Check out this delicious Wildflower Bread fakeaway
Wildflower Bread Company is a cool little chain of cafes/restaurants in Arizona that sells a lot of tasty salads and sandwiches. I think of them as an even yummier version of Panera, with more inventive menu options.
I was lucky enough to eat at Wildflower often when we visited Arizona several years ago. This was an excellent opportunity to familiarize myself with their menu.
Unfortunately, I currently live nowhere near a Wildflower Bread, considering I reside in New England. Luckily, I can still enjoy dishes similar to the ones I enjoyed there with fakeaway Wildflower Bread recipes! This Wildflower Bread Chopped Salad is the first of several copycat recipes that I have planned.
If you're new to making chopped salads, may I recommend that you get yourself a salad chopper? It makes chopping the ingredients so much easier!
What's great about this chopped salad though is that the only ingredient that needs fine chopping is the arugula. The soft roasted red pepper can be chopped finely pretty easily with a regular knife, and the rest of the ingredients need no chopping.
This might be the easiest chopped salad ever! Just gather and stir.
The Deets on this Wildflower Bread Chopped Salad Copycat
My chopped salad has a few differences from Wildflower Bread's recipe. First, I swapped couscous for quinoa to make this gluten-free and to add more protein. Second, I added some black beans to the salad for even more plant-based protein.
Finally, I'm using roasted corn rather than the dried sweet corn that Wildflower uses. This last substitution was based more on product availability here versus anything else. Here's a pic of all of the players in this one:
I kept the pesto vinaigrette simple, using just prepared pesto and white wine vinegar. Pesto already has plenty of oil, garlic, herbs, and so on. The only thing it really needs to turn it into dressing is some vinegar, or perhaps citrus juice.
I am always on the lookout for creative ways to use pesto because I have so much! My radish plants bolted (flowered), rendering the radishes woody and inedible.
However, I was still able to use the leaves to make a delicious pesto. My carrot leaves pesto recipe works perfectly for radish tops too!
The last thing I want to say about this salad recipe is that dried cranberries do typically have added sugar. Because they are so tart naturally, they will often be sweetened to the level of "non-cranberry comparable products" (e.g., raisins).
Substitute an unsweetened dried fruit for the dried cranberries if you'd prefer to altogether avoid added sugar. Unsweetened dried cranberries are available, but they can be challenging to find in regular grocery stores around here.
I think you're really going to enjoy how easy this chopped salad is to make, as well as how delicious it is! I made a video for you below that shows the salad assembly process in action. Enjoy!
And now for the disclaimer…
All recipes on this website may or may not be appropriate for you, depending on your medical needs and personal preferences. Consult with a registered dietitian or your physician if you need help determining the dietary pattern that may be best for you.
The nutrition information is an estimate provided as a courtesy. It will differ depending on the specific brands and ingredients that you use. Calorie information on food labels may be wildly inaccurate, so please don't sweat the numbers too much.
For more information on how the three recipe levels may help with a weight management goal, refer to this post. Let's get cooking!
Wildflower Bread Chopped Salad Copycat Recipe (Gluten-free!)
- 5 ounces baby arugula (142 grams)
- ½ cup dry quinoa
- 1 cup vegetable broth (or chicken broth)
- 3.5 ounces dried cranberries (100 grams)
- 15 ounces canned black beans, drained (425 grams)
- 1 cup frozen roasted corn, thawed
- 6 ounces roasted red peppers (170 grams)
- ½ cup shelled sunflower seeds, toasted
- 4 ounces feta, crumbled (113 grams)
- 6 tablespoons pesto (I used homemade radish top pesto but storebought works too)
- 3 tablespoons white wine vinegar
- Put the quinoa and broth in a small saucepan over medium heat. When it comes to a simmer, lower the heat, cover, and finish cooking the quinoa. It will take about 15 minutes and all of the broth will be absorbed.
- Finely chop the arugula using a salad chopper. Chop the roasted red pepper finely as well.
- Stir the pesto and white wine vinegar together to make the pesto vinaigrette.
- If your shelled sunflower seeds are not toasted, you can toast them in a dry skillet for a few minutes over medium heat. Keep them moving in the skillet and don't let them burn!
- When the quinoa is finished cooking, divide all ingredients except the pesto vinaigrette between four salad bowls or meal prep containers. (Watch the assembly process in the video below!) Drizzle on the pesto vinaigrette and serve.
- If you are using this salad recipe as a meal prep, I recommend waiting to chop the arugula until you are ready to have the meal. (I didn't do this, but it will help to keep your salads from getting soggy.) The pesto vinaigrette should be kept separate until serving time. I used separate dressing cups.
- Swap the dried cranberries for one cup of fresh sliced strawberries.
- Use a no- or low-oil salad dressing rather than the pesto vinaigrette.
- Substitute one pound of grilled chicken breast for the black beans and corn.
- Add more arugula to each salad.
Do you ever make copycat recipes for your favorite restaurant dishes? If you try this fakeaway Wildflower Bread chopped salad, please leave a rating below! I love how chopped salads let you get a taste of everything in a single bite.
P.S. If you dig copycat recipes, my cheeseburger salad (based on a B.good burger) is not to be missed!
Terrified Amateur says
Nice job, Summer, bringing the Wildflower Bread experience to those of us east of the Mississippi. The substitutions are improvements. Good choices, all of them.
The ingredient where you really didn't have a choice (the corn) is completely understandable. Obviously, a restaurant hailing from the land of the Zuni and Apache would know a thing or two about corn. Obviously, they've had a millennia-long head start perfecting all the varieties.
Oh, totally off-subject, but are the radish flowers edible? Most aren't, but more than a few blooms still are eater-friendly, even delectable. In my opinion, chive flowers are particularly nice.
Summer Yule says
I love chive blossoms! Yes, you can eat the radish flowers, but I tend to focus on the leaves because there are so many!