Portillo's is one of my very favorite places to eat. My mom and I always stop there during our Black Friday shopping, or really any time we go shopping up north (Chicago suburbs). I always get the same thing, a hot dog and chocolate shake, but they have a ton of other items on their menu, too, one of them being a chopped salad. While I have never actually had the chopped salad at the restaurant, my grandma received this copy-cat recipe from a friend. She made it for us awhile ago and it's been a favorite ever since. It's seriously so good, it almost makes me want to get the salad next time I am there...and that's saying a lot!
Portillo's Copy-cat Chopped Salad
3 cups chopped romaine lettuce
3 cups chopped iceberg lettuce
2 1/2 cups chopped red cabbage
4 cups cooked Ditalini pasta
1 small container of grape tomatoes, cut in half
1 cup green onions, diced (I leave out - personal preference!)
1 small red onion, minced
1 cup bacon crumbles
1 cup Gorgonzola cheese crumbles
Marzetti Sweet Italian dressing (find in the refrigerated section by the produce)
Layer ingredients in a large bowl. Toss with desired amount of dressing. Enjoy!
To keep the salad fresher for longer, my mom suggests using all romaine lettuce - it's sturdier than iceberg. As with most salads, if you just dress your individual portion instead of the entire thing at once, it will stay better. This is also a great salad to make ahead of time. You can get everything ready, then store each ingredient in individual containers in the fridge. That way, if you are serving it to a group, or even just yourself, everything is ready to go right then!
I think this salad is great by itself, but adding a bit of chicken to the salad, or just on the side is delicious, too!
Linking up with Annie.