Crispy Chicken and Citrus Salad with Honey-Dijon Vinaigrette

You can make the chicken legs for this hearty salad up to 4 days in advance. Reheated in a skillet until crisp and golden, they crown an otherwise simple salad for a great dinner on busy nights.

plate with Crispy Chicken confit and Citrus Salad with Honey-Dijon Vinaigrette
Photo: Kelsey Hansen
Start To Finish Time:
25 mins
8 cups


  • 1 recipe Slow Cooker Chicken Confit (see below)

  • 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar

  • 2 teaspoon Dijon mustard

  • 1 teaspoon honey

  • ¼ teaspoon salt

  • teaspoon ground black pepper

  • 4 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

  • 8 cup mixed greens (watercress, arugula, spinach, and/or mesclun)

  • 1 large Cara Cara orange

  • ½ cup chopped Candied Nuts

Slow Cooker Chicken Confit

  • 4 bone-in, skin-on chicken leg quarters (drumstick and thigh)

  • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves or 1 teaspoon dried thyme, crushed

  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt

  • ½ teaspoon granulated garlic

  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

  • Nonstick cooking spray


  1. Heat a 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium. Add the chicken confit legs; cook 4 minutes per side or until heated through and the skin is crisp.

  2. Meanwhile, in a large bowl whisk together vinegar, mustard, honey, 1/4 tsp. salt, and 1/8 tsp. black pepper. Gradually whisk in olive oil. Set aside 2 Tbsp. of the vinaigrette. Add greens to remaining vinaigrette in bowl; toss gently to coat. Divide salad among four plates.

  3. Using a sharp knife, cut the top and bottom off the orange. Set orange on cutting board and cut away peel and white pith from top to bottom. Thinly slice orange into rounds and cut orange rounds into pieces. Arrange orange pieces over salads. Place a chicken leg quarter on each plate. Drizzle chicken with reserved vinaigrette and sprinkle salads with Candied Nuts. Serve immediately. Serves 4.

Slow Cooker Chicken Confit

  1. Pat the chicken pieces dry. In a small bowl mix together thyme, garlic, 1 tsp. salt, and 1/4 tsp. black pepper. Rub mixture all over the chicken pieces.

  2. Coat the inside of a 6- to 7-qt. slow cooker with nonstick cooking spray. Place chicken pieces skin side up in an even layer in slow cooker. Cover; cook on high 3 to 3 1/2 hours or low 6 to 7 hours.

  3. Serve chicken immediately or cool slightly, then refrigerate until completely cool. Cover and store in the refrigerator up to 4 days. Serves 4.

Candied Nuts

Preheat oven to 325°F. Line a tray with foil; butter the foil. Spread 3 cups nuts (such as pecans, walnuts, or pistachios) in a shallow baking pan. Bake 10 minutes, stirring once. Meanwhile, in an 8-inch heavy skillet heat 1/2 cup sugar, shaking skillet occasionally to heat sugar evenly; do not stir. Heat until some of the sugar melts (it should look syrupy); stir melted sugar only to keep it from overbrowning. Stir in remaining sugar as it melts. Reduce heat to medium-low; continue cooking 5 minutes or until all sugar is melted and golden. Add 2 Tbsp. butter to melted sugar in skillet, stirring until butter melts and mixture is combined. Remove from heat. Stir in 1/2 tsp. vanilla. Add warm nuts to skillet, stirring to coat. Pour nut mixture onto the prepared tray. Cool completely. Break apart candied nuts. Makes about 4 1/3 cups.Nutrition analysis per serving: 220 calories, 2 g protein, 11g carbohydrate, 20 g total fat (3 g sat. fat), 5 mg cholesterol, 2 g fiber, 9 g total sugar, 1% Vitamin A, 0% Vitamin C, 14 mg sodium, 1% calcium, 4% iron

The slow cooker transforms these simple chicken legs into crisp-skinned, fall apart tender meat that can be served with traditional side dishes or as the star of a French-inspired fork-and-knife winter salad (see recipe.)

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

650 Calories
38g Fat
13g Carbs
64g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 4
Calories 650
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 38g 49%
Saturated Fat 7g 35%
Cholesterol 191mg 64%
Sodium 660mg 29%
Total Carbohydrate 13g 5%
Total Sugars 9g
Protein 64g
Vitamin C 30.5mg 152%
Calcium 89mg 7%
Iron 3.5mg 20%
Potassium 875mg 19%
Folate, total 92.6mcg
Vitamin B-12 0.7mcg
Vitamin B-6 1.1mg

*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.

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