Almost-Famous Garden Salad

There’s actually one new recipe in this post and TWO product reviews! I know, I went a little crazy. First, the salad. This is a copy of the Olive Garden’s famous salad! I actually only copied the dressing part and didn’t attempt the salad part. Who knew that there was Miracle Whip in their dressing? I sure didn’t! It was super-easy to make and yep, it tastes just like the Olive Garden! Now for the product reviews. We tried another fake meat product from It’s All Good. This one was “Veggie Pulled Chick’n”. I served it on a bun with some cole slaw, kind of like a BBQ sandwich. I didn’t like it. Toby said that it was scary how meat-like it was, and he ate his sandwich plus most of mine. I don’t know what it is about most of It’s All Good’s products…they use some kind of seasoning that I don’t like. Anyway. The second product review is for Bush’s Grillin’ Beans. They have four new kinds of baked beans (sorry, Grillin’ Beans!), and three of them are vegetarian. This first one we have tried is the Steakhouse Recipe. I thought they were really good. Toby didn’t love them. He doesn’t like his baked beans sweet (and I do!). Oh well. Two more kinds left to try.

rating: Olive Garden salad dressing: 8

It’s All Good Veggie Pulled Chick’n: 5

Bush’s Grillin’ Beans- Steakhouse Recipe: 8.5

Almost-Famous Garden Salad
(Food Network magazine, June/July 2009)


1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 tbsp white wine vinegar
3 tbsp Miracle Whip
1 tbsp lemon juice
2 tbsp grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 tsp garlic salt
1/2 tsp dried Italian seasoning

1 10-ounce bag American salad blend
1/4 red onion, thinly sliced
4 small pickled peppers, such as pepperoncini
1 small vine-ripened tomato, quartered
2 tbsp sliced black olives
1/2 cup large croutons
1 tbsp grated Parmesan cheese


1. Combine all the dressing ingredients and 1-2 tbsp water in a blender or food processor; puree until smooth.
2. Place the salad blend in a large bowl and top with the remaining salad ingredients. Drizzle with the dressing.


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