Truly the best Italian chopped salad recipe, with chopped fresh greens and veggies in a simple Italian vinaigrette. This salad is vegetarian and easily vegan. Recipe yields 6 to 8 side servings or 3 to 4 meal-sized servings (a lot). If you store the salad separately from the vinaigrette, it will keep well for up to 4 days.
- 10 ounces chopped romaine lettuce* (about 2 medium or 3 small heads, chopped)
- ½ medium head of radicchio*, finely chopped (about 2 cups)
- ½ medium red onion, chopped (about 1 cup)
- 2 ribs celery, chopped
- 1 pint cherry tomatoes, thinly sliced
- ⅓ cup stemmed and thinly sliced pickled pepperoncini peppers
- ⅓ cup oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, rinsed and roughly chopped
- 1 can (15 ounces) chickpeas, rinsed and drained, or 1 ½ cups cooked chickpeas
- 1 cup (4 ounces) ¼″ cubes of provolone cheese (optional)
- ⅓ cup extra-virgin olive oil
- ⅓ cup red wine vinegar
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 1 teaspoon honey
- 2 cloves garlic, pressed or minced
- 2 teaspoons dried oregano
- 10 twists freshly ground black pepper
- ¼ teaspoon salt, more to taste
- Pinch of red pepper flakes, for heat (optional)
- In a large serving bowl, combine the chopped lettuce, radicchio, onion, celery, cherry tomatoes, peppers, sun-dried tomatoes, chickpeas and cheese (if using). Toss the ingredients together and set aside.
- To prepare the dressing, combine all of the ingredients in a liquid measuring cup. Whisk until blended. Taste, and add more salt if the dressing doesn’t knock your socks off (I usually add one to two more pinches of salt).
- If you’ll be serving all of the salad at once, go ahead and drizzle enough dressing in to lightly coat the salad and toss to combine. I prefer to store the salad and dressing separately so I can enjoy salad for a few days. Just whisk the dressing again before drizzling (if the olive oil solidifies a bit in the refrigerator, don’t worry, that’s normal—just let it warm up for about 5 minutes at room temperature or microwave for 10 to 20 seconds).