Chinese Chicken Salad

Chinese Chicken Salad-Fresh and Balanced

When I was a kid, I had a salad that I ordered at Applebee's every time my family went. I felt very grown up and sophisticated ordering from the adult menu, no chicken nuggets for me! I always stated my order proudly and couldn't wait to dive into a bowl of what I thought was a very exotic and adventurous Chinese chicken salad. 

I loved everything about that salad! It was crunchy, bright and a balance of sweet and salty that I couldn't get enough of! When the summer temperatures start to climb, I always get a craving for this cool and crunchy salad. 

Sadly, as an adult I learned that the salad I used to order had as many calories as a cheeseburger. So I set out to create a salad that would take care of my craving, but stay on the light side!

The real secret to this salad is to make your own dressing. A bottled dressing works in a pinch, but take an extra minute to whip out this sweet, salty, spicy and savory dressing! 

Enjoy!

Chinese Chicken Salad-Fresh and Balanced

Chinese Chicken Salad

Makes 6 servings

Ingredients

For the Dressing:

  • 1/4 cup rice vinegar
  • 2 cloves minced garlic
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger 
  • 1 teaspoon Sriracha
  • 1 tablespoon low-sodium soy sauce
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil (caramel brown in color)
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds

 

For the Salad:

  • 1 head romaine lettuce, chopped
  • 1 cup broccoli slaw
  • 1 medium red bell pepper, sliced into thin strips
  • 1 cucumber, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup matchstick carrots
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 1/4 cup green onions, thinly sliced
  • 6 chicken breasts cooked and chopped into bite sized pieces
  • 1 can (15 oz) mandarin oranges, drained
  • 1/2 cup sunflower seeds 
  • 1 lime, cut into wedges

Instructions

Whisk together all ingredients for the dressing. Dressing will save in the fridge for 5 days. 

In a large bowl, toss all salad ingredients except lime wedges together. Evenly distribute salad between six plates and drizzle with one tablespoon of dressing. Serve each salad with a wedge of lime to be squeezed over salad before eating.