When you ask what wine goes best with chicken salad, there’s no answer. It depends on a handful of factors. To help you decide, let’s look at red wine and white wine with chicken salad.
What Wine Goes Best With Chicken Salad: Red Wine Or White Wine?
Many people look at wine pairings by starting with broad categories of wine like dry wines, sweet wine, red wine, or white wine. This is an excellent first step that helps you sort through obvious pairings that are proven to work with the food ingredients typically found in more straightforward chicken salads.
White wine like Pinot Grigio or Chardonnay goes better with chicken salad in most cases. However, the specific salad ingredients have a significant impact on the pairing. A chicken salad with goat cheese and black pepper is different from a chicken salad with a light Italian dressing. Other popular choices include Chenin Blanc and Viognier.
On the other hand, a red glass of wine like Grenache or the best Shiraz wine might be an excellent choice for a few reasons. Some people love red wine as a personal preference and want to have it with every meal. There’s nothing wrong with that. Further, a chicken salad with roasted tomatoes tends to go well with a medium-bodied red wine.
White Meat vs. Dark Meat Wine Pairings
Your wine choices might also consider the type of chicken you’re having: white meat or dark meat—the type of meat you have in your salad matters when you seek wine recommendations.
Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay are the obvious pairings for a chicken salad with white meat. Here is the good news – the same wines work just as well with dark meat in a chicken salad.
Affordable Wines To Drink With Chicken Salad
When you have a chicken salad for lunch on a Friday or weekend, affordability might be on your mind. Fortunately, many inexpensive wines can work well. If you are eating at a restaurant, tell your server what kind of wine you generally like (e.g., Chenin Blanc or Pinot Grigio) and your budget, and they can offer suggestions.
Are you enjoying a chicken salad at home instead? In that case, the best way to find inexpensive wines high in quality is to take some risks! Specifically, pick up wines from one of the less well-known wine regions. For example, you might be used to drinking Pinot Grigio from Italy, but France also makes excellent Pinot Grigio which might be a better deal.
What Wine Goes With A Chicken Salad Sandwich?
The right wine for a chicken salad sandwich is typically similar to a whole salad. For white wines, it is hard to go wrong with Pinot Grigio or Chardonnay. For those who have a personal preference for red wine, look for specific ingredients. Red wines like chianti can pair well with tomatoes and sun-dried tomatoes.
Salad and Wine Pairing Tips and Tricks
Enjoying wine with salad may not be as popular as wine and steak, but that doesn’t mean you can’t find a good pairing. The classic pairing you choose depends on the ingredients and what kinds of salad dressing you like. When you have a salad like these on a summer evening, various wines can enhance your meal.
Lettuce Salad Wine Pairing
Lettuce typically goes well with light white wines like Pinot Grigio or Riesling. The traditional advice is to avoid red wines with this type of salad. With different salad ingredients, other wines with salad options are feasible.
Are you sitting down for a lunch of chicken salad with lettuce and goat cheese? In that case, there are some other excellent choices to pour into your glass of wine, like Sauvignon Blanc or Cabernet Franc.
Spinach Salad Wine Pairing
As with lettuce, lighter wines are your friend for wine and spinach. Put Sauvignon Blanc or Gamay into your glass of wine to avoid overwhelming the spinach. If you like rich salad dressing with olive oil, you might try a heavier white wine like Chardonnay.
As with lettuce salad, think about your salad ingredients for a moment. In addition to white meat, your salad might feature balsamic vinaigrette. There are a variety of wines that will work, such as light red wines (i.e., Pinot Noir and Gamay Noir).
Kale Salad Wine Pairing
The distinct taste of kale salad works with a few different types of wine. You might try some less familiar red wines like Barbera or Cabernet Franc. Curious about how Cabernet Franc tastes? The best way to find out how it tastes is to compare it with a well-known grape variety like Cabernet Sauvignon. Find out more in this guide: Cabernet Franc vs. Cabernet Sauvignon.
Chicken Caesar Salad Wine Pairing
Choosing a wine that works with Caesar salad or chicken Caesar salad is easy when you know a few principles. As the BBC Good recipe points out, the dressing in chicken Caesar salad includes mayonnaise, white wine vinegar, and parmesan cheese.
The creamy sauce in this type of salad means you have a few options. Sparkling wines, white wines (i.e., Chardonnay and Pinot Grigio), and light red wines (e.g., Gamay and Pinot Noir) work well with chicken Caesar salad.
Salad with Bacon Wine Pairing
A bacon salad is a popular choice for some who don’t like a traditional chicken salad. When you have a meal with smoky bacon or bacon with barbecue sauces on a bed of lettuce, there are a few obvious pairings to try. Wine recommendations for a salad with bacon include white wines like a dry Riesling (a sweet Riesling isn’t the best choice in this case) or a Pinot Blanc.
You might prefer ham instead of bacon. To get the ideal pairings for ham dishes like smoked ham, black forest gam, or honey glazed ham, check out this post about wine that pairs with ham.
What Wine Goes Best With Chicken Salad Summary
In general, a few types of wine work with chicken salad, including Pinot Grigio and Chardonnay. For added fun, try a bottle of sparkling wine with the meal. Keep alcohol content in mind if you have wine with lunch – you want to be able to function well in the afternoon!