Saturday, January 21, 2012

Chicken Caesar Salad Shakers

I must give partial credit for this post to McDonald's. No, I have not improved on the Big Mac or figured out how to successfully reheat McDonald's fries without them turning into something horrible, but the idea for this post came to me last summer, inspired by McDonald's and a picnic.

I was brainstorming picnic ideas for an outdoor concert I was going to with a group of friends. I thought about taking salad, but the problem with packing a salad is the dressing causes the greens to wilt and become slimy when prepared too far in advance. Then I remembered salad shakers. McDonald's had them on their menu years ago. I decided to pack a bunch of different salad greens, toppings, and dressings, and have each person make their own salad at the concert. It was so fun! Since that picnic, I've taken a salad shaker to work, on road trips, etc. It's the perfect, fresh, portable meal. Out of all the flavor combinations I've tried, my favorite is the chicken caesar salad shaker.

For this salad, you need greens (I had baby spinach in my fridge) chicken, from a store bought rotisserie or oven roasted chicken, parmesan cheese, Creamy Caesar Dressing, and Garlic Parmesan Croutons. This is one of those great no measuring recipes. Just gather your ingredients and get shaking!

For my salad shakers, I use these 16 oz. clear deli containers. They are very inexpensive and can be bought in bulk at a restaurant supply store. However, any container with a tightly sealing lid will do. 

Start layering your salad. Start with a handful of greens....

add some chicken...

add croutons and parmesan cheese,

Repeat! Think of this as a savory parfait. Make sure to stop layering an inch or two from the top of the container so you have room to shake.

Pour in a few tablespoons of Creamy Caesar Dressing. Add less dressing than you think you need at first, shake, then add more if desired. Remember, you can always add more but you cannot undress a salad.

Shake! Top with more parmesan cheese and Garlic Parmesan Croutons.

How easy was that? Have fun experimenting shaking your favorite salad toppings and dressings!

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