Here’s an end-of-summer salad recipe that you must try! > Strawberry- Caesar Grilled Chicken and Vegetable Salad
I know what you’re thinking. You’re saying, “Oh my gosh, did she just mix strawberries with greens and pasta?!” The answer is yes. Yes, I did! I added grilled chicken and veggies, and Parmesan cheese too. And then there’s a secret sort of salad dressing mixed in, which I’ll reveal as you continue reading.
Today, I’m sharing about the Greens for Good recipe contest- sponsored by the Newman’s Own® brand. Newman’s Own, inc. donates 100% of their profits after taxes to charities ($400 million since 1982!) So, this isn’t your typical recipe contest… you know, the kind where you enter and you win a small prize and bragging rights? It’s much better than that. The Grand Prize winner takes home a Newman’s Own® gift basket (estimated retail value $100) AND the opportunity for a charity of your choice to receive a $35,000 donation from Newman’s Own®. That’s huge, right? And four First Prize winners receive a Newman’s Own® gift basket (estimated retail value $50) and a $1,000 donation to their chosen charity. So you can think of this as a contest that you’re entering to benefit a charity that means a lot to you.
Here’s your chance to eat some green and give some green! What do you have to do? >> Create a green salad recipe that utilizes one of Newman’s Own® Salad Dressing flavors as an ingredient in the recipe. The salad you create should be inspired by your favorite charity. For more details on how to enter, go to the Newman’s Own Facebook page (or read through to the end of this post where I am sharing all of the details).
To get you started, I’m sharing a salad that I created… inspired by a charity that means a lot to me > No Kid Hungry- Share Our Strength. Share Our Strength is devoted to ending child hunger in America. Their No Kid Hungry campaign connects kids in need with nutritious food and teaches their families how to cook healthy, affordable meals. The campaign also engages the public to make ending child hunger a national priority. This charity means something to me because I was a teacher for 12 years before I got into the recipe biz. I always made sure that my students had healthy food to eat during the school day. It broke my heart when I saw kids eating bits and pieces of junk food for lunch, and many were without a lunch entirely. So this is a charity that I keep an eye on and donate to often!
In my salad recipe creation, I started with a healthy portion of chopped romaine lettuce. Greens are important! Eating them daily will help your body stay healthy and fight disease. I also packed in a good amount of chicken for protein, pasta (because kids love it!), grilled vegetables, and the sweet addition of strawberries. This green salad is sure to give you a healthy boost; plus, the strawberries and pasta make it kid-friendly too. I used Newman’s Own® Caesar Dressing in my recipe, and I blended it with strawberries to create a Strawberry- Caesar Salad Dressing!
I used some of the dressing as a marinade for my chicken.
After marinating for a few hours, the chicken is ready for grilling. It turns out tender and juicy and full-of-flavor from that wonderful strawberry-caesar. I grilled the veggies too- zucchini, bell pepper and corn.
Rotini pasta is tossed with the remaining strawberry-caesar dressing, chopped chicken and veggies, Parmesan cheese and chopped fresh strawberries. It’s all served over a generous pile of fresh greens. Kids will eat this healthy, packed-full-of-veggies salad because they’ll be lured in by the pasta and strawberries.
The strawberry flavor doesn’t come through as much as you might think (it’s definitely not a crazy- weird strawberry salad!) The added strawberries just add sweetness and flavor to the already awesome caesar dressing. It’s the perfect salad to bring to end-of-the-summer barbecues! Now, are you inspired to create a salad of your own for the Newman’s Own Greens for Good recipe contest? Maybe a gorgeous green salad filled with all of your favorites? Maybe there will be quinoa or beans or nuts added in? Maybe you’ll utilize greens that we’ve never even thought of! What else?? I’m sure you have some great ideas
How to enter the Newman’s Own Greens for Good recipe contest:
- Think of your favorite charity, and use that as inspiration for your recipe creation.
- Create a salad recipe that uses one of Newman’s Own salad dressings as an ingredient.
- Visit the Newman’s Own Facebook page at www.facebook.com/newmansown.
- Click on the “Greens for Good” tab.
- “Like” the page, if you haven’t already.
- Fill out the official entry form, enter your recipe and share your charity.
- The contest entry period closes on September 23, so be sure to enter before then!
Strawberry- Caesar Grilled Chicken and Vegetable Salad
Yield: 6 to 8 side dish servings
Prep Time: 35 min
Cook Time: 12 min
MARINADE AND DRESSING:
1 1/2 cups Newman's Own® Caesar Dressing
1 1/2 cups chopped fresh strawberries
2 tablespoons strawberry jam
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
3 cups dry rotini pasta, cooked according to package instructions
1 medium zucchini, trimmed and sliced horizontally
2 yellow bell peppers, trimmed and cut into large pieces
1 corn on the cob, husked and silk strings removed
3 green onions, chopped
1/3 cup shaved or shredded fresh Parmesan
1 cup chopped fresh strawberries
4 cups chopped romaine lettuce
1. Prepare the marinade/dressing and marinate the chicken: Combine the caesar dressing and strawberries in a blender or food processor. Process until smooth. Place 3/4 cup of the strawberry caesar marinade into a large zip bag with the chicken. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours (or overnight is fine too). Add the jam to the remaining mixture and process again. This will be the strawberry caesar dressing that you'll use for the salad. Pour it into another container, then cover and refrigerate until the salad is ready to assemble.
2. Grill the chicken and veggies: Preheat your grill to medium-high heat. Grill chicken on both sides until cooked through. Grill zucchini, bell peppers and corn on the cob on all sides until tender and slightly charred. Remove from the grill to let cool. Chop the chicken, zucchini and bell peppers into chunks. Cut the corn off the cob.
3. Assemble the salad: Place the cooked pasta in a large bowl. Add enough of the strawberry caesar dressing to coat the pasta (don't drown it!) Mix in the chicken, grilled veggies, and green onions. Toss and add more dressing, as desired. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to serve (it's okay to make this several hours ahead- even overnight).
4. For serving: Stir the Parmesan and strawberries into the pasta salad. Sprinkle the bottom and sides of a large serving bowl with the lettuce. Scrape the pasta salad on top of the lettuce lined bowl, and serve.
Disclosure: This post was written in partnership with Newman’s Own® to help spread the word about their Greens for Good recipe contest. Any opinions shared about their products are entirely my own.