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Recipe courtesy of Mark Thomas

Sweet Tea-Brined Chicken Sandwich

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  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 4 hr 30 min (includes cooling and brining times)
  • Active: 30 min
  • Yield: 4 servings
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Sugar, as needed

8 cups freshly brewed tea

1 cup canola oil

1/2 cup pickling spice 

1 tablespoon granulated garlic

1 tablespoon granulated onion

1 tablespoon kosher salt

1 1/2 teaspoons celery salt

1 1/2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper

4 large boneless, skinless chicken breasts

1 cup mayonnaise

1/2 cup pecans 

1/4 cup honey 

1 apple, diced

6 large croissants, halved

Iceberg lettuce, for serving

Tomato slices, for serving

Red onion slices, for serving


  1. Sweeten the tea to taste, then add the canola oil, pickling spice, garlic, onion, kosher salt, celery salt and black pepper while it's still hot. Refrigerate until cool, then add the chicken breasts to the brine. Refrigerate for 4 to 8 hours.
  2. When ready to cook the chicken, preheat a grill to 375 degrees F.
  3. Remove the chicken from the brine and grill until an instant-read thermometer inserted in the middle registers 165 degrees F, 3 to 5 minutes per side. Let the chicken cool, then dice it.
  4. Add the diced chicken, mayonnaise, pecans, honey and apple to a bowl and toss to combine. Put a large scoop of chicken salad on each croissant bottom, then top with lettuce, tomato, red onion and the croissant tops.
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