It’s hard to go wrong with a sandwich, isn’t it?
Whatever the craving, whatever the time… there’s nothing a sandwich can’t fix. Whether you love a simple, classic filling or something a little more inventive, there’s one thing we can all agree on: the bread can make or break it.
If your usual chicken salad sandwich is in need of a makeover, forget the complex fillings – switching up your bread can be enough to take it to the next level.
Not sure where to start? We’re here to introduce you to our FAVORITE ever breads for the chicken salad sandwich. Whether you want crispy, soft, flavorful, or plain and simple, we’ve got it all.
Without further ado…
Traditional White Bread
There’s a reason why traditional white bread is our go-to sandwich bread. It’s just so damn good!
Traditional white bread is one of the most versatile sandwich breads out there, and it’ll complement almost any filling. It’s a simple, statement loaf – the kind you’d run to the store for, but boy, does it taste good.
Traditional white bread is usually soft and fluffy, with a mild flavor and a slightly crunchy crust. Because it’s so, well, basic, it won’t be competing with any of the flavors in your salad.
It’ll simply exist to elevate them, and sometimes, that’s exactly what you need your bread to do.
Although there isn’t much variation of the traditional white loaf, some varieties have crunchier crusts than others.
This kind of bread can be a great way to add some extra texture to your sandwich, but the choice is yours! As always, traditional white bread is here to save the day (if you’re looking for the perfect dairy free bread recipe, read here).
Here’s another bread you just can’t go wrong with – tiger bread.
Tiger bread is celebrated for its super soft center, crunchy outside, and uniquely mottled crust. This Dutch bread (also known as Dutch crunch) has a bit more flavor than your traditional white bread.
It’s a little nutty and malty, with a distinctive taste and aroma.
What we love about tiger bread, though, is it’s not overbearing. While this flavor certainly shines through, it won’t overpower your sandwich – especially a chicken salad.
Tiger bread is used for all sorts of sandwiches, but it always pairs well with chicken or veg, cheese, pesto, and meat. Basically, anything you’d have in a traditional loaf!
If you want a similar texture to the traditional white loaf with some added “oomph”, tiger bread may be the perfect choice for your chicken salad sandwich.
We always feel so fancy when we eat sourdough. There’s just something about this bread that exudes class and style. It’s timeless.
Sourdough is something special. It’s known as a ‘naturally leavened bread’, because it doesn’t use traditional yeast. Instead, it uses fermented flour and water to rise.
This slow-fermented bread is unique, and if you’ve ever had yeasted bread, you’ll notice it tastes quite similar.
Sourdough also has a slightly tangy (neutrally acidic flavor) that isn’t overbearing but certainly makes itself known. It also has a slightly chewier texture than traditional white bread, and a crackly, crispy crust.
Because of its long fermentation time, sourdough can also help our bodies break down gluten much easier, which makes them great from a health perspective.
Although sourdough is traditionally enjoyed as is (or with a dash of butter), its relatively neutral flavor makes it a great choice for your chicken salad sandwich – especially if you’re going to throw in some hummus or a few herbs!
The croissant may not be your first choice for your chicken salad sandwich, but we’re here to convince you.
The humble croissant (traditionally eaten as a breakfast pastry), is beautifully buttery and flakey.
These crescent-shaped pastries usually have a slightly sweet flavor, and although we usually enjoy them with a sweet filling for breakfast, the savory croissant deserves some love, too.
The croissant pairs well with almost anything, but you’ll find that your traditional chicken salad sandwich takes on an entirely new profile with the croissant (for more chicken salad sides, read here).
The sweetness of the croissant isn’t overbearing, but it’ll definitely make itself known in your sandwich.
You’ll enjoy a light, fluffy, and slightly sweeter savory sandwich, that’s SO good, you’ll never want to go back to sweet croissants again.
Next up, we have the humble bagel.
Seriously, what’s not to love about bagels? The bagel is thought to have Polish, Jewish and American roots, and it’s one of the best-loved breads in the world.
The circular bread (known for its unique doughnut-holed centre) can be paired with just about anything and everything.
Bagels come in all shapes, sizes and flavors. You could opt for a traditional plain bagel, a seeded bagel, a sweet bagel, or something else, making them a cupboard staple you NEED to pair with your chicken salad sandwich (for the best way to microwave bagel bites, read here).
Compared to traditional white bread, the bagel offers a bit more crunch and substance, Bagels are tougher and chewier, and although their flavors can vary, if you opt for a plain variety you’ll have a mild, subtle flavor that won’t overpower your filling, which is exactly what you want to showcase the delicious flavors in your sandwich.
This iconic Italian white bread could be the perfect match for your chicken salad sandwich. This classic rustic loaf is made with wheat flour, olive oil, salt, water and yeast, and it’s notoriously tasty – and sturdy.
If you’re planning on stuffing your sandwich to the brim, ciabatta will hold it all together with no mess, and no fuss.
Ciabatta bread usually has a savoury crisp, and a notoriously “woolly” inside, with a golden-yellow crust. Although it’s often compared to sourdough, ciabatta usually has a crustier texture and a much milder flavor.
If you like your bread for its texture more than its flavor, you’ll love ciabatta!
Ciabatta is one of our favorite breads for a chicken salad sandwich, and it’s all thanks to its texture. This bread is sturdy, and it’s guaranteed to hold all your filling without the risk of a soggy bottom.
There’s nothing quite like a classic Italian bread, and that’s exactly why it’s made it onto our list. Although Italy may be most commonly thought of for its pasta, we need to change that – Italian bread never fails to hit the spot!
Although there are many types of Italian bread, we’re talking about the traditional Italian loaf. It’s soft and fluffy and can be enjoyed with just about anything.
Like other Italian breads such as ciabatta, traditional Italian bread also has a sturdy outside, and a fluffy middle.
This makes it the ideal choice for any sandwich that’s heavy on the filling – especially your chicken salad sandwich.
If you like ciabatta but you fancy a change of pace, why not opt for a classic Italian bread? We promise you, you won’t regret it.
How could we give you this post without mentioning rye? We just couldn’t. It’d be criminal.
Rye is a popular bread made from different proportions of flour from the rye grain. We LOVE rye, but honestly, it can be a divisive member of the bread community.
You either love it or hate it, but if you love it, there’s a good chance you’ll find any excuse to eat it.
Compared to other bread, rye has a bit of a ‘kick’. This bread has a slightly earthier flavor, which some describe as sour or malty.
It’s a little reminiscent of brown butter or sugar, but this unique flavor can still pair with plenty of foods, including your chicken salad sandwich.
The texture is a little harder to pinpoint, and it can vary dramatically depending on how much flour you’re using in your recipe. However, many varieties of rye bread have a coarse texture.
We think rye is a great choice for your chicken salad sandwich. Its earthier flavor can help balance out the sweetness in your sandwich, and it’ll also give you a generous helping of fibre!
The pita is one bread that never goes out of style.
This classic leavened flatbread is made from flour, water, and yeast, and it can occasionally include salt and sugar. The pita is famous for its little ‘pocket’, which can be stuffed with just about anything you want!
The pita is a diverse bread. It tastes similar to other flatbreads and can be chewy and semi-dry. If you want a bread that’s delicately flavored, but can give your sandwich a unique texture, pita is a great choice.
Although pita is chewy, it’s pretty soft and spongey, and the interior has two layers, which really put it in a league of its own. Seriously, the pita texture is unmatched!
Pita is a great bread for the chicken salad sandwich, but be warned – too many wet fillings can make it go soggy pretty fast, so choose your ingredients wisely.
Potato bread may not be your first choice, but damn, is it good!
Potato bread is a type of bread made from wheat and mashed potato worked into the dough. This Irish staple bread has a distinctively sweet and light taste.
It’s mild, and usually smells like cooked potatoes! (Not everyone’s favorite, we know, but if you love potatoes – you’re going to love it). If you like traditional white bread, you may enjoy potato bread – they taste pretty similar!
Potato bread has a fluffy texture, which is a slightly crunchy outside, and some loaves can feel denser than others. Potato bread may have a darker or lighter color depending on the loaf.
Potato bread can be a great choice for your chicken sandwich – it’s sturdy yet fluffy, so it can hold all of your fillings while still giving you a soft interior.
If you haven’t tried potato bread yet, we urge you to give it a go – we think you’ll love it!
In the mood for something a little different? Why not enjoy your chicken salad sandwich as a chicken wrap!?
The chicken wrap is one of our all-time favorite recipes. It’s versatile, easy to make, and absolutely delicious. Seriously, it’s hard to go wrong.
Your standard grocery store wraps are just as good as any other. These wraps (usually tortillas) are often made from 100% corn, but many commercial varieties are made from dehydrated corn flour with added wheat flour.
Tortillas are a great choice for your chicken salad because they have a neutral, semi-sweet flavor. They’re also incredibly soft and light, but they still have a bit of weight to them.
Tortillas are extremely forgiving – you can load them up with a mountain of fillings, but they never seem to go soggy or break. This makes them a fantastic choice for chicken salad.
They’ll complement the flavors (but not overpower them), and they require little effort to throw together! What’s not to love?
Next up, we have one of the best chicken salad sandwich breads ever… or maybe we’re just biased.
Focaccia is a flat leavened Italian bread that has similar style and texture to pizza (have we piqued your interest?).
This pretty unique bread can be sweet or savory (depending on the recipe), and the dough is usually flavored with olive oil.
Savory varieties are often topped with different herbs and spices, and even vegetables! This oil-rich bread is spongy and SO damn delicious, we can’t get enough of it.
Although focaccia is usually served up as an appetizer or a side dish, there’s no reason why you can’t make it your perfect chicken salad sandwich base.
When loaded with chicken salad, the focaccia (especially if it’s savory), really comes to life.
Varieties that are topped with a simple dash of salt and rosemary are exceptional, and they really complement the sweeter flavors in your salad, without being overbearing.
If you really want to push the boat out, treat yourself to a focaccia chicken salad sandwich. Delicious!
If you’ve never heard of lavash, allow us to introduce you.
This thin flatbread is traditionally baked and eaten in tandoor, but it’s also becoming increasingly common in the West. If you love tortillas, you’ll love the lavash.
They’re incredibly similar in taste and texture, but the lavash is a healthier alternative. It’s lower in sodium, contains less oil, and it’s not as chewy.
This yeast flatbread can taste slightly charred and bubbly, and many people enjoy it with a sprinkling of sesame or poppy seeds. It’s incredibly versatile, so you can do as you please!
Lavash can be a great choice for your chicken salad ‘sandwich’ – (although with lavash, it’ll be more of a wrap). It’s not too heavy or filling, but it’s just enough to give you that carb fix and hold together all of your filling.
It also provides a great contrast with the creamier additions to your salad – we just love it, and we know you will too!
What To Put In A Chicken Salad Sandwich
The humble chicken salad sandwich is as versatile as you want it to be. The only thing limiting you is your imagination!
As long as you have your all-important staple (chicken), you have free reign to go crazy and express your tastes.
However, you’ll want to consider your fillings based on the type of bread you’re using. If your bread is softer and less sturdy, wetter filling will be more likely to soak through your bread and ruin your sandwich.
These are the most common ingredients seen in chicken salad sandwiches:
- Lemon juice
- Salt and pepper
Of course, you probably won’t have room to squeeze in ALL of these ingredients (what a sandwich that would be!), so feel free to experiment with different flavor combinations that suit your tastes.
You may also want to include ingredients that aren’t on this list – go for it!
Don’t Feel Like A Sandwich?
Not feeling a sandwich? Why not enjoy your chicken salad with some crackers, instead? For the best crackers to serve with your chicken salad, read our guide here)
If you want something a little carby but you’re keen on a sandwich, crackers can be a great alternative. Plus, there’s so many varieties to choose from, you’ll be spoilt for choice!
Some popular cracker varieties include:
- Cream crackers
- Graham crackers
- Rye crackers
- Whole wheat crackers
- Seeded crackers
- Cheese crackers
If you’re using crackers as an alternative, choose your ingredients wisely. You’ll need to scale everything down to fit. Think of it as a mini version of your chicken salad sandwich!
Chicken salad crackers can make a great lunch or a great snack. Personally, we prefer to enjoy them as a snack, and they’re great to eat post-workout.
The Bottom Line
Chicken salad is always a strong choice. It’s creamy, healthy, refreshing… But chicken salad in a sandwich? It doesn’t get much better than that.
To some, bread is just bread. You may not think twice about the type of bread you pick up from the grocery store, and if you’re happy with your usual choice, we can’t blame you.
However, bread REALLY can make or break your sandwich. If you’re looking to spice up your usual chicken salad sandwich recipe, we urge you to branch out and try one (or all!) of these beautiful breads.
Whether you want something crunchy or soft, sweet or savory, you’ll find it all right here. So, what are you waiting for? Your new favorite chicken salad sandwich recipe awaits!
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