I’ve eaten a lot of chicken salad in my life. When I moved to the South many moons ago I started to learn about all the different kinds. Although I can’t say I understood there was GREAT chicken salad until I stumbled into a tea room in Little Rock, Arkansas when I lived there. I even dragged my husband to the tea room once expecting him to complain, but he fell in love with their chicken salad as much as I did. We started eating there once a month. I have been comparing all other varieties to that amazing stuff for years. Until I stepped into Chicken Salad Chick.
Not being much for chain restaurants, I tend to go local whenever I can. And there is a lot of really good local chicken salad in Rutherford County, but Chicken Salad Chick has drawn me in. I am a little bit addicted. The opening of the new Chicken Salad Chick in Smyrna just gives me another place to go feed my addiction. And I am so glad.
Chicken Salad Chick makes everything from scratch daily with fresh ingredients. Their menu offers a dozen flavors of chicken salad, two kinds of pimento cheese salad, egg salad, signature sides, soups, salads, kids’ meals, and sweet treats. I love their little sugar cookies. They are just the right amount of sweet after one of their sandwiches. They also offer catering. And have sweet tea!
I am partial to the Cranberry Kelli, which contains dried cranberries and slivered almonds, but I have tried most of the other flavors. This includes new flavors that pop up in the restaurants from time to time, like one with curry. Fancy Nancy is actually closest to the one I fell in love with in Little Rock, but I also like Sassy Scotty and Barbie-Q. Scotty has ranch dressing, bacon, and cheddar cheese, while Barbie has hickory-smoked barbecue flavor.
The chain began when a woman named Stacy Brown went on a quest to find the perfect chicken salad recipe. As the Chicken Salad Chick website goes on to say, “The stay-at-home mom set to work perfecting her own recipe, recruiting her family and neighbors to taste-test, before arriving at the one…Once Stacy had the chicken salad that made her family and friends say “mmm, yes ma’am,” she started dropping off samples of her creation in teachers’ lounges and hair salons, and then began selling door-to-door. Orders poured in; Chicken Salad Chick was born. One day Stacy received a call from Stan with the Lee County Health Department, who told her the home business was illegal. With her chicken salad still in high demand, Stacy and her husband, Kevin Brown, were motivated to open up a carry-out only, humble yet honest-to-goodness restaurant…” It has since then taken off as a franchise under CEO Scott Deviney. At the end of 2021, there were more than 220 restaurants open.
Smyrna’s location is already getting great reviews. One reviewer even talked of an employee going above and beyond.
“Miranda went above and beyond to make sure we got our order, “ wrote the reviewer. “Especially being their first day open. I went to their website and saw they delivered, so I put an order in. I may have been the first online order, I’m not sure, anyway #DoorDash was supposed to deliver but they canceled my order. I was a bit confused so I called the store. They saw #DoorDash canceled on them as well. That’s where Miranda stepped up and low and behold, she pulls up to deliver the food herself. Thank you so much! BTW, it was delicious!”
Chicken Salad Chick
372 Sam Ridley Parkway, Smyrna, Tennessee
Hours: Monday through Saturday, 10:00 a.m. until 8:00 p.m.