As I sit down to write about this Cracker Barrel Grilled Chicken and Fresh Vegetable Salad recipe, my mouth starts to water just thinking of the delicious flavors lock up in it. This salad is bursting with colorful, fresh ingredients, smoky and juicy grilled chicken tenders, and crunchy toppings.
If you’re like me, who loves a hearty salad that doesn’t skimp on flavor and satisfies your hunger pangs, then you’re in for a treat. This recipe combines the best of both worlds – chicken salad and grilled chicken n’ fresh vegetable salad.
What makes this grilled chicken and vegetable salad recipe so special is how it features grilled chicken tenderloins—the smoky Southern flavor will have you lickin’ your fingers for more! The succulent meat lightly coated in a crispy fry brings out the best of this homestyle salad.
And served over a bed of fresh greens mixed with crisp cucumbers, cherry tomatoes, and onions tossed in a rich dressing of Italian flavors, you’ll get to experience every bit of the tastes that summer brings. It’s the perfect summer dish to share with your loved ones, friends or when hosting at home.
So let’s head on to the next section to discover why this particular recipe has become one of my favorites.
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
Are you tired of the same old bland and boring chicken salad? Look no further, because this Cracker Barrel Grilled Chicken and Fresh Vegetable Salad Recipe is the solution to all your flavor woes! Trust me, once you try this recipe, you’ll never want to go back to plain old chicken salad again.
First off, this recipe is packed full of fresh and delicious ingredients. Imagine the crisp crunch of cucumbers and onions mixed with juicy grape tomatoes and sweet corn. Add in some smoky and succulent grilled chicken tenderloins, and you’ve got yourself a flavor explosion in every bite.
But it’s not just about taste – this recipe is also incredibly healthy. With low-fat mayonnaise, fresh lemon juice, and plenty of veggies, this salad is bursting with nutrients to fuel your body. Not to mention, by grilling the chicken instead of frying it, we’ve significantly cut down on calories and fat without sacrificing any flavor.
But perhaps my favorite part of this recipe is its versatility. Not feeling like a traditional salad? Try spooning it into a pita pocket for an easy and satisfying sandwich. Or serve it alongside some crackers and cheese for a light and refreshing appetizer.
So don’t settle for boring chicken salad any longer – give this Cracker Barrel Grilled Chicken and Fresh Vegetable Salad Recipe a try. Trust me, your taste buds (and waistline) will thank you!
List of Ingredients You Will Need
- 4 boneless chicken breast halves
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 2 teaspoons honey
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1 clove garlic, grated or crushed
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- freshly ground black pepper
- 1 red onion, finely chopped
- 2 tablespoons fresh parsley, finely chopped
For the salad:
- 1 (11 oz) can of corn, drained or 1 cup frozen corn, thawed
- 1 (4 oz) jar of diced pimientos
- **1 bulb sweet onion】, chopped
- 2 English cucumbers, sliced
- 7 oz mixed salad greens
- 2 medium tomatoes, diced
For the dressing:
- 1/4 cup low-fat mayonnaise
- 1/4 cup Dijon mustard
- 3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 teaspoon honey
- ½ teaspoon celery seed
- Freshly ground black pepper and kosher salt, to taste
- Boiled eggs
- Cheese wedge (Colby cheese)
These ingredients will come together perfectly to make your own copycat Cracker Barrel Grilled Chicken and Fresh Vegetable Salad Recipe.
The Recipe How-To
Now that we have all our ingredients, it’s time to get the grill fired up and start cooking. In this section, I will guide you through the steps of making this delicious Cracker Barrel Grilled Chicken and Fresh Vegetable Salad Recipe.
Grilling the chicken tenderloins
- Preheat your grill to medium-high heat.
- Mix together 1 tablespoon of paprika, 1 tablespoon of kosher salt, and 1 teaspoon of black pepper in a small bowl.
- Sprinkle both sides of 24 chicken tenderloins with the seasoning mix from step 2.
- Grill the chicken for about 3-4 minutes per side or until internal temperature reaches 165°F (74°C).
Tip: Be careful not to overcook the chicken as it can become dry and tough.
Prepping the dressing
- In a medium bowl, whisk together ¾ cup of low-fat mayonnaise, ¼ cup of fresh lemon juice, 2 tablespoons of Dijon mustard, and 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar.
- Stir in 1 teaspoon of honey, 1 minced garlic clove, ½ teaspoon of celery seed, ½ teaspoon of dried parsley, and salt and pepper to taste.
- Cover and chill until ready to use.
Making the salad
- In a large bowl, mix together chopped sweet onion, pimientos, frozen corn, English cucumbers, grape tomatoes or halved cherry tomatoes, and fresh parsley.
- Add grilled chicken tenders that have been cut into bite-sized pieces.
- Pour prepped dressing over salad mixture and toss until well combined.
Tip: The longer this salad sits in the fridge before being served the better it tastes as all of the flavors get to mingle.
This salad is excellent served over fresh greens or sandwiched between bread for a delicious summer sandwich. Add a cheese wedge or two on top if desired!
And there you have it – a perfect copycat Cracker Barrel Grilled Chicken Salad at home!
Substitutions and Variations
Let’s face it, sometimes we either don’t have all the ingredients on hand or we want to switch things up and add a little twist to our regular recipe. Fear not, as there are several substitutions and variations that you can easily make for this Cracker Barrel Grilled Chicken and Fresh Vegetable Salad recipe.
Firstly, if you’re looking to cut down on the calories, the low-fat mayonnaise can be substituted for Greek yogurt or even a mashed avocado if you want to go for a healthier option. Also, if you don’t have any Dijon mustard, regular mustard will do just fine but bear in mind that this may change the overall flavor profile of the recipe.
For those who are looking for some extra heat and spice, add a pinch of cayenne pepper or red pepper flakes to the mix. Additionally, you can swap out the frozen corn and pimentos for jalapeños or habaneros if you fancy something with more of a kick.
If you prefer a different type of meat than chicken tenderloins, try using grilled chicken breast instead. This will give the dish a slightly different texture and flavor but it will still be just as delicious.
If you want to incorporate different types of vegetables into your salad, use your favorites instead. For example, cherry tomatoes, bell peppers or mushrooms can all be added to give your salad an even more colorful and diverse look.
Lastly, if you want to experiment with dressings or toppings, try using balsamic vinegar or honey mustard dressing as an alternative. With so many options available, this recipe can be customized to fit anyone’s preferences or taste buds.
Serving and Pairing
When it comes to serving the Cracker Barrel Grilled Chicken and Fresh Vegetable Salad Recipe, it’s all about keeping things fresh and vibrant. This salad pairs perfectly with a variety of dishes, making it a versatile option for any meal.
One great way to enjoy this salad is as a side dish paired with grilled chicken tenderloins or chicken breast. The flavors of the grilled chicken are complemented by the fresh vegetables and homemade dressing, making for a delicious and satisfying meal.
For those looking for a lighter option, this salad can also be enjoyed on its own as a main course. The protein-packed chicken tenderloins make it filling enough to stand alone as a meal, while the combination of flavors and textures keeps things interesting.
If you’re looking for a more decadent pairing, consider serving this salad with cornbread or cheesy garlic bread. The richness of these sides complements the fresh and vibrant flavors of the salad perfectly, creating a truly indulgent dining experience.
And if you’re feeling really adventurous, why not pair this salad with another southern classic – fried chicken? The crunchiness of the fried chicken lends itself well to the freshness of the vegetables in this salad, creating an unforgettable flavor combination that is sure to please.
No matter how you choose to serve it up, this Cracker Barrel Grilled Chicken and Fresh Vegetable Salad Recipe is sure to be a hit at any table. So go ahead – get creative and have fun experimenting with different pairings!
Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating
Are you planning to make this delicious Cracker Barrel Grilled Chicken and Fresh Vegetable Salad Recipe ahead of time? No worries! This recipe is great for meal prep and can be stored in the fridge for up to 3 days.
To make ahead, I suggest grilling the chicken tenders and preparing the vegetables as directed in the recipe how-to section. Assemble the salad greens, grilled chicken, and fresh vegetables in a large bowl without mixing in the dressing. Cover tightly with cling wrap and store it in the fridge.
When you’re ready to serve, mix the dressing with fresh lemon juice, Dijon mustard, and low-fat mayonnaise. Drizzle over the salad and toss everything together. If you want to adjust seasoning or moisture level, feel free to add more olive oil or vinegar.
Storing leftovers from this recipe is simple! Remove any used lemon wedges before storing salad in an airtight container in your fridge for up to 3 days. Use a plastic knife or spoon when serving from your container to avoid any metal taste that may otherwise form.
Reheating your Cracker Barrel Grilled Chicken and Fresh Vegetable Salad is another simple procedure. To reheat just chicken tenders, heat them up on a plate covered with a damp paper towel and microwave for 30 seconds intervals till heated through.
If you do not have access to a microwave oven,stove top reheating could be done carefully on low heat temperature. To reheat salads leftovers that have already been dressed with salad dressing, microwave reheating should not be attempted. Just warm the chicken separately if desired then add to chilled vegetables before mixing all together. Don’t forget enjoy your fresh chicken n’ vegetable grill salad yumminess again!
Tips for Perfect Results
If you want to impress friends and family by serving the best grilled chicken salad they have ever tasted, then you’re in the right place. While making Cracker Barrel Grilled Chicken and Fresh Vegetable Salad recipe may not be challenging, achieving perfect results requires some attention to detail.
Firstly, it’s important to prepare the ingredients for this recipe as fresh as possible, especially if you’re using chicken breast or tenderloins. Make sure to use firm sweet onions, juicy cucumbers, ripe grape tomatoes or diced pimientos, which will all add bold flavors and bright colors to your dish.
When grilling chicken tenderloins, I recommend pounding them with a meat mallet until they are no thicker than 1/4-inch for more even cooking outcome. Using a digital thermometer when grilling is also a good idea, as it will ensure that your chicken is cooked at an internal temperature of 165°F.
To add an extra smoky flavor to your grilled chicken breasts or tenderloins, I suggest rubbing them with a mixture of paprika, pepper, and kosher salt before placing them on the grill. This combination of spices will give your chicken a delicious savory taste that everyone will love.
When making the salad dressing, whisk together fresh lemon juice, Dijon mustard, low-fat mayonnaise, apple cider vinegar, honey and extra virgin olive oil. Don’t forget to add some garlic cloves or shallots for their unique piquancy. And don’t hesitate to adjust ingredients based on your own taste preferences!
For the best texture outcome in this salad recipe – use crunchy fresh greens and a mix of chopped fresh parsley and dried parsley. These herbs lend some earthiness touch that harmonizes with other flavors in the dish.
Just a few simple tips can help make this Cracker Barrel Grilled Chicken and Fresh Vegetable Salad recipe into a real masterpiece!
As we progress in our BBQ journey, uncertainties may arise. To help you stay informed and on track throughout the process of making this Cracker Barrel Grilled Chicken and Fresh Vegetable Salad Recipe, here are some frequently asked questions, tips and recommendations that will undoubtedly come in handy. Sit tight as we unravel the answers to your nagging questions!
What is grilled chicken salad made of?
For this recipe, we’ll be using either boneless chicken breasts or pre-grilled chicken breasts. To season the chicken, we’ll use a combination of olive oil, salt, pepper, garlic powder, and dried oregano. We’ll pair the chicken with some fresh baby spinach or your preferred salad greens, along with some juicy red onions and colorful bell peppers.
Are grilled chicken salads healthy?
Chicken salad is a nutritious and wholesome dish that provides a good source of lean protein, essential vitamins, and minerals. It is a great option to include in your diet if you’re looking for a healthy meal that is both satisfying and nourishing.
What is in Cracker Barrel Chef salad?
We pile our crisp and refreshing salad greens high with mouth-watering Oven Roasted Turkey Breast, delicious pieces of Sugar Cured Ham and crispy bacon. This flavorful medley is complemented by fresh and crunchy cucumbers, juicy grape tomatoes, a generous Colby cheese wedge, tender house-baked Sourdough croutons, and perfectly boiled eggs. All of this is accompanied by crispy Westminster ® Crackers, making for a delicious and satisfying meal.
In conclusion, this Cracker Barrel Grilled Chicken and Fresh Vegetable Salad recipe is a must-try for any BBQ enthusiast or anyone who enjoys a healthy, fresh and tasty salad. The combination of grilled chicken tenderloins and fresh vegetables with a hint of paprika, Dijon mustard, and low-fat mayonnaise creates a perfect balance of flavors that will leave your taste buds wanting more. Not only is this recipe easy to prepare, but it’s also highly customizable, allowing you to experiment with different ingredients and make it your own.
Whether you’re looking for a quick and healthy lunch or a delicious dinner that’s sure to impress, this recipe has got you covered. Packed with essential nutrients and bursting with flavor, it’s the perfect summer salad for any occasion.
So why not give this amazing salad recipe a try today? Your friends and family will thank you for it. Plus, with so many potential variations and substitutions, you can never run out of new ways to enjoy this Cracker Barrel Grilled Chicken and Fresh Vegetable Salad Recipe. Trust me; this dish is about as good as it gets!
Cracker Barrel Grilled Chicken and Fresh Vegetable Salad Recipe
- 1 1/4 lbs chicken tenderloins, trimmed of any fat
- 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
- kosher salt, to taste
- freshly cracked black pepper, to taste
- 12 cups spring greens
- 2 large vine ripe tomatoes, thickly sliced
- 1 pint grape tomatoes
- 1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
- 1/3 cup red wine vinegar
- 1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
- 3 tablespoons fresh orange juice
- 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 2 garlic cloves, finely minced
- 1 shallot, finely diced
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
- 1/8 teaspoon celery seed
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
Cucumber and Onion Salad
- 1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
- 2 large English cucumbers, thickly sliced
- 1 sweet onion, thickly sliced (Vidalia, Walla Walla, or Maui)
- 2 ears sweet corn, cut off cob or (10 ounce) packages frozen corn, thawed
- 1 (4 ounce) jar pimientos, drained
- 1 cup chow chow relish
- 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
- 3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley or 1 tablespoon dried parsley
- 1 teaspoon garlic salt
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 8 large eggs
- 4 tablespoons low-fat mayonnaise
- 1/2 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/8 teaspoon pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon paprika
- In bowl, stir together corn relish ingredients and mix thoroughly. Refrigerate for at least three hours to marry flavors.
- Whisk together all of the vinegars, orange juice, Dijon mustard, garlic, onion, salt and black pepper in a large bowl; Add oil in a slow stream, whisking until emulsified. Set aside.
- In bowl, toss cucumbers and onions with 1/2 cup of the country vinaigrette. Chill for at least one hour.
- In a saucepan, place eggs, and add cold water to cover. Bring eggs to a rolling boil; immediately cover and remove from heat. Let eggs stand, covered, for 17 minutes.
- Drain, and place eggs in ice water for 10 minutes before peeling or cool running under continuously running cold water. Peel eggs, pat dry, and cut in half lengthwise. Remove yolks, and place in medium bowl, mashing with a fork to a fine crumble.
- Add mayonnaise, mustard, lemon juice, salt and pepper to yolks and mix vigorously until well combined. Pipe or spoon filling into halves. Garnish with a sprinkle of paprika. Chill until ready to serve.
- Season chicken tenderloins with kosher salt and black pepper. Spray nonstick skillet with nonstick spray, add olive oil and heat to medium high. Add seasoned chicken and sear until done turning once (6-8 minutes).
- When ready to serve, divide prepared salad into 4 large salad plates. Spoon onto each serving plate the following: 1/2 cup cucumber and onion salad, 1/3 cup corn relish, 1/2 cup grape tomatoes, 2 thick slices of vine ripe tomatoes and 2 deviled eggs. Top with hot seared chicken, and serve immediately.
YOUR OWN NOTE
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Shara @The Bird BBQ
Shara loves to experiment with different flavors and techniques when it comes to BBQ. She has been perfecting her craft for years and loves hosting backyard BBQs with friends & family. She often comes up with creative recipes that her guests rave about.