Home Cook and Avid Runner

Copycat Portillo’s Chopped Salad

on October 9, 2015

portillos salad

It is no secret that the only “fast food” I will eat is Portillo’s.  There is nothing on their menu that I do not absolutely love!  One of my favorite items is the chopped salad.  I call it the garbage salad, which I realize does not make it sound appetizing, but for me it means it has everything I could ever want in it.  There is everything from pasta to bacon to yummy gorgonzola.  I think the biggest key to any salad is the dressing and this one is no exception.  In order to get just the right flavor, I mixed two types of vinegar together.  I used my “all things” chicken for this recipe and it came out phenomenal!  The result was a spot on copycat recipe.  It was a hit for dinner!  This is definitely entering the normal meal plan rotation in our household.

Copycat Portillo’s Chopped Salad 


Salad Dressing:

  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 2 Tablespoons of rice wine vinegar
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper


  • 1 1/2 cups cooked Macaroni or Ditalini pasta (cooled)
  • I bag of salad mix (iceberg, cabbage, and carrots)
  • 3 roma tomatoes, chopped
  • 3 green onions, chopped
  • 5 slices cooked and crumbled bacon
  • 1/3 cup crumbled Gorgonzola cheese
  • 2 cups shredded or diced chicken


For the dressing, combine all the ingredients in a jar or small bowl. Whisk or shake until well-combined. Add additional salt and pepper to taste, if needed. You can make and refrigerate the dressing a week or two in advance.  In a pot of salted, boiling water, cook the pasta according to package directions. Drain and rinse quickly with cool water so it doesn’t stick together while it cools. Pour a few tablespoons of the dressing over the pasta and stir lightly. Set aside to cool to room temperature (spreading it into a flatter layer – versus mounded in a bowl – will speed up the cooling process).  In a large bowl, toss together the lettuce mix, tomatoes, and green onions. Add the cooled pasta, bacon, gorgonzola cheese, and chicken. Toss the salad with the dressing before serving.


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