So I survived my first week of kids in the classroom. During a pandemic. With some technology issues. I had a dream last night that I was back in college and I realized I hadn’t been to math all semester, which pretty sums up how I’m feeling right now. ????????. It’s okay. I’m adjusting to our new normal. My clothes have never been washed and put away faster and let’s just say I was seriously underestimating how much money I was spending on gas and eating out for lunch because now that I don’t drive a whole lot or eat lunch out ever, I have saved a lot of money. A lot. ????
I’ve been experimenting with different lunches and salad jars are always a favorite. These grilled chicken salad jars are a copycat of one of my favorite dishes at one of my favorite local restaurants. When I first saw pasta in a green salad, I thought that was very weird and wanted no part of it, but it is amazing. It’s a happy compromise between carb-heavy pasta salads and not-heavy-enough green salads, plus the pasta adds some nice texture. My all-time favorite dressing to serve with this is our Sensation or our homemade ranch dressing (or a little sensation and a little Ranch), but feel free to add your favorite dressing to a condiment cup and throw it into your lunch box!
how to make these grilled chicken salad jars
You’ll need grilled chicken (I marinated some chicken breasts in our Italian dressing and then grilled them over medium heat 7 minutes per side), baby tomatoes, baby cucumbers, hard boiled eggs (pressure cooker is the best way!), red onions, chopped broccoli florets, shredded cheddar cheese, and the secret ingredient: rotini pasta. It might sound weird, but you’ll never go back!
You’ll also need salad greens (I like 50/50 spring greens and spinach).
Divide grilled chicken evenly between 6 1-quart mason jars.
Top with greens, egg (1 per jar, peeled and quartered),
cucumbers, onions, cheese,
and top with pasta.
Serve with your favorite salad dressing! Any high-quality salad dressing will be good on this salad, but my favorite is Sensation or our homemade ranch dressing (or a little of each). Feel free to browse our salad dressing section for more choices!Print
Grilled Chicken Salad Jars
These meal prep grilled chicken salad jars will become a regular in your lunchtime rotation!
3 cups cooked rotini pasta
12 cups spinach/spring greens mix
6 hard-boiled eggs
18 ounces grilled chicken breast
1/2 small red onion, thinly sliced
2 baby cucumbers, sliced
grape tomatoes (about 6 ounces)
6 ounces grated cheese
1 cup chopped broccoli florets
Salad dressing of choice (see below)
Divide grilled chicken evenly between 6 1-quart mason jars. Top with greens, tomatoes, cucumbers, onions, egg (peeled and quartered), cheese, and top with pasta. Serve with your favorite salad dressing!
Any high-quality salad dressing will be good on this salad, but my favorite is Sensation or our homemade ranch dressing (or a little of each). Feel free to browse our salad dressing section for more choices!
Thanks for the great salad jar recipe. I’ve been trying a new one each week. I’m a teacher as well. We started a “salad club” at work so we each take a day and you get four yummy salads throughout the week. It’s been a life saver. I only make lunch once. Just a thought to throw out there. Have a great school year!!
That is an AWESOME idea!! I’m going to tell my co-workers!
The class I typically dream about not attending is biology. And I always have a big report due that I’m trying to figure out how I’ll finish without having attended the lectures or having read the textbook. Hopefully the dreams ease up and the technology cooperates!
HOW LONG WILL FINISHEF SALAD LAST IN JARS?
No more than 5-6 days—-use the freshest ingredients possible to make sure it lasts as long as possible.
How many days would these last in the refrigerator? Would they last 6 days? Or would the lettuce/greens start getting slimy?
As long as the ingredients are super fresh, you can make it 5-6 days.
Thank you for the inspiration. I’m back next week doing a mix of teletherapy and in person for speech therapy and I’m totally feeling the anxiety. This is a great idea to check something off and prep so I can dedicate brain cells elsewhere. For you , I’d say you got this!!! Honestly we all fake it when needed for awhile until we figure it out. Remember YOU are the expert in the room. Even when you’re not so sure of things.
You’ve got this Kate! I wish I had a child in your class. Also, I think maybe it’s time that I jump onto this salad jar bandwagon. I’ve had a hard time meal prepping for myself when I’m home with kids alldayeveryday, but if I did, I could at least guarantee that I’d eat a good lunch, even if my kids just want toast or a cheese sandwich for the 167 day in a row. ????
It looks like it would be hard to mix everything around in there or do you pour it out onto a plate?
It’s up to you—a plate or salad bowl is always easiest when it comes to salad jars, but when you add the dressing, the greens wilt a bit and you have a little more room.