Recreate the sensational taste of the Cheesecake Factory’s Chinese Chicken Salad at home, featuring a colorful medley of fresh ingredients and a vibrant sesame plum dressing.
Imagine treating yourself to the Cheesecake Factory’s Chinese Chicken Salad in the comfort of your home. This copycat recipe is an easy yet flavor-packed meal that balances the crunch of lettuce, red cabbage, and crispy wonton strips with the soft, succulent bites of rotisserie chicken and mandarin orange slices. A sprinkle of sesame seeds, the zing of fresh green onions, and the surprising crunch of bean sprouts round out this satisfying salad.
The star of this recipe is undoubtedly the sesame plum dressing, a delightful blend of soy sauce, rice vinegar, olive oil and sesame oil, heightened with the pungency of fresh ginger and garlic. Its delicate balance of sweet, sour, and umami notes turns this assortment of fresh ingredients into a flavorful salad.
Moreover, the recipe’s simplicity means you can easily get the ingredients at your local grocery store, and prepare them with basic kitchen equipment such as a knife, a cutting board, and a large bowl, without the need for a food processor or any other appliance.
What better way to experience healthy eating than with a salad that doesn’t compromise on taste? With every bite, you’ll savor the authenticity of this Chinese Chicken Salad recipe, combining the satisfaction of homemade meals with the cherished memory of the Cheesecake Factory’s signature salad. Whether you’re looking for great recipes for a casual weeknight dinner or a special occasion, this salad guarantees a delightful, restaurant-worthy experience in your own kitchen.
- Sesame Plum Dressing Ingredients
- Chinese Chicken Salad Ingredients
- By the Numbers: How to Make a Copycat Cheesecake Factory Chinese Chicken Salad
- Tips for Making the Best Copycat Cheesecake Factory Chinese Chicken Salad Recipe
- Can I substitute chicken breasts for rotisserie chicken?
- Can powdered ginger be substituted for fresh ginger?
- Can I substitute almond slices with another type of nut?
- What can I use instead of gluten-free wonton strips if I can't find them at the grocery store?
- Best substitute for plum sauce
- Substitutes for mandarin oranges
- Substituting other types of lettuce
- Substitutes for bean sprouts
- Can I omit the sugar from the dressing?
- Can a different type of oil be used instead of sesame oil in the dressing?
- How can I make my salad a little crispier?
- Serving size adjustment tip
- Leftover salad storage tips
- Add a side dish
- Copycat Cheesecake Factory Chinese Chicken Salad
- More Gluten Free Dinner Ideas
Sesame Plum Dressing Ingredients
- ¼ cup of plum sauce
- 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon of sesame oil
- 3 tablespoons of rice vinegar
- 2 tablespoons of gluten-free soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
- 2 cloves of finely minced garlic
- 1 teaspoon of granulated sugar
Chinese Chicken Salad Ingredients
- ½ head of red cabbage
- 1 rotisserie chicken
- 6 chopped green onions
- 4 ounces of sliced almonds
- 2 tablespoons of sesame seeds
- 1 package of gluten-free wonton strips
- 1 can of mandarin oranges
- 1 package of crispy rice noodles
- ¼ cup of sliced snow peas
By the Numbers: How to Make a Copycat Cheesecake Factory Chinese Chicken Salad
Follow these simple step-by-step instructions to learn how to make this easy recipe for a restaurant-quality Chinese Chicken Salad.
Step 1: Make Sesame Plum Dressing
Add ¼ cup of plum sauce, 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil, 1 teaspoon of sesame oil, 3 tablespoons of rice vinegar, 2 tablespoons of gluten-free soy sauce, 1 teaspoon of grated fresh ginger, 2 cloves of finely minced garlic and 1 teaspoon of granulated sugar to a mason jar, then shake vigorously to combine. Chill the dressing while you prepare the salad.
Step 2: Combine Salad Ingredients
Core and chop 1 head of romaine lettuce and 1 head of iceberg lettuce and add it to a large mixing bowl. Core and thinly slice one head of purple cabbage and add it to the bowl along with the meat from 1 rotisserie chicken, ½ cup of bean sprouts, 3 chopped green onions, 2 ounces of sliced almonds, 1 tablespoon of sesame seeds and ½ package of wonton strips. Mix until evenly combined.
Step 3: Dress, Toss and Garnish Salad
Pour the dressing on top of the salad and toss until the dressing is evenly distributed. Top the salad with the 3 more sliced green onions, 2 more ounces of almonds, 1 tablespoon of sesame seeds and the remaining wonton strips.
Step 4: Serve Chinese Chicken Salad
Divide the Chinese Chicken Salad onto individual plates or serving bowls and garnish with mandarin oranges, snow pea slices and crispy rice noodles.
Tips for Making the Best Copycat Cheesecake Factory Chinese Chicken Salad Recipe
Answers to all of your questions about making this copycat Cheesecake Factory Chinese Chicken Salad recipe, including tips and substitution ideas.
Can I substitute chicken breasts for rotisserie chicken?
Yes, chicken breasts can be used in place of rotisserie chicken. Just make sure to cook them thoroughly before adding them to the salad.
Can powdered ginger be substituted for fresh ginger?
Yes, you can use powdered ginger, but it may slightly alter the taste. Fresh ginger provides a stronger, fresher flavor. If you’re using powdered ginger, reduce the amount by half.
Can I substitute almond slices with another type of nut?
Yes, you can substitute almond slices with other nuts like cashews or peanuts for a different taste and texture. However, remember that this could alter the salad’s overall flavor profile.
What can I use instead of gluten-free wonton strips if I can’t find them at the grocery store?
If you can’t find gluten-free wonton strips, you can make your own gluten free wonton strips. You can also use regular wonton strips if you aren’t on a gluten-free diet or even substitute with gluten-free chow mein noodles or thinly sliced toasted tortilla strips.
Best substitute for plum sauce
If you don’t have plum sauce, you can use hoisin sauce or sweet and sour sauce as a substitute. It won’t taste exactly the same but should give a similar sweet and tangy flavor.
Substitutes for mandarin oranges
You can substitute mandarin oranges with canned pineapple chunks or fresh mango chunks if you prefer. Keep in mind this will change the flavor of the salad.
Substituting other types of lettuce
Yes, you can use other types of lettuce like butter lettuce, baby spinach, or mixed greens. The taste and texture will be slightly different but should still be delicious.
Substitutes for bean sprouts
If bean sprouts are not available at your local grocery store, you can use thinly sliced celery or julienned cucumbers for a similar crunchy texture.
Can I omit the sugar from the dressing?
Yes, you can omit the sugar from the dressing. If you find the dressing too tart without it, consider adding a natural sweetener like honey or a sugar substitute like stevia.
Can a different type of oil be used instead of sesame oil in the dressing?
Sesame oil gives a distinctive flavor to the dressing. If you don’t have it, you can use another oil like olive oil, but note that it won’t have the same Asian-inspired flavor. For a closer match, consider using another aromatic oil like toasted walnut oil or a mild-flavored oil with a few drops of toasted sesame seeds.
How can I make my salad a little crispier?
For extra crunch, consider adding a few more crispy rice noodles or crispy fried wonton strips just before serving.
Serving size adjustment tip
Remember to adjust the amount of dressing to the amount of salad ingredients to ensure every bite is flavorful. If you increase the salad ingredients, don’t forget to make more dressing.
Leftover salad storage tips
Store salad leftovers in airtight containers in the fridge. It’s recommended to store the dressing separately to prevent the salad from becoming soggy.
Add a side dish
If you’re serving this as a main dish, consider pairing it with some homemade gluten-free bread. Or if you want to serve the salad as a side, it pirs really well with my Instant Pot Egg Roll in a Bowl recipe!
Copycat Cheesecake Factory Chinese Chicken Salad
Chinese Chicken Salad Ingredients
- 1 head romaine lettuce - cored and chopped
- 1 head iceberg lettuce - cored and chopped
- ½ head red cabbage - cored and thinly sliced
- 1 rotisserie chicken - skinned and cubed
- ½ cup bean sprouts
- 4 ounces sliced almonds
- 2 tablespoons sesame seeds
- 5 green onions - chopped
- 1 package gluten free wonton strips
- 1 package crispy rice noodles
- 1 can mandarin oranges
- ¼ cup snow peas - sliced
Sesame Plum Dressing Ingredients
- ¼ cup plum sauce
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon sesame oil
- 3 tablespoons rice vinegar
- 2 tablespoons gluten free soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon fresh ginger - grated
- 2 cloves garlic - finely minced
- 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
- Cutting Board
- Add all dressing ingredients to a mason jar, then shake vigorously to combine. Refrigerate while preparing the salad.
- Combine the lettuce, cabbage, chicken, bean sprouts, ½ of the green onions, ½ of the almonds, ½ of the sesame seeds and ½ of the wonton strips in a large salad bowl.
- Pour the dressing on top and toss until it’s evenly distributed. Top the salad with the remaining green onions, almonds, sesame seeds and wonton strips.
- Divide the Chinese Chicken Salad onto individual plates and garnish with mandarin oranges, snow pea slices and crispy rice noodles.