Classic Wedge Salad

There’s something about the wedge salad that satisfies every time! This recipe breaks down all the elements of this classic side dish. Classic is classic for a reason, and the classic wedge salad does not disappoint. Every time we serve it, people ooo and ahh. Because it really is perfection: the crunch of iceberg lettuce against the creamy, savory blue cheese dressing just makes sense. Not to mention it looks stunning! There’s a reason this salad has been impressing us all for 100 years. It’s our favorite to serve with a grilled dinner or sheet pan salmon and asparagus. How do we make it? Here are all the classic elements: and of course, we’ve put our spin on it. What’s in a wedge salad? The first recipe for an iceberg lettuce wedge salad was printed in 1916 in the book Salads, Sandwiches and Chafing Dish Recipes by Marion Harris Neil. It was called “Lettuce Salad with Roquefort Dressing” and calls for smothering lettuce hearts with a creamy blue cheese dressing and hard boiled egg whites cut into rings. Not quite what the salad looks like today! In the 1950’s, the wedge salad took on the blue cheese crumbles and bacon […]

A Couple Cooks – Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

There’s something about the wedge salad that satisfies every time! This recipe breaks down all the elements of this classic side dish.

Wedge salad

Classic is classic for a reason, and the classic wedge salad does not disappoint. Every time we serve it, people ooo and ahh. Because it really is perfection: the crunch of iceberg lettuce against the creamy, savory blue cheese dressing just makes sense. Not to mention it looks stunning! There’s a reason this salad has been impressing us all for 100 years. It’s our favorite to serve with a grilled dinner or sheet pan salmon and asparagus. How do we make it? Here are all the classic elements: and of course, we’ve put our spin on it.

What’s in a wedge salad?

The first recipe for an iceberg lettuce wedge salad was printed in 1916 in the book Salads, Sandwiches and Chafing Dish Recipes by Marion Harris Neil. It was called “Lettuce Salad with Roquefort Dressing” and calls for smothering lettuce hearts with a creamy blue cheese dressing and hard boiled egg whites cut into rings. Not quite what the salad looks like today!

In the 1950’s, the wedge salad took on the blue cheese crumbles and bacon bits that are traditional in today’s salad. By the 1970’s, it became popular at steakhouses where it still is today. Most restaurants and chefs these days like to put their own creative touches on wedge salads (which we’ll cover below). The basic elements of a classic wedge salad are:

  • Iceberg lettuce
  • Blue cheese dressing
  • Tomatoes
  • Chives
  • Bacon
Wedge salad recipe

Try smoky breadcrumbs in place of bacon!

For our spin on the classic wedge salad, we’ve created an innovation instead of the traditional bacon: smoky bread crumbs! You can use breadcrumbs to add the crunchy element that bacon provides, and season them to add a hint of the smokiness of bacon. It’s a fun way to get creative with your wedge salad (and makes it vegetarian). You’ll simply toast the breadcrumbs in a skillet with olive oil and spices until they’re golden, about 3 minutes. Here are the spices you’ll need:

  • Smoked paprika: Also labeled as pimentón at the grocery store, it’s a smoked version of sweet paprika and adds a hint of smoke to everything it touches. It’s worth seeking out here! (Use leftovers for all these smoked paprika recipes.)
  • Onion powder
  • Garlic powder
  • Salt

A fresh spin on blue cheese dressing

This wedge salad uses our favorite blue cheese dressing recipe: classic with a modern spin! Here are a few of the features of this dressing that makes it a go-to:

  • Uses Greek yogurt! Combining the standard mayonnaise with Greek yogurt helps to reduce the calories but still keeps the deliciously creamy texture.
  • Easy to whisk up. This one takes just a few minutes to make! You’ll mash the blue cheese crumbles with a bit of vinegar, then mix it together with the yogurt, mayo and spices.
Wedge salad

Don’t like blue cheese? A few options

Blue cheese is a strong flavor, and we know several people in our immediate circle who aren’t fans. You too? You can mix things up in the wedge salad and use a different salad dressing. Then top with feta cheese crumbles! Here are a few ideas for alternate dressings:

  • Ranch dressing: Try our best Ranch Dressing! It also uses Greek yogurt. You can even add a little smoked paprika to make Smoky Ranch.
  • Feta dressing: Simply make the blue cheese dressing below but use feta cheese instead of blue cheese.
  • Thousand island: Who doesn’t love Thousand Island? It’s not classic for a wedge salad, but still tasty!
Wedge salad

Cutting the wedges in wedge salad

Last up: there are a few things to note when you cut an iceberg head for your wedge salad! Here are a few notes and things to look for:

  • Look for a small to medium iceberg head. Some iceberg lettuce heads you can find at the store are massive! Small to medium makes the best wedge.
  • Remove the outer leaves first. The outer leaves can be dirty and sometimes are damaged. Pull them all off first!
  • Cut into 4 for a small head or 6 for large. If all you can find is a very large iceberg head, you can cut it into 6 wedges. This will make it more manageable on a plate!

Mains to pair with wedge salad…it’s totally versatile!

The classic wedge salad is one of the most versatile salads we know. It goes with nearly anything. Here are some our favorite ways to pair it with a meal…that’s not steak:

More classic salads

Love the wedge? You’ll love these super classic salads too:

This wedge salad recipe is…

Vegetarian and gluten-free.

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Wedge salad

Classic Wedge Salad


1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (5 votes, average: 5.00 out of 5)

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: 4
  • Diet: Vegetarian

Description

There’s something about that classic wedge salad recipe! Crisp iceberg and creamy blue cheese dressing is a match made in heaven.


Ingredients

For the salad

  • 1 recipe Blue Cheese Dressing*
  • 1 small head iceberg lettuce
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, quartered (or 4 sundried tomatoes, chopped)
  • 2 chives, thinly sliced
  • 3 tablespoons blue cheese crumbles
  • Smoky breadcrumbs, for the garnish (1 handful crushed potato chips or crumbled bacon)

For the smoky breadcrumbs

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 cup panko (or homemade breadcrumbs)
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon each onion powder and garlic powder
  • 1/4 heaping teaspoon kosher salt

Instructions

  1. Make the Blue Cheese Dressing
  2. Make the smoky breadcrumbs, if using: Heat the olive oil in a small skillet over medium heat. In a small bowl, mix the panko with the smoked paprika, onion powder, garlic powder and kosher salt. Add them to the skillet and toast, stirring frequently, until golden and crisp, about 2 to 3 minutes. Remove to a bowl. 
  3. Remove the outer leaves of the iceberg head, then slice it into wedges (4 for a small head, 6 for a large head). Prep the chives and tomatoes.
  4. To serve. place a wedge on a plate. Top with dressing, tomatoes, chives, blue cheese crumbles, and smoky breadcrumbs. Serve immediately. 

Notes

*Not a blue cheese lover? Make our Ranch Dressing and add 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika for a smoky flair. Then top with crumbled feta cheese. 

  • Category: Side dish
  • Method: Raw
  • Cuisine: Salad

Keywords: Wedge salad, wedge salad recipe

A Couple Cooks - Healthy, Whole Food, & Vegetarian Recipes

Seared Filet with Blue Cheese Butter.

I’m here to tell you how to make the best filet mignon recipe for Valentine’s Day!  Seriously, this is the best. While I only make filet on super special occasions, we adore it and this recipe is absolutely divine. The steak is so tender and juicy and flavorful. The blue cheese butter is wonderful enough […]

The post Seared Filet with Blue Cheese Butter. appeared first on How Sweet Eats.

I’m here to tell you how to make the best filet mignon recipe for Valentine’s Day! 

filet mignon with blue cheese butter and cacio e pepe brussels

Seriously, this is the best. While I only make filet on super special occasions, we adore it and this recipe is absolutely divine.

filet mignon steaks with salt and pepper

The steak is so tender and juicy and flavorful. The blue cheese butter is wonderful enough to want to eat with a spoon. The combo is classic, restaurant-worthy and makes dinner feel extra fancy. I’d say we all need that right now!

brussels sprouts ready to roast

If you follow me on instagram, you saw me make this amazing filet on Christmas Eve. We wanted to keep things low key but also really wanted filet, because we usually have something like my espresso crusted beef tenderloin.

However, I’ve been cooking my filet mignon steaks like this for years – ever since I first learned how. This is by far the best foolproof recipe I’ve found and it works like a charm every single time if you want to make steaks. It’s pretty quick and easy too! 

butter, herbs, blue cheese in a bowl

The only thing I occasionally do differently is baste with butter from the pan until cooked. I mean, basting with butter is the most delicious thing you can do, but it also requires standing over the hot pan for a few minutes and if you have little kids around, I can assure you this is easier! And just as delish.

Oh! And! The only thing that makes this steak better is topping it with… 

The blue cheese butter!

seared steak in a cast iron skillet with blue cheese butter

Oh my yes please.

Obviously, this is a dream. Remember years and years ago when I made these blue cheese biscuits with red wine butter? Well I almost made pinot noir butter here again but changed it at the last minute. Blue cheese on filet is just such a classic flavor combo. One that is so, so good. 

filet mignon with blue cheese butter and cacio e pepe brussels

The steak is rich and decadent, the blue cheese butter is a bit tangy and creamy – it complements so well. Can’t beat the classic! 

filet mignon with blue cheese butter and cacio e pepe brussels

Perhaps my favorite part of searing a filet is having some filet leftovers. We love using leftover filet to make slider sandwiches (hot or cold!) or even use on my steakhouse pizza. Pretty sure that leftover filet may rank up there as Eddie’s favorite leftover of ALL time.

One the side of this filet, I did a quick roast of my cacio e pepe brussels. This recipe is SO good. Such an easy way to prepare brussels sprouts and makes for a wonderful side dish that everyone loves. When we have this for dinner, I often keep it to a side like the brussels or my parmesan roasted broccoli. The steak is already so filling and decadent, that having a roasted vegetable side dish is the way to go.

filet mignon with blue cheese butter and cacio e pepe brussels

Isn’t is just the perfect special occasion meal?!

filet mignon with blue cheese butter and cacio e pepe brussels

Best Filet Mignon with Blue Cheese Butter

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Seared Filet Mignon with Blue Cheese Butter

This is the best filet mignon you can make at home! Seared to perfection, finished in the oven and topped with blue cheese butter. Divine!
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Resting Time 10 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 4 people
Author How Sweet Eats

Ingredients

  • 4 filet mignon steaks, about 2 inches thick
  • kosher salt and fresh ground pepper
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • cacio e pepe brussels sprouts, for serving

blue cheese butter

  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • cup crumbled blue cheese
  • 2 tablespoons chopped herbs, like parsley, thyme, basil, chives

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F. I highly highly suggest using a cast iron skillet for this - it will get a little smoky, so be sure to use your oven vent or turn on a fan, etc!
  • Heat a cast iron skillet over medium-high heat. Season the steaks all over with salt and fresh ground pepper. Add the 2 tablespoons of butter to the skillet - it will begin to brown and smoke. That’s okay!
  • Place the steak in the skillet right away. Sear on each side, about 2 minutes per side, until deeply golden brown. Add the remaining tablespoon of butter if needed. Once you’ve done both sides, turn off the heat.
  • Place the skillet in the oven and cook for about 5 minutes, for medium doneness. This will depend on the thickness of your steak, but I suggest taking the internal temperature as this will help so much! For rare, you want 120 degrees F. For medium rare, 125 to 130 degrees F. For medium, 135 to 140 degrees F and medium-well, 145 to 150 degrees F.
  • Let the steak rest for 5 to 10 minutes before serving. I top mine with a scoop of the blue cheese butter about 2 minutes before serving, so it gets a bit melty.

blue cheese butter

  • Mash and stir everything together until combined and creamy. You can make this ahead of time and store it sealed in the fridge for a few days.

filet mignon with blue cheese butter and cacio e pepe brussels

Seriously the perfect bite.

The post Seared Filet with Blue Cheese Butter. appeared first on How Sweet Eats.

Sticky Chicken Fingers with Yogurt Blue Cheese Sauce.

It’s official: I’m obsessed with these crispy sticky chicken fingers. They are INCREDIBLE. Saucy, crunchy, crispy, sweet, savory and slightly spicy if you’d like. Oh, and BAKED! Not fried. Absolutely divine and perfect for a snack, fun weeknight dinner, super bowl eats or just… today. Because they’re that good.   It’s no secret we looooove some […]

The post Sticky Chicken Fingers with Yogurt Blue Cheese Sauce. appeared first on How Sweet Eats.

It’s official: I’m obsessed with these crispy sticky chicken fingers.

sticky chicken fingers with yogurt blue cheese sauce

They are INCREDIBLE. Saucy, crunchy, crispy, sweet, savory and slightly spicy if you’d like. Oh, and BAKED! Not fried.

Absolutely divine and perfect for a snack, fun weeknight dinner, super bowl eats or just… today. Because they’re that good.  

crispy baked chicken fingers

It’s no secret we looooove some homemade chicken fingers in this house! Our favorites are these pretzel crusted chicken fingers, but I’ve been making them since I first started the blog 13 years ago, waaaay before kids. Eddie and I always loved using crunchy chicken fingers on salads or just as a part of dinner. In fact, they are probably one of Eddie’s favorite foods.

yogurt blue cheese

Needless to say, I’ve perfected my method over the years. They are baked, super crispy and crunchy and tender inside. They are wonderful and work everytime. 

We love these even more than any fried chicken fingers. Okay, maybe not chick-fil-a, but you know what I mean. Others don’t hold a candle to these.

sticky chicken fingers with yogurt blue cheese sauce

Now, this sticky sauce makes them even MORE incredible. Not even joking when I say I’ve made these twice some weeks by request.

Everyone LOVES them. 

The sauce makes these taste 100% restaurant-worthy.

sticky chicken fingers with yogurt blue cheese sauce

The sauce is a combo of brown sugar, butter, buffalo wing sauce (or you could use hot sauce!) and a drop of water if you need it. It’s divine. It’s fairly indulgent too, but it makes the crispy chicken taste fantastic. I know some of you may ask if you can reduce the sugar… you can try, but this combo is what makes it perfectly sticky and saucy. If you don’t want to coat the chicken in the sauce, you could even use it as a dip. It’s addictive! 

You can also add a little more hot sauce or even a dash of cayenne if you want to make this spicier. I’m a huge baby, so it’s a no for me. But I know some of you love your spice.

sticky chicken fingers with yogurt blue cheese sauce

Oh and the blue cheese! I’ve shared this before on the blog but it’s wonderful here in this recipe. Greek yogurt, some lemon, salt, pepper, lots of blue cheese or gorgonzola. Deeeelish. Super refreshing and a wonderful complement for the chicken. 

And if you’re feeling ranch, here’s my incredible homemade ranch recipe that also is a delish dipper.

Now please run and make them!

sticky chicken fingers with yogurt blue cheese sauce

Sticky Chicken Fingers with Yogurt Blue Cheese

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Sticky Chicken Fingers with Yogurt Blue Cheese Sauce

These sticky chicken fingers are crispy, crunchy and most importantly, BAKED! Serve with the blue cheese yogurt dip and you'll be in heaven!
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 4 people
Author How Sweet Eats

Ingredients

sticky chicken

  • 1 pound chicken tenders
  • kosher salt and pepper
  • garlic powder
  • 1 cup flour
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 3/4 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • ¼ cup seasoned fine breadcrumbs
  • olive oil spray, or nonstick spray, coconut oil spray, avocado oil spray, etc
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • ¼ cup buffalo wing sauce
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 tablespoon water

yogurt blue cheese

  • 1 cup plain greek yogurt
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • big pinch of kosher salt and pepper
  • ¾ cup crumbled blue cheese
  • 2 green onions, thinly sliced

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with a wire rack. Spray the wire rack with nonstick (or olive oil/coconut oil/avocado oil) spray. This is key so the breading sticks to the chicken!
  • Line up 3 bowls or large plates. Put the flour in one, the eggs in the second and stir together both breadcrumbs in the third.
  • Sprinkle the chicken all over with salt, pepper and garlic powder, covering both sides. Dip each piece of chicken in the flour, covering completely. Then dip in the egg, then in the breadcrumb mixture, pressing gently so the crumbs adhere. Place each chicken piece on the sprayed wire rack.
  • Bake the chicken for 12 minutes, then gently flip and bake for 12 minutes more.
  • While the chicken is baking, heat the brown sugar, wing sauce, butter and water in a saucepan over medium heat. Whisk until the sugar dissolves. Let the mixture come to a boil (watch it the entire time!) then reduce it to a simmer and cook for 2 minutes. Turn off the heat and let the mixture cool while the chicken finishes.
  • When the chicken is done, gently lift it on the wire rack with a spatula or tongs. Place it on a plate or in a bowl and drizzle it with the sauce. Don’t let the chicken sit too much in the sauce, because the sauce gets stickier and thicker as it sits, and it will rip off the breading! So toss in the sauce, then serve on plates with the dip. Enjoy!

yogurt blue cheese

  • Mix all ingredients together in a bowl, mashing the blue cheese in as you stir. Serve immediately! You can make this ahead of time and store it in the fridge.

sticky chicken fingers with yogurt blue cheese sauce

Hello this is my friday night!

The post Sticky Chicken Fingers with Yogurt Blue Cheese Sauce. appeared first on How Sweet Eats.

Holiday Cheese Board

This post is sponsored by Kroger. The holidays are here and that means it’s time to party! Today, I am going to show you how to make a festive Holiday Cheese Board that will WOW your family and friends. It’s almost too pretty to eat and if …

This post is sponsored by Kroger. The holidays are here and that means it’s time to party! Today, I am going to show you how to make a festive Holiday Cheese Board that will WOW your family and friends. It’s almost too pretty to eat and if you want to be fancy, you can call…

The post Holiday Cheese Board appeared first on Two Peas & Their Pod.

French Onion Soup with Brûléed Blue Cheese.

If you do one thing this week, make some blue cheese french onion soup! 2020 is wacky, especially since this is the second recipe for french onion soup that I’m sharing in one year. YES. I couldn’t help it. I originally shared this lover’s french onion soup back in February, just in time for Valentine’s […]

The post French Onion Soup with Brûléed Blue Cheese. appeared first on How Sweet Eats.

If you do one thing this week, make some blue cheese french onion soup!

french onion soup with brûléed blue cheese

2020 is wacky, especially since this is the second recipe for french onion soup that I’m sharing in one year. YES. I couldn’t help it.

I originally shared this lover’s french onion soup back in February, just in time for Valentine’s Day. Before the world imploded!

It’s incredible. It’s a classic version that is dreamy and cheesy and oh-so comforting.

caramelized onions in a pot

Then.

Then I saw a recipe for french onion soup with blue cheese. Ummmm. What?

My life was forever changed. I love blue cheese SO MUCH. 

The thought of melty, bubbly blue cheese on top of french onion soup was something I could not erase from my brain. It sounded absolutely incredibly and such an upgrade from the original.

So I made it. A bunch.

We ate it like crazy.

base of french onion soup

And here we are! I’m showing you how to make it because it’s a hug in a bowl. A big bowl of heaven that has to happen in your life. Yes, it’s a treat to make any time of year, but especially delicious right now for this chilly holiday season. If you’re looking for a special meal to make to take the sting off of this weird and lonely holiday season, I’ve the ticket.

French onion soup with blue cheese! It will comfort you and make you the happiest person EVER.

french onion soup topped with baguettes and blue cheese

So in my traditional french onion soup recipe, I like to deglaze the caramelized onions with bourbon. In this recipe, I use red wine.

My preference is pinot noir, but you could use your favorite red. I love the flavor that the red wine adds to the onions as it cooks down – and it complements the blue cheese so well.

french onion soup topped with baguettes and blue cheese

P.S. I’m a little bit of a red wine + blue cheese combo fanatic. Remember when I make these blue cheese biscuits with pinot noir butter?!

french onion soup with brûléed blue cheese

Anyway! The base of the french onion soup is still a classic – it’s the topping that takes it up a notch! I like to make crouton-y baguette slices that fit right in your bowl. Once those are toasted, pile a bunch of blue cheese or gorgonzola and broil the heck out of your bowls.

french onion soup with brûléed blue cheese

OH YES.

french onion soup with brûléed blue cheese

This is seriously one of my dream meals. Caramely, savory french onion soup. Toasty bread. Melty, bubbly blue cheese. Does not get any better than this! 

french onion soup with brûléed blue cheese

Blue Cheese French Onion Soup

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French Onion Soup with Brûléed Blue Cheese

This blue cheese french onion soup is divine! Classic french onion soup topped with a baguette slice and bruleed blue cheese. Dreamy!
Course Soup
Cuisine American
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 35 minutes
Servings 4 people
Author How Sweet Eats

Ingredients

  • 4 to 5 large sweet onions, (about 2lbs worth), sliced
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons red wine
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • cup dry sherry
  • 6 cups beef stock
  • 1 to 2 sprigs of fresh thyme, plus extra for garnish
  • 1 baguette, cut into slices
  • 8 ounces blue cheese or gorgonzola, sliced or crumbled

Instructions

  • Heat a large pot over low heat and add the butter. Once melted, stir in the onions, salt, pepper and thyme. Cook, stirring often, until the onions are softened and are starting to caramelize, about 20 minutes. Stir in the red wine. Cook, stirring often again, for another 20 to 30 minutes until the onions are deeply caramelized and golden in color. Stir in the garlic.
  • Stir in the dry sherry and cook for about 5 minutes. Add in the beef stock and fresh thyme sprigs. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce it to a simmer and cook uncovered for 15 to 20 minutes, until the broth has reduced and thickened a bit.
  • While the soup is simmering, make your baguette slices. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Place the slices on a baking sheet. Brush the bread with olive oil. Place in the oven for 10 to 12 minutes, until golden and crunchy.
  • To serve the soup, ladle spoonfuls of the soup into oven-safe ramekins or crocks. Place them on a baking sheet. Add a sprinkle of blue cheese on top, then a baguette slice. Pile more blue cheese on top. Repeat with remaining crocks. If you have leftover baguettes and blue cheese, I like to top the bread with the blue cheese and place them on a baking sheet too. These are great for extra dippers.
  • Turn the broiler on your oven to high with a rack in the center of the oven.
  • Stick the baking sheet in the oven. Broil for 2 to 3 minutes, or until the cheese is golden and bubbly. Be sure to keep an eye on them so the bread doesn’t burn! Garnish with extra thyme if you wish. And serve!

french onion soup with brûléed blue cheese

Dooooo it.

The post French Onion Soup with Brûléed Blue Cheese. appeared first on How Sweet Eats.

How to Pair Cheese With Halloween Candy (Because We All Need a Little Fun)

That Cheese Plate is a column by Marissa Mullen—cookbook author, photographer, and Food52’s Resident Cheese Plater. With Marissa’s expertise all things cheddar, comté, and crudité—plus tips for how to make it all look extra special, using stuff you pro…

That Cheese Plate is a column by Marissa Mullen—cookbook author, photographer, and Food52's Resident Cheese Plater. With Marissa's expertise all things cheddar, comté, and crudité—plus tips for how to make it all look extra special, using stuff you probably have on hand—we'll be crafting our own cheesy masterpieces without a hitch.


The air is getting colder, the days are getting shorter, and all I want to do is drink pumpkin beer while snacking on chocolate. Last time we paired potato chips with cheese, offering some delicious salty and savory combinations. Now it’s time to switch gears into the world of sweets. Halloween is approaching: It's the time of year when we all devour candy like nobody’s business.

Read More >>

Fuji Apple Chicken Salad with Creamy Champagne Vinaigrette.

Welcome to my lunchtime fave: the fuji apple chicken salad! Made at HOME!  I promise this will be the last fall salad! I mean, I almost promise. Yes, I share a ridiculous amount of fall salads, especially including apples, but they are just the best salad add-in. And this one is SO good.  A year […]

The post Fuji Apple Chicken Salad with Creamy Champagne Vinaigrette. appeared first on How Sweet Eats.

Welcome to my lunchtime fave: the fuji apple chicken salad! Made at HOME! 

fuji apple chicken salad with champagne vinaigrette

I promise this will be the last fall salad! I mean, I almost promise. Yes, I share a ridiculous amount of fall salads, especially including apples, but they are just the best salad add-in. And this one is SO good. 

homemade apple chips

A year or two ago we started getting panera once a week for lunch while working. Mostly, my kids were obsessed with different items, but I have gone through phase after phase of their salads – there are multiples that I really love!

I’ve made the strawberry poppy seed chicken salad before and I’ve made their mediterranean kale salad with quinoa too. And! I make their baja grain bowls frequently. 

toasted brown sugar pecans

Even though we’re cooking constantly here, sometimes the dishes aren’t ready for lunch (as in, they need to be photographed!) and lunch take out has added the best spark to the day. It also helps that the salads are fairly healthy, even when I do want to get a vat of broccoli cheddar soup in a bread bowl. As delicious as this is, it puts me in a food coma and I can’t work after!

fuji apple chicken salad with champagne vinaigrette

A long time favorite of mine has been the fuji apple chicken salad. The apple chips, gorgonzola and vinaigrette bring so much life to the salad! I’ve recreated it almost exactly here, with a few exceptions.

Fuji apple chicken salad perfection:

I made my own apple chips, which aren’t quite as crunchy as store-bought ones. You know? They are still really good! Just never as crisp. You can either make your own or grab some from the store. I use these in salads year round, that’s how much I love them.

pouring champagne vinaigrette on fuji apple chicken salad

Also, I either broil or grill some chicken thighs or breasts. It’s delicious, but not necessary. If I was going to prep these for the week ahead, I’d probably use a rotisserie chicken for ease. Or any leftover grilled chicken!

I make pickled onions instead of using raw red sliced onion in the salad. Because pickled onions are ALWAYS better! The tart, briney flavor is out of this world. You can make these ahead of time, of course. I like to keep a batch in the fridge every week.

fuji apple chicken salad with champagne vinaigrette

Finally, I made a creamy champagne vinaigrette instead of a white balsamic. I modeled this after my creamy balsamic dressing in the blueberry salad this summer (which was such a hit!) and oh my word – it is SO good. I’m pretty sure panera has their dressing bottled if you just want to buy that for an extra legit salad. But mine is super close and SO good. 

fuji apple chicken salad with champagne vinaigrette

I mean, see that texture?! Crunchy and crisp and refreshing and satisfying and hearty! Everything a salad should be.

fuji apple chicken salad with champagne vinaigrette

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Fuji Apple Chicken Salad

This fuji apple chicken salad is a copycat of the delicious version from panera! Topped with a creamy champagne vinaigrette - it's so good!
Course Salad
Cuisine American
Prep Time 30 minutes
For the apple chips 2 hours
Total Time 2 hours 30 minutes
Servings 4 people
Author How Sweet Eats

Ingredients

fuji apple chicken salad

  • 2 fuji apples, thinly sliced (or 1 to 2 cups apple chips)
  • ½ cup pecans
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • pickled onions, for serving
  • 1 cup cubed or shredded chicken breast
  • 8 cups spring greens
  • ½ cup sliced grape tomatoes
  • cup crumbled gorgonzola cheese
  • salt and pepper

creamy champagne vinaigrette

  • ¼ cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 tablespoon heavy cream
  • 2 teaspoons dijon mustard
  • 2 teaspoons honey
  • pinch of salt and pepper
  • ½ cup extra virgin olive oil

Instructions

  • To make the apple chips, preheat the oven to 225 degrees F. Thinly slice the fuji apples and place the slices in a single layer on the sheet. Bake for 1 hour, then flip the slices and bake for 1 more hour. You can do this head of time and store them at room temp in a bag or container.
  • To toast the pecans: heat the pecans in a nonstick pan over medium heat. Add in the brown sugar. Toss and stir constantly, as the pecans toast and the sugar melts. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes until toasty. Remove and spread on a piece of parchment paper to cool. You can leave these whole or chop them.
  • To assemble the salad, toss the greens with a big pinch of salt and pepper. Top with chopped chicken, the apple chips, toasted pecans, chicken, gorgonzola, tomatoes and dressing. Toss well and serve!

creamy champagne vinaigrette

  • Whisk together the vinegar, garlic, cream, mustard, honey and a pinch of salt and pepper. Stream in the olive oil while whisking until emulsified. Serve with your favorite salad! This dressing stays great in the fridge. Just shake or whisk it to combine before serving.

fuji apple chicken salad with champagne vinaigrette

This is heavenly.

The post Fuji Apple Chicken Salad with Creamy Champagne Vinaigrette. appeared first on How Sweet Eats.

Tomato Picnic Toast with Blue Cheese Mayo.

This is anything-but-boring tomato toast.  And it is so, so perfect for the next month or two, when tomatoes are at peak ripeness – for both lunch and dinner! And let’s be real… maybe even breakfast. It wasn’t until I started this blog that I knew about the phenomenon of mayo tomato toast. Sure, we’ve […]

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This is anything-but-boring tomato toast. 

tomato toast with blue cheese mayo

And it is so, so perfect for the next month or two, when tomatoes are at peak ripeness – for both lunch and dinner!

And let’s be real… maybe even breakfast.

sliced heirloom tomatoes

It wasn’t until I started this blog that I knew about the phenomenon of mayo tomato toast. Sure, we’ve had incredible tomatoes come mid-summer here PA (for about five minutes) ever since I was a kid, but we usually served them as salad. Or just sliced with some balsamic. 

P.S. there is a super easy, delicious tomato salad in my next book! It was a staple my mom made when we were growing up. Can’t wait!

crumbled blue cheese in mayo

Let’s just say that since the mayo/toast/tomato meal skipped over me, I’ve felt very deprived ever since discovering it. I mean, it is SO GOOD. So simple. Such a classic. How could I go so long without knowing this was a thing?

Granted, I thought I didn’t like mayo until about five years ago. But that’s neither here nor there.

blue cheese mayo on sourdough toast

So. You know I have made just about a million versions of tomatoes on toast right here on this blog. It’s unbeatable in the summer, the perfect lunch or dinner – just so unbelievably good.

tomato toast with blue cheese mayo

Most of my tomato toast varieties include burrata cheese, so I left that out today in order to really switch things up. Hello BLUE CHEESE!

And not just any old boring blue cheese, We’re making blue cheese mayo. Which is really just a fancy way for saying that we’re stirring crumbled blue cheese into mayo. It’s true. 

tomato toast with blue cheese mayo

It.is.everything. 

Especially slathered on sourdough toast!

Especially topped with ripe tomatoes!

Then sprinkle it all with flaked salt and you’re golden.

This is my perfect picnic toast. 

Whether you’re throwing a blanket in the backyard for a weekday picnic lunch or actually venturing to a park, it’s the best way to elevate your tomato toast or sandwich.

Add a sprinkle of fresh chives and you won’t even want to eat anything else all summer. 

tomato toast with blue cheese mayo

Tomato Toast with Blue Cheese Mayo

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Tomato Toast with Blue Cheese Mayo

This tomato toast is my new favorite lunch! Toasted sourdough spread with blue cheese mayo, topped with sliced heirlooms and sprinkled with salt. YUM.
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Prep Time 15 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Servings 4 people
Author How Sweet Eats

Ingredients

  • ½ cup mayonnaise
  • ¼ cup crumbled blue cheese
  • 4 slices sourdough bread, toasted
  • 1 to 2 heirloom tomatoes, thinly sliced
  • 1 tablespoon fresh chives, for topping
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • flaked salt for sprinkling

Instructions

  • In a bowl, stir together the mayo and blue cheese. Toast the sourdough. Spread it with the blue cheese mayo, then layer with the sliced tomatoes. Sprinkle with flaked salt, pepper and chives. Eat!

tomato toast with blue cheese mayo

But whyyyyy is this so good?

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Smashed Buffalo Cucumber Salad with Avocado.

Oh how I adore this smashed buffalo cucumber salad! It’s refreshing with a touch of heat and also has cheese and avocado which means it’s basically my favorite thing on the planet right now. So! I’d love to know what you’re eating right now. Are you working out of your pantry? Are you grocery shopping […]

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Oh how I adore this smashed buffalo cucumber salad!

This smashed buffalo cucumber salad is filled with tons of buffalo wing flavor! Avocado, blue cheese, peanuts and lime juice make this irresistible.

It’s refreshing with a touch of heat and also has cheese and avocado which means it’s basically my favorite thing on the planet right now.

smashed cucumbers

So! I’d love to know what you’re eating right now. Are you working out of your pantry? Are you grocery shopping once a week, or twice? How is the fresh produce situation in your life?

Not only is it tricky for me to figure out what to share here on the blog, it’s just as tricky in real life to determine what we will eat. I feel like the past month we survived mostly on comfort food, even if it was a salad of sorts. And now that the weather is getting warmer, I’m craving fresher dishes. But that’s also hard since we’re only getting grocery pickup every ten days or so. 

cucumbers with buffalo wing sauce

I’m still making (and wanting!) fresh salads and dishes like this, so I figured why not. After all, you have to know about this deliciousness. 

Enter buffalo smashed cucumbers!

This smashed buffalo cucumber salad is filled with tons of buffalo wing flavor! Avocado, blue cheese, peanuts and lime juice make this irresistible.

Last year I shared this sesame smashed cucumber salad here on the blog and it is SUCH a hit. I actually can’t believe how much I love it and how I often crave that salad, even for a snack. It’s weird. But it’s so refreshing and flavorful at the same time.

Eddie loathes cucumbers so it’s rare that I make that salad for dinner, unless I do just a few cucumbers for Emilia and me. She loves them too, though her preferred method of consumption is by dipping them in guac. 

This smashed buffalo cucumber salad is filled with tons of buffalo wing flavor! Avocado, blue cheese, peanuts and lime juice make this irresistible.

So this bowl!

We do the whole salt + sugar cucumber thing and let them hang out for 20 minutes or so. Enough time to grab the rest of your ingredients. Instead of an actual vinaigrette with this one, we’re doing buffalo wing sauce. It’s spicy and tangy, which is perfect for the fresh, juicy cucumbers.

This smashed buffalo cucumber salad is filled with tons of buffalo wing flavor! Avocado, blue cheese, peanuts and lime juice make this irresistible.

We’re also adding an avocado. It keeps things mild, in a good and creamy way. It also adds some more substance so the salad, you know? So we’re not just eating a bowl of cucumbers.

I love to drizzle the wing sauce on at this point and toss the cucumber and avocado so it really gets coated in the flavor. I also do a splash of fresh lime juice!

Next comes the cheese. I’m all for blue cheese and definitely have it on hand. Plus, it works with the buffalo wing combo. But if you don’t have it or simply don’t like it, use feta, goat or even cheddar. They all work.

This smashed buffalo cucumber salad is filled with tons of buffalo wing flavor! Avocado, blue cheese, peanuts and lime juice make this irresistible.

My favorite buffalo wing trifecta comes next: green onions, chives and cilantro. I love a mix of these three things on ANYTHING buffalo-wing flavored. It really makes a huge difference. 

Finally, a big handful of crushed peanuts. These are everything. They add texture, of course (which I can’t live without) and again, more satiety to the dish! Also wonderful flavor too. 

Doesn’t it look so incredible?!

This smashed buffalo cucumber salad is filled with tons of buffalo wing flavor! Avocado, blue cheese, peanuts and lime juice make this irresistible.

Smashed Buffalo Cucumber Salad

Print

Smashed Buffalo Cucumber Salad with Avocado

This smashed buffalo cucumber salad is filled with tons of buffalo wing flavor! Avocado, blue cheese, peanuts and lime juice make this irresistible.
Course Salad
Cuisine American
Prep Time 35 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Servings 2 to 4 people
Author How Sweet Eats

Ingredients

  • 8 baby seedless cucumbers (or english/seedless cucumbers)
  • 1 pinch kosher salt
  • 1 pinch sugar
  • 1 avocado, sliced
  • 3 tablespoons buffalo wing sauce, or more, if you like it!
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice
  • cup crumbled gorgonzola cheese (or feta, goat, cheddar, etc)
  • ¼ cup chopped peanuts
  • 2 green onions, thinly sliced
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
  • 2 tablespoons chopped chives

Instructions

  • Cut the cucumbers into pieces (some in half, some lengthwise, whatever you want!) and use a jar or meat tenderizer to smash each piece, gently and most of the time, just once. You can discard any seeds that come out, but place all the cucumber pieces in a large strainer. Set the strainer over a bowl. Sprinkle on a generous pinch of salt and sugar, and toss the cucumbers. If you want, you can place a bowl (or something heavy!) on top of the cucumbers to help press out the water. Let the cucumbers sit for 20 to 30 minutes at room temperature.
  • While they sit, prepare the rest of your ingredients!
  • Drain the cucumbers and place them in a large bowl. Toss in the avocado. Add a small pinch of salt and pepper. Drizzle with the wing sauce and lime juice and toss. Sprinkle on the cheese, peanuts, onions, cilantro and chives. Serve immediately!

This smashed buffalo cucumber salad is filled with tons of buffalo wing flavor! Avocado, blue cheese, peanuts and lime juice make this irresistible.

Yes to some green!

The post Smashed Buffalo Cucumber Salad with Avocado. appeared first on How Sweet Eats.

Loaded Chicken Wing Dip with Beer Caramelized Onions.

This wing dip is sponsored by ALDI! I’m so excited to be working with them to bring you some amazing dishes this year! It’s dip season! And I am here for you with this loaded wing dip! Oh my gosh you guys. This app right here is chock-full of EVERYTHING you want to eat (and […]

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This wing dip is sponsored by ALDI! I’m so excited to be working with them to bring you some amazing dishes this year!

It’s dip season! And I am here for you with this loaded wing dip!

This loaded wing dip is full of buffalo wing sauce, BBQ sauce, honey mustard, ranch, blue cheese and tons of cheddar. All the flavors!

Oh my gosh you guys. This app right here is chock-full of EVERYTHING you want to eat (and share!) for the Big Game. Gooey, melty cheese, juicy shredded chicken, three sauces, beer caramelized onions (!!) – seriously everything. I’m pumped! 

beer caramelized onions

Today I’m partnering with ALDI again to bring you a deeeelish spread just in time for the Big Game! They have seriously everything you need for an incredible game spread. Not only am I sharing this fabulous dip, but also a few of their new dreamy hummus and salsa varieties. Oh and their ready-to-go wings! So good, and they come with extra sauce. 

My obsession with ALDI is going wild and I’m happy to report that I brought home a huge haul from there on Sunday. I found every.single.thing. I needed for the week plus for this recipe. Woohoo! 

p.s. If you need any ideas for a spread, check out the incredible tailgate football food spread I made all with ingredients from ALDI! 

wing dip ingredients

So the dip. THE DIP!

First, I cooked a few Never Any! Fresh Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts from ALDI and chopped them up. I love this recipe because you can make the chicken and use it in the dip, use leftover chicken from dinner or use a rotisserie chicken. You really can’t go wrong! 

wing dip ingredients

Oh my word. I am such a lunatic for this dip! The flavor is unreal. It’s more flavorful than just about any other chicken dip I’ve tried.

See, it’s no secret that I’m a buffalo chicken freak. And if you noticed over the holidays, I made the classic dip (after a 10 (or so) year hiatus!) and fell in love again. It was a weird craving that materialized and everyone else in my family was here for it. We burned out on buffalo chicken dip after making it nonstop in the early 2000s, so bringing it back for a night (or, um, and entire holiday) was a delicious surprise.

This loaded wing dip is full of buffalo wing sauce, BBQ sauce, honey mustard, ranch, blue cheese and tons of cheddar. All the flavors!

Then I realized that I love BBQ as much, if not more than, buffalo wing flavors. And I’ve made BBQ chicken dip before, but it wasn’t until someone at our party asked me about it that I considered… combining the two. Yes. Combining them. 

And then adding the other things that we have with wings, so maybe a little smokiness? A little honey mustard? Plus blue cheese and ranch, like usual. Then, trashing it up more with beer caramelized onions! I used the Wernesgrüner Pilsner from ALDI to caramelize and the flavor is over the top.

Oh boy, this is just getting good.

This loaded wing dip is full of buffalo wing sauce, BBQ sauce, honey mustard, ranch, blue cheese and tons of cheddar. All the flavors!

If I didn’t loathe celery so much, maybe I’d even chop that up and throw it in the dip for you too. Alas, I saved it as a dipper. But seriously? We have ALL THE FLAVORS here. Can I just call it ALL THE FLAVORS dip? 

Because that sounds appropriate. 

This loaded wing dip is full of buffalo wing sauce, BBQ sauce, honey mustard, ranch, blue cheese and tons of cheddar. All the flavors!

Let’s go through the wing dip spread!

Front and center, we have the warm, melty, cheesy dip that is divine. I like to serve this with both the Clancy’s Hint of Lime Tortilla Chips and the Savoritz Sea Salt Pita Crackers. There’s a little something for everyone!

ALDI buffalo wing hummus

Along with that, a few dips. The Park Street Deli Avocado Salsa is refreshing and wonderful. It’s great as a dip on its own but also delish on tacos, salads and bowls! The Park Street Deli Buffalo Hummus complements the dip here so well. It’s smooth and creamy – perfect for when you want that buffalo flavor but don’t have enough time (or, friends to eat it with you!) to make a big dip like this. 

My favorite is the Park Street Deli Jalapeno Lime Hummus. Oh it’s just amazing! It bright but creamy, light but with a touch of heat. Everyone loves this one. It’s amazing on wraps or sandwiches too! 

All of these delish snacks – the Park Street Hummuses, Park Street Salsas and Park Street Wings, along with the Clancy’s Hint of Lime Tortilla Chips can be found at Aldi for a limited time! Run and go get them!

ALDI hummus

Because Eddie loves all things wings, I grabbed a few of the Park Street Deli Wings. These are SO GOOD. They come ready to eat – all you have to do is heat them up. I loved the maple BBQ ones so much. 

This loaded wing dip is full of buffalo wing sauce, BBQ sauce, honey mustard, ranch, blue cheese and tons of cheddar. All the flavors!

These extra bites are the perfect things to add to a spread with a hot and bubbly dip! 

Now run run run and get all the flavors.

This loaded wing dip is full of buffalo wing sauce, BBQ sauce, honey mustard, ranch, blue cheese and tons of cheddar. All the flavors!

Loaded Wing Dip

Loaded Wing Dip with Beer Caramelized Onions

This loaded wing dip is full of buffalo wing sauce, BBQ sauce, honey mustard, ranch, blue cheese and tons of chedder. All the flavors!

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 large sweet onion, (thinly sliced)
  • pinch of salt and pepper
  • ⅓ cup Wernesgrüner Pilsner
  • 2 Never Any! Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts, (cooked and shredded)
  • 2 8-ounce blocks Happy Farms Cream Cheese, softened
  • 1 block Reserved Aged Cheddar, (freshly grated)
  • 1 bag Happy Farms Shredded Sharp Cheddar Cheese
  • ⅓ cup crumbled blue cheese, (plus more for topping)
  • ¼ cup Burman’s Hot Sauce, (plus more for drizzling)
  • 1/4 cup Burman’s BBQ Sauce, (plus more for drizzling)
  • ½ cup honey mustard, (plus more for drizzling)
  • 2 tablespoons ranch dressing
  • 2 tablespoons blue cheese dressing

for serving:

  • Park Street Deli Buffalo Hummus
  • Park Street Deli Jalapeno Lime Hummus
  • Park Street Deli Avocado Salsa
  • Clancy’s Hint of Lime Tortilla Chips
  • Savortiz Pita Chips
  • Carrot sticks
  • Celery sticks
  1. Heat a large skillet over low heat and add the butter. Add the sliced onions with the salt and pepper and stir. Cook until slightly softened, about 5 minutes. Add in the pilsner and cook, stirring often, until the onions caramelize, about 25 to 30 minutes.
  2. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Spray a 9-inch baking dish with nonstick spray.
  3. In a large bowl, stir together the cream cheese, almost all the cheese (I save a handful for topping the dip!), the hot sauce, BBQ sauce, honey mustard, ranch and blue cheese. You can use an electric hand mixer to combine things more if needed! Once combined, stir in the caramelized onions and the shredded chicken. Spread the mixture in a baking dish. Top with the remaining cheese. Add on another drizzle of BBQ sauce, buffalo and honey mustard.
  4. Bake the dip for 20 to 25 minutes, until golden and bubbly and hot. Serve immediately with carrot sticks, celery sticks, crackers and chips.

This loaded wing dip is full of buffalo wing sauce, BBQ sauce, honey mustard, ranch, blue cheese and tons of cheddar. All the flavors!

Give me all the flavors!

The post Loaded Chicken Wing Dip with Beer Caramelized Onions. appeared first on How Sweet Eats.