We all have favorite meals and snacks that we crave from time to time.
For me, it can be something as simple as a fig, honey and goat cheese crostini, or something more hearty like Chicken Saag from my favorite Indian place down the road. For my fiance, it’s Chicken Barbecue Ranch Salads from the Cheesecake Factory.
I’ll admit, the Factory’s version is decent, but it’s no better than anything you could make at home. In fact, I’m convinced that this homemade version of the BBQ Ranch Salad I’m sharing with you today is not only healthier, but more delicious than its restaurant counterpart. (My fiance even gave me the gold star of approval on this one.)
So, if you want to save money, and eat fresher and healthier, here’s a restaurant recipe makeover for you to try out at home. Let me know what you think, and in the comment section below, tell me what favorite meal you find yourself craving!
Copycat Cheesecake Factory Barbecue Ranch Salads
Author: Lauren Hardy | Serves: 2
1 onion, sliced apart into thick rings
1/4 cup flour
1/4 cup buttermilk, milk or beer
1/2 egg, lightly beaten
1/2 cup breadcrumbs (I use gluten free)
3 cups lettuce (spinach, mixed greens or romaine)
1/2 cucumber, chopped
1/4 red bell pepper, chopped
1/3 cup cooked sweet corn
1/4 cup black beans
1/2 lb. your choice of cooked meat (chicken or shrimp work best!)
For the dressing:
1/4 cup ranch
1/4 cup barbecue sauce
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon onion powder
1. Preheat the oven to 425˚ F. Place half of the flour in a wide, shallow bowl. In another wide, shallow bowl, mix the rest of the flour with the buttermilk and egg. Place the panko breadcrumbs in a third wide, shallow bowl.
2. Dredge the onion slices in the flour, dip them in the wet ingredients and then, dredge them in the breadcrumbs.
3. Place the onion slices on a wire rack on a baking sheet and bake until golden brown, about 12 minutes.
4. While the onions are baking, mix the dressing ingredients together in a small bowl and set aside.
5. Assemble salads with lettuce and toppings. Remove onion rings from the oven, let cool for 5 minutes and then place on top of the salads. Top with dressing and enjoy.