When the title is longer than the actual recipe, you know it’s gonna be easy. This one’s all ’bout that dressing – a sassy Dijon vinaigrette with plenty of fresh chives and an abundance of verve with a bold vinegar-to-oil ratio. Hey, everyone, get ready to meet your new favourite salad.
The magic of this salad is the vinaigrette and the vinegar-to-oil ratio. With a nearly 50/50 combo and the added bite from Dijon mustard, this is one cheeky blend. The Dijon does add a noticeable kick, but trust that it’s generally tamed but the velvety, ripe avocado, tender chicken, and salty bacon.
Oh, and about that bacon …
This is a meal born out of convenience. So, how quickly this salad hits the table all comes down to the bacon as it’s really the only part of this meal that requires any cooking (thank you, convenient and delicious rotisserie chicken). If the idea of cooking bacon isn’t your favourite, you’re not alone.
I suppose you could skip the process altogether and pick up the equally convenient pre-cooked bacon right along with the rotisserie chicken. But, if you’re like me and prefer to cook your own –read on, friend!
I’m offering a quick, “I need crispy bacon right now!” method, and also a super easy, new-to-me method of cooking bacon that produces superior results on a meal-prep scale that’s mostly hands-off and won’t mess up your range.
First, the quick method: Bacon “lardons.”
Lardons are traditionally made from slab bacon and not smoked, but for our purposes here the same method ensures even (and faster) cooking without the need to babysit each splattering strip of bacon.
Set a skillet over medium heat and cut your desired amount of bacon across the width of the strips into batons about ¼” wide. Add them to the hot skillet and cook, stirring frequently so that the fat renders evenly. Once the pieces start to look almost done, watch them carefully to ensure nothing burns – it can happen fast! Use a slotted spoon to remove the bacon lardons and drain on paper towel.
Now for my favourite – the super-duper easy method: Oven-cooked bacon.
Starting with a cold oven, line two large, rimmed baking sheets with foil. Lay the strips of bacon on the sheets in a single layer. I found that one 500 gram package of thick-cut bacon fills two large trays perfectly.
With the racks placed in the upper and lower thirds of the oven, put both trays in, one above the other. Turn the temp to 400ºF and set a timer for 12 minutes.
Once the timer goes, check the bacon and swap the upper tray with the lower tray. If you’re not using thick-cut bacon yours will cook a lot faster and you would want to flip the pieces when they start to look like they’re browning. Again, set a timer for 12 minutes.
Here’s where you’ll want to keep an eye on things. I swapped the tray positions one more time and removed some of the bacon pieces as ones around the outside of the tray cooked faster than in the middle. Transfer the cooked pieces to a plate lined with paper towels to drain any excess fat.
After about 35-40 minutes (remember, thin slices of bacon won’t take this long), I had the most beautiful, perfectly flat, crisp pieces of bacon with evenly rendered fat (no curled up, rubbery uncooked ends), and my range was still clean!
Obviously, you won’t need the whole package for THIS salad, but we’re talking meal-prep here and keeping pre-cooked bacon handy is a really good idea. We don’t actually eat a lot of bacon, but when we have a hankering (and I find some on sale!), I approach the task from a meal-prep mindset, pre-cooking one (but usually) more packages at once, then storing the slices in the fridge or freezer. Right before using, I quickly warm the slices in a skillet to re-crisp and serve. This makes for much cleaner cooking and quicker meals where bacon is called for.
So now that you have all the perfectly cooked bacon you need, let’s make a salad.
Writing the details for this particular salad in a recipe format was surprisingly a bit tricky since it’s more of a non-recipe. So, rather than restrict you with measurements here, this is more about the general idea of a successful salad, with the recipe for a really dynamite vinaigrette.
Our family loves easy meals like this, and I hope you enjoy it too.
Rotisserie Chicken B.L.T. Salad with Avocado and Dijon-Chive Vinaigrette
This one's all 'bout that dressing – a sassy Dijon vinaigrette with plenty of fresh chives and an abundance of verve with a bold vinegar-to-oil ratio. Perfect for dressing tender bites of rotisserie chicken, crispy bacon crumbles, juicy tomatoes, and creamy avocado on a bed of leafy greens. Since this is a meal salad, it's a nice touch to serve larger pieces of everything, and whole leaves of lettuce, then use a knife with your fork to cut bite-sized pieces. (Please note the times stated are assuming you have the bacon pre-cooked – see Recipe Notes.)
For the Dijon-Chive Vinaigrette (makes enough for 3 generous meal-sized salads or 4 smaller ones)
- ⅓ cup extra virgin olive oil
- ¼ cup red wine vinegar
- 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
- 2 tbsp finely chopped chives
For the Salad Assembly
- rotisserie chicken
- pre-cooked bacon
- leafy lettuce
- cherry tomatoes
In a bowl, whisk together the oil, vinegar, and Dijon. Once emulsified, add the chives and season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Alternatively, you can put everything in a jar with a lid and shake to combine. Set aside.
Wash and dry the lettuce, slice the tomatoes, chicken, and avocado; crumble or chop the bacon. Arrange everything into individual bowls, or on one large serving platter.
Serve with the Dijon-Chive Vinaigrette and enjoy!
A note about the “Cook Time.” I’m sensitive to the fact that writing a recipe using pre-cooked ingredients can be wildly misleading and frustrating. The reason I did so here is that cooking bacon can be done in different ways, with varied time commitments and results.
If your bacon is not already cooked, start that first and while it’s cooking, prepare the dressing and build your salad. Cook as much bacon as you wish and anyway you like, or you could follow the quick method or the easy meal-prep oven method described above, which can take up to 40 minutes for thick-sliced bacon, but giving you enough for other uses besides this salad.
I consider bacon as part of my meal prep on a monthly basis, pre-cooking one (but usually) more packages at once, then storing the slices in the fridge or freezer. Right before using, I quickly warm the slices in a skillet to re-crisp and serve. This makes for much cleaner cooking and quicker meals where bacon is called for.
Thanks for reading and if you make this “non-recipe,” let me know! Drop a comment below and share your creation on Instagram. Don’t forget to tag #myfamilyfoodlife!