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This paleo Italian salad is one of my very favorite paleo salads: loaded with radicchio, roasted garlic, olives, bright and spicy peperoncinis, salami, sun-dried tomatoes, and more. Such a great paleo dinner, paleo salad, or paleo side dish! Seriously, this paleo Italian salad will become a staple in your meal plan.
There’s only two types of salads I really can’t resist: the steakhouse style steak salad, smothered with garlicky ranch dressing, cucumbers, tomatoes (and you know, in general… croutons). Rich and super filling, I crave this salad regularly, loving how the tender and juicy steak works with the crisp lettuce, all topped off with an herbaceous, creamy sauce. And when I’m on a Whole30 (like, hey!, right now), a steakhouse style steak salad is a fantastic weeknight dinner. Sear the steak, wash and chop a few things, and done.
The other salad I absolutely can’t say no to?
The loaded Italian salad. Oh. Oh oh oh.
Chopped salami, briny olives, juicy tomatoes, spicy pepperoncinis? Yes, please. And, of course, Italian salads are typically made with some sort of cheese, but we’re leaving that out, paleo friends. And in its place? A billion even better ingredients. A billion!
I’m talking radicchio and romaine, crunchy, spicy pepperoncinis and tart sun-dried tomatoes, roasted garlic and marinated artichoke hearts, soft-boiled eggs and two–I repeat, two–types of olives, grape tomatoes and cucumber, spicy red onion and crunchy carrots. Lots and lots of salami.
If you’re fancy, you could turn this into an Italian chopped salad party – place all the ingredients out salad bar-style and let your guests dooty up their salads. Drizzle some dressing over the entire thing then chopchopchop with two knives thwacking away on your cutting board, the Yankee teppanyaki.
Or you could just opt for one of these paleo Italian salads on a weeknight when you’re feeling a bit lazy but can’t stand the thought of going out, in the mood for something light but super flavorful, and can’t bring yourself to turn on the oven. I ate a giant bowl of this paleo Italian salad for dinner from the couch with Doctor Who on, and I can confirm:
So much yes.
What really takes this paleo Italian salad over the edge is the brilliant pepperoncinis. We don’t shy away from there here, sprinkling a delicate few on a sandwich or garnishing a salad with a whole pepper. Nope, we’re fans of flavor at 40 Aprons, and these Mezzetta Pepperoncinis really, really work here. I use upwards of a cup, bringing in the perfect spicy, crunchy, briny kick that this salad absolutely needs. These Mezzetta Peperoncinis really energize and brighten this everyday recipe!
We keep a jar of these peperoncinis in the fridge at all times, integrating them into Greek meal prep bowls, Italian gluten-free pastas, and dipping them into Whole30 ranch (no shame!). It really takes the ‘everyday’ all the way to ‘crave-worthy.’ We always get the bottom of the jar – they don’t last long in our house!
But really, this salad is super versatile. Throw in whatever sounds good to you, but freaking let me know what it is… I have serious paleo Italian salad FOMO.
Paleo Italian Salad
- 1 head radicchio , chopped, about 4 cups
- 1 head romaine lettuce , stem cut off and sliced thin
- 1/4 cup sliced red onion
- 1/2 cup grape tomatoes , halved
- 1/4 cup kalamata olives , pitted and sliced
- 1/4 cup black olives , pitted and sliced
- 1/2-3/4 cup Italian dry salami , sliced
- 1/4 cup sun-dried tomatoes , sliced
- 2/3 cup Mezzetta Peperoncini , stemmed, deseeded and sliced
- 2-4 whole medium-boiled eggs , diced
- 1/4 cup chopped marinated artichoke hearts
- 1/4 cup chopped roasted garlic cloves
- Combine all ingredients in a food processor and blend until very smooth. Or combine all ingredients in a medium bowl and whisk until emulsified and well-blended.
- In a large bowl, combine all ingredients. Pour salad dressing over, a little at a time, and toss with tongs until well coated. Serve immediately.