Whenever I find myself at a restaurant or a family party that serves an Italian style chopped salad, I absolutely devour it. It’s one of my favorite types of salads and I thought it’d be fun to make a unique version with seasonal, crunchy brussels sprouts instead of lettuce. Say hello to crunchy flavor!
This Italian chopped salad involves shredded brussels sprouts instead of lettuce, tomatoes, chickpeas, provolone and parmesan cheese, olives, red onion, pepperoncini and MORE. It’s wrapped together in a light Italian style dressing that you’ll fall in love with as soon as you take one bite.
What’s in an Italian chopped salad?
You know that giant chopped salad you get from California Pizza Kitchen or Macaroni Grill? Yeah, I’m talking about that salad.
Italian chopped salads are made with a crunchy base like different types of lettuces, radishes, radicchio or cabbage, veggies like tomatoes, onion and even artichoke hearts, chickpeas and meats like ham or salami, tangy pepperoncini and topped off with cheeses like mozzarella, parmesan or provolone. They’re then tossed with a light, tangy dressing to coat everything.
Talk about a big bowl of deliciousness.
Ingredients in this Italian chopped salad with brussels sprouts
My take on a classic Italian chopped salad mixes it up with a shredded brussels sprouts base that marinates and soaks up all of the amazing flavors with tons of crunch. Every topping in this gorgeous salad adds a new flavor and texture element that you’re going to love. Here’s what you’ll need:
- For the dressing: you’ll need olive oil, red wine vinegar, sugar or honey, garlic, dijon mustard, Italian seasoning, salt & pepper.
- Brussels sprouts: the base that holds up all of the delicious toppings! Freshly shredded/chopped brussels sprouts.
- Protein: we’re adding a full can of chickpeas, Genoa salami, cubed provolone cheese and shredded parmesan for plenty of protein and a tasty saltiness.
- Veggies: this salad also has a full cup of grape tomatoes and some sliced red onion for crunch.
- Special toppings: don’t forget the sliced olives and pepperoncini! A little kick of Italian flavor.
What is a pepperoncini?
Although “pepperoncini” sounds like a cute little pepperoni, it’s actually a type of pepper. Pepperoncini are yellow-green and look similar to banana peppers, but are thinner and often a bit hotter in terms of spice (some banana peppers have virtually no spice). If you’re sensitive to spice or aren’t a fan of banana peppers, feel free to omit the pepperoncini in this recipe.
Customize your salad
Missing a few things from the list or looking to DIY? No problem! Here are some easy ingredient swaps you can make in this Italian chopped brussels sprouts salad:
- Swap your protein. Customize your protein by using grilled chicken instead of salami or chickpeas. You could even swap in some crispy bacon or ham for the salami.
- Make it vegetarian. Simply omit the salami to keep this salad vegetarian.
- Go vegan. Looking to make it vegan? Omit the salami & cheeses and enjoy as-is.
- Pasta party. Get a little wild and add some cooked elbow, bowties or cavatappi noodles!
How to chop brussels sprouts for salad
- The easiest way to chop or shred brussels sprouts is by using your food processor. Simply add the slicing attachment to your food processor and pulse until the brussels sprouts are thinly sliced.
- If you don’t have a food processor you can thinly slice the brussels sprouts with a sharp knife. Just make sure to remove the stem and any outer yellow leaves.
Italian chopped salad in 4 easy steps
- Make your dressing. Start by whisking together all of the dressing ingredients in a small bowl.
- Shred the brussels. You’ll then want to shred all of those brussels sprouts with a food processor or sharp knife.
- Marinate the brussels. Add your dressing to the brussels sprouts by themselves so that the soak up all that flavor.
- Chop & toss. Chop the rest of your toppings, add them to your bowl of marinated brussels sprouts and serve!
Meal prep this salad
This Italian chopped brussels sprouts salad is great for making ahead of time. Simply make the dressing, shred your brussels, chop all of those toppings and store them in containers until you’re ready to put it all together.
Got leftovers? Store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 2-3 days.
More salad recipes you’ll love
Get all of my delicious salad recipes here!
I hope you love this flavorful, easy Italian chopped brussels sprouts salad! If you make it be sure to leave a comment and a rating so I know how you liked it. Enjoy, xo!
Italian Chopped Brussels Sprouts Salad
Gorgeous Italian chopped salad recipe loaded with shredded brussels sprouts, chickpeas, veggies, salami, olives, pepperoncini and delicious cheeses. This flavorful and easy Italian chopped brussels sprouts salad is tossed in a light Italian dressing and makes the perfect hearty lunch or fresh dinner!
- For the Italian dressing:
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 1-2 teaspoons sugar or honey, depending on how sweet you like your dressing
- 1 clove garlic, finely minced
- 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
- 1 teaspoon italian seasoning
- ½ teaspoon salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- For the salad:
- 1 pound brussels sprouts, ended trimmed and outer leaves removed
- 1 (15 ounce) can chickpeas
- 4-6 oz thinly sliced Genoa salami, cut in half or julienned
- 1 1/2 cups cherry or grape tomatoes, halved
- ½ cup pitted sliced kalamata or sliced black olives
- ¼ cup sliced pepperoncinis
- ½ small red onion, thinly sliced
- ½ cup cubed provolone cheese
- ¼ cup shaved or shredded parmesan
Make the dressing: in a medium bowl, whisk together the olive oil, red wine vinegar, sugar/honey, garlic, dijon, italian seasoning, salt and pepper.
Next, shred the brussels sprouts by using a food processor with the slicing attachment and pulse until the brussels sprouts are thinly sliced. If you don’t have a food processor, feel free to use a sharp knife to thinly slice.
Add shredded brussels to a large bowl and pour the dressing all over. Next use a tongs to coat the brussels with the dressing. Let the dressing sit and marinate the brussels for 30 minutes. While the brussels marinate and soak up the dressing, you can chop and prep all your other ingredients.
Next add in the chickpeas, salami, tomatoes, olives, pepperoncinis, red onion, provolone cheese cubes, shaved parmesan. Toss to combine. Serve immediately with extra black pepper. Serves 4 to 6.
Feel free to keep this recipe vegetarian by skipping the salami.
Check the full post for more ways to customize this salad, plus storing instructions.
Servings: 6 servings
Serving size: 1 serving (based on 6)
Saturated fat: 6.1g
Recipe by: Monique Volz // Ambitious Kitchen | Photography by: Eat Love Eats
This post was originally published on January 19th, 2021, and republished on May 1st, 2022.