Better Than Cheesecake Factory Luau Salad

Loaded with sweet, tropical flavors, this delicious Luau Salad is BETTER than what you'll get at Cheesecake Factory! Fresh pineapple, mandarin oranges, celery, onions, wantons and a sweet pineapple balsamic dressing top this easy-to-make layered salad. Perfect for summer on the patio!

Loaded with sweet, tropical flavors, this delicious Luau Salad is BETTER than what you’ll get at Cheesecake Factory!  Fresh pineapple, mandarin oranges, celery, onions, wantons and a sweet pineapple balsamic dressing top this easy-to-make layered salad.  Perfect for summer on the patio!

If you’ve been to The Cheesecake Factory restaurant chain, you’ve likely indulged in their beautiful salads and entrees.  One of Kristyn’s and my favorites is their delicious Luau Salad.  It’s a stacked salad loaded with tropical flavors that will make you think you’re on an island getaway in Hawaii.  Well, now you don’t have to go to a restaurant, or Hawaii for that matter, to enjoy wonderful, fresh tropical flavors.  I’ve recreated this delicious salad and even added a few extras to make it even better than the Cheesecake Factory favorite!

Loaded with sweet, tropical flavors, this delicious Luau Salad is BETTER than what you'll get at Cheesecake Factory! Fresh pineapple, mandarin oranges, celery, onions, wantons and a sweet pineapple balsamic dressing top this easy-to-make layered salad. Perfect for summer on the patio!

One of the ingredients that makes the Cheesecake Factory version of this salad so delightful are the large wantons, which are stacked in layers to make this salad pretty impressive.  When I decided to make this salad and ventured out to get my ingredients I had a rather hard time trying to find large, sesame wantons.  I also looked for wanton wrappers, however, you’ll typically find these just in specialty Asian markets.  Should you find the wanton wrappers you’ll have to go to the trouble of heating up a pan of oil and frying them, which to me, doesn’t sound too appealing in the heat of the summer.

Loaded with sweet, tropical flavors, this delicious Luau Salad is BETTER than what you'll get at Cheesecake Factory! Fresh pineapple, mandarin oranges, celery, onions, wantons and a sweet pineapple balsamic dressing top this easy-to-make layered salad. Perfect for summer on the patio!

Instead of the large wantons, I substituted wanton strips, which are easily found in the salad topping section (near the croutons) of the grocery store.  They have the same flavor as the original large wantons, but without all the trouble of having to fry them yourself!  I still wanted to keep the idea of the stacked salad, so I did this by layering the salad ingredients on the uncut leaves of Boston lettuce, which worked beautifully!

Loaded with sweet, tropical flavors, this delicious Luau Salad is BETTER than what you'll get at Cheesecake Factory! Fresh pineapple, mandarin oranges, celery, onions, wantons and a sweet pineapple balsamic dressing top this easy-to-make layered salad. Perfect for summer on the patio!

Another goodie I added, which in addition to all of the fresh delicious flavors, adds some amazing texture are macadamia nuts!  Wow – these add such a great crunch to an already delicious salad, and also add a nice tropical complementary flavor.

Here’s the easy, delicious recipe for my Better Than Cheesecake Factory Luau Salad:

Better Than Cheesecake Factory Luau Salad
 
Loaded with sweet, tropical flavors, this delicious Luau Salad is BETTER than what you'll get at Cheesecake Factory! Fresh pineapple, mandarin oranges, celery, onions, wantons and a sweet pineapple balsamic dressing top this easy-to-make layered salad. Perfect for summer on the patio!
Author:
Recipe type: Main
Cuisine: American
Serves: 1 serving
Ingredients
  • 3-4 leaves of Boston or Bib Lettuce
  • ½ c. white meat chicken (rotisserie chicken works well)
  • 1 c. fresh, sliced pineapple
  • ½ c. mandarin oranges
  • 1 green onion, sliced
  • 1 stalk celery, sliced
  • ½ c. wanton strips
  • ¼ c. chopped macadamia nuts
  • ½ tsp. sesame seeds
  • Dressing:
  • ¼ c. pineapple juice
  • 2 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp. sesame oil
  • 1 Tbsp. honey
  • salt and pepper (a few grinds of each)
Instructions
  1. On a dinner plate, layer a large, uncut lettuce leaf, and sprinkle with a bit of chicken, pineapple, oranges, onion, celery and wanton strips. Repeat this process 3-4 times until you've used all of your ingredients. Top the salad with the macadamia nuts and sprinkle with sesame seeds.
  2. For dressing: In a large glass measuring cup, measure out the juice, vinegar, oil, honey, salt and pepper. Whisk to combine all ingredients. Pour over salad. Enjoy right away.

This recipe makes one good sized single serving salad.  If you’re looking to make this salad for several people, multiple the ingredients as necessary, as set up an assembly line of plates and build your salads.  It may take a bit of time, but these salads will sure to be a showstopper!

I hope you get to enjoy the tropical island flavors of summer soon!  ~Erin

If you liked this recipe, be sure to check out some of my other delicious salads at Delightful E Made:

Cucumber Melon Fruit Salad by Delightful E Made

Cucumber Melon Fruit Salad

Grapefruit and Spinach Salad with Mahi Mahi

Grapefruit and Spinach Salad with Glazed Mahi Mahi

erin-2

__________________________________

Mmmm this salad looks delicious! Thanks so much for sharing Erin!

For more great recipes and ideas from her, head on over to Delightful E Made!

To see some more delicious salads, check out these posts:

Copycat version of Applebee's Oriental Chicken Salad - one of the best salad recipes! A delicious salad made with breaded chicken, cabbage, romaine, sliced almonds, egg, cucumber, and dry chow mein in a flavorful dressing!!

Copycat Applebee’s Oriental Salad

Disneyland's Big Thunder Ranch Copycat Coleslaw recipe - so delicious! { lilluna.com } Red and green cabbage and shredded carrots mixed with red wine vinegar, celery salt, cayenne pepper, and paprika!!

Sweet and Tangy Coleslaw

Quick and simple Asparagus salad filled with cheese and cherry tomatoes - our new favorite salad!!

Asparagus Salad

For all salad recipes, go HERE.

For all recipes, go HERE.

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ENJOY!

Loaded with sweet, tropical flavors, this delicious Luau Salad is BETTER than what you'll get at Cheesecake Factory! Fresh pineapple, mandarin oranges, celery, onions, wantons and a sweet pineapple balsamic dressing top this easy-to-make layered salad. Perfect for summer on the patio!

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Erin Indahl-Fink

Erin Indahl-Fink

Writer and Founder at Delightful E Made
Delighted to meet you! My name is Erin, and the "E" in Delightful E Made. I take great joy in cooking, baking, creating and sharing all the greatness that food brings to our lives and how it connects us as friends, family and community.
Erin Indahl-Fink
Erin Indahl-Fink

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  1. 1

    Krystin!
    We don’t have a Cheesecake Factory up here in Canada, but if we did, something tells me that I would order this EACH and every time! I’m looking for some recipes for a summer BBQ and this is perfect! Pinned and will def try