Every time I share this dinner on IG I get messages asking for the recipe. I often respond that there is no real recipe because I just throw the ingredients together. BUT there is a method to the madness.
I’ve been making buffalo chicken salads for years because buffalo sauce and ranch is in my top favorite food combos of all time, battling it out for the top spot against banana and peanut butter and garlic and butter.
I’ve tweaked the method over time and finally have it down to a mouth watering science. And I’m not overselling it. The right combination of crunchy and creamy, cold and heat, and overall aesthetic (we eat first with our eyes!) makes this dinner a monthly (if not more often) staple.
Step one: create a crispy base. Yes, mixed greens are packed with nutrients, but save those more tender greens for craisins and goat cheese. For this salad you want a fresh, crisp base that gives you a satisfying CRUNCH when you bite into it. My favorite combo is a blend of iceberg and romaine.
Step two: Hearty toppings. My personal favorites here are cucumber and purple cabbage for added fresh crunch. Then halved grape tomatoes followed by warm, crispy diced chicken tenders. I get mine from Butcher Box and they are excellent.
Step three: Delicate toppings. A sprinkle of finely diced red onion and crumbled blue cheese add a nice sharp contrast of flavors and a salty and smooth component as well.
Step four: Dressing. I’ve tried a lot of dressings and for this particular combination my hands down favorites are Noble Made Buffalo Sauce and Primal Kitchen Avocado Ranch. I crisscross the drizzles of each over the whole salad, but you can mix them and serve them on the side as well.
Step five: Final details. A sprinkle of fresh cracked pepper and chopped cilantro leaves finishes the salad off nicely. And then, you’re ready to dig in!
When set up like a salad bar, it’s a great meal for the whole family. Let the kids put together what they please in a bowl, or separate components onto a dinner plate for a “dippable” salad using their favorite dressings. A great meal for a busy weeknight; I hope you enjoy it as much as we do!
Crispy, fresh, and hearty, this buffalo chicken salad is a delicious combo of heat and creamy coolness- a delicious dinner option! It will be a fast favorite for the whole family, as it’s set up as a salad bar with something for everyone.
Baked chicken tenders
Buffalo wing sauce
Create a crispy base. Wash, dry and chop romaine (or iceberg).
Add hearty toppings. Cucumber and purple cabbage will add some extra fresh crunch. Then chopped crispy chicken tenders and halved grape tomatoes.
Add delicate toppings. A sprinkle of finely diced red onion and crumbled blue cheese add a nice sharp contrast of flavors and a salty and smooth component as well.
Dressing. Drizzle both the buffalo sauce and the ranch over the top of the salad.
Final details. A sprinkle of fresh cracked pepper and chopped cilantro leaves finishes the salad off nicely. And then, you’re ready to dig in!