A few of my favorite recipes for delicious salads happens to be from Nordstrom Cafe. In Orange County, my local Nordstrom is about a 5 minute drive and so I make sure to plan frequent visits for lunch when I’m there. In Salt Lake, our closest Nordstrom isn’t to much much further, but what I find interesting is that at the two Nordstrom restaurants closest to our house they have different styles of restaurants that make the salads a little bit differently than I’m used to. That caused me to do a little investigative work and see if I couldn’t whip up a few of the Nordstrom Cafe Recipes for Salads that I love so much here in my own kitchen, just the way I like them. Affiliate links are included in this post.
Fortunately for me, there isn’t much to my favorite Nordstrom Cafe Recipes for Salads…what you see is what you get. The fresh ingredients are all there, right in front of you, so dissecting the recipe wasn’t too difficult…although one of my favorites…the cilantro lime chicken salad which they just plain don’t even make in other locations that I have found other than OC, is a little trickier to figure out because the dressing is not so simple.
Just seeing those delicious ingredients all laid out in one spot is making me hungry! I love taking pretty pictures of food! Especially because it means you get to eat the props afterwards. 😉
I am a bit lazy and buy a spring mix so I don’t have to wash, dry and chop any lettuce. I know…really lazy! I also buy matchstick carrots because well…for an entire bag it’s about $1.25, and that just isn’t worth it to me to wash, peel and cut carrots into tiny little pieces either. lol!
Actually, you can really buy everything that goes into this salad already pre-made if you feel like it, which makes putting the whole chicken salad recipe together about a 2 minute task. Talk about an easy lunch!
I do cut my own red and yellow bell peppers…I know, applause accepted. ha! Then I simply toss the spring mix, carrots and bell peppers together and it looks so pretty and colorful!
For the chicken I like to buy boneless breasts that are thin cut. These cook up a lot faster and more evenly and chop up for perfect bite size pieces in your salad recipe. I simply sprinkle these with salt and pepper and then cook on the stove in a non-stick pan turning once, until they are cooked through.
Even though you only need about 1/2-1 chicken breast in each salad, I make a few extra because it is great to have these already ready to go in the fridge for other days. It’s best cold on the salad anyway. If you prefer, you can buy pre-cooked chicken strips to use in this salad recipe.
Wonton strips are usually readily available in the salad aisle at the grocery store, but just in case you can’t find them, you can find the full sized wonton wrappers (about the size of 3×3 square) in the refrigerated aisles somewhere. That is what I had to use this time and fry up my own because I was only able to find wasabi flavored wonton strips at the store, and that is not what I was looking for. For these Nordstrom Cafe salad recipes I wanted the simple, salty fried strips of wontons. If you need to fry up your own wonton strips, just cut the wonton wrappers into about 1 inch strips.
Place them in a pot with enough oil covering the amount of wontons you want to fry at one time. Make sure your pot has tall enough sides to prevent the oil from going over the edge once you put your wonton strips in to fry and they expand. Heat up your oil and and place the wonton strips you have cut into the pan slowly. Only put a few in at a time to fry. They cook quickly.
Use a slotted spoon to remove the cooked wontons and place them on a paper towel to drain. Sprinkle with salt while they are fresh out of the oil. Then, add some more to the pot to fry. These keep really well, like chips, in a sealed container in a cool, dry place. I make lots of extras to have on hand for all my Nordstrom Cafe salad recipes.
This recipe might be a little intimidating since it involves frying, but deep frying isn’t scary if you are prepared, go slowly and are patient. All you need is a small pot, enough oil to cover the food you want to fry, a slotted spoon or utensil to get the food out of the pot, and paper towels drain the food. It might seem scary at first, but really it’s not that hard!
Once your wonton strips are drained and cooled, you can finish assembling your salad. Place a sliced chicken breast on top of your bed of spring mix, carrots and peppers. Sprinkle the salad with the sliced almonds (I buy pre-sliced honey almonds) and arrange a few sweet mandarin orange slices around the bowl.
Drizzle the salad with the most important ingredient…the Nordstrom Cafe Ginger Sesame Dressing. You can buy this at Nordstrom, or if you don’t have a Nordstrom nearby, you can make your own with this delicious recipe from the Nordstrom Cookbook. Next, toss a few sesame seeds on top of the dressed salad, top with a generous pile of fried wonton strips and wa-la! You have yourself an amazingly delicious Nordstrom Cafe salad. Isn’t that an easy recipe?
I will eat this salad morning noon and night. It’s great for family dinners, as a side dish if you want to omit the chicken, and definitely for a spring or summer gathering.
- Spring Mix
- Red and Yellow Bell Pepper Strips
- Chopped Matchstick Carrots
- Mandarin Oranges
- Sesame Seeds
- Chicken Breasts
- Fried Wonton Strips
- Nordstrom Ginger Sesame Dressing
- Sliced Honey Almonds
- Toss together spring mix with pepper strips, oranges and carrots. Top salad with slices of cooked chicken breasts, sliced almonds, dressing, sesame seeds and fried wonton strips. Enjoy!
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