Insalata di Arance e Finocchi (Orange and Fennel Salad)
What happens when you mix sweet oranges, fennel, peppery arugula, and salty olives? Try insalata di arance e finocchi (orange and fennel salad) and find out!
For the shredded orange chicken:
- 1 lb. chicken breast cutlets, thinly sliced
- ½ cup orange juice, freshly squeezed
- ½ tablespoon orange zest
- 1 teaspoon fresh grated ginger
- ½ tablespoon low-sodium soy sauce
For the orange vinaigrette:
- 6 tablespoons orange juice, freshly squeezed
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon orange zest
- 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
- salt and pepper, to taste
For assembly of the salads:
- 2 bulbs fennel (I had 18 ounces of fennel bulb left after removing the stalks and cores)
- 21 ounces mandarin oranges, packed in juice (canned)
- 10 ounces baby arugula (also known as rocket)
- ½ cup black olives, sliced
- ¼ cup sunflower seeds, toasted
- ¼ cup pistachios, toasted and chopped
- ½ cup fennel fronds, chopped (for garnish)
To make the shredded orange chicken:
Combine all of the "for the shredded orange chicken" ingredients except the chicken to make your marinade. Marinate your chicken pieces in this mixture in the refrigerator for anywhere from four hours to overnight.
Preheat your oven to 400°F. Put your chicken with the marinade in an oven-safe baking dish. Once your oven is heated, bake the chicken (uncovered) for 20-30 minutes.
Lift your chicken out of the marinade once it has finished cooking. Shred the chicken with two forks. Refrigerate your shredded chicken while you make the rest of the salad.
To make the orange vinaigrette:
To assemble the salads:
Prepare your fennel bulb by removing the stalks and core. (Watch the recipe video to see how I do it!) Slice the fennel very thinly using either the slicing blade of a food processor or a mandoline. I'm always afraid of slicing a finger on mandolines, so I opted to use the food processor.
Drain your canned mandarin oranges.
Divide the baby arugula between four meal prep containers or serving bowls.
Top each bowl of arugula with an even amount of sliced fennel bulb, oranges, orange chicken, olives, pistachios, and sunflower seeds. Garnish with the fennel fronds.
Drizzle the salad with the orange vinaigrette dressing right before serving. Yum! (For additional tips on using this salad recipe as a meal prep, check out the post above.) These salads are so refreshing after being chilled!
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This is a level 1 recipe (may help support fat loss). Note: the chicken marinade is not included in the nutrition information since most of it is not consumed.
This salad is under 500 calories per serving, provides ample protein, as well as an abundance of high-volume, non-starchy veggies. I’d consider this one ideal for those who have a fat loss goal. For those with higher energy needs, I’d add a side of whole grain bread or crackers. To keep things low-carb, you could also make this one higher calorie by adding more nuts, seeds, olives, and olive oil.
Nutrition information is for one serving of the recipe.
Calories: 469kcalCarbohydrates: 40.9gProtein: 32gFat: 22.3gSaturated Fat: 3.8gSodium: 384.6mgFiber: 7.7gVitamin A: 65.2% DVVitamin C: 90.4% DVCalcium: 22.9% DVIron: 18.3% DV