Warm chicken and grain salad with green harissa recipe

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Our warm chicken and grain salad with green harissa requires 5 minutes prep and makes extra harissa for future meals

Warm chicken and grain salad with green harissa
(Image credit: Future)
Preparation Time5 mins
Cooking Time12 mins
Cost RangeCheap
Nutrition Per PortionRDA
Calories513 Kcal26%
Saturated Fat2.5 g13%
Fat19 g27%
Carbohydrates26 g10%

This hearty warm chicken and grain salad with green harissa is a filling salad option for lunch.

We have so many 15 minute meals for you to explore and they are perfect for lunch or dinner. With plenty of veggie, meaty, and cheap options, there’s a recipe for any occasion. This warm salad is made with chicken but you could swap it for steak, fish, prawns, or even halloumi. 


  • 6 chicken mini fillets
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 3 tbsp za’atar
  • 1 courgette, thinly sliced into coins
  • 3 spring onions, finely sliced
  • 250g pouch cooked mixed grains (we like Merchant Gourmet Glorious Grains)
  • 30g flaked almonds, toasted
  • Small bunch mint or coriander, roughly chopped
  • Finely grated zest and
  • juice of 1 lemon

For the green harissa:

  • 1 garlic clove
  • 2 spring onions, roughly chopped
  • Large handful mixed soft herbs, leaves picked (we used a mix of parsley, coriander, mint and basil)
  • 2 green chillies, seeds scraped (or leave them in if you like it spicy)
  • Juice of 1⁄2 lemon
  • 1tsp ground cumin
  • 1tsp ground coriander
  • 60ml olive oil




  1. Put a frying pan on a high heat. Toss the chicken with 1tbsp oil, 2tbsp za’atar and some salt, and add to the pan. Cook for 4 minutes on each side, until slightly charred and cooked through.
  2. For the green harissa, blitz the garlic, spring onions, herbs, chillies, lemon juice, cumin, coriander and olive oil in a food processor until finely chopped. Season with salt and more lemon juice if needed. Set aside.
  3. Meanwhile, heat the remaining oil in a pan over a high heat. Add the courgette and cook for 2 minutes until beginning to colour. Add the spring onion, grains and almonds, then cook for 1-2 minutes more until warmed through. Stir through the herbs, lemon and the remaining za’atar.
  4. Season and add more oil and lemon to your taste.
  5. Pile the chicken and grain salad onto a serving platter. Sprinkle over the remaining almonds and drizzle with 3tbsp harissa. Serve with lemon wedges.

Top tips for making our warm chicken and grain salad with green harissa 

Keep the leftover harissa in an airtight container in the fridge for 1-2 days. It’s great with everything from baked potatoes to sandwiches.

What is the difference between green and red harissa paste?

Green harissa uses green chillies as the base with a mix of soft green herbs, olive oil and spices. Most common cumin and coriander. Red harissa uses red chillies and peppers and both are usually seasoned with lemon juice and or zest for some freshness. 

What is harissa made out of?

Harissa is a spice paste made from blended chillies, herbs, spices, and oil. Cumin, coriander, and caraway are common spices and they can be added ground or whole to the mixture depending on the preferred texture of the paste. Some recipes include more garlic and other variations include ingredients such as rose, saffron, and even smoked chillies. 

What is a substitute for green harissa paste?

For something less spicy try swapping for a classic green pesto instead. You’ll still get the herby freshness of basil and then a delicious subtle salty note from the cheese. 

Profile picture of Jessica Ransom
Jessica Ransom

"This is a great way to use up leftovers from your roast chicken too. Shred the meat and finely chop any leftover carrots or veg. Mix through the warm grains and serve with a leafy green salad."

In step two of this recipe you’ll need to blitz the harissa ingredients to a fine paste. Read our full Ninja 3-in-1 food processor review to discover what else you could use it for. 

Ninja 3 in 1 Food Processor - View at Amazon

Ninja 3 in 1 Food Processor - View at Amazon

The smallest blender and pot attachment in this handy 3-in-1 food processor by Ninja is the best option to make your green harissa. There are also settings and attachments to help with slicing and dicing and even kneading dough if you fancy making some flatbread to serve with the salad.

Cheap family meals don’t have to be boring and we’re certain to have a recipe everyone falls in love with. We also have some warm salad recipes for the cooler months when you’re craving a healthy salad. However, when you’re ready for a comforting classic, you can’t beat Joe Wicks chicken pie.  

Georgia Sparks
Junior Food Writer

Georgia Sparks is Junior Food Writer, working across Woman & Home, Woman’s Weekly, Chat and goodto.com. She's passionate about food and is most content knife and fork in hand around the table with family and friends. Georgia works within the Food Team at Future Plc where she can usually be found in the kitchen developing and testing recipes as well as assisting on shoots and writing food features. When Georgia isn’t eating or writing about food she enjoys working on her fitness, being outside and spending time with her friends and family.

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