Community Blog

Senior Care Recipes: Wilted Chicken Caesar Pasta Salad

By Vicki and Brian Day

Senior Care in Schnecksville PA

When the summer weather rolls around your thoughts likely shift to cool, delicious meals that will satisfy you without weighing you down. A salad is a classic choice for a lunch or dinner that takes advantage of the abundance of fresh vegetables that came into season during this time of year, but sometimes that is simply not enough. This recipe takes the tried-and-true favorite flavors of a chicken Caesar salad and bumps up the satisfaction factor by adding pasta. This makes it perfect for a more filling lunch or dinner option, or as a unique side dish to bring along with you to your next cookout or potluck.

This pasta salad is incredibly delicious served cold. To make it for a meal your parent and their senior care provider can enjoy the next day, prepare the salad except for adding the lettuce and put in the refrigerator to chill. The next day, lightly warm the romaine with a touch more Caesar dressing just until slightly wilted, not softened, and add to the salad before serving.

What You Will Need

• 1 pound of dry pasta, preferably bowtie pasta
• 1 pound of chicken breasts
• 1 cup of Caesar dressing
• 1 cup of croutons
• 1 pint of cherry tomatoes (grape tomatoes work as well)
• 1 small Romaine lettuce head
• Salt
• A sharp knife
• A cutting board
• A large sauté pan
• 1/4 of a cup of toasted pine nuts (optional)
• 1 tablespoon of dried oregano
• 1/2 of a teaspoon of dried parsley flakes
• 1 tablespoon of dried garlic powder
• 1 tablespoon of dried onion powder
• A large stockpot
• 1/2 of a cup and 2 tablespoons of olive oil, separated
• A colander

What to Do

• Fill the large stockpot with generously salted water and 1/2 of a cup of olive oil
• Place the stockpot on high heat and cover
• While the stockpot is heating, place the sauté pan on medium heat
• Add the 2 tablespoons of olive oil to the sauté pan
• Season the chicken with the oregano, onion powder, garlic powder and parsley flakes
• Place the chicken into the sauté pan
• When the water is boiling, add the pasta to cook
• Cook the chicken until cooked through, about 10 minutes, flipping after 2 minutes and then again at 6
• When the chicken is cooked through, turn off the heat and dice or shred the chicken using the sharp knife and a fork
• Return the chicken to the pan to keep warm
• Cook the pasta to al dente, usually about 10 minutes, to taste
• Drain the pasta into the colander
• Once the pasta has drained thoroughly, return it to the stock pot
• Roughly chop the Romaine lettuce using the sharp knife and add it to the stock pot
• Add the grape tomatoes, croutons and parmesan cheese to the stockpot as well
• Add the Caesar dressing to the stockpot and toss to combine
• Add the toasted pine nuts, if using
• When well combined, add the chicken to the stockpot
• Continue to toss
• Plate the pasta salad and sprinkle a touch of the parmesan cheese on top before serving
• This pasta salad can be served hot or can be covered and refrigerated for serving later for up to one day.

From this recipe.