese Chicken Pasta Salad include:

By using these plating techniques and garnishing ideas, Chinese Chicken Pasta Salad can be transformed into a visually stunning dish that is sure to impress guests.

Elevate Your Palate with our Irresistible Chinese Chicken Pasta Salad Fusion

Recipe by Sarah JenCourse: salads, pastaCuisine: AsianDifficulty: Easy


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Experience a burst of Asian flavors with this delightful Chinese-inspired chicken pasta salad. Packed with succulent chicken, vibrant veggies, and a mouthwatering sauce, it’s a fast, easy, and healthy dish that’s perfect for any occasion.


  • Sauce:
  • ⅓ cup honey

  • ¼ cup rice wine vinegar (substitute with apple cider vinegar)

  • 3 tablespoons sesame oil for the sauce + 1 tablespoon for cooking chicken

  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce (opt for reduced sodium)

  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice

  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger

  • ½ teaspoon salt (adjust to taste)

  • ½ teaspoon pepper (adjust to taste)

  • Pasta Salad:
  • 8 ounces rotini pasta, cooked per package instructions

  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, diced into bite-sized pieces (approximately 1 1/2 pounds)

  • 1 cup thinly sliced purple cabbage

  • 1 cup sugar snap peas

  • ½ cup edamame, cooked and shelled

  • ½ cup carrots, diced small or shredded

  • ½ cup yellow or orange bell peppers, diced small

  • ½ cup chow mein noodles (add dry, don’t cook)

  • ½ cup Fisher Natural Sliced Almonds

  • ¼ cup peanuts

  • ½ cup green onions, sliced thin

  • 2 tablespoons sesame seeds


  • Cook the rotini pasta according to package directions, drain, and place it in a large bowl; set aside.
  • In a medium bowl or large measuring cup, combine honey, rice wine vinegar, 3 tablespoons sesame oil, soy sauce, lemon juice, ground ginger, salt, and pepper; set the sauce aside.
  • In a large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of sesame oil, add diced chicken, and cook over medium-high heat for about 5 minutes, ensuring even cooking on all sides. The chicken should be around 90% cooked through.
  • Carefully add the sauce to the skillet; let it bubble at a medium-fast boil for approximately 5 minutes, or until the sauce thickens, and the chicken is fully cooked. Stir and flip the chicken intermittently.
  • Transfer the chicken and sauce to the bowl of pasta.
  • Add purple cabbage, sugar snap peas, edamame, carrots, bell peppers, chow mein noodles, almonds, peanuts, green onions, and sesame seeds to the bowl. Stir well to combine.
  • Serve the dish warm immediately or as a cold pasta salad.
  • Nutrition:
  • Serving: 1, Calories: 290kcal, Carbohydrates: 35g, Protein: 10g, Fat: 14g, Saturated Fat: 2g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 11g, Cholesterol: 5mg, Sodium: 609mg, Fiber: 5g, Sugar: 17g


  • Will stay fresh in the fridge for up to 3 days. Enjoy it cold or gently reheat before serving if desired.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Can I make this salad ahead of time?

Absolutely! The flavors of the Chinese Chicken Pasta Salad meld and intensify over time, making it an excellent choice for advance preparation.

2. Any vegetarian alternatives?

Certainly! Substitute the chicken with tofu or your favorite meat alternative for a delicious vegetarian version of this fusion salad.

3. Can I add nuts for extra crunch?

Indeed, crushed peanuts or cashews make a delightful addition, providing an extra layer of texture to your Chinese Chicken Pasta Salad.

4. Is there a recommended pasta type?

While any pasta works, using thin noodles like spaghetti or angel hair enhances the overall experience, allowing the flavors to shine through.

5. How long does the dressing last?

Stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator, the soy and ginger dressing can last for up to a week, making it convenient for multiple servings.