Tonight one of my favorite people came over for dinner. I figured she would be a great choice for taste tester since she's 21 weeks pregnant (for you who might not know how long that is, she's half way through). I've always tried to order the different kinds of salads available at fast food establishments, but have never really been satisfied with the selection or quality. It seems like the lettuce is always wilted...and there was this one time....at McD's....and it involved a cucumber that made me sicker than I care to remember.
I created this salad while trying to come up with an easy, enjoyable, filling, and yummy dish that I could make for lunch or dinner. I really wanted some BBQ, but since I was trying to eat healthier, I decided to turn it into a salad. We didn't have any croutons available, so I cut up some sweet potatoes into 1-inch segments and baked them until crispy. They were the perfect substitute and one that I will continue to use! This salad is what I like to call "topping heavy", meaning that there is a lot more of the filling toppings than of the salad stuff.
BBQ Chicken Salad
6 organic chicken breast tenderloins
3 slices low sodium bacon
1 bag organic spring salad mix (you may need to use a bag and a half depending on how many helpings your family wants!)
Sweet Potato Fries (see recipe on Day 2)
1/2 cup Jack Daniels BBQ Sauce
1/4 cup Low-fat Ranch Dressing
1) place chicken in freezer bag along with 1/4 cup of the BBQ Sauce, set aside the remainder for later. Pre-heat grill. Cook the bacon according to package directions or personal preference. Set aside for later. 2) cut the sweet potatoes into small 1 inch segments and prepare according to recipe (found on Day 2's recipe) 3) slice red onion thinly, cut as much as you would like depending on your personal taste. 4) grate cheddar cheese, again as much as you would like depending on your personal taste. Mozzarella also works really well with this recipe. 5) place chicken on grill and cook through (should be white all the way through and have an internal temp of 165 degrees). Shred chicken (see below for easy shredding tip) 6) mix together remaining BBQ sauce and Ranch Dressing. 7) in bowl, combine all ingredients, cutting the bacon into small pieces. Toss prior to serving, and allow your family to dribble on their own dressing.
Shredding cooked chicken is easy. Place chicken on plate, and using two forks, pull in separate directions. Repeat until all chicken is shredded.
Slicing onion thinly is also easy. Just cut the onion in half and peel off the dry outer layer. Place half of the onion into the freezer. When frozen, you can almost shave off slices with a sharp knife. It's such a nice easy way to get super thin slices of onion.
The family reviews:
Dad: "It was delicious." (I am so surprised...aren't you? This is the same thing he says anytime I make anything and ask for his review. haha)
Picky Pregnant Lady: "It was really good, all the flavors were good. It was really simple and wasn't too much. It's something you could BBQ a lot of chicken and throw together in less than five minutes which makes it really nice." (Sara wanted to be labeled as the picky pregnant lady, she said there isn't too much to say. She ate three bowls. I am very happy I was able to satisfy her!)
9 year old girl: Two thumbs up
8 year old boy: Two thumbs up
3 year old girl (Sara's daughter): "I want pizza" (So we made her cheese pizza)
Baby: Devoured the chicken, cheese and sweet potatoes. Happy smiles and kicks.
Needless to say, I will be making this again. Let me know if you have any questions about the recipe, I am a little tired tonight and am not really thinking while I type.