Crispy Waldorf Chicken Salad

Crispy Waldorf Chicken Salad

I love salads topped with protein.

Be it chicken, salmon, steak, tuna, or even just beans, I love it all!

Protein topped salads are one of the most satisfying meals out there.

The salad itself loads you up on greens, and all the delicious add-ins help you stock up on fiber-rich fruits, veggies, & nuts.

The fats in the cheese and/or dressing help slow the digestion of your meal (keeping you fuller, longer) and boost your absorption of fat soluble vitamins A, D, E, & K.

The protein topper adds some heft to the meal, and leaves you feeling super satisfied, since protein is the most satiating of all the macronutrients.

Perfection.

Lately I’ve been all about crispy chicken toppers! They’re like homemade chicken tenders, lightly panfried in a skillet. They’re quick, easy, & taste so so so much better than anything store bought. Seriously, look at that beauty: (!!)

Crispy Waldorf Chicken Salad

Simply pound your chicken breasts into thin cutlets, dredge in egg & seasoned panko, and pan fry for a few minutes on each side until golden and crispy. Since the chicken is pounded thinly, it cooks evenly & quickly, and has a fabulous ratio of golden crust to juicy moist chicken. It’s seriously one of the best ways to prepare boneless skinless chicken breasts. YUM!

Crispy chicken pieces + grapes + apples + celery + walnut + herbed blue cheese dressing.

Sounds delicious, right?

The sweet fresh fruit & crisp celery pair perfectly with moist flavorful chicken and the savory-tang of the blue cheese dressing. This salad is sweet & savory done right.

Serve with a slice of grilled baguette or small cup to tomato soup and you’re good to GO.

Enjoy!!

Crispy Waldorf Chicken Salad

Crispy Waldorf Chicken Salad
Prep Time
15 mins
Cook Time
45 mins
Total Time
1 hr
 
Servings: 4
Ingredients
  • 5 oz baby lettuce blend of your choice
  • 1 cup chopped celery
  • 2 cups chopped fuji apple
  • 1 cup halved red grapes
  • 1 cup walnut halves & pieces
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
  • 1 cup crumbled gorgonzola cheese
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 3/4 cup mayonnaise
  • Zest of 1/2 organic lemon
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh chives
  • 1 clove minced garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 cups panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup grated parmesan/romano cheese blend (I use Trader Joe’s)
  • up to 1/2 cup olive oil
  • plastic wrap or waxed paper
Instructions
  1. Place the baby greens, celery, apple, and grapes in a large serving bowl & keep cool in the fridge.
  2. Add the walnut pieces to a small skillet and toast on medium-low heat, stirring often, until fragrant and golden, just a few minutes. Remove from the skillet and let cool, then add to the salad bowl with the greens, celery, and fruit.
  3. Next, make the dressing. In a medium bowl, mix together the red wine vinegar, dijon mustard, gorgonzola, buttermilk, mayonnaise, lemon zest, parsley, chives, garlic, pepper, and salt. When evenly combined, store in the fridge until the salad is ready to assemble.
  4. Finally, make the crispy chicken!
  5. Cut off any extra fat or connective tissue from your chicken breasts, then lay one breast on a large cutting board. Cover with a layer of plastic wrap or waxed paper (to prevent chicken juice splatter), and then pound to 1/4th inch thickness using a meat mallet. If you don’t have one, you can use a heavy bottomed skillet to pound the meat instead.
  6. Pound each chicken breast individually, replacing the plastic wrap or waxed paper as needed, and set them aside on a plate.
  7. In a medium bowl, beat the 2 eggs until smooth & set aside.
  8. On a large plate, mix together the panko, oregano, salt, pepper, and parmesan.
  9. Add roughly 1/4th cup olive oil to a large nonstick skillet. Enough to coat the entire pan with a thin layer for pan frying. Place on the stove and heat over medium-high flame.
  10. Take 1 chicken breast, dip it into the beaten eggs to coat well on both sides, then lay it on the plated panko mixture. Use your hands to turn the chicken cutlet & pat the breading onto all sides.
  11. When the cutlet is well coated with panko, carefully add it to the hot oil in your skillet. While the first chicken cutlet is cooking, repeat the egg-wash & breading process with a second piece of chicken and add it to the hot pan as well. Cook the cutlets 2-3 minutes on each side, until the panko coating is nice and golden and crispy. When the first 2 pieces are done, remove to a plate and set aside.
  12. Add a few more tablespoons of oil to the pan (however much is needed to generously re-coat the skillet) and repeat the entire process for the second two chicken breasts.
  13. Once the chicken breasts are done, let rest for a few minutes, then thinly slice on the diagonal. Place 1/4th of the salad mixture into each of 4 large bowls, drizzle generously with dressing, and top with the the crispy chicken pieces. Enjoy right away!
  14. Store any extra dressing in the fridge & use for dipping veggies or spooning onto veggie-filled pitas. Leftover chicken pieces make great “chicken-nugget” snacks.

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Apple Grapefruit Ginger Juice

Apple Grapefruit Ginger Juice

Mmmm… fresh juice.

I ALMOST asked whether there was a better way to start your morning… but…. coffee.

Nuff said.

But, fresh juice takes a solid second place in my book.

Apple Grapefruit Ginger Juice

My favorite part about fresh juice is the endless flavor combinations.

Fruits, veggies, even herbs & spices. They can all take part.

Right now I’m all about the fall flavors;

  • apples
  • beets
  • carrots
  • celery
  • kale
  • pears
  • pomegranate

🙂

Love love love.

You can make some deliciously rich & earthy juices by combining these seasonal produce items.

This week, however, I happened to pick up a gigantic bag of grapefruit.

Since I’m the only one who likes grapefruit in this house… I knew I could never finish the bag before they started to go south.

Enter, juicing!

I have an amazing Champion Juicer, which I use all the time to make delicious fresh juices.

Yes, it’s an investment, but you end up saving a ton of money when you make your own fresh juice, rather than splashing out $8 a pop at fancy juice shops.

Plus, you know it’s the freshest possible, since you literally made it right before your eyes.

It’s a pretty easy process- just assemble the juicer, turn it on, and run the fruits and veggies through the funnel. Fresh juice drains out of the bottom, and the pulp is ejected out of the tube at the end.

Check out my last juice post for some creative things to do with that leftover pulp, and my opinions on juicing vs blending.

In the meantime, I highly recommend investing in a juicer and making this yummy apple grapefruit ginger juice.

It packs a nice punch with the tang from the grapefruit & zing of the ginger, but it’s mellowed nicely by the sweet apple flavor.

This is a fab breakfast juice to go with a weekend brunch, or a nice pick-me-up on the way to work.  (check out these super awesome sippable mason jar lids– they make it easy to take juice on the go!)

Um, also, if you haven’t put two & two together yet… owning a juicer = super fresh and tasty orange juice, which = amazing fresh mimosas. 😉

Apple Grapefruit Ginger Juice

 

Apple Grapefruit Ginger Juice
Prep Time
10 mins
Total Time
10 mins
 
Servings: 1
Ingredients
  • 3 red apples, cored and cut into quarters
  • 3 grapefruit, peeled & cut into pieces that will fit in your juicer
  • 1 inch piece of fresh ginger, peeled
Instructions
  1. Run the fruit through your juicer, alternating between apples and grapefruit sections. Insert the ginger roughly halfway through the juicing process. Stir the juice with a spoon & serve immediately over ice.
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Orange Energizing Juice

Orange Energizing Juice | ericajulson.com

I really wanted to call this “Halloween Juice,” because it’s so awesomely vibrantly orange & halloween-y!

But logic took over, and I decided to call it “Orange Energizing Juice.”

Because juice is awesome.

Whenever I drink fresh juice (NOT store-bought) my body just giggles with happiness.

It’s like l can FEEL the nutrients seeping into my body & making me feel awesome.

For this recipe, you really do need a juicer (not a blender).

While I love high-powered blenders (like Vitamix) for smoothies, I like to change it up and also make fresh juices from time to time.

I get asked this question all the time, “Which is better, blending or juicing?”

And my answer is BOTH!

They are both awesome, for different reasons.

Pros & Cons of Blending: 

Blending leaves all the fiber in the smoothie, which is fabulous for your gut. It also helps slow down the absorption of the sugars, preventing a blood sugar spike & crash. With blending, you’re more likely to feel full & have steady energy for a longer period of time after drinking. But, that fiber also binds some of the vitamins & minerals, so you don’t actually absorb all of them. Rest assured, you’re still getting plenty of nutrition 🙂 I like to think of blended smoothies as meals. You can make them really filling by adding extras like avocado, banana, nut-butters, chia or flax, the possibilities are endless!

Pros & Cons of Juicing: 

Juicing separates the fiber from the juice & discards it. You’re left with a delicious glass containing just the juice & nutrients from the fruits & vegetables. Since the fiber has been removed, there is nothing slowing down the digestion & absorption of the nutrients. It’s like taking a shot of insta-absorb vitamins.

But the lack of fiber also means there’s nothing slowing down the absorption of the sugars, so you may also get a blood sugar spike (something to be aware of if you’re diabetic or pre-diabetic). If you’re worried about this, try enjoying green juices that use lower-sugar fruits & vegetables. They’re still delicious! I think of juices as snacks / nutrient boosters. They’re definitely not a meal replacement, but they could be a great addition to your routine. Try ’em out & see how they make you feel!

I use a Champion Juicer:

Which I really love. It’s super heavy duty & can make juice out of pretty much anything!

It can also make delicious sorbets & nut butters if you use the blank screen instead of the juicing screen.

It’s a serious piece of equipment, but totally worth it if you’re into juicing. You can save so much money by making your own juice instead of purchasing them from pricey juice bars!

Here’s what went into my juice:

Orange Energizing Juice Ingredients | ericajulson.com

Lots of orange, as promised!

You simply assemble the juicer, turn it on, and feed the items through. The fresh juice comes out of the bottom, and the pulp comes out of the tube.

You can feed most fruits & vegetables through whole, but it’s a good idea to peel citrus fruits first. Otherwise, the rind will clog the juice screen & you’ll get less juice. The rind also tends to impart a bitter flavor that you probably don’t want!

Is it okay if I call this juice beautiful??

Autumn Energizing Juice | ericajulson.com

Orange Energizing Juice
Prep Time
15 mins
 
Servings: 2
Ingredients
  • 5 large organic carrots
  • 2 organic oranges, peeled & cut to fit into juicer
  • 1 organic lemon, peeled & cut to fit into juicer
  • 1 inch chunk of fresh ginger, peeled
  • 2 cameo, honey crisp, or fuji apples, cut to fit into juicer
Instructions
  1. Assemble & turn on your juicer. Feed the fruits & vegetables through, alternating between soft items (oranges & lemons) and firmer items (carrots, apple, ginger).

  2. Catch the juice underneath & enjoy right away or store in an air-tight container in the fridge for up to 3 days. (I like to enjoy mine with a few ice cubes to make it extra refreshing).
  3. Discard the pulp, or repurpose it in other recipes.

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