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Tortellini Chicken Salad

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1 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup Dijon mustard
3 tablespoons lemon juice
1/2 cup creamy mustard salad dressing
1 (20 ounce) package frozen cheese tortellini
3 cups cooked cubed chicken breast
1 (16 ounce) package frozen peas
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1 yellow bell pepper, chopped
1 cup grape tomatoes

Tortellini Chicken Salad

This wonderful main dish salad is a cool, crisp, creamy, and crunchy delight for hot summer nights.

  • Serves 8
  • Easy

About This Recipe

You can make a main dish salad, especially chicken salad, out of just about anything. I myself like to dream up new combinations using ingredients I have around the house. In the fridge and freezer, obviously. That’s how this recipe for Tortellini Chicken Salad was born.

I always have frozen cooked chicken (cut from rotisserie chicken), frozen cheese tortellini, frozen baby peas, mustard, mayo, and lettuce on hand. And usually some type of fresh veggie, most often bell peppers, zucchini, and green beans.

And I know this isn’t a popular opinion, but I love bottled lemon juice. I think it tastes just like fresh juice, especially when mixed with other ingredients. Besides, I can never keep lemons fresh for more than a few days, even in the fridge. They sit there until they turn brown and then they get thrown away.

So this salad was born. It’s easy to make, full of flavor, and healthy too. It’s so great to have a big salad in the fridge; you can direct hungry children to serve themselves, and you don’t have to think about what’s for dinner for a couple of days.

Tips for the best Tortellini Chicken Salad:

  • Using a hot rotisserie chicken is the way to get the most tender chicken in this salad. Take off the meat and cube it and immediately add it to the dressing. The meat will absorb some of the dressing and will be super tender and flavorful.
  • Add the tortellini to the dressing while it’s still hot too so it absorbs some of the dressing.
  • After the salad has chilled in the fridge for a few hours, stir it gently again to mix everything.

Why this recipe works:

  • When the chicken is properly cooked, it is almost the same texture as the tortellini, which makes for a wonderful mouthfeel.
  • The salad dressing will be absorbed by the chicken and tortellini as the salad sits in the fridge, adding flavor.
  • You may want to make more dressing and keep it in the fridge, then add to the salad before you serve it. Any leftover dressing can be used in the next salad you make.

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In a large bowl combine the mayonnaise, mustard, lemon juice, and salad dressing and mix well.


Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Cook the tortellini according to package directions until tender.


Meanwhile, put the peas into a colander in the sink. When the tortellini is done, drain over the peas. Add to the dressing in the bowl.


Stir in the chicken and all of the veggies.


Cover and chill the salad for a few hours before serving.


Linda is a bestselling cookbook author and home economist who has written 54 books (53 cookbooks and Medical Ethics for Dummies) since 2005. She has worked for Pillsbury since 1988, on the Bake-Off and other projects. Linda has been a web presence since 2002, developing recipes and teaching people how to cook.

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