If you have ever been in the Los Angeles food scene, you know that La Scala's chopped salad is iconic. Packed with smokey salami, little bites of bocconcini cheese, and a tangy dressing, this recipe makes salad fun! This copycat recipe for La Scala's salami chopped salad uses simple, fresh ingredients to mimic the restaurant's famous recipe. You probably have everything you need in your fridge and pantry!
👩🏽🍳Why This Recipe Works
Just like the restaurant version: If you have been around here before, you know I love a good copycat recipe - think longhorn mac and cheese, panera kitchen sink cookies, cava lentil tabbouleh - the list can go on forever. This recipe is extremely similar to the iconic restaurant version - without having to make a reservation!
Fresh flavors: This salad screams bright, fresh flavors. The tangy vinaigrette paired with crisp lettuces, and juicy produce make for the ultimate fresh salad.
Quick to make: One of the reasons why this salad is so quick to make is because it requires little-to-no prep work. Instead of going the messier chopped salad route, by chopping everything on a cutting board, I like to layer the individually chopped ingredients for quicker clean-up, and a little more variation of texture!
- Iceberg lettuce: Iceberg lettuce adds the 'crunch' factor to this salad. I love to use iceberg for a lot of classic salads, like a wedge salad, for the nostalgic element too!
- Romaine lettuce: Romaine lettuce adds another level of texture, with a little more flavour than iceberg lettuce.
- Salami: I used regular smoked salami for this salad. I like to use a smoked salami like this one, as it is not excessively oily, and does not get greasy as it comes to room temperature.
- Cherry tomatoes: Cherry tomatoes are perfect for this salad, as they will not water down the salad as whole tomatoes would. They have less seeds and liquid in them, and not to mention are ideally-sized for a salad like this.
- Roasted red peppers: Roasted red peppers add a smokey / sweet flavour to the salad.
- Bocconcini cheese: Bocconcini cheese is soft, and mild in flavour - it's the perfect addition to the salad.
- Chickpeas: You may use canned or fresh chickpeas, if you have them on hand.
- Spices and seasonings: You will need dried mustard, garlic powder, chilli flakes, and oregano. You will also need red wine vinegar and olive oil.
A full list of ingredients with measurements is located on the recipe card, below.
- Salami: Pepperoni would make a good substitute for salami in this salad. Alternatively, you can use turkey to keep it on the lighter side. If you are feeling even more adventurous, mix up the meats with some spicy pepperoni and plain salami.
- Bocconcini cheese: You can use regular mozzarella, or provolone cheese instead. If you are in a rush, you can use shredded mozzarella or provolone, and add a sprinkle into the salad.
- Vegetarian: Omit the salami to make this salad completely vegetarian. You can experiment with some extra beans, such as cannelini white beans, to add some additional protein to the salad.
- Antipasto: Add in some olives and artichoke hearts to give this salad more of an antipasto twist.
- Extra cheesy: Finish this salad with pecorino romano or parmesan cheese, for an extra cheesy layer.
- Herby: Tear in some fresh basil, for a delicious and bright herby twist.
⏲️ Step-by-Step Instructions
Prep Work Before Cooking
Collecting all your ingredients - This will make cooking so much easier. Gather all the spices you will need, and keep them nearby.
Draining the chickpeas - If using canned chickpeas, drain and rinse them so there is none of the canning liquid left.
Finely chop the lettuce, salami, bocconcini and roasted red peppers. Layer on a platter. [photos 1-3]
Halve the cherry tomatoes, and add on top of the lettuce and other ingredients. Top with chickpeas.
Add the dressing ingredients to a mason jar. Put the lid on, and shake to combine. Drizzle the dressing onto the salad just before before serving. Toss, and serve. [photo 4]
Make extra dressing: Keep extra dressing on hand in the fridge for the week! The dressing will keep well in a mason jar in the fridge for up to a week.
If you have the time: Drizzle half of the salad dressing onto the chickpeas and allow them to marinate in the dressing. This is more of a traditional way of making this restaurant-style salad.
You can use a traditional chopped salad method: If you prefer the classic method of chopping everything together, you can absolutely use that method for this recipe!
🍽 Make Ahead & Storage
Make Ahead Instructions
You can make this salad dressing one week in advance, and store it in an airtight jar in the fridge.
In addition, you can marinate the chickpeas one week in advance, in the prepared salad dressing. Store in an airtight container in the fridge, and top on your salad once prepared.
You can store leftover salad in an airtight container in the fridge for 1-2 days. Be mindful that if the salad is dressed, it will likely wilt and not be as crisp as it will be when served fresh. Because this salad is quick to come together, I recommend making it fresh.
⭐ Recipe FAQs
Traditionally, a chopped salad is made by placing all the ingredients in a cutting board, and chopping them at the same time into fine-sized pieces. That method works for this recipe as well, depending on the texture and method you prefer.
Including too much liquid from the ingredients, or dressing your salad too far in advance, are two of the main reasons why your salad may end up soggy. I recommend ensuring that you drain your bocconcini cheese as well as chickpeas thoroughly, to avoid any extra liquid. I also highly suggest waiting until you are ready to serve or eat your salad.
📝More Salad Recipes
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La Scala Copycat Salami Chopped Salad
- ½ heart Romaine lettuce
- ½ head Iceberg lettuce
- 1 cup Chickpeas drained, rinsed and dried
- 4 slices Salami
- ½ cup Bocconcini cheese drained and dried
- ½ cup Cherry tomatoes
- ¼ cup Roasted red pepper drained and dried
- Finely chop the lettuce, salami, bocconcini and roasted red peppers. Layer on a platter or in a large bowl.½ heart Romaine lettuce, ½ head Iceberg lettuce, 4 slices Salami, ½ cup Bocconcini cheese, ¼ cup Roasted red pepper
- Halve the cherry tomatoes, and add on top of the lettuce and other ingredients. Top with chickpeas.1 cup Chickpeas, ½ cup Cherry tomatoes
- Add the dressing ingredients to a mason jar. Put the lid on, and shake to combine. Drizzle the dressing onto the salad before serving. Toss, and serve.¼ cup Extra virgin olive oil, ¼ cup Red wine vinegar, 2 teaspoon Mustard powder, 1 teaspoon Dried oregano, ¼ teaspoon Red chilli flakes, 1 teaspoon Sea salt, Black pepper
- Make extra dressing so you can keep it on hand in the fridge for the week! The dressing will keep well in a mason jar in the fridge for up to a week.
- If you have the time, drizzle half of the salad dressing onto the chickpeas and allow them to marinate in the dressing. This is more of a traditional way of making this restaurant-style salad.
- You can use a traditional chopped salad method! If you prefer the classic method of chopping everything together, you can absolutely use that method for this recipe!