I have a long standing love relationship with pineapple and I am constantly looking for ways of adding it to our menu. Fresh summer salads are a staple on our kitchen table the only challenge; is coming up with a flavor combination that appeals to everyone. The flavors in this salad are beautifully balanced between the savory grilled chicken, sweet pineapple chunks and sharp blue cheese. The pineapple vinaigrette is light and refreshing, just as a summer salad dressing should be. After marinating the chicken overnight, the chicken can be grilled and the salads assembled and served within 30 minutes. If you’re a fan of pineapple too, take a peek at my Sweet & Spicy Pineapple Chicken Kabobs!
Grilled Polynesian Chicken Salad with a Pineapple Vinaigrette
- 1½ lb boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- ½ cup pineapple juice
- ⅓ cup teriyaki sauce
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 2 Tbsp brown sugar
- salt & black pepper to taste
- ½ cup pineapple juice
- 3 Tbsp white balsamic vinegar
- 3 Tbsp honey
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp onion powder
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 1 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
- ⅔ cup olive oil
- 10 cups mixed salad greens
- 1 large cucumber, seeded & julienned
- 1 large carrot, peeled & julienned
- 1 medium red onion, thinly sliced
- 1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced
- 1½ cup fresh pineapple chunks
- 8 oz crumbled blue cheese
Whisk the marinade ingredients together and pour over the chicken. Place into the refrigerator and marinate overnight.
To prepare the chicken, preheat the grill to medium-high. Remove the chicken pieces from the marinade and discard. Grill the chicken for 4-5 minutes on each side, depending on the thickness of the chicken pieces. Grill until the juices run clear. Rest for 5 minutes before slicing and serving.
To make the vinaigrette, whisk together the pineapple juice, white balsamic vinegar, honey, garlic powder, onion powder, sea salt and red pepper flakes. Slowly drizzle the oil into the mixture, whisking vigorously while you pour. The vinaigrette will slightly thicken.
To assemble the salads, arrange salad greens on a plate or platter. Dress with julienned cucumber and carrot. Add thinly sliced strips of red onion and red bell pepper. Top with fresh pineapple chunks and a sprinkle of blue cheese. Slice the chicken and arrange on top. Serve drizzled with the pineapple vinaigrette.
Makes 4 dinner salads.
About the Author
Melissa Sperka is the creator of Melissa’s Southern Style Kitchen. After winning the National Just a Pinch Flour Power! baking contest, she also gained national attention with her blue ribbon Nested PotatoSkins, featured in Southern Living Magazine. To Melissa, “Southern style” isn’t just about regional food, but about serving homemade dishes with grace, charm, and a healthy dose of Southern hospitality.