The only thing better than a get-together with your friends or family is a get-together with food!
And if you’re planning on serving chicken salad, we commend you on your decision. When done right, chicken salad is the perfect crowd pleaser – even picky eaters will eat it.
It’s also a very simple recipe to get right, which is perfect if it’s your first time hosting an event with food.
All you have to do is make the chicken salad, buy some ready-made buns or croissants, and have some of the guests bring in side dishes to accompany it.
Party buffet food has a lot in common with picnic food, but using croissants rather than burger buns instantly elevates the party food to the next level, giving a more sophisticated feel.
But you have to balance having enough food for everybody with not letting any food go to waste.
And that’s exactly why we decided to put this article together, so you have actual figures you can use to determine exactly how much chicken salad you will need per person, and therefore in total.
In this article, we’re going to kick things off with giving you one of our favorite chicken recipes, since there’s little use telling how much salad to use if you haven’t yet planned the salad itself.
Then we’ll go through how much chicken salad to use per person as an appetizer, or in regular and mini croissants respectively.
And of course, you’re going to want to have more to offer than merely chicken salad croissants, which is why we’ve also got some great suggestions of side dishes to go with it, including drinks and desserts. Then we’ll wrap things up with our final thoughts.
(Please feel free to scroll ahead to any section that jumps out at you.)
And without further ado, let’s get straight to it!
How Much Chicken Salad Per Person By Sandwich/Croissant Size? Quick Answer
When using chicken salad as a filling for a regular croissant, we recommend using half a cup of chicken salad for each party guest.
This works out at approximately 2 and a half pounds for every 10 party guests.
If you plan on serving several sides alongside it, you can get away with reducing the total amount of chicken salad by up to a quarter.
Note – this measure goes for any chicken salad croissant filling, and not just the one we’re providing the recipe for.
Chicken Salad Croissant Recipe
We recommend making the chicken salad ahead of time, because it will need to be left to chill in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours prior to being served.
It only requires 15 minutes of prep time, and the cooking time is 40 minutes.
This recipe produces 12 individual servings in 12 regular size croissants.
The chicken salad itself comes to 550 calories per serving, but you’d also have to add on the calories in the croissant.
This easy recipe features a whole fryer chicken cooked in an Instant Pot, which is then combined with grapes, celery, slivered almonds and chopped green onions in a yummy mayo sauce.
The following chicken salad recipe features how to cook a whole chicken in an Instant Pot. You don’t have to cook the chicken this way if you don’t have an Instant Pot, so long as the chicken gets cooked and cubed.
Or you could just grab a rotisserie chicken for some canned chicken from your local grocery store.
- 1 whole 3 to 4 pound chicken – this is the most economical option, but if you prefer you could just cook chicken breasts
- ½ cup of chicken broth or water
- ½ cup of plain yogurt or sour cream
- ½ cup of mayonnaise
- 2 tablespoons of fresh lemon juice
- 2 to 3 cups of grapes – you can use either red or green grapes and halve them
- 3 whole green onions – if you prefer, you can use red onion instead
- 2 to 3 stalks of celery – adds a great crunch
- 2 tablespoons of chopped fresh dill
- 1 to 2 tablespoons of brown sugar
- ½ cup of slivered almonds – if you have the time, we recommend toasting the slivered almonds
- Freshly ground black pepper to taste
- Sea salt to taste
- Cayenne pepper to taste
- A dozen regular croissants
Cooking The Whole Chicken In The Instant Pot
- Remove the chicken’s innards.
- Generously season the chicken with salt and pepper.
- Allow the chicken to get to room temperature. This takes about half an hour, and it helps to cook the chicken more evenly.
- While you wait, prepare ½ a cup of chicken broth, and add it to the bottom of the Instant Pot before adding a trivet.
- Place the chicken inside on the Instant Pot trivet, and pressure-cook on high for 25 minutes.
- When the Instant pot releases the pressure, carefully remove the chicken and allow it to cool for long enough for the chicken to be comfortable enough to handle. This could take up to 15 minutes.
- Remove all the skin and bones and cut the chicken into cubes.
Making The Mayo Sauce
- Take the mayonnaise, sour cream (or yogurt), brown sugar, lemon juice, fresh dill, cayenne pepper, and salt and pepper, and mix them in a bowl.
Preparing The Chicken Salad
- Wash the onions, celery and grapes, chop them, and place them in a bowl with the cubed chicken.
- Mix half of the mayo sauce in with the veggies and chicken, then gradually add more, bit by bit, until you’re happy with the amount of sauce (you might not need all of it).
- Stir in the almonds (ideally toast them first).
- Leave the completed salad to chill in the refrigerator for a minimum of two hours.
Then all you have to do is slice open the regular croissants, and place half cup of chicken salad inside each. You don’t have to butter the croissants first, unless you particularly want to.
How Much Chicken Salad As An Appetizer?
If your chicken salad is not the main event of the meal, perhaps you’ve spotted a warm dish you’d prefer for the main course, for example, then you could serve some chicken salad as an appetizer beforehand.
You could, for example, serve it with crackers on a charcuterie board. If you decide to do this, we would recommend using 2 heaped tablespoons of chicken salad per guest.
How Much Chicken Salad Per Regular Croissant?
The most affordable places to get your ready-made store-bought croissants would be either Sam’s Club or Costco, since they’re often half the price or less than ones you’d find in most other grocery stores.
And if you’d prefer to buy your chicken salad already made, rather than make it yourself from scratch, you may also be interested to know that both of these stores sell chicken salad by the pound.
Although croissants are traditionally crescent-shaped, there’s a new shape on the market, which is much more straight, and it’s much better for holding the chicken salad in. Or other fillings for that matter.
As a general rule, most people who enjoy chicken salad filled croissants prefer them to be buttered. But you could argue that this isn’t truly necessary.
And now for what you came here for. Guidelines on how much chicken salad you’re going to need for each croissant served at your party.
It’s always best to have more chicken salad ready to serve than to not have enough. For this reason, we recommend that you expect your party guests to take up to half a cup of chicken salad per regular size croissant.
That said, however, some guests may decide to use only a third of a cup of chicken salad as their croissant filling.
But expecting more salad to be used, rather than less, will help to ensure that you won’t run out of chicken salad filling before you run out of croissants.
However, it’s also worth bearing in mind that if you’re serving plenty of sides alongside the chicken salad croissants, then you’re not going to need as much chicken salad, and you can reduce the amount of chicken salad to make or buy by up to a quarter.
Here follows a handy table that specifies how much chicken salad croissant filling you will need for various numbers of party guests, assuming each person has one regular size croissant.
How Much Chicken Salad Per Person When Served On A Regular-Sized Croissant
(Based on ½ cup of chicken salad per person.)
|Number Of Party Guests||Amount Of Chicken Salad Required|
So, as you can see, in this regular size croissant scenario you will need 2.5 pounds of chicken salad for every 10 party guests, which makes it easy to work out how much you’ll need per guest if you work in multiples of 10.
How Much Chicken Salad Per Mini Croissant?
But what if you don’t have a big budget?
Well, there’s no need to worry – you can make your chicken salad go even further by putting it in mini size croissants instead of regular size ones.
Your party guests may even prefer mini size croissants – especially if there are lots of other lovely little side dishes and buffet food on offer as well.
Obviously, when you are serving mini croissants, you won’t need as much chicken salad filling.
Whereas we’d recommend using half a cup of chicken salad filling for a regular croissant, you only really need a quarter of a cup of chicken salad filling for each mini croissant.
This is because a mini croissant is typically half the size and weight of a standard regular size croissant.
How Much Chicken Salad Per Person When Served On A Mini-Sized Croissant
(Based on ¼ cup of chicken salad per person.)
|Number Of Party Guests||Amount Of Chicken Salad Required|
So, as you can see, in this mini-croissant scenario you will need 1.25 pounds of chicken salad for every 10 party guests, which makes it easy to work out how much you’ll need per guest if you work in multiples of 10.
Regular Croissants Versus Mini Croissants
So, now that you have the figures you need to know how much chicken salad you will need for regular and mini croissants based on the number of guests, you now need to decide whether to buy regular croissants or mini ones.
Here are some key points to consider when you make your decision.
- More chicken salad is required for regular croissants than mini croissants, specifically twice as much, since regular ones are twice the size of mini ones.
- The more options of sandwich fillings you provide to guests, the less chicken salad will be required per person whatever croissant size you decide to go for. (Of course, if you already know that a good portion of the party guests like chicken, then the additional sandwich fillings could still be based around chicken.)
- If you have quite a lot of party guests coming along, then you could save yourself a considerable amount of money if you were to bulk buy at somewhere like Sam’s Club or Costco. (Incidentally, Sam’s Club typically stocks both regular croissants and mini ones called cocktail croissants.)
- If you (or your party guests) set out a nice assortment of side dishes to go alongside the chicken salad croissants, then there’s less pressure to provide as much filling, and you won’t need to make or buy quite as much, since party guests usually like to have a little bit of everything.
And speaking of side dishes, that leads us very nickel onto our next section – what side dishes would be good to serve with your chicken salad croissants?
Best Side Dishes For Chicken Salad
In this section, we’ll put forward some suggestions about other things you could lay out for your party guests to choose from and nibble.
We’ll be covering side dishes, drinks and desserts.
Here are some of the more common side dishes you’ll see at a buffet…
- Green Salad – A leafy green salad is an excellent side dish for any buffet, cookout, or picnic. It helps ensure that there’s at least some perfectly healthy food available for your party guests, and it can easily be added either into or with a filled croissant or with any other side dish you have on offer. You can include the likes of lettuce, cherry tomatoes or tomato slices, cucumber slices, chopped green onions, corn kernels, red onion, salad dressing, and more.
- Veggie Sticks And Dip – Another cheap yet healthy option would be to put together a colorful veggie platter, whereby you can cut raw veggies such as carrot, sweet bell peppers, and/or celery into crudités, that your party guests can have with a nice store-bought or homemade dip.
- Pasta Salad – Pasta salad can also be a very cheap and cheerful addition to your table or picnic. All you have to do is cook the pasta ahead of time, and mix in some popular ingredients such as cooked diced bacon, red onion, green onion, corn kernels, canned tuna, and mayo.
- Chips – Chips are a great crowd pleaser, everyone loves them. You can either serve some plain tortilla chips with some sour cream, guacamole and/or tomato salsa dips, or alternatively you could simply serve some flavored chips.
- Fresh fruit – A colorful arrangement of fresh can really brighten up the buffet table, and it gives everyone another healthy option to enjoy alongside their chicken salad croissants. We like the idea of threading fruit pieces onto skewers and serving them with a drizzle of melted milk chocolate.
- Trail Mix – Things like nuts and Bombay mix are also a nice, easy side dish to serve at a get-together. All you have to do is choose what nuts or trail mix to get in, if you want to add dried fruit as well, and pour it into bowls.
- Crackers – Crackers are yet another easy and affordable option, and they’re also very versatile, you can top them with just about anything you like. Sliced Cheddar cheese may be popular with your guests, and one block could go a long way. Or simple green salad and tomato slices.
You have to quench the guest’s thirst as well! Here are some ideas for you…
- Lemonade – Lemonade can be wonderfully refreshing, not to mention easy to get hold of and cheap to buy. You could even go for pink lemonade to really jazz things up.
- Cordial – Cordial is also an excellent budget buy, especially if you buy a super concentrate to add to water, and if you use it properly it can really go a long way.
- Fruit Punch – Whether you decide to go for an alcoholic punch or a non-alcoholic one, it can really deliver a punch of flavor (pardon the pun!). And it goes great over ice.
If you ask us, no party is complete without dessert! Here are some easy ideas for you…
- Cookies – Cookies are great, you can add chocolate chips or dried fruit, and they can be both crunchy and gooey!
- Chocolate Brownies – Chocolate brownies are also a fantastic crowd pleaser, and you can make them in just one pan.
- Muffins Or Fairy Cakes – If you feel chocolate brownies would have too rich a taste, then how about some blueberry muffins, or pretty fairy cakes topped with butter frosting!
- Jello – Jello is also a very cheap and easy option for a sweet and fruity dessert. And you can top it with some Cool Whip.
So, to summarize:
- When using chicken salad as a filling for a regular croissant, we recommend using half a cup of chicken salad for each party guest. This works out at approximately 2 and a half pounds for every 10 party guests.
- For a mini croissant, you only need a quarter cup of chicken salad per croissant because they are half the size of a regular croissant.
- The measures listed at any point in this article work for any chicken salad sandwich/croissant filling, regardless of what chicken salad recipe you use.
- You can make things easier for yourself if you make the chicken salad up ahead of time.
- Why not throw in some cheap and easy side dishes?
If you follow the tips provided in this article, you’re sure to host a party that people will remember.
Have a great party!
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