Here’s how to make dinner better: pretzel crusted chicken salad.

pretzel crusted chicken salad with mustard vinaigrette

Oh oh yes. !!!! This pretzel crusted chicken salad is going to make an appearance in our house at least once a week for the foreseeable future.

pretzel crusted chicken

One of my favorite chicken recipes EVER is my pretzel crusted chicken with hot honey and house sauce. Oh my word. They chicken fingers are absolutely to die for – we love them!

I make the chicken fingers often for dinner and Eddie and I throw them on a salad. It’s seriously one of the best salads I’ve ever eaten. The chicken is so flavorful because the pretzels are so crunchy and salty, obviously! And it just adds so much more than you’d even expect.

sliced pretzel crusted chicken on cutting board

So! Here we are with an ACTUAL pretzel crusted chicken salad.

Can I make this one of my faux oktoberfest recipes?! 

It’s no secret I’m already a fan of this combo. Remember a few years ago when I made a hot pretzel panzanella with mustard dressing? Yes, actually chunks of soft pretzel in the salad, drizzled with mustardy vinaigrette.

I die just thinking about it. It’s SO GOOD.

This is like that, just different. Crunchy pretzel bites, hearty chicken, still the same briney and tangy dressing that I could practically drink! 

pretzel crusted chicken on spring greens

I’m using full chicken breasts here instead of the tenders. I like to pound them out a bit so they are even all over in size, then coat them in the pretzels and bake for 25 to 30 minutes. The result is the most flavorful, tender, crunchy chicken you’ve ever had. 

You won’t be able to stop eating it!!

P.S. you can find me on instagram today showing you how to make this step-by-step.

pretzel crusted chicken salad with onions, cheese, cucumbers and apples

In celebration of all things fall, I added some extra goods to this salad. Apples, because hello! ‘Tis the season. You can chop, slice or grate them. White cheddar, because it’s delicious with the pretzel flavor. Pickled onions for tanginess, cucumbers for a refreshing crunch. 

And it’s all drizzled with a mustard vinaigrette. I make many mustard-y vinaigrettes, sometimes even multiple times per week! But this one is extra good because it complements the pretzels so well.

pouring dressing on pretzel crusted chicken salad

I used to live for a soft pretzel with yellow mustard when I was a kid. It has been about a million years since I’ve had one, so this combo is allowing me to relive all of that over again. 

pretzel crusted chicken salad with mustard vinaigrette

Crunchy pretzel chicken, creamy cheddar, crisp apples and tangy dressing. Literally makes the best pretzel crusted chicken salad ever.

pretzel crusted chicken salad with mustard vinaigrette

I am so there!

pretzel crusted chicken salad with mustard vinaigrette

Pretzel Crusted Chicken Salad

This pretzel crusted chicken salad is packed with spring greens, cheddar, apples, and crunchy crispy pretzel coated chicken. It's a dream!
4.96 from 22 votes
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  • 3 cups mini pretzel twists, (traditional salted ones)
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 8 to 10 cups spring greens or your favorite lettuce
  • 1 honeycrisp apple, chopped
  • 4 ounces cheddar cheese, chopped or grated
  • 4 baby cucumbers, sliced
  • ¼ cup pickled onions

mustard vinaigrette

  • 3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 tablespoon dijon mustard
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely minced or pressed
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil


  • Note: if you haven't made the pickled onions yet, make those to start. They can sit for 45 mins at room temp while you make the rest of the salad. I highly suggest making them ahead and storing in the fridge for weekly use!
  • Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Line a baking sheet with foil and place a wire rack on top. Spray the rack with nonstick spray.
  • Pound the chicken breasts so they are evenly thick all over. Season the chicken breasts with the salt and pepper. Place the pretzels in a food processor and blend until mostly fine crumbs remain. Place the pretzels in a bowl. Stir in the garlic powder.
  • In another bowl, lightly beat the eggs.
  • Take each chicken breast and coat it in the beaten egg. Dredge it through the pretzel crumbs, pressing gently so the crumbs adhere. Place the chicken on the rack and repeat with remaining chicken. Once all the chicken is finished, spray it with avocado or olive oil spray. This is important and really helps things get crispy and golden!
  • Bake the chicken for 12 to 15 minutes. Flip it gently and spray the other side with the oil spray. Bake for another 12 to 15 minutes.
  • While the chicken is baking, assemble the salad. Place the greens in a large bowl with a pinch of salt and pepper. Add in the chopped apples, cheddar, cucumbers and pickled onions.
  • Remove the chicken from the oven and slice it. Add it to the salad and drizzle on the dressing. Enjoy!

mustard vinaigrette

  • In a bowl, whisk together the vinegar, honey, mustard, garlic, salt and pepper. Continue to whisk while streaming in the olive oil. This dressing stays great in the fridge in a sealed container for about a week.

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pretzel crusted chicken salad with mustard vinaigrette

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