Thai Crunch Chicken Salad

If there was one thing I could eat every single day for the rest of my life (besides sushi) it would without-a-doubt be California Pizza Kitchen’s Thai Crunch Salad. I don’t know if it’s the crisp cabbage or sweet peanut sauce or a combination of it all that makes me wanting more. I recently ordered it at the CPK in Novi after a long day of shopping; of course, I ordered the full-size and it took every ounce in my body to stop eating so I could take leftovers home. However, to no surprise, I gobbled up the remainder right when I got home!

I’ll be in the presence of another one this coming weekend during my girls day with one of my besties and sure enough, that’s exactly what I’ll be getting. It’s hard to deviate away from you favorite dish. To satisfy my craving in the meantime, I decided to recreate the dish at home! All of the ingredients are things I normally have on hand anyways and I always like to mix it up with my salads now and then. It’s fairly simple for something that looks quite complex – the most effort you’ll put in is chopping the veggies and mixing the sauce!

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For the salad:

  • 1/2 head Napa cabbage, thinly chopped
  • 1/4 small head red cabbage, thinly chopped
  • 1.5 cups shredded carrots
  • 3 green onions, chopped
  • 1/2 English (hothouse) cucumber, peeled and julienned
  • Handful of cilantro, chopped
  • 2 cups cooked shelled edamame
  • 2 oven roasted chicken breasts (seasoned with salt, pepper and garlic powder)
  • 7 wonton wrappers cut into thin strips
  • 2 cups crisp rice sticks (mai fun)
  • 1 ripe Hass avocado

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Season chicken breasts with salt, pepper and garlic powder and roast for 20 minutes. When the chicken is finished, allow it to cool for 10 minutes and slice thinly. I only used 2 of the 4 breasts I cooked — saving the other two for another recipe! Cut your wonton wrappers into thin strips, coat with oil and place on a baking sheet and into the oven for 10-15 minutes. Turn halfway and keep an eye on them so they don’t get too burnt. In the meantime, chop the veggies and crisp the rice sticks. Heat 2 Tbsp of oil in a pan until hot – add rice sticks a few at a time. You’ll see that they quickly puff up. Remove and set aside on a paper-towel lined plate.

For the lime cilantro sauce:
Adapted from RecipeZazz

  • 1 bunch of cilantro
  • ½ red bell pepper, chopped
  • 3 Tbsp honey
  • 1.5 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 tsp ginger
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Juice from ½ of a lime
  • 2 Tbsp cup white vinegar
  • ½ cup extra virgin olive oil

Place the first 8 ingredients into a blender/food processor and pulse until completely blended – about 30 seconds. Add in olive oil and blend for another 15 seconds.

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For the peanut sauce:

  • 3 Tbsp creamy peanut butter
  • 1 Tbsp honey
  • 1 Tbsp rice vinegar
  • 1 tsp soy sauce
  • 1 Tbsp hot water
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1 Tbsp canola oil

Whisk the first 7 ingredients together in a small bowl until thoroughly combined. Add in canola oil and whisk until smooth. If it seems a little thick, add in a little more water and oil.

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 Now, assemble the salad! Toss all of the chopped veggies in a large bowl until combined. (If you don’t have a bowl large enough, make each serving portion by portion). Add in wonton strips and chicken; coat with the lime cilantro sauce. Dish up on a large plate, top with crisp rice sticks, avocado and drizzle with peanut sauce.

I made this with the intention of having leftovers for the lunch the next day or two. Safe to say that goal was achieved! My Meal Prep Containers are the perfect size for lunch. I swear, the lime cilantro sauce is what pulls this entire dish together. Enjoy!

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A passionate twenty-something that wears a lot of hats, writes an abundance of to-do lists, and color codes the appointments on her calendar.

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