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How to Make Low-Glycemic Chicken and Tuna Salads

Being prepared for your lunches at the beginning of the week can actually save you more time during your busy weekdays and help you stay on track with your weight-loss plan. Make a batch of chicken or tuna salad on Sundays to use during the week. Both salads are simpler to prepare than other recipes and incredibly versatile, so you can change up your lunch each day.

You can use chicken or tuna salad to

  • Make a basic sandwich

  • Top off a big bowl of mixed greens

  • Fill a tortilla or wrap

  • Pair with a side salad or a bowl of soup

  • Spread on top of some low-glycemic crackers with a side salad or a bowl of soup

Lemony Chicken Salad

Preparation time: 15 minutes

Yield: 4 servings

3/4 cup finely chopped celery

1/4 cup low-fat mayonnaise

1/4 cup low-fat plain yogurt

1/4 cup finely chopped green onions

2 tablespoons chopped fresh tarragon

3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

1 teaspoon lemon zest

3 cooked boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1/2-inch cubes

1 green apple, cored and cut into 1-inch chunks

Salt and ground black pepper to taste

  1. Mix the celery, mayonnaise, yogurt, green onions, tarragon, lemon juice, and lemon zest in a large bowl to blend.

  2. Stir the 1/2-inch chicken cubes and 1-inch apple chunks into the mayonnaise mixture. Season with the salt and pepper.

Per serving: Calories 240 (From Fat 46); Glycemic Load 1 (Low); Fat 5g (Saturated 1g); Cholesterol 91mg; Sodium 250mg; Carbohydrate 13g (Dietary Fiber 2g); Protein 34g.

Save time by using about 3 cups rotisserie chicken or 3 cups leftover grilled chicken in place of the chicken breasts.

To add some variety to this tasty chicken salad, replace the green apple with 1 cup dried cranberries or 1 cup halved grapes.

Curry Chicken Salad

Preparation time: 15 minutes

Yield: 4 servings

2 teaspoons curry powder

1/4 cup low-fat mayonnaise

1/4 cup plain low-fat yogurt

2 teaspoons honey

1/2 teaspoon ginger

1 teaspoon orange juice

1/2 teaspoon orange zest

3 cups 1/2-inch pieces cooked boneless, skinless chicken breasts

1 cup halved seedless red grapes

1/2 cup thinly sliced green onions

1/3 cup walnuts, toasted and coarsely chopped

Salt and ground black pepper to taste

  1. Add the curry powder, mayonnaise, yogurt, honey, ginger, orange juice, and orange zest to a medium-sized mixing bowl. Whisk to blend.

  2. Stir in the chicken, grapes, green onions, and walnuts. Season with the salt and pepper.

Per serving: Calories 332 (From Fat 128); Glycemic Load 3 (Low); Fat 14g (Saturated 3g); Cholesterol 97mg; Sodium 213mg; Carbohydrate 15g (Dietary Fiber 2g); Protein 36g.

For speedier preparation, use 3 cups rotisserie chicken or 3 cups leftover grilled chicken.

Tuna Salad with Olives and Red Peppers

Preparation time: 15 minutes

Yield: 4 servings

2 tablespoons low-fat mayonnaise

2 tablespoons low-fat plain yogurt

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

One 12-ounce can light tuna packed in olive oil, drained

2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil

1/2 cup chopped and drained bottled roasted red peppers, or 1/2 cup chopped fresh red pepper

10 black olives, sliced

1 large celery rib, chopped

2 tablespoons finely chopped red onion

Salt and ground black pepper to taste

  1. Whisk together the mayonnaise, yogurt, mustard, and lemon juice in a large bowl.

  2. Add the next six ingredients and stir together gently. Season with the salt and pepper.

Per serving: Calories 185 (From Fat 67); Glycemic Load 0 (Low); Fat 7g (Saturated 1g); Cholesterol 13mg; Sodium 496mg; Carbohydrate 8g (Dietary Fiber 1g); Protein 21g.

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