Who says salads have to be boring? Definitely not Panera Bread – their salads are full of colors, flavors, and all kinds of delicious ingredients. Today, we’re sharing with you a Copycat Panera Spicy Thai Salad With Chicken recipe, so you can make this popular salad from home. The secret to this recipe is in the dressing. It’s a Peanut-Chili Vinaigrette with just the right amount of spices and seasonings to give this salad a spicy kick. If you prefer your salad a little milder, you can either reduce the amount of red pepper flakes or skip it. Be sure to prepare the dressing ahead of time and let it chill in the refrigerator before serving.
For preparing the chicken, you could cook boneless, skinless chicken breast, or you could use a fully-cooked rotisserie chicken, which will reduce the preparation time. You could also serve this as a vegetarian meal, and skip the chicken altogether.
We would recommend preparing all of the ingredients separately but don’t mix them together until you’re ready to serve. This keeps the lettuce fresh and crispy- no one wants wilted, soggy lettuce. Serve your Copycat Panera Spicy Thai Salad With Chicken chilled, and enjoy.
Copycat Panera Spicy Thai Salad With Chicken
For the Salad
- 2 chopped carrots
- 1 cup frozen shelled edamame
- 6 cups chopped romaine lettuce
- 8 oz cooked chicken, diced, 1 1/2 cups
- 1/2 cup chopped roasted red peppers
- 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
- 1/3 cup roasted cashews
- olive oil
For the Peanut Chili Vinaigrette
- 2 tsp creamy peanut butter
- 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
- 1 tsp honey
- 2 tbsp low-sodium soy sauce
- 2 tbsp water
- 2 tsp rice vinegar
- 1/4 tsp sesame oil
- 1/2 tsp fresh lime juice
- 1 tsp minced ginger
- 1 minced garlic clove
- kosher salt and black pepper to taste
For the Salad
- First, cook the carrots and edamame in olive oil over medium-high heat until slightly charred, for about 5-8 minutes. Set aside to cool.
- In a large salad bowl, combine the lettuce, chicken, roasted carrots, edamame, roasted peppers, cilantro, and cashews with the vinaigrette. Toss until fully coated. Taste for salt and pepper before serving.
For the Peanut-Chili Vinaigrette
- Whisk all of the ingredients together and season it with salt and pepper to taste.
- You could use rotisserie chicken for this recipe, which would cut down on preparation time.
- This salad is pretty spicy. If you'd like to tone it down a bit, use only 1/4 tsp of red pepper flakes.
Are you a Panera Bread salad fan? Check out our article on how Panera Bread is moving towards a more plant-based menu.