I know I have said this before, but one of the best things about Whole 30 (besides feeling great) is that it turns you into a better cook. When you can’t reach for the grains or dairy you have to get creative. And when that creativity results in something as wonderful as this Chopped Chicken Salad with Homemade Ranch, it’s a beautiful thing indeed. This salad is so good you would never know it was made without buttermilk!
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This salad is a meal unto itself. Finely chopped romaine, diced rotisserie or my pulled chicken, tomatoes, avocados, cucumbers, apple and walnuts all tossed in a homemade dairy free ranch dressing. It’s so delicious it rivals any restaurant chopped salad (actually it out does most restaurant salads but I didn’t want to sound braggadocious)
That Creamy Dreamy Ranch Though…
This ranch dressing is just as creamy as my Buttermilk Ranch but it’s made with my cashew milk recipe. You could also make it with coconut milk or really thick almond milk. I recommend homemade (of course) but you can also use store bought as long as it is unsweetened and compliant.
How I Make It:
I start by making a mayonnaise base. It’s really easy but it is important to follow all the directions I give you in the recipe. Skipping any of them can cause your mayo to not set up. It’s happened to me and it’s a bummer. I know some people have success using a regular blender to make mayo, I do not. I use an immersion blender. So here is how it’s done:
- Place room temp egg, lemon juice and extra light olive oil or avocado oil into a jar with a wide enough opening for an immersion blender to fit in.
- Keep the blender at the bottom of the jar and whirl. Immediately you will see the oil and egg thicken up…it’s mayo magic!
- Then add the cashew milk, herbs and spices and voila! Homemade dairy free ranch that is both Whole 30 and Paleo compliant!
The Stunning Result!
A beautiful, delicious salad you can sink your teeth into. A chopped salad worth the chopping, that’s for sure! And that ranch dressing stays good for five days, trust me you’ll find other uses for it.
The Recipe: Chopped Chicken Salad with Ranch ~ Whole 30/Paleo
Chopped Chicken Salad with Homemade Ranch~ Whole30/Paleo
Yield 4 servings
A Paleo Whole 30 chopped chicken salad that will rock your world!
Ranch Dressing Ingredients:
- 1 cup light olive oil or avocado oil
- 2 eggs, the second is back up ( both eggs need to be room temp, very important!)
- juice of half a lemon (room temp)
- 1/2 cup cashew milk (see recipe link above) or coconut milk
- 2 tablespoons cilantro, chopped
- 1 tablespoon chives, chopped
- 3/4 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 3/4 teaspoon onion powder
- 3/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1 smallish head romaine lettuce, chopped finely
1 medium tomato. diced small
1/2 a cucumber, diced small
1 apple, diced small
1 avocado, diced small
1/2 cup walnuts, chopped
2 cups rotisserie chicken or leftover roasted chicken
Make the dressing:
- Place a room temp egg (have a second egg as back up) and olive in a narrow jar that is wide enough to accommodate an immersion blender.The egg must be room temp. If you forget to take the egg out of the fridge in time, you can place it in a bowl of hot water for 10 minutes to bring it to room temp.
- Add the juice of half a room temp lemon.
- Place an immersion blender into jar with the blender touching the bottom. Turn on immersion blender keeping it at the bottom of the dish. In about 30 seconds or less you will have mayonnaise! Stop blending. If mayo doesn't set up, use that second egg. Add it to the jar and mix again, it almost always saves the day. Add chopped herbs, spices and cashew milk or coconut cream for my dairy free friends, being sure to whisk it before adding) and give one more quick blend to incorporate herbs and spices! Ta-da!
Chop and dice all ingredients and place in a bowl. Toss with desired amount of dressing right before serving. Extra dressing can be saved in the fridge for five days.
Courses Main Course Salad