Panera-Inspired Grilled Chicken Strawberry Poppyseed Salad

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Grilled Chicken Strawberry Poppyseed Salad is a refreshing and flavorful dish that’s perfect for a light summer meal. This Panera copycat recipe has grilled chicken, juicy strawberries, sweet mandarin oranges, and crisp butter lettuce, all tossed in a tangy citrus poppyseed dressing. Topped with crunchy toasted pecans, this salad is is full of flavor and will leave you feeling satisfied and energized.

Butter leaf lettuce and strawberry combination salad with additional fruit, grilled chicken and poppyseed dressing.
The family can’t believe I made a salad as tasty as restaurant quality! The flavors in this dish are so vibrant and delicious that it’s now a family favorite.
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🗝️ Recipe’s key points

  • Marinating the chicken in a blend of olive oil, balsamic vinegar, garlic, salt, and pepper ensures tender, juicy, and well-seasoned meat for your salad.
  • The combination of butter lettuce, strawberries, pineapple, blueberries, and mandarin oranges creates a refreshing and fruity base for the salad.
  • The homemade citrus poppyseed dressing ties all the flavors together beautifully.
  • Toasted pecans add a satisfying crunch to the salad for the perfect finish.

This copycat Panera strawberry poppyseed salad perfectly balances savory and sweet flavors. The homemade citrus poppyseed dressing takes this salad recipe to the next level, making it an irresistible summer dish.

🛒 Ingredients

This is an overview of the ingredients. You’ll find the full measurements and instructions in the recipe card (printable) at the bottom of the page.

Image of the ingredients needed to make Strawberry Salad with Poppyseed dressing and grilled chicken breast.

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  • Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts – Will be marinated and grilled for the perfect salad protein.
  • Chicken Marinade – Made from olive oil, balsamic vinegar, minced garlic, salt, and pepper.
  • Butter Lettuce – You can also use romaine lettuce, baby spinach, or a mixture.
  • Strawberries – Sliced.
  • Blueberries
  • Mandarin Oranges – Fresh or canned and drained.
  • Pineapple – Fresh or canned and drained.
  • Pecans – Toasted.
  • Citrus Poppyseed Dressing – You can use store-bought poppy seed dressing if you prefer, but I highly recommend my version with champagne vinegar, orange juice, lime, honey, shallot, garlic, salt, pepper, olive oil, and poppy seeds.

🗒 Instructions

This is an overview of the instructions. Full instructions are in the recipe card at the bottom of the page.

The collage features the first four steps to making the lettuce strawberry salad, showing the chicken's marinating and grilling.
  1. In a small mixing bowl, combine the olive oil, balsamic vinegar, garlic, salt, and pepper.
  2. Place the chicken breasts in a shallow baking dish. Pour the marinade over the chicken.
  3. Toss to coat the chicken evenly. Cover and marinate for at least 30 minutes, or overnight.
  4. Grill the chicken for 5-6 minutes per side over medium-high heat. Let it rest for a few minutes before slicing.
The second recipe collage for the grilled chicken strawberry butter lettuce salad made with poppyseed dressing.
  1. Combine the champagne vinegar, orange juice, lime juice, honey, shallot, garlic, mustard powder, salt, and pepper in a food processor and blend until combined. Pour in the olive oil slowly until all ingredients are well blended. Stir in the poppyseeds and set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, toss the butter lettuce with salt and pepper. Add strawberries, pineapple, blueberries, and mandarin oranges.
  3. Top with sliced grilled chicken and toasted pecans.
  4. Drizzle the citrus poppyseed dressing over the salad and serve!

🥫 Storage

Making It Ahead: Prepare the grilled chicken up to 1 day in advance and the poppyseed dressing up to 1 week in advance. Store each component separately in the refrigerator. When ready to serve, assemble the salad and drizzle with the dressing.

Storing Leftovers: If you have leftovers, it is best to store the components separately so the fruit and lettuce do not become soft. The grilled chicken can be stored for up to 4 days and the dressing can be stored for up to 1 week. To serve, assemble the salad with the leftover ingredients.

📚 Variations

  • Omit the grilled chicken and replace it with grilled tofu or roasted chickpeas for a protein-packed vegetarian alternative.
  • Swap out the butter lettuce for fresh baby spinach to create a classic spinach strawberry salad with a twist.
  • In addition to the strawberries and blueberries, add raspberries and blackberries for a colorful and antioxidant-rich mixed berry salad.
  • Substitute the grilled chicken with grilled shrimp for a seafood twist on this strawberry poppyseed salad.
Salad bowl with wooden serving spoons filled with the strawberry grilled chicken breast salad with poppyseed dressing.
This salad has become my go-to healthy meal option. It’s so easy to make, and the poppyseed dressing is to die for!

👩🏻‍🍳 Tips

  • To ensure the chicken is cooked through, use a meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the breast. The internal temperature should reach 165°F (74°C).
  • To toast the pecans, preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C). Spread the pecans in a single layer on a baking sheet and bake for 5-7 minutes, stirring halfway through, until fragrant and lightly golden. Keep a close eye on them, as they can burn quickly.
  • If the citrus poppyseed dressing is too thick, thin it out with a tablespoon of water at a time until you reach the desired consistency. If it’s too thin, add a bit more olive oil and blend again.
  • To keep the salad from getting soggy, store the dressing separately and drizzle it on just before serving. If you’re preparing the salad in advance, keep the fruit and vegetable components separate from the lettuce until ready to serve.

🤔 FAQs

What’s on Wendy’s Strawberry Salad?

Wendy’s Strawberry Salad contains sliced strawberries, grilled chicken, , candied almonds, Applewood smoked bacon, a Tuscan cheese blend, Champagne vinaigrette, and spring mix lettuce.

How do you cut strawberries for strawberry salad?

To cut strawberries for a salad, hull them (remove the stems) and slice them thinly, either vertically or horizontally.

What is strawberry fluff made of?

Strawberry fluff is typically made of Cool Whip, strawberry Jell-O mix, and fresh or frozen strawberries.

What are the ingredients for spinach salad?

A basic spinach salad usually includes fresh baby spinach, sliced red onions, crumbled bacon, sliced hard-boiled eggs, and a vinaigrette dressing, but you can top it however you like!

Does Wendy’s have strawberry chicken salad?

The Summer Strawberry Salad is a limited edition salad that is sometimes available in the summer.

Panera copycat of their grilled chicken strawberry salad with poppyseed dressing.
Discover the true essence of fresh and delicious flavors with our Panera copycat strawberry poppyseed salad.

🍽 What to serve with Strawberry Poppyseed Salad

This dish is really a complete meal in one! If you would like, you could serve it alongside a bread like Sourdough Focaccia, French Baguette, or Homemade Breadsticks.

Homemade citrusy poppyseed dressing was poured on the strawberry lettuce salad.
Evoke the taste of sunshine with every bite of this homemade Poppyseed citrus salad, filled with goodness and bursting with flavor

🔪 All Our Way recommends the following

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You’ll need the following items to make this recipe successfully.

  • Grill or grill pan and tongs
  • Baking dish (for marinating chicken)
  • Mixing bowls
  • Whisk
  • Cutting board and a sharp knife
  • Food processor
  • Serving bowl and salad tongs

📞 Chiacchierata (chat)

I’m so excited for you to try this Grilled Chicken Strawberry Poppyseed Salad recipe! I’d like to share why I’m head over heels for this fresh, fruity salad, which is perfect for brunch or lunch.

This salad isn’t just about nourishing your body—it’s about feeding your soul with every vibrant, delicious bite. It’s about gathering around the table with loved ones and savoring the simple joys of good food and good company.

So, whether you’re hosting a brunch with friends or enjoying a quiet lunch at home, this Strawberry Salad with homemade Poppyseed Dressing is sure to steal the show. Give it a try and let its fresh, fruity goodness brighten your day!

Buon appetito!

Tutti a tavolo, è pronto!

A bowl of Chicken Strawberry Poppyseed salad is on a white wooden table. There are more strawberries on one side and the serving bowl with the salad on the other.
If you’re tired of the same old salad, this masterpiece with butter lettuce, fresh fruit, and zesty poppyseed dressing will refresh your opinion of salad.

If you love this recipe please give it 5 stars ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️.

What’s new? Check out my All Our Way Store on Amazon. We’ll be adding more items we love and use or wish we had to make
cooking fun and easy.

📖 Recipe

A salad bowl filled with Strawberry Lettuce combination and grilled chicken dressed with poppyseed dressing.

Grilled Chicken Strawberry Poppyseed Salad

This Grilled Chicken Strawberry Poppyseed Salad is a burst of flavor with perfectly grilled chicken, ripe strawberries, fresh fruit, butter lettuce, crunchy pecans, and a homemade citrus poppyseed dressing. It’s the ultimate summer salad you can make at home.


Course: light meal salad, Salad, Salad Dressing

Cuisine: American

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 12 minutes

Marinate time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 52 minutes

Servings: 4 Servings

Calories: 669kcal

Author: Marisa Franca @ All Our Way

As An Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.


Grilled chicken **see notes

  • 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 4 Tablespoonns olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon pepper

Fruit vegetable salad

  • 8 cups torn butter lettuce
  • 1 ½ cups strawberries sliced
  • 1 cup sliced pineapple
  • ¾ cup blueberries
  • ¾ cup mandarin oranges
  • ½ cup Toasted Pecans

Citrus Poppyseed Dressing

  • 3 tablespoons champagne vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon orange juice
  • ½ lime juiced
  • ¼ cup honey
  • 1 shallot diced
  • 1 garlic clove minced
  • ½ teaspoon ground mustard
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper
  • ½ cup olive oil or grapeseed oil
  • 1 ½ tablespoons poppy seeds


Grilled chicken

  • Place the chicken in a baking dish or a resealable bag. In a small bowl, whisk together the olive oil, balsamic vinegar, garlic, salt and pepper. Pour it over the chicken and toss to coat. Marinate for at least 30 minutes or even overnight.
  • Heat your grill to medium-high heat. Grill the chicken for 5 to 6 minutes per side. Let it rest for a few minutes before slicing it thinly.

Fruit Vegetable Mix

  • In a large bowl, toss the butter lettuce with a pinch of salt and pepper. Add the strawberries, pineapple, blueberries, and oranges and toss well. Add the chicken and pecans on top, and drizzle on the dressing to serve.

Citrus Poppyseed Dressing

  • Combine the vinegar, orange juice, lime juice, honey, shallot, garlic, mustard powder, salt, and pepper in a food processor and blend until combined. With the processor on, stream in the olive oil until the dressing is emulsified and comes together. Stir in the poppy seeds with a spoon and serve. This stays great in the fridge for a few days!


***May use a sliced rotisserie chicken breast without the skin. 


Calories: 669kcal | Carbohydrates: 49g | Protein: 29g | Fat: 42g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 7g | Monounsaturated Fat: 27g | Trans Fat: 0.01g | Cholesterol: 73mg | Sodium: 581mg | Potassium: 1049mg | Fiber: 7g | Sugar: 39g | Vitamin A: 3668IU | Vitamin C: 61mg | Calcium: 148mg | Iron: 3mg

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