I kept the title of this salad pretty generic, but for those of you from Wisconsin, you might recognize this as the Wisco Salad at Ian’s Pizza. It’s the perfect combination of sweet and savory! I go through spurts with this salad where I’ll keep my fridge stocked with cooked chicken and bacon to throw this salad together for lunch. The recipe, as written, will make about three salads.
Here’s what I modified/what to keep an eye out for as you are selecting your ingredients:
- Mixed Greens – nothing to change here. Load up on the greens! I use whatever I have on hand, but my favorite is a mix of kale and arugula. Spinach would work well, too. Trader Joe’s has a Kale/Brussels Sprout/Broccoli/Cabbage bagged mix that is awesome. If I use this, I sauté it for a bit to warm it up.
- Chicken – I add chicken to this to make it a complete meal. I simply bake up a few chicken thighs at 375 seasoned with salt and pepper for about 35 minutes.
- Spicy Pecans – I’m not positive how Ian’s prepares their spicy pecans, but most of the prepared spicy pecans I’ve found in the store have sugar in them. You could definitely make your own, but plain raw pecans or walnuts work great in this recipe.
- Dried Cranberries – most dried cranberries unfortunately are not just dried cranberries. They usually are sweetened somehow. Find a brand that is unsweetened or sweetened with something like apple juice.
- Bacon – Please don’t buy cheap sketchy bacon. Just don’t. Find a good brand without a bunch of added junk or, even better, get it straight from a butcher! If you are on Whole30, you need to find a good bacon that doesn’t have sugar. Pederson Natural Farms makes a great one.
- Blue Cheese – dairy is not Paleo, but I won’t lie – the blue cheese does add a lot to the flavor of the salad, so if you tolerate dairy, go ahead and add it! I made this for lunch on my dairy reintroduction day after Whole 30.
- Maple Balsamic Vinaigrette – Again, I’m unsure of Ian’s specific recipes, but most store bought maple balsamic would have added sweeteners in addition to the maple syrup. I’m using the Maple Mustard Vinaigrette from my Maple Mustard Brussels Sprout Salad. If you are doing Whole 30, maple syrup is not allowed so use a regular balsamic dressing in it’s place.
What are your favorite salads you get when you dine out?
Modified Monday: Bacon Apple and Cranberry Salad (Ian’s Pizza Wisco Salad)
- 1 lb chicken breast, baked and cut into strips
- 4 strips bacon, crumbled
- 1 green apple, cut into thin slices
- 2 Tbsp unsweetened dried cranberries
- 1/4 cup walnuts, chopped
- Greens of choice (I usually use a mix of kale and arugula. Spinach would work great as well)
- Optional: Blue Cheese (if you tolerate dairy – dairy is not Paleo)
- Maple Mustard Vinaigrette (Modify to Whole 30 by omitting maple syrup or using a regular balsamic such as TesseMaes)
- 4 Tbsp olive oil
- 1.5 Tbsp maple syrup
- 1 tsp red wine vinegar
- 2 tsp Dijon mustard
- 1/4 tsp garlic powder
- salt and pepper to taste
- Mix up the ingredients for the Maple Mustard Vinaigrette in a small mason jar. Shake well.
- Plate your greens. I use about two handfuls per salad.
- Top the greens with chicken, crumbled bacon, apple slices, dried cranberries and walnuts (and blue cheese if you are using).
- Drizzle the salad with the Maple Mustard Vinagrette. Mix well.