From potato salad to ambrosia to a classic Caesar salad, there’s no denying that salads are one of the most versatile meals. And whether you prefer kale or romaine or no leafy greens at all, there is a salad for everyone – and a salad for every season.
And, not to brag, our Autumn Chopped Chicken Salad is indubitably perfect for this season and may just become your new favorite fall salad! Every bite is loaded with crisp pears, tangy cranberries, toasted pecans, feta, and juicy chicken – topped with a simple LifeEssence™ maple vinaigrette that is bursting with flavor and startlingly healthy. Packed with vitamins, minerals, and other key nutrients, this salad and dressing combo provides your body the extra oomph it needs to help you stay healthy when your immune system needs it the most.
Our Secret Immune-Boosting Ingredients
We chose to make this salad with chicken to provide a good source of high-quality protein without being too heavy on fats. Protein is incredibly useful for bolstering your immune system.
We also needed our salad to contain a good assortment of fruits and vegetables to help increase the diversity of vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients. Leafy greens like kale and spinach are terrific sources of antioxidants, vitamin C, vitamin A, vitamin E, and selenium. And pears and dried cranberries are also rich sources of vitamin C and antioxidants. Antioxidants help your body fight free radicals, which can damage your cells; vitamin C and the other nutrients help support immune functions like improving the production of white blood cells (necessary for combating colds, flu, and other ailments).
Lastly, despite tasting sweet and tangy, like a good vinaigrette – our dressing has some surprising benefits too! Naturally, as the LifeEssence™ Powder is a whole-food multivitamin, it contains a comprehensive list of vitamins, minerals, phytonutrients, adaptogens, and everything you could possibly want from a multi (while also having a tasty lemon-lime flavor). But both apple cider vinegar and Dijon mustard have their health perks too! Apple cider vinegar contains vinegar, which can help eliminate bad bacteria and other harmful pathogens; Dijon mustard is rich in antioxidants that can help fight against infections.
Needless to say, this salad is easy, healthy, and loaded with the best fall ingredients. It’s paleo (if you use a goat/sheep milk feta), gluten-free, and guilt-free, and is perfect as a main course, side salad, or contribution to a potluck or party. We hope you enjoy it as much as we do!
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Makes 6-8 servings
1 lb. Chicken breasts (2 large), trimmed and halved lengthwise
½ tsp Garlic salt (or to taste)
1/8 tsp Black Pepper freshly ground
1 tbsp. Olive Oil
3 cups chopped Romaine lettuce, rinsed and dried
3 cups chopped Spinach, rinsed and dried
2 cups chopped Kale, rinsed and dried
2 Pears, cored and sliced
1 cup dried Cranberries
1 cup Pecans, lightly toasted on a dry skillet
½ cup (4 oz.) Feta cheese, crumbled
Vinaigrette3 scoops LifeEssence™ Powder
1/3 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
¼ cup Apple Cider Vinegar
1/3 cup Maple Syrup
2 tbsp. Dijon mustard
Salt & Pepper to taste
Cut chicken breasts in half lengthwise so you have 4 thin cutlets. Season chicken cutlets on both sides with garlic salt and black pepper. Place a large skillet over medium heat with 1 Tbsp. olive oil. Add chicken cutlets and sauté 3-4 minutes per side or until fully cooked through. Transfer to a cutting board and let chicken rest while preparing the salad then chop the chicken into bite-size pieces.
Meanwhile, in a medium dry skillet, toast pecans over medium heat for 5 minutes, tossing frequently or until pecans are fragrant and lightly golden. Remove from heat and cool to room temperature.
In a large mixing bowl, combine chopped romaine, spinach, kale, sliced pears, dried cranberries, toasted pecans, crumbled feta, and cooked chicken.
Combine dressing ingredients in a small mason jar. Cover with lid and shake vigorously to combine. If any separation occurs, shake again just before using. Drizzle vinaigrette over the salad, adding it to taste then toss to combine.