Italian Chopped Salad
If you love Italian anitpasto, then this chopped salad recipe will be right up your alley! Loaded with fresh romaine lettuce, mozzarella, olives, salami and more, this incredible anitpasto salad will quickly become a family favorite for every potluck, cookout, and picnic this summer. Even better than the famous Olive Garden salad!
Once the warm days of spring and summer roll around, I absolutely love a cool, fresh crisp salad. I love tossing together this fantastic chopped salad recipe that includes all of our favorite salad ingredients. Much like the famous Olive Garden Salad, this makes a fantastic dinner side dish with grilled chicken, steak, or chops, and makes a fantastic light lunch or dinner just by itself. I’ve also brought this salad to neighborhood cookouts, picnics, and potluck’s – it’s a nice departure from the mayo-heavy potato and macaroni salad.
Here are the simple steps to making this amazing chopped salad recipe:
Step 1: Chop the lettuce and antipasto ingredients
Start with a big bowl where you can add all of the ingredients with extra room for tossing. I tend to start with the romaine lettuce on the bottom, and then add the additional ingredients on top of that. You’ll add cooked ditalini pasta (or any other small pasta), small black olives, fresh mozzarella balls, thick-cut salami that has been quartered, chopped red onion, sliced yellow pepperoncini peppers, and grape tomatoes.
Add a grind of black pepper and salt for seasoning.
Step 2: Mix the dressing
Whisk together the vinegar, olive oil, garlic and Italian seasoning. Pour the dressing over the salad. If you’re making the salad before your meal, be sure to wait until just before serving to dress the salad. This will help keep the lettuce as crisp as possible.
Step 3: Toss and Serve
Once you’ve poured the dressing over the top of the salad, toss well to coat all of the ingredients. The salad is now ready to serve and enjoy! I’ve also added grated Parmesan cheese to the top of the dressed salad, which is a nice addition. Chickpeas, cannelini beans, red peppers or any of your other antipasto favorite are a great addition as well.
Enjoy this fantastic chopped salad at your next cookout or potluck – it’s a fantastic side dish that will quickly disappear! Be prepared to be asked for the recipe.
Here’s a shopping list of the ingredients you’ll need for this amazing chopped salad recipe:
- Romaine lettuce (or romaine hearts)
- Small pasta – like ditalini
- Fresh mozzarella
- Grape tomatoes
- Red onion
- Small black olives
- Yellow Pepperoncini peppers – jarred (can find these in the condiments & pickle section at the grocery store)
- Red wine vinegar
- Olive oil
- Italian herbs – dry
- Minced garlic
Wondering what to serve with your Italian Chopped Salad? Here are some fantastic options:
Here’s the easy recipe for this Italian Chopped Salad:
- 1 large romaine heart, chopped
- 2 c. cooked Ditalini pasta (1 c. uncooked)
- 1 c. thick cut salami, quartered
- 1 c. fresh mozzarella balls, halved
- 1 pint, grape tomatoes, halved
- 3/4 c. red onion, chopped
- 3/4 c. yellow pepperoncini peppers, sliced
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1/3 c. red wine vinegar
- 1/3 c. olive oil
- 1 tsp. minced garlic (1-2 cloves)
- 1/2 tsp. dry Italian herbs
- In a large bowl add the chopped romaine lettuce to the bottom of the bowl. Top the lettuce with the cooked pasta, olives, mozzarella, salami, onions, peppers and tomatoes.
- For the dressing: In a small bowl whisk together the vinegar, olive oil, garlic and herbs.
- Pour the dressing over the salad and toss well to dress. Serve right away.
If prepping the salad beforehand, wait until just before serving to dress the salad. This will ensure the lettuce stays crisp.
Nutrition Information:Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 215Total Fat: 14gSaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 30mgSodium: 244mgCarbohydrates: 13gSugar: 5gProtein: 8g
I hope this recipe inspires you to make an amazing salad to enjoy at your next cookout, picnic or grill-out. Enjoy! ~Erin
If you loved this fantastic salad recipe, be sure to check out some of my other recipes: