Grilled Chicken Salad with Creamy Hazelnut Vinaigrette ~ Greens, Brussels, mushrooms, red onions, dried cranberries tossed in a creamy hazelnut vinaigrette.
If you’ve been reading for any amount of time, you’ve come to know that I love taking one item and making something completely different than its original purpose. And I love the challenge of using things I have on had before they go bad. It’s a mixture of creativity and pressure. And maybe if you’ve been reading for any amount of time, you’ve come to figure out I’m odd.
As it happens, I often have produce odds and ends that need to be used up. The easiest way to use them, in my opinion, is to either make a stir fry or a salad. Both options are quick and loaded with nutrition. For this round of ‘what will she make’ I opted for a salad. I was low on time with having had a sick kid home for days and I’ve been getting further and further behind in work.When I make salads, my biggest issue always lies with the dressing. I am a saucy gal and love to slather my greens in dressings, but I have to watch store-bought dressings. My stomach is fickle with them. One time I can eat a particular flavor, and then the next time I go to eat it, it doesn’t agree with me. I’ve found it is best for me to make them homemade.
Homemade is always fun because rarely is it something I plan out. I mean when I wanted to make blue cheese dressing, I had to actually go buy the bleu cheese, but I mostly make vinaigrettes because I adore vinegar and let’s be honest, they’re simple.
This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #IDSimplyPure #CollectiveBiasWhile rummaging around in the fridge for vinaigrette ingredients, I decided to see how a salad dressing would taste using Hazelnut International Delight Simply Pure. Frankly, I thought it might be a bit of a stretch-even for me who loves whacky things, but I was in full blown creative mode. Once I have an idea in my head, I have to see it through.
During my last trip to Walmart I picked up Hazelnut International Delight Simply Pure. It comes in three flavors: caramel, vanilla, and hazelnut. My mood was screaming hazelnut, plus it only has 5 ingredients including real milk, cream, and sugar. I’ve been enjoying it in my coffee for about week now….why not a salad dressing?I settled on my vinaigrette ingredients and put it together. Good, but it was missing something. It had the sweet and the savory that I love, but it needed a kick. I didn’t want to go spicy, something mild that subtly was there, but didn’t distract from the hazelnut. I opted for paprika. But as with all my recipes, adapt it to your taste. You want sweet, savory and spicy, then add some cayenne or chipotle instead.
Letting it chill in the fridge is important, the flavors meld during that time. In the recipe I didn’t specify how much dressing to use on the salad, as that is such a personal decision. Some of you are dainty, dip just the tips of your fork tines in the dressing and then get your salad folk. Others of you are three parts salad dressing to one part salad folk. No judgement. Add as much dressing as you like. When I tossed it all together, I used about 3/4 of all the dressing I made to toss the entire salad. But I knew the entire salad was going to be consumed in the setting, so dress as needed.
Grilled Chicken Salad with Creamy Hazelnut Vinaigrette
- 1/2 cup Hazelnut International Delight Simply Pure Coffee Creamer
- 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1/4 cup sherry vinegar
- 2 tbsp Dijon mustard
- 1 large shallot; minced
- 2 cloves garlic; minced/grated
- 1 1/2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
- 1/8 tsp salt and pepper; to taste
- Pinch to 1/8 tsp paprika (smoked or regular, not sweet)
- 16 oz mixed greens
- 6 oz Brussels sprouts; trimmed and sliced
- 4 oz sliced mushrooms
- 1/4 cup thinly sliced red onion
- 1/4 cup dried cranberries
- 2 grilled chicken breasts
Mix/whisk all the ingredients together, cover and chill for one hour before using.
Toss together the greens, onions, mushrooms, Brussels sprouts, and cranberries together.
Slice or cube the grilled chicken and mix into the salad.
Shake the dressing, and pour the desired amount over the salad, mix and serve.
Now I know International Delight Simply Pure is designed to add joy and happiness to your morning coffee, but why not to your lunch or dinner as a salad dressing? When my taste-testers sat down to eat the salad, I didn’t tell them what they were getting. I simply said a salad with a homemade creamy vinaigrette. I wanted no prejudice or preconceived ideas in their minds. As each one tried it, I could see the confused delight wash over their faces. They loved it, but couldn’t put their finger on what it was. Once I revealed International Delight Simply Pure creamer, the response was “wow, I would have never thought to use that” and “I can’t believe how good a coffee creamer is as a dressing.” Grilled chicken salad with creamy hazelnut vinaigrette is a quick, simple, and tasty way to enjoy lunch or dinner. I’ll take that as a win for this whacky yet delicious adventure in my kitchen. What creative or whacky ideas do you have for International Delight Simply Pure Creamers? Tell me about it in the comments below.