The Chicken Salami Recipe You Need

Salami sparks images of cured sausages, richly flavored and filled with specks of marbled fat. Traditional renditions usually showcase pork and beef, but the versatility and mildness of chicken offer a more accessible option for daily enjoyment, maintaining that gratifying texture when properly shaped and dried at home.

The Chicken Salami Recipe You Need
The Chicken Salami Recipe You Need

Let’s delve into the world of flavorful chicken salami and relish the delightful chicken salami recipe!

What's the Essence of Salami?

These robust, smoked sausages originate from Italy and various southern European regions, where preserving meats played a vital role in enhancing flavors, especially in eras lacking refrigeration. Classic salami primarily comprises finely minced pork and beef, infused boldly with garlic, peppercorns, wine, paprika, and an array of other vibrant spices.

The amalgamation is encased in casings and undergoes bacterial fermentation, aided by specific temperature and humidity levels, culminating in its distinctive tanginess and prolonged shelf life.

For home chefs seeking to replicate salami's firmness and robust flavor on a smaller scale, ground chicken serves as an excellent alternative to the traditional pork or richer meats. Employing spice blends, wine, citrus juice, and salt to draw out moisture from the meat mixture, followed by allowing it ample time to tightly set, grants chicken salami its concentrated, pliable, and easy-to-slice texture.

Advantages of Chicken Salami

Although traditional salami crafted from pork and beef boasts immense flavor, it also contains higher levels of saturated fat, sodium, nitrates, and preservatives, causing concern among health-conscious individuals.

Opting for lean ground chicken as the foundation for your homemade salami offers numerous benefits, including:

  • Reduced Saturated Fat and Cholesterol 
  • Higher Lean Protein Content
  • Lower Caloric Density
  • Absence of Nitrites/Nitrates 
  • Transparent Ingredients 
  • Flexibility in Customization & Ensured Food Safety 
  • Cost Efficiency Compared to Commercial Variants

Now, let's dive into seasoning and shaping…

Useful Equipment & Tips for Crafting Chicken Salami

Having the right tools can streamline the entire process:

  • Sharp knives for ingredient mincing
  • Food processor for meat pulsing
  • Generously sized mixing bowls
  • Instant-read thermometer
  • Cheesecloth
  • Kitchen twine
  • Cooling racks
  • Large-rimmed baking sheets

Tips for Optimal Results:

1. Partially freeze the chicken for firmness before mincing.

2. Choose thigh meat for a better fat ratio over breast meat.

3. Gradually incorporate binding agents into the mix.

4. Ensure thorough chilling of the dough before stuffing casings.

5. Pack the mixture tightly into wrappings for better results.

6. Start by drying uncovered in the refrigerator before ambient air drying.

Chicken Salami Recipe
Chicken Salami Recipe

Chicken Salami Recipe

Follow these steps for crafting an exceptional homemade chicken salami that’s bound to amaze!

Reliable Chicken Salami Recipe


  • 2 pounds skinless, boneless chicken (preferably thighs), partially frozen
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 3 minced garlic cloves
  • 1 minced shallot
  • 1⁄4 cup dry white wine
  • 1⁄4 cup lemon juice
  • 1 Tbsp Italian herb blend
  • 4 Tbsp crushed fennel seeds
  • 1 Tbsp crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1⁄4 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil


  1. Partially freeze the chicken for 20-30 minutes until slightly firm. Begin by dicing the chicken into 1-inch cubes. Pulse these cubes in a food processor until a finely ground paste forms.
  2. Transfer the ground chicken to a large bowl. Gradually add and mix in all seasonings, ensuring even incorporation. Taste-test for seasoning adequacy.
  3. Line a rimmed baking sheet with double layers of cheesecloth, leaving excess overhang around the edges. Shape the chicken mixture into a 6-inch log in the center.
  4. Wrap the chicken tightly by folding the cheesecloth over the log, pressing to compress the meat into an even cylinder, then rolling inward from both open sides simultaneously.
  5. Secure the log tightly with kitchen twine tied at 2-inch intervals down its length. Twist and knot the ends tightly.
  6. Place the wrapped chicken salami onto a cooling rack over a secondary rimmed baking sheet lined with paper towels. Refrigerate uncovered overnight, flipping it once halfway through.
  7. The following day, hang the salami log or lay it on fresh paper towel-lined trays to dry at room temperature for about 3 days until the exterior feels firm. Check for any mold development, wiping it off immediately with vinegar if necessary.
  8. For extended storage, wrap the hardened salami log in plastic wrap, then place it in a zip-top bag to remove excess air. It stays fresh in the refrigerator for up to 3 weeks. Slice thinly across rounds as needed for charcuterie trays or dish toppings.

Experiment with Wine, Citrus, and Spices

Modify this foundational chicken salami recipe by experimenting with ingredient additions such as:

  • White wine or vinegar for added tanginess
  • Fresh herbs like rosemary, thyme, or sage
  • Seasonings such as smoked paprika, garlic, onions, or peppers
  • Various cheeses like Parmesan, cheddar, feta, or goat cheese
  • Citrus zest or juice from lemon, lime, or orange
  • Textural elements like nuts or dried fruits
  • Cured meats like pancetta or prosciutto
  • Sweet components like maple syrup or honey

Blend a mix of savory, salty, sweet, and sour components to create a dynamic chorus of flavors in your chicken salami.

Create Authentic Salami Shape by Stuffing Prepared Casings

While the method of wrapping the forcemeat mixture tightly in cheesecloth and shaping it into logs is effective, using edible collagen casings adds a touch of traditional aesthetics to your salami:


  • Lean ground chicken (as previously mentioned)
  • Desired spices and seasonings (as previously mentioned)
  • 2 cups cool water
  • 1 oz Prague Powder 
  • 1 package edible collagen casings


  1. Fully dissolve Prague Powder #2 curing salt in 2 cups of cool water in a bowl. Soak collagen casings in the solution for 10 minutes to rehydrate.
  2. Pat the casings dry. Attach one end to a kitchen faucet, gently running clean water through to rinse the interior. Detach the end, ensuring water completely empties out.
  3. Carefully transfer the forcemeat mixture into the casing tubing using a funnel at the opposite opening, leaving at least 2 inches unfilled at the end. Close the top by tying it closed while eliminating air pockets.
  4. Tie the salami rope at both ends and twist it into links at 5-6 inch intervals. Use a sterilized needle or skewer to puncture any air pockets.
  5. Hang the salami vertically above a tray overnight before air-drying. Monitor it for 30 days until the exterior feels firm.
Chicken Salami
Chicken Salami

Troubleshooting Homemade Chicken Salami

Q: Why does my chicken salami taste bland?

A: Ensure adequate salt up to a 2% ratio to the total meat weight to enhance flavors. Add additional spices, wine, garlic, or citrus to suit personal taste preferences.

Q: What causes off or unpleasant flavors?

A: Rancid tastes stem from fat oxidation. Use the freshest ground chicken available and minimize air exposure when mixing.

Q: Why does my salami remain too soft and moist inside?

A: Patience is key! Allow the chicken salami several weeks refrigerated to desiccate and firm up before slicing.

Q: Is it safe to consume chicken salami without cooking?

A: Yes, the acids and salt act as preservatives, similar to commercial cured raw meats, preventing the growth of pathogens.

Handcrafted Chicken Salami – A Preserved Delight

From traditional Italian-style dry-cured sausages to inventive ground chicken variations infused with global spices, crafting salami offers a fulfilling journey, turning simple ground meat into a delightful charcuterie.

It’s perfect for thinly sliced presentations on impressive grazing trays or as a flavorful garnish for vibrant dishes.

Follow proper guidelines for handling, fermenting, and drying times to ensure superior safety and quality in your homemade creations. Get ready to dazzle guests with your DIY chicken salami prowess!

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