I am a huge fan of a tasty salad. If it were up to me, we’d have a different kind of salad every night for dinner, especially during the summer. And since we have five months of summer in Richmond, that’s a lot of lettuce!
Mom It Forward asked me to team with one of my local Chick-Fil-A restaurants to host an event when some of my local mom-influences could sample the new Chick-Fil-A chicken salads. I wasn’t compensated, unless you count good times with friends over a lovely meal (which is worth a million dollars to me).
First, I have to say the Chick-Fil-A in Mechanicsville, Virginia, is a wonderful restaurant. We were met by the amazing Becki Baldwin, who handles marketing and events for the location. I can’t even adequately describe how marvelously she treated us. We were escorted to reserved tables that were decorated with tablecloths and fresh flowers. We feasted on a full-sized version of EACH of the new chicken salads.
Becki was the consummate hostess, answer our questions about ingredients, and really making us feel special. I know this good customer service wasn’t only for us. I saw employees visiting other guests’ tables offering refreshed drinks and checking if anything was needed. For a counter-service restaurant, they really give it table-service feel.
I’d already had the new Asian chicken salad when we were in Florida this month, so I knew I’d like that one. It has lots of fresh, crisp Romaine lettuce and baby greens, red cabbage, shredded carrots, and amazingly juicy mandarin orange slices. The best parts for me were the optional toppings of honey-Thai almond slivers and Chinese garlic-and-ginger wontons, and the amazing Honey Sesame dressing. The dressing is lick-off-your-fingers good.
The Grilled Market Salad is my husband’s favorite. Instead of the crispy breaded chicken, it comes with slices of grilled chicken as the standard. The base of Romaine, baby greens, red cabbage, and carrots are tossed with blue cheese, fresh apples, blueberries, and strawberries. It is the ultimate summer salad, especially when you add on the options of roasted nuts, granola, and the apple cider vinaigrette—a deliciously balanced dressing with just the right tanginess.
If you avoid gluten, the Grilled Market Salad is gluten-free if you leave off the nut and granola options.
The last salad was brand new to me—the Chick-Fil-A Cobb salad. It’s the base vegetables mentioned previously plus roasted corn, bacon, egg, two kinds of shredded cheese. The suggested dressing for the Cobb is the new avocado Ranch. My friends and I talked about how avocado can be tricky to do in a dressing, but we thought Chick-Fil-A really nailed it with this one.
The optional topping for the Cobb is called “charred tomato & crispy red bell peppers” but I call it crack. I could snack on a big bag of that! The Cobb is my new go-to, just for the avocado Ranch dressing and the crispy bell pepper flakes. Delicious!
I had such a great time with friends at Chick-Fil-A. It had been a place we’ve picked up a quick dinner or taken the kids there for lunch and a turn around the play area, but I’ve never thought of it as a place for a Girlfriend Lunch before. I hope you’ll give your local store a visit and try one of the fresh and tasty salads.
I don’t know how you are going to pick your favorite new salad from Chick-Fil-A, but I’m going to help you try. I have a special gift card for one of my salads that will let you try one of each!
Just leave me a comment below telling me which salad sounds the best to you. One entry per person and you must live in the U.S. I’ll use random.org to draw a winner on Tuesday, June 4. Good luck!