Happy New Year! Our New Year’s Resolutions are in full effect and whether you’ve vowed to eat healthier, eat at home more often, try new foods, or eat your greens, these salads have you covered. We’re sharing a traditional and vegan take on Buffalo Chicken Salad, a tried and true favorite for most everyone, and to take it a step further, we’re sharing homemade ranch recipes. Both recipes are super easy and nutritious and we even venture to say you’ll never eat store-bought ranch dressing again!
Click the link below to get spicy & saucy!
Buffalo Tofu Salad with Homemade Ranch Dressing
Ranch dressing was one of the things that was hard to let go of when I first went vegan. There’s a few great replacements from Follow Your Heart and other brands, but I was super happy with how this recipe turned out. It’s the kind of ranch you can put on salads or dip your fries in! Dreams really do come true. The ranch dressing will make enough to keep a little jar in your fridge, while the tofu and & salad are single servings, so adjust accordingly.
- 1/4 cup almond or soy milk mixed with 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
- 1 more teaspoon apple cider vinegar
- 1 1/2 cups raw cashews soaked in water overnight
- 3/4 cup vegan mayo
- 2 1/2 teaspoons lemon juice
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup chopped cucumber
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 2 tablespoons chopped parsley
- 2 tablespoons chopped basil
- 2 tablespoons chopped dill
- 2 tablespoons chopped chives
- 1/2 block firm tofu, drained and water pressed out
- 2 tablespoons corn starch
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- Sprinkle of pepper
- Coconut oil for frying
- Buffalo wing sauce
- your favorite leaf mix
- shredded carrots
- sliced cucumbers
- black beans would be good too!
For the ranch dressing, set your apple cider vinegar and almond milk mixture aside. Chop your cucumber and add the 1/2 cup cucumber, 1 1/2 cups drained cashews, 3/4 cup vegan mayo, 2 1/2 teaspoons lemon juice, 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and the almond milk mixture to a blender and blend for approximately 1 minute, or until completely smooth. Pour into a small mixing bowl and add the herbs and garlic powder.
Do a taste test and add additional lemon juice, herbs or spices as needed. Store in a jar.
For the tofu, preheat oven to 400 degrees. Press and drain the water out of a block of firm tofu and slice in thin strips. In a small shallow bowl, mix approximately 2 tablespoons cornstarch, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and sprinkle of pepper. Add more as needed. Turn each strip over in the cornstarch mixture to coat.
Heat coconut oil in a pan over medium heat and add the tofu strips. Cook for about 3 minutes on both sides.
Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and lay the tofu strips on. Pour buffalo sauce generously over the strips and turn over to coat. Bake for 12 minutes, turning once and recoating with excess sauce.
While the tofu is cooking you can chop up your cucumbers and carrots or any other veggies you want in your salad. Mix everything together and enjoy!
Buffalo Chicken Salad with Buttermilk Ranch Dressing
This is one of my favorite salads because it is loaded with healthy ingredients and topped with a tasty ranch dressing. This is an easy way to sneak in tons of nutrients and vegetables for kids or carnivorous boyfriends. It is not lacking in flavor at all because of the spicy buffalo chicken and tangy dressing. I used Lacinato kale, one of my personal favorites, for the base of this salad, but feel free to use romaine or something else instead. Let’s get started!
- 1 bunch Lacinato kale, or another lettuce, chopped into bite size pieces
- 1 cup shredded carrots
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
- 4 green onions, chopped
- 4 hearts of celery, diced
- 1 large avocado, sliced
- 1 rotisserie chicken, fully cooked and shredded
- 1 bottle (12 fl oz) Frank’s RedHot Hot Sauce, or another brand if you prefer
- 1 cup mayonnaise
- ½ cup sour cream
- ½ cup buttermilk (+ extra if needed for desired consistency)
- 1 teaspoon rice wine vinegar (or cider vinegar)
- 1 garlic clove, grated or finely minced
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh dill
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon garlic salt
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
For the salad, simply prepare your celery, carrots, tomatoes, green onions, avocado and kale by chopping/dicing/slicing your ingredients as listed above. For the chicken, pull it off of the bone and shred it with your fingers. In a large bowl, combine the hot sauce and the shredded chicken with a spoon or your hands until the chicken is well-coated and the hot sauce is evenly distributed. Arrange the salad ingredients on top of the kale.
Next, make the dressing.
First, chop the herbs and garlic.
Next, add all of the ingredients to a food processor. Pulse until smooth and well combined. If you don’t have a food processor, you can whisk all of the ingredients together in a bowl until smooth and well combined.
Drizzle the ranch over the salad and toss to combine.