June 3, 2013

Chick-Fil-A New #FreshMade Salads

I love food, I love to eat! I'm guessing most of us love food right?  So when I have the opportunity to try some new dishes, in this case salads, I say yes!  Last week one of my blogger buddies, Raised By Culture hosted a salad tasting at a local Chick-fil-A.  She invited a few local blogger to taste the new salads from Chick-fil-A.  I am already a big fan of their chicken sandwiches and waffle fries and was excited to taste the new salads.

The tasting started with a tour of the the kitchen, and explanation of how all the food is prepared fresh daily.  I was very impressed with the kitchen set up at Chick-fil-A, it was my first time behind the scenes at any restaurant.  The kitchen was clean and very organized, with each area set up to prep individual menu items.

The new salad menu at Chick-fil-A consist of 3 new salads; the Asian Salad, Grilled Market Salad and Cobb Salad.   The owner who was very gracious, gave us samples of each new salad and explanation of the ingredients each salad came with.

The New Asian Salad comes with sliced hot nuggets, chopped romaine lettuce, baby greens, red cabbage, mandarin orange segments, honey Thai almonds, Chinese garlic & ginger wontons accompanied by the new Honey Sesame Dressing.   

I have always been a fan of Asian/Chinese type salads, this one didn't disappoint me.  The flavors were refreshing and tangy, with just a hint of sweetness from the mandarin oranges.  The almonds and wontons gave the salad a crunchy texture that I liked. The whole salad was complimented well with the honey sesame dressing.   Overall this was a favorite for me and will go back get this salad again. 

The next salad we tasted is the New Grilled Market Salad which comes with; sliced grilled chicken, chopped romaine lettuce, baby greens, red cabbage, carrots, fresh apples, strawberries, & blueberries, roasted nut blend, harvest nut granola, crumbled blue cheese with Zesty Apple Cider Vinaigrette.

That is a whole lot of stuff in a salad, and at first sight I wasn't sure if it looked good to me.  I don't mine fruit, in a salad, or nuts or blue cheese.  But not all at the same time!  Then you added blue cheese!  OK so since this was a tasting I went in to taste and not prejudge a salad by its ingredients.   I have to admit, this salad surprised me and was delightfully tasty.  It was not sweet at all, despite all the fruit and apple cider dressing.  The blue cheese gave it a tangy taste which compliments all the other ingredients very well.  I am no chef or gourmet foodie and can't really explain flavor profiles to you, but wow this salad is good!!  That much I can say, you should definitely go try it.
The last salad we tasted is the Cobb Salad which consisted of; sliced, hot nuggets, chopped romaine lettuce & baby greens, shredded red cabbage & carrots, roasted corn kernels. charred tomato & crispy red bell peppers, crumbled bacon, hard-boiled egg, shredded Monterey jack & cheddar cheeses, grape tomatoes mixed with Avocado Lime Ranch Dressing.  

This salad I was most excited to taste, since Cobb salad is one of my faves.  The interesting mix of ingredients also had me intrigued, like the charred tomato & crispy bell peppers and avocado lime ranch dressing.  OMG is probably the best to describe this salad, the dressing is awesome.  I love avocado and this dressing is so tasting, the lime gives it a kick of flavor.  The charred tomato & crispy red bell peppers are kinda hard to describe, since I had never heard of such a thing, but I can say they were good and gave the salad an unexpected taste and crunch.  YUM!   

All the salad were wonderful and really difficult to just pick one as my favorite.  I was very pleased with not only the selection of salads but with the quality of ingredients.  These new salads were just as good or dare I say even better than some sit down restaurant salads.  The portions sizes are big enough to make it a meal and satisfying to fill you up.  One thing I did learn from this visit to Chick-fil-A, when ordering a salad  you are getting a fresh salad which was made no more than 12 hrs prior.  You also have the choice to select any type of chicken, if you don't want the kind it is served with.  You can also select a different type of dressing, if you wish not to use the suggested dressing.  

Overall all 3 new salads at Chick-fil-A get 2 thumbs up from me.  The salads are very tasty and refreshing for a hot summer day or just any time you are craving a really good salad.    I also recommend the New Cool Chicken Grilled Wrap.  We did not sample this but during the kitchen tour we saw them being made and they looked so good I had to buy one.  I took the wrap home to eat, with the avocado lime ranch dressing.  My suspicions were right, the wrap was really good.  Oh by the way I think Chick-fil-A needs to bottle the avocado lime ranch dressing and sell it.  I can eat that with everything, not just salads.  

Now go try the new salads from Chich-fil-A and tell me what you think!  Enjoy!

*Disclosure: I was invited to taste the salads at Chick-fil-A and not being paid for this post.  This is my honest and personal opinion of the food.  I was given a gift card for being part of the tasting.

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