Marks Daily Apple
Serving up health and fitness insights (daily, of course) with a side of irreverence.
23 Jan

Cashew Turmeric Chicken Salad (Plus a Contest)

Cashew Chix Salad 1Cashew cream is a vegan obsession that can certainly have a place in a Primal kitchen. To make cashew cream, simply blend cashew nuts with water. A little bit of water makes thick, spreadable cream—and a lot of water turns cashew cream into cashew milk. Either way, the texture is smooth and creamy while the flavor is mild and slightly sweet.

The natural sweetness makes cashew cream an instant dessert. Try a spoonful right out of the blender—it’s like nutty whipped cream. It’s good. A little too good. Don’t say you haven’t been warned.

Surprisingly, though, all it takes is a little salt, acidity, and spices to take cashew cream in a completely different direction. With those slight modifications, you’ll have yourself a savory dressing. Cashew cream is an obvious replacement for dairy, or, in this recipe, a stand-in for mayonnaise. Believe it or not, this mayonnaise-free chicken salad can easily compete against traditional chicken salad with mayo. The creamy, slightly tangy dressing coats the chicken nicely, and some celery and shallot add a little crunch.

Unlike traditional chicken salad, this recipe also adds fresh turmeric root for a hint of earthy flavor and powerful health benefits. (If you also want to add curry powder to make full-on curried chicken salad, go for it.) The great thing about fresh turmeric root is, well, its fresh flavor—as opposed to dried turmeric powder, which can be stale and muted. Fresh turmeric root is similar to ginger in appearance (except for turmeric’s bright orange color) and can be sliced, grated and used in similar ways. Turmeric root will stay fresh in the refrigerator for several weeks and can be added to foods like soups, stir-fries and your other favorite dressings and sauces.

Servings: 4

Time in the Kitchen: 15 minutes (plus at least 4 hours to soak the nuts)


Cashew Cream

  • 1 cup whole, raw, unsalted cashews (140 g)
  • 1/2 cup water (120 ml)

Cashew Turmeric Chicken Salad

  • 3 cups chopped, cooked chicken (450 g)
  • 6 tablespoons cashew cream (90 ml)
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice (10 ml)
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar (5 ml)
  • 2 teaspoons coconut aminos (10 ml)
  • 3/4 teaspoon Dijon mustard (4 ml)
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil (15 ml)
  • 1 1-inch/2.5 cm piece of fresh turmeric root, peeled and grated (add more, to taste, if you like)
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped parsley (30 ml)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt (2.5 ml)
  • 2 ribs celery, finely chopped
  • 1 shallot, finely chopped
  • Cracked black pepper


Cashew cream

It’s hard to make tiny batches of cashew cream, so this recipe will make a little more than you need for the dressing. The amount of water added here makes a thick, but not stiff, cream. Add a little less water for a thicker cream or add 1 1/2 to 2 cups water (350 ml – 475 ml) to make cashew milk.

First, soak cashews at least 4 hours or overnight in cold water. Drain and rinse.

Put the cashews and 1/2 cup (120 ml) water in a high-powered blender. Blend for 1 to 2 minutes, scraping down the sides as needed, until the consistency is similar to whipped cream. The texture should be very creamy with no bits of nut left at all.


Cashew Turmeric Chicken Salad

Recipe Note: A microplane zester works well for grating fresh turmeric root. Fresh turmeric will stain anything it comes in contact with bright orange, so make sure to wash your grater and your hands immediately.

In a small bowl, whisk together 6 tablespoons (90 ml) of cashew cream, plus the lemon juice, apple cider vinegar, coconut aminos, Dijon, olive oil, turmeric root, parsley and salt.

In a large bowl, mix together the chicken, dressing, celery and shallot. Top the chicken salad with cracked black pepper.


Now, for the Contest!

The Prize:

win103 Bottles of Greek Vinaigrette: Using real, organic oil of oregano, organic apple cider vinegar and the freshest ingredients (avocado oil, organic red wine vinegar, black pepper and lemon) our perfectly balanced vinaigrette is a tantalizing and refreshing complement to any salad. Its lush herb flavor is balanced with a hint of sweetness, savory spices and the zest of fragrant lemon oil—the quintessential addition to roasted chicken…or drizzle some on top of your vegetable lasagna. It also pairs very well with heavier fish like mackerel or sablefish.

3 Bottles of Honey Mustard Vinaigrette: This succulent dressing packs in the pungency of stone ground mustard and the sweetness of organic honey, perfectly enhanced by a tangy bold touch of lemon. It pairs well with slightly bitter greens, like chicory, Belgian endive, escarole or radicchio, and is succulent enough to be used as a dipping sauce for veggies…or to flavor your favorite fish, chicken or beef dishes. Honey mustard-flavored braised short ribs, anyone?

The Contest:

Last contest of the challenge with almost $50 worth of goods up for grabs! All you have to do is enter below by selecting one of the two entry options.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Contest Deadline:

January 24th, midnight PDT.

Choosing a Winner:

One entry from the above widget will be chosen at random.


Anyone in the world can enter!

To track all the contests visit the 2016 Primal Blueprint 21-Day Challenge Contest Page for daily updates.

You want comments? We got comments:

Imagine you’re George Clooney. Take a moment to admire your grooming and wit. Okay, now imagine someone walks up to you and asks, “What’s your name?” You say, “I’m George Clooney.” Or maybe you say, “I’m the Clooninator!” You don’t say “I’m George of George Clooney Sells Movies Blog” and you certainly don’t say, “I’m Clooney Weight Loss Plan”. So while spam is technically meat, it ain’t anywhere near Primal. Please nickname yourself something your friends would call you.

  1. This is good to know. I love cashews but had no idea you could make cream with them. Cashew cream could be used with a variety of foods, like on top a bowl of fresh berries. Yum.

    Shary wrote on January 23rd, 2016
  2. Maybe you could do the same thing with macadamia nuts? Hmmm.

    Alfred wrote on January 23rd, 2016
  3. Been meaning to make cashew cream for a long time but just haven gotten around to it. Too busy making my own primal mayo, sunflower seed butter and kombucha. Just what I need, one more thing that I love and feel compelled to make!

    Naomi Williams wrote on January 23rd, 2016
  4. Gotta go soak my nuts!

    paul wrote on January 23rd, 2016
    • Oh, nice.

      It’s the blending of your nuts that takes courage.

      Ross wrote on January 23rd, 2016
      • Owch! I will use my hand!lmao!

        paul wrote on January 24th, 2016
  5. Wow, I make a great chicken salad but I’ve got to try this. It looks and sounds delicious!

    celticswede wrote on January 24th, 2016
  6. Thank you very much! Loved it. Didn’t know there is so much recepies with cashews :))

    Goof Rishon wrote on January 24th, 2016
  7. Absolutely nice looking salad. I will give a try to the provided recipe to surprise my good friend. Thanks!

    Josh Spaulding wrote on January 24th, 2016
  8. Funny I just made a thick cashew milk yesterday to use in coffee. So easy and it turned out great. I usually blend with coconut oil, ghee and collagen, but wanted an alternative. I still have tons of raw cashews left, and I ❤️ turmeric, so I’ll have to make this next!

    Elizabeth wrote on January 24th, 2016
  9. I am so making this. Almost all of the ingredients are ones I keep stocked and I can get fresh turmeric this time of year at the farmer’s market.

    Tina wrote on February 3rd, 2016
  10. using this came out around 1200 calories, 60g fat, 30g carbs and 130g protein

    Harry wrote on March 17th, 2016

Leave a Reply

If you'd like to add an avatar to all of your comments click here!

© 2016 Mark's Daily Apple

Subscribe to the Newsletter and Get a Free Copy
of Mark Sisson's Fitness eBook and more!