Fuji apple salad with citrus-herb marinated chicken and apple-balsamic vinaigrette


Fuji Apple Salad

Fuji apple salad, November 2011

Panera Bread is one of my favorite fast-food restaurant chains. They serve healthy food made with fresh ingredients and wonderful-tasting all-natural chicken. Their Fuji apple salad is delicious—greens, pecans, grilled chicken, a slightly sweet apple vinaigrette, and topped with crispy apple chips. When I discovered Seneca apple chips in the produce section at my local small-town grocery store JW’s Foods, I was inspired to make the salad at home.

This copycat recipe can be enjoyed as a main-dish salad, or use the components. A side salad of the base ingredients can be tossed with the apple-balsamic vinaigrette, or the citrus-herb marinated chicken can be served on the side or with an entirely different meal. It’s all good.


Fuji Apple Salad
Recipe type: Salad
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 4
  • 1/4 cup olive oil, plus more to coat grill
  • 1 lemon, zest and juice
  • 1/2 orange, zest and juice
  • 1/3 cup parsley, finely chopped
  • 1/3 cup basil leaves, finely chopped, or 2 teaspoons dried basil
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
  • 2 tablespoons apple juice concentrate, or 1 cup apple cider placed in small saucepan and heated over medium high heat about 10 minutes to reduce to 2 tablespoons
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar (white, if available)
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 5 ounces mixed salad greens
  • 1 tomato, seeded and diced
  • 1/4 red onion, sliced and cut into short strips
  • 1/4 cup pecans, toasted (10 min at 300 degrees)
  • 1/4 cup crumbled blue cheese
  • 1 2.5-ounce package apple chips, original flavor
  1. Prepare the chicken: In a medium bowl mix together 1/4 cup olive oil, lemon zest and juice, orange zest and juice, parsley, basil, garlic, and salt and pepper.Place chicken breasts in the bowl and turn to coat. Cover and refrigerate for several hours, turning once or twice. Heat grill or pan and brush oil on grate or place oil in pan. Remove chicken breasts from marinade and cook 4 to 7 minutes on each side until done, or until internal temperature reaches 165 degrees. Baste with marinade during grilling, discarding any unused marinade. Allow to cool slightly and cut into pieces.
  2. Make the dressing: In a small bowl, mix apple juice concentrate or reduced cider and cider vinegar through garlic powder. Stream in olive oil, whisking until mixture is slightly thickened. Add salt and pepper to taste, and whisk to combine.
  3. Assemble the salad: In a large bowl, toss together salad greens, tomato, and red onion with about 1/4 cup of the vinaigrette. Divide into four individual serving bowls. Top each with 1 tablespoon pecans, one fourth of the chicken, and 1 tablespoon blue cheese. Drizzle each serving with remaining dressing and divide the apple chips between the servings. Serve immediately.
Calories: 744; Fat: 45g; Saturated fat: 8g; Unsaturated fat: 0g Carbohydrates: Carbohydrate: 26g; Sugar: 16g; Fiber: 4g; Protein: 57g; Cholesterol: 153mg.


(Chicken recipe adapted from “Grilled Chicken Breast with Citrus Herb Marinade” at bakespace.com. Dressing and salad base recipes adapted from caramel_ca’s post at ths.gardenweb.com/forums.)

Shared at Simply Sugar & Gluten-Free Slightly Indulgent Tuesday (one of the week’s Healthier Highlights) and The Gluten-Free Homemaker Gluten-Free Wednesday.

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