Warm Chicken Salad with Oranges & Black Olives

A heatwave has been scorching its way across Europe and I guess a temperature in the mid-30s in London today is not so bad when you consider other places – like France, Spain and Italy – have had record highs in the mid-40s. However, it definitely wasn’t a day for standing by a campfire in the garden, as my 4-year-old grandson Freddie calls the barbecue; nor was it a day for rich stews or roasts. But the family were coming for a meal and I wanted to make something nice so decided on a warm chicken salad. ‘Warm’ because the chicken needed cooking and I would griddle it. And I didn’t want a fridge cold salad; sometimes just warm and fresh can be good in heat too.

I bought some mini organic chicken fillets and decided to marinate them before cooking. I thought serving them with a fresh orange dressing would add a nice summery and special touch. I put the chicken in the marinade and prepared the orange dressing a few hours in advance and the final preparation took only a short time – maybe 15-20 minutes?


Warm Chicken Salad with Oranges & Black Olives

  • 10 mini chicken fillets (350g)
  • 1 bag of mixed green salad
  • 4 spring onions, peeled and thinly sliced
  • a handful of black olives


  • 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 5 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 level teaspoon dried oregano
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper

Orange Sauce

  • 3 oranges
  • 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon sherry vinegar (or wine if you don’t have sherry)
  • 1 teaspoon runny honey
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper



Put all the marinade ingredients in a shallow dish and whisk together. Add the chicken fillets and mix carefully but well to coat each one. Cover in cling film and put in the fridge for at least one hour. (If you can’t get mini fillets, just buy chicken breasts and slice.)

Make the orange sauce: grate the zest of 1 orange into a bowl and the juice of one other (you may only need half) to get 30ml/2 tablespoons. Add the olive oil, sherry vinegar, honey and salt and pepper. Whisk together.

Cut the peel and pith away from the orange you removed the zest from, and the 3rd orange, and carefully remove the orange segments from between the membrane separating them with a sharp knife. Add the orange segments to the dressing. Cover with cling film and put in the fridge.


When it’s nearly time to eat lay the salad on a large serving plate. Prepare the spring onions.


Heat a griddle and when hot lay the chicken slices on it (I had to do mine in two batches). They should cook quite quickly. Once you have a nice charred effect you can always slice into one to check it’s cooked through, if you like. As the chicken is ready, lay the pieces directly on to the green salad. I’d chosen an organic salad with peppery leaves in Wholefoods.


When all the chicken is cooked, sprinkle over the spring onion slices. Then spoon over the orange dressing and all the orange segments. Scatter the black olives over the top.

I cooked some lovely little new potatoes to accompany the salad, dressed with butter and fresh chopped mint.

The salad looked very inviting!

It was a gorgeous salad. The chicken pieces were just warm still and thus were nicely soaking up the orange dressing. They were beautifully tender from the marinade and quick cooking on the griddle. Chicken, oranges and olives make a great combination and this was a gorgeous light but tasty salad for a hot evening.

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A lifelong lover of good food and travel; writer and book editor

2 thoughts on “Warm Chicken Salad with Oranges & Black Olives

  1. What a delightful salad! I love all of the ingredients, like the potatoes along with the oranges and olives. And it’s so pretty. Hope it cools off soon for you!

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