Healthy RV Lunch: Orchard Chicken Salad Recipe & The Microsopic RV Fridge

This post may contain affiliate links.

Chicken Salad in the tiny RV refrigerator

With my super huge RV refrigerator, every trip is a challenge. I wonder if there’s a Class B out there with a fridge smaller than mine.  That’s unlikely, because they don’t even MAKE a fridge smaller than mine!  (James checked with Norcold…)  I win the smallest RV fridge contest, people, so don’t even try to top me. In fact, I may even submit it to the Guinness Book of World Records just to make it official.

My hobbit fridge has come to be a welcome challenge, though, because I’ve been forced to discover all sorts of food tricks to help me maximize my space. Take something as simple as a sandwich for lunch. My picky RV pilot has requirements for his sandwich. If you’ve never been here before, James is one of those mildly compulsive system-obsessed geeks who reflexively resists “change.”Is Stef from Fit RV actually Snidely?

This is highly irregular!” I hear that all the time around here. He’s convinced I was put on this planet to thwart his order and routines. Maybe I was, Dudley. Maybe I was.



This is what James needs on his sandwich or he won’t touch it:

  1. Pickles sliced longways
  2. Iceberg (AKA boring) lettuce
  3. Mustard
  4. Light mayo (and for the love of God if it’s Miracle Whip, there’ll be an instant divorce)
  5. Banana peppers
  6. Swiss Cheese
  7. Oven-roasted turkey
  8. White soft bread

Seven of those eight ingredients need the fridge. So that’s about half my fridge space gone just for one stupid sandwich! Unacceptable. That’s where my healthy homemade Orchard Chicken Salad recipe comes in. I had to find an acceptable sandwich alternative to save my fridge space and simultaneously satisfy Mr. Persnickety over there in the driver’s seat.

Here’s some pictures I took of the Orchard Chicken Salad in progress when I made it before heading out on our recent Steamboat Springs, Colorado trip. If you like Subway’s chicken salad, you’ll like this recipe, too. It’s very similar.

Subway Orchard Chicken Salad Recipe Ingredients

 Look how pretty and fresh the ingredients look!

This is what you are seeing in the pic:

  • 1 apple, diced
  • ½ c grapes sliced in half
  • ½ c dried cranberries
  • 2 large celery stalks, diced
  • 3 TBS walnuts, crushed
  • Lemon juice squeeze

Once I dice the apple, I toss it with lemon juice. Then I add all the other tiny diced things to the bowl. Next, I stir in:

  •  ½ cup light mayo
  • ½ cup Greek plain yogurt

Subway Chicken Salad Recipe

I throw it in a Tupperware, and it’s ready for the RV fridge! I don’t add the chicken until during the trip. There are two ways to do this. The best is to grill up chicken for dinner at the RV park and make extra. Chop it up and add about two cups of it to the chicken salad mix the next day before lunch. Your other option is to bring along a 13 oz can of chicken breast, and stir that in right before lunch (canned chicken saves even more fridge space!). You could definitely mix your chicken in before the trip, but since James goes nuts if any smells come from the fridge (are you surprised?) and meats make the worst fridge odors, I wait.

According to James, there are 7! (or 5040) ways to layer his ingredients on a sandwich.  Naturally, only one of them is correct.  I apparently still haven’t figured out that one correct way, which is why I’m so happy with this recipe!  No more pulling out seven ingredients and spending 20 minutes layering them on bread.  I actually put the Orchard Chicken Salad on top of a bed of spinach and eat it just like that, but of course James uses his soft white bread…which is probably a habit he set back during his childhood days of Wonder bread. The good news is that he loves these chicken salad sandwiches! I always feel I’ve won some sort of battle on Planet James whenever I can introduce something new or get him to change one of his previously set habits. I foiled you again, dear hubby James! You haven’t seen the last of me!!!


After 15 years as an educator in both the public K-12 setting and the University level in Special Physical Education, Stef made the leap to her true passion… the fitness world. She’s currently a personal trainer and wellness coach specializing in seniors, medical conditions, and injuries. Stef loves running, cycling, and being “Mugga” to her two favorite mini-humans — Punky and Marshmallow. ❤️

    7 thoughts on “Healthy RV Lunch: Orchard Chicken Salad Recipe & The Microsopic RV Fridge

    1. Bill Pemberton

      Hey guys, I have a recipe for no potato salad that uses cauliflower instead and you’d never know there wasn’t ny taters in it. If you’re interested let me know.

      1. Stefany - Post author

        I’ve had cauliflower potato salad and it’s awesome!!! I like it with Greek yogurt best…is yours mayo based or yogurt based? LOVE all the things you can do with cauliflower! Would definitely be curious to see your version! xoxo

        1. Bill Pemberton

          Mayo based but I can’t see why you couldn’t use Greek yogurt. Directions are from a friend and I rarely use my microwave so I use my bamboo steamer.

          Whole Cauliflower in piece steamed for 8-10 mins in microwave, chopped up fine, 4 boiled eggs chopped up, celery chopped up, green onion chopped up, real mayo (no miracle whip!), salt pepper and a table spoon of mustard. Stir it up, let sit in fridge for a couple hours or more.

    2. Donna Sturkie

      I will be trying this recipe; sounds great and so easy to make and take. I have used grapes, pecans, and grated cheddar cheese in mine but yours looks healthier. I can relate to your husband–mine smells everything he takes out of the fridge. Thanks!

    3. Momster

      LOL…..I had to laugh…..your chicken salad recipe is exactly like mine. No wonder he married you. I usually put mine in a pita pocket if I am making a sandwich. Otherwise, like you it is on lettuce or spinach.

      1. Stef - Post author

        Well I guess that explains why he was so amenable to it; he’d grown up on it! So much for adding something new to his dietary repertoire, LOL!


    Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

    Comment moderation is in use. Please do not submit your comment twice -- it will appear once we have had the chance to review it.