Roast Chicken & Giant Couscous Salad

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This giant couscous salad is made with leftover roast chicken, fresh veg, feta cheese & a punchy basil dressing. A great way to use up leftovers!

roast chicken giant couscous salad

This giant couscous salad is a fantastic way to use up leftover roast chicken & it tastes absolutely delicious!

For this salad, we’re cooking our own giant couscous then mixing it with a flavourful, homemade basil dressing, shredded leftover roast chicken, plenty of fresh veggies & a sprinkling of feta cheese. It’s seriously tasty & incredibly easy to make.

For some more lunchtime inspiration, take a look at our ever growing collection of lunch recipes! There’s something for everyone here, from tasty salads, scotch eggs, pies & next level sandwiches.

Why You’ll Love This Salad!

  • It’s super quick to prepare, so makes for an easy lunch.
  • Is a great way to use up leftover roast chicken.
  • Super customisable – you can add pretty much whatever mix ins you like!
  • Can be made several days in advance, so is great for meal prepping & packed lunches.
  • It’s made with fresh ingredients & a punchy herb dressing, so is packed full of flavour.

Components Of This Salad

This leftover chicken salad only uses a handful of ingredients & comes together in no time at all! To make, we simply mix giant couscous with a homemade basil vinaigrette, leftover roast chicken, cherry tomatoes, diced red onion & sliced cucumber. We’re finishing each salad with some crumbled up feta as well.

It’s quick, it’s easy, it’s delicious! Here’s what you’ll need…

Leftover Roast Chicken

This salad works best with cold, leftover roast chicken but would also work great with smoked/grilled chicken as well (our grilled spatchcock chicken with chermoula sauce works well!). To make four generous portions, you’ll need 400 grams of chicken, which equates (roughly) to half a medium chicken. I like to use the breasts, as they are easier to shred.

Giant Couscous

Giant couscous (also called Israeli or pearl couscous) is a type of semolina pasta. Giant & Northern African couscous are both made from semolina but that’s where their similarities end! Giant couscous is more than double the size of African couscous & is dried & toasted (whereas couscous is steamed & dried), which gives it a subtle nutty flavour.

How To Cook

To cook, we bring a pan of salted water to the boil, add in the giant couscous & simmer for 6-8 minutes, until tender. Once cooked, we drain the couscous through a sieve, leave it to cool slightly then fluff up with a fork & dress with the vinaigrette. Dressing the couscous whilst it’s still slightly warm, helps the vinaigrette properly coat each grain of couscous.

Basil Vinaigrette

This basil salad dressing is fresh, vibrant & super quick and easy to make! This stuff is packed with a whole load of flavour and compliments the components of this salad perfectly. It’s proper tasty!

To make this vinaigrette, we use a blender to blitz together fresh basil, garlic, dijon mustard, white wine vinegar & olive oil, until smooth & emulsified. Make sure to season your dressing generously with salt & pepper, to bring the flavour to life!

Fresh Veg

You can use pretty much whatever fresh veg you like in this salad (and some fruits)! I went with cherry tomatoes, red onion & cucumber. Red cabbage, avocado, carrot, roasted red onions & grilled courgettes would work nicely as well.

Feta Cheese

A sprinkling of crumbled up feta on top of each bowl of salad, finishes them off really well. Feta cheese tastes rich, tangy & fairly salty so not only does it taste good, it also helps seasons our salads. If you’re not a fan of feta, grated parmesan would be another good choice.

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Roast Chicken & Giant Couscous Salad

This giant couscous salad is made with leftover roast chicken, fresh veg, feta cheese & a punchy basil dressing. A great way to use up leftovers!
Prep Time20 minutes
Total Time20 minutes
Course: Lunch
Cuisine: Middle Eastern
Servings: 4 Portions
Author: Ben Racey

Equipment

  • Saucepan
  • Mixing Bowl
  • Blender

Ingredients

  • 200 g Giant Couscous

Basil Vinaigrette

  • 60 g Fresh Basil Leaves
  • 2 Garlic Cloves
  • 2 tsp Dijon Mustard
  • 4 tbsp White Wine Vinegar
  • 100 g Olive Oil

Salad

  • 400 g Leftover Roast Chicken (Shredded)
  • 200 g Cherry Tomatoes (Cut Into Quarters)
  • 1 Red Onion (Finely Diced)
  • ½ A Large Cucumber (Sliced)
  • 80 g Feta

Instructions

Giant Couscous

  • Bring a saucepan of salted water to the boil then add in the couscous. Cover with a lid & simmer for 6-8 minutes, until tender. Drain through a sieve then leave to cool slightly.

Basil Vinaigrette

  • Place the basil, garlic, mustard, vinegar & oil into a jug blender or food processor. Season well with salt & pepper then blend until smooth & emulsified.

Salad

  • Use a fork to fluff up the couscous then add into a mixing bowl. Add in the vinaigrette then stir, to coat the couscous.
  • Next, add the chicken, tomatoes, red onion & cucumber into the couscous. Season with salt & pepper then stir, to combine.
  • Spoon the salad into bowls then crumble feta over each. Finish with black pepper then serve.

Notes

1. Leftover Chicken – This salad is a great way to use up leftover roast chicken. For 4 salads, you’ll need 400 grams of chicken, which roughly equates to half a medium chicken.
2. Couscous – Giant couscous is available to buy in most supermarkets & should be cooked in boiling, salted water until tender. We’re cooking our own couscous, so make sure to use dried couscous.
It’s best to mix the vinaigrette with the couscous whilst it’s still slightly warm, as this will make it coat the outside better. 
3. Vinaigrette – The basil vinaigrette can be made up to 3 days in advance & should be stored in the fridge.
4. Making In Advance – Once mixed, the couscous salad can be served straight away or will keep in the fridge for a day or 2, depending on when you cooked the chicken. 

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