This easy version of Italian Chopped Salad combines garbanzo beans, salami, mozzarella, tomatoes and romaine lettuce. Serve it alongside some crusty bread, and you've got a nutritious, satisfying meal.
When I lived in Los Angeles many years ago, I was introduced to a salad that changed my life: The Italian Chopped Salad.
It was a staple lunch order for the bigwig execs in the entertainment industry (the most famous version was from La Scala restaurant in Beverly Hills).
I was not a bigwig exec, but I worked for some, so I got the inside scoop on the "it" salad of Hollywood.
My personal favorite Italian chopped salad was from a little Italian spot called the Pasta Factory in Marina del Rey, just down the street from my apartment. Sadly, neither my apartment nor the Pasta Factory exist anymore, but the chopped salad lives on in my memory and in my kitchen.
The perfect thing about this salad is that it's got an amazing combination of textures and flavors, and it's hearty enough to count as a full meal (especially if you serve it alongside some warm crusty bread).
Our favorite restaurant served it with piping hot bread and a dish of super garlicky olive oil for dipping.
You only need 6 ingredients to make this salad.
Italian Chopped Salad Ingredients
- chopped romaine
- garbanzo beans
- shredded mozzarella
- diced salami
- chopped tomatoes
- Italian dressing*
To keep things as easy as possible, I use store bought dressing for my salad. Look for a thicker/creamy-ish Italian dressing, as it helps to bind the ingredients. (My personal favorite to use in this salad is the store bought Olive Garden dressing. Shhhhhh...)
Of course, making your own dressing is a fantastic option as well.
Just combine everything in a bowl and you're good to go! Top with some freshly ground black pepper for some added zest.
Main dish ideas to serve with Italian salad
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Easy Italian Chopped Salad
- 1 roma tomato diced
- ⅓ cup diced salami
- ½ cup salt free garbanzo beans drained and rinsed
- ½ cup shredded mozzarella cheese
- 2 cup chopped romaine lettuce
- 2 tablespoon Italian salad dressing
- black pepper (optional)
- Combine ingredients in a bowl and serve, topping with freshly cracked black pepper.