One of my favorite, favorite salads from Panera Bread is the Fuji Apple Chicken Salad. I think I like it so much because of the little dried apples on top. So darn good! When I was wandering around Target, I saw the Simply Balanced Freeze Dried Apple Chips. Have you had them? They are so yummy and they are the same kind of chips that are on the Panera Salad. So when I opened up my package and had one, I thought, I am soooooooooo making my Panera Copycat Salad!!
This salad is amazing! I actually like it better than Panera’s salad! The chicken is fresh, hot and so moist. I marinated it in orange juice and a pinch of pepper. The lettuce is full of life and the apple chips make it all that much better!!! After all the salad wouldn’t be a Fuji Apple Salad with out the freeze-dried apple chips. In case you haven’t seen the Freeze Dried Apple Chips from Target it’s located with the dried fruit. It’s only 110 calories for the whole package.
Instead of topping the salad with Gorgonzola cheese I used goat cheese, since it is light and very creamy, but feel free to use Gorgonzola if you like it! I also omitted the pecans that come on the salad. I’m just not a huge on having nuts on my salads. I save the nuts for snacking! I did make my own dressing by trying to copy the ingredients in Panera’s dressing. But some of their ingredients were things I have never heard of, so I kind of came up with my own dressing. The dressing is made with apple cider vinegar, rice vinegar, olive oil, garlic powder, salt and pepper. The dressing gives the salad a nice zing.
One thing I love about my salad is that it is fewer calories than the Panera Bread salad.
Here are the nutritional facts: Panera’s Full Size Fiji Apple Salad with no pecans: Calories: 460, Fat: 24, Trans Fat: .05, Cholesterol: 100, Sodium: 670, Carbs: 34, Fiber: 5, Sugar: 21, Protein: 31
My Salad for Full Size is, which is a lot: Calories: 286, Fat: 7.8, Cholesterol: 70, Sodium: 220, Potassium: 451, Carbs: 27.8, Fiber: 7.3, Sugar: 13, Protein: 32
I think my salad stats come in way better!! To save on calories for bread, I served my salad with half a whole grain pita which is 100 calories and has 5 grams of fiber. I think Panera’s french bread is 195 calories. But I do love their french bread baguette. Yummy!
- 8 oz chicken, skinless boneless
- ¼ cup orange juice, freshly squeezed
- 1 tsp. black pepper
- 2 cups romaine lettuce, shredded, divided
- 2 cups mixed spring mix, divided
- 1 cup tomatoes, seeded, diced, divided
- 1 oz goat cheese crumbles, divided or gorgonzola cheese
- 1 pkg. Simply Balanced Apple Chips, divided
- For Dressing:
- 1 tbsp. apple cider vinegar
- 2 tbsp. rice vinegar
- 1 tsp. olive oil
- ¼ tsp. garlic powder
- 1 dash salt
- 1 dash pepper
- Marinate the chicken in the orange juice and 1 tsp. black pepper for at least 30 minutes.
- Drain the marinade from chicken and heat the grill to medium. Place the chicken on the grill and cook for about 5 minutes and flip the chicken for about another 5 minutes; cook until no longer pink.
- Meanwhile, between two plates, add lettuce, spring mix and tomatoes; set a side.
- When chicken is cooked, let it cool for a few minutes and cut into slices. Evenly divide the slices between both plates and place on top of the salad mixture. Top the chicken with goat cheese and apple chips.
- To make dressing; add all of the dressing ingredients in a bowl and whisk until combined. Evenly pour the dressing over each salad.
- Optional topping: add pecans
Well my friends, I am having some major server problems and it took me forever to write this post. I am going to cut it short because I am afraid I will lose my post. Way too scary!!!
Have a great day and be sure to make your self a healthy salad this week!