Thursday, April 22, 2010

Grilled Chicken Caesar - Panera Copycat

Hi! My name is Katie, and I am a Panera addict!

No, I am not kidding, I am there all the time. I have a real issue with it. Why am I addicted? Well, for starters they have awesome hot tea. I am a hot tea addict, I enjoy several cups a day. They have good iced tea, too. I am also an iced tea addict, unsweetened and lemon please. I tell my husband all the time I want to go to Panera so I can "guzzle" the tea.

Please be don't make fun of me too much, take it easy. I really do say "guzzle" when I refer to Panera's endless tea.

Next, their lovely muffins. Cranberry Orange anyone???? In case you are wondering, a lot of my blogging is done over one of these lovely muffins and some hot tea. That was until I saw the calorie count in the you will find me just guzzling the tea. Sad, I know! Do you think I could sneak in my own lower calorie snacks????

If it is dinner time it is most definitely a pick two with the Fuji Apple Chicken Salad (I am working on that recipe folks). Broccoli Cheddar Soup or Frontega Chicken Panini accompanies the just depends on my mood, but I will never be seen without the Fuji Apple Chicken Salad.

I am on a frugal journey. I love this frugal journey, but it isn't always easy for me. In some ways the frugalness takes really hard work and discipline. Three things have been really hard for me (I am sure the list could go on and on)

1. Leftovers. That says it all. You can't be frugal and throw food out. Ouch, that is a hard one. I am not a leftover person. Ickkkky, but I am working on it. I really am...we had leftover macaroni and cheese with our dinner this week. I think it was the first time I have ever served leftovers with dinner. Honest!

2. Not throwing out those plastic containers you buy. You know, the kind that are "disposable", but you are supposed to wash them. For the first few years I was married, I really didn't grasp hold of that concept (I know, I shouldn't be admitting this one either). I would buy new ones all the time and didn't think anything of it. I wash them now, are you proud of me?

3. Eating out. Wow, this is a hard one. I LOVE eating out. I enjoy my trips to Panera, but I sure can blow through my personal money, I am learning to make some of our favorites at home.

Here is a copycat Caesar salad, one of my husband's favorites at Panera. I found this recipe over at Prudence Pennywise...check her out, she posts some awesome recipes.

I am guessing that you could make the entire meal for four, for the cost of one dinner at Panera! Next time I will have to calculate the cost and see.

1/2 cup mayonnaise
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper
pinch of cayenne, if desired
(mix this up and let it sit for a few hours if you can)

Grilled Chicken Breasts (1 pound)
Romaine lettuce, washed and torn into bite sized pieces
Parmesan Cheese

Oh, and if you really want to be like Panera, mix it all up in a bowl and then put on a plate. That just distributes the dressing all over, so that every peice of lettuce has a taste of dressing. Very important in my book!

Serves 4

Recipe Credit: Prudence Pennywise

This post is linked to Frugal Friday


Your Frugal Friend, Niki said...

Hi there! I am dropping in from Frugal Friday.

I enjoyed your post. I adore Panera. Their iced green tea makes my heart sing.

Stop by and see me when you get a chance over at Free 2 Be Frugal.


April said...

I've never made a homemade salad dressing, but I really need to try. This salad sounds delicious.

Mom2fur said...

I haven't been to Panera in a long time, but I like their broccoli soup in the bread bowl.
I'm bookmarking this recipe. We like a big salad with a little meat on top in the warmer months, and this sounds just perfect! Thanks!

pinecone304 said...

This looks like a great recipe. Thanks.

Jessica said...

Oh my, I think we would be great friends in the real world. I LOVE Panera too and the Fuiji Apple salad is my favorite! I also hate leftovers. Truly we may have to meet over lunch at Panera one day! haha

Misty said...

I LOVE Panera... especially when I go there with a dear friend! Love their tea and of course their brocoli cheese soup... got a recipe for that??? Then we could make both at our house and meet there instead... NAH! :)

Katie said...


I think we would be great friends :) If only we didn't live half a world away...

If you ever come to cincy, we will have to meet at Panera!

Katie said...


Move our weekly Panera meeting to our homes?!?!?

Nah, I don't think so. It would save us mone though...

I don't have a soup recipe...Daniel despises broccoli and cheese together. I know, he is so strange. He eats them separate, but never together. Maybe I cold make some for just us sometime.

Beth said...

Now that looks fantastic!!


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