Review: Asian Salad from Chick-fil-A

I just paid $7.19 for a fast food salad.  Three new salads are now available on the updated Chick-fil-A menu and my first sampling was the Asian Salad.  Let’s see if this salad was $7.19 well spent.Asian Salad ChickfilaThe Asian Salad from Chick-fil-A is described like this:

Chick-fil-A® Nuggets, pressure-cooked, sliced and served hot on a fresh bed of chopped Romaine lettuce and baby greens, topped with shredded red and green cabbage, carrots and mandarin orange segments. Made fresh daily. Served with Honey Thai Almonds, Chinese Garlic & Ginger Wontons and Honey Sesame dressing.

Right off the bat, it’s hard to impress me when I cringe at the fact that I just dropped over 7 bucks for a salad at a drive-thru.  Putting that aside for the moment, I still found the new Asian Salad to be a quality salad, yet altogether quite forgettable.The Asian Salad is advertised as a 330 calorie salad, but that’s if you exclude the toppers and dressing that make it truly complete.  Adding the Honey Thai Almonds (40 calories), the Chinese Garlic & Ginger Wontons (100 calories), and the Honey Sesame dressing (170 calories) will clock this salad at 610 calories.  Let’s not forget the 31 grams of fat and 1900 milligrams of sodium that help you forget you’re trying to eat healthy.  But ordering a salad is a choice and how you customize it gives you control over how out of control you want to follow through with that choice.

Asian Salad Chickfila 2Chick-fil-A has done away with chicken tenders in their salads and has replaced them with sliced Chick-fil-A Nuggets (not the grilled nuggets for whatever reason).  The nuggets on my salad weren’t hot as advertised and I was OK with that.  This salad felt smaller than the now discontinued salads.  If anything, it seems like the glut of greens have been scaled back to make a better balance of ingredients.  At the end of my salad, there were still nugget pieces strewn about and that shows me a well-executed balance of ingredients.  The mix of chopped Romaine lettuce, baby greens, carrots and cabbage were crisp, cool and fresh.  I was worried the heat of the chicken would have a negative impact on the cold ingredients, but this wasn’t the case.  The only ingredients that were a little warm happened to be the mandarin oranges.  The mandarin oranges were a juicy and sweet contrast to the salty soy sauce flavors of the crispy wontons.  The Honey-Thai almonds lacked much flavor impact when accompanied by everything else, but were welcomed in their subtle crunch.  You can choose any Chick-fil-A salad dressing to go with your salad, but I stuck with the recommended Honey Sesame Dressing.  I barely used half of the packet of dressing and was satisfied without needing more.  The dressing is primarily dominated by a mix of soy sauce, rice vinegar and honey flavors.Asian Salad Chickfila 3Nothing really stood out to me with the Asian Salad as overly impressive.  This salad is basically the Wendy’s Mandarin Chicken Salad with a Chick-fil-A twist.  The fact that the Wendy’s version is now discontinued might be a warning sign for this one, but only time will tell.  I would say the Asian Salad hits solid marks in quality as far as fast food is concerned, but at a price of $7.19, it’s hard to give this particular salad any advantages over a fast casual offering.  It’s a filling meal, yet doesn’t stand above and beyond in any areas that would warrant a strong recommendation from me.

Pros: Filling. Nice packaging. Balance of ingredients. Chick-fil-A Nuggets.

Cons: $7.19 is too pricey for a fast food salad. Doesn't stand out as a significant improvement over the discontinued salads.

Taste: 6.25/10
Value: 4.00/10
Grubbing on-the-go: 5.25/10
Price: $7.19

Overall GrubGrade: 6.00/10

More Info: http://www.chick-fil-a.com/Food/Salad-Detail/ChickfilA-Asian-Salad
Nutrition Facts:
Asian Salad with wontons/almonds/dressing:
Calories - 610
Total Fat - 31 grams
Saturated Fat - 4 grams
Cholesterol - 70 milligrams
Sodium - 1900 milligrams
Carbs - 52 grams
Dietary Fiber - 6 grams
Sugar - 28 grams
Protein - 33 grams

27 comments on “Review: Asian Salad from Chick-fil-A

  1. Sheila says:

    Wow… I’ve always liked the Chick-fil-A Chargrill salads, but I couldn’t get them too often because they were rather expensive. Now that the new ones are $7.19, I don’t know if I can justify the cost! Were all the salads $7.19, or was one more expensive than the others? I think the fruit one used to be more expensive than the Southwest and the Garden salads. Did you get a chance to see the price for the new wrap too?

    Thanks for the review! :)

    • Ryan says:

      The wrap by itself was $5.19 at my Chick-fil-A in Maryland… the wrap combo meal was $7.95. Steep!

    • ChunkBunny says:

      The price is steep for fast food, but remember this is much higher quality than McDonald’s. If you want to pay $3-$4, you’re going to get a half brown, wilted, iceberg salad. Pay more, you’re going to get something above average that is actually green. I will gladly pay more for food that can be described as more than a “processed food product”.

      • Sheila says:

        Well, yes, I agree that you’d expect a higher quality salad for a higher price. But $7.19 just seems overboard for the “type” of food Chick-fil-A serves. Don’t get me wrong…I DO expect better quality from Chick-fil-A than McDonald’s, etc., and I usually receive it. But in the end it is still fast food. A price of over $7 for a single thing (i.e., not a combo) at a fast food restaurant just seems a little too much to me…it is getting into the realm of a “regular restaurant’s” cost. But I admit that I am pretty cheap, so maybe that’s just my opinion. :/

        I also stopped by a Chick-fil-A here (Kansas City) today and the salads are $7.35 before tax. The wrap was $5.19 like Ryan’s in Maryland.

  2. Daniel N says:

    Good review. Hard to see how people can complain about Panera being expensive when you paid more for a lower quality salad at chick-fil-a

  3. KaShiDC says:

    Way too expensive! The quality is what you would expect from CFA but at over $7 they have added too much unnecessary fluff. A lot of the ingredients that drive up the price are not even wanted. How about just the garden or chargrilled garden salad I lived for. I will find a new alternative. I also tried the grilled Market salad and found myself picking off everything. Who puts blue cheese on a fast food salad. CFA made the same mistake a few years ago when they added corn to their salads and lost me as a customer for several years.

  4. Anne says:

    Personally, I am going to miss the old salads. I enjoyed them. Just tried one of the new salads. It cost too much and wasn’t an improvement. I’d rather have the old salads back.

    • Ryan says:

      Yeah I’m going to definitely miss the Southwest salad.

    • Bob says:

      I’ll have to agree. CFA screwed up changing to the new salads. The chargrilled garden salad was the healthiest choice low cal, low fat salad. I dont like fruit in my salad and the only option left is the cobb salad which has higher fat of bacon, egg and cheese. I dont mine paying extra for a good salad but if I order mine without egg, bacon and cheese it should not cost $7.40.

  5. Ashley says:

    I definitely will miss the chargrilled and fruit salad. Tried the berry one and was not impressed…and the salad was smaller and not as filling.

  6. Melinda says:

    I HATE the new salads! What a disappointment! Bring back the grilled chicken strip salad! I will be moving on to other places for salads. I want a good garden salad not an overpriced, smaller, “fufu” salad. I think they really messed up by dropping all the old salads. Why couldn’t they just add these others instead of replacing the old, GREAT ones??

  7. Kim says:

    I tried the Asian salad and did not like it al all. It would have been healthier with grilled chicken. I love romaine and spinach, but I am not a fan of the field greens lettuce used in this salad. I wish the grilled chicken strip salad was back. Also, very expensive…Zaxby’s salads have these beat.

  8. Sharona says:

    The new salads are the “new Coke” of 2013. They are terrible and I hope Chick Fil a realizes this and brings back the old salads that they are famous for before it is too late and a lot of their regular customers find another place to get a good salad. I know I won’t be back buying their salads and I bought at least 3 a week from them.

  9. allison says:

    I actually LOVED the cobb salad. See, I feel like you can get a plain salad anywhere. Sonic, McDonalds, Whataburger, Burger King…they’re all the same. At Chick-Fil-A, they are actually putting quality ingredients in their food. The old salads — with the exception of the Southwest — were bland and just ‘okay.’ No one is going to love everything, but I’m personally glad to see restaurants like this raising the bar.

    • Bob says:

      To me a plain salad is the grilled chicken ceasar salad without cheese from McDonalds. Try to get that plain salad anywhere or at CFA. CFA is not raising the bar but rather raising the price and raising awareness to better healthier choices at other restaurants.

  10. Lydia says:

    At first, I was devastated about my old salads being discontinued at CFA…not any longer! I LOVE the Market Grill salad!!! 180 calories without nuts and granola. Add light Italian dressing for 25 more calories and you have a few healthy lunch. I have also custom ordered the salad for friends with no blue cheese with no issue and just a two minute wait – and even asked for extra strawberries and blueberries and they did it at no charge. Also note that any of the salads can be changed to grilled chicken – they need to “advertise” that option more so everyone knows. You can customize each salad how you want. Making the salad just the way you like is easy and they are happy to do it.

  11. cb says:

    The new coke? If it tasted bad then I would agree. But that is an unfair comparison. If I am going to pay over $7 for a salad it needs to be loaded and fresh. This was exactly what I had in the COBB salad. I actually got two meals out of it. It was loaded with the trimmings, and the chicken was the best. So it’s $2 more than other fast food salads? Have you seen the dismal salad offerings from other fast food entities? It doesn’t compare to the size and quality of the new CFA salads.

  12. CDMB says:

    I loved their chargrilled and fruit salad. I’m not a salad lover but I loved it and I liked how all the toppings were piled together so I could pick off anything I didn’t want. I would eat there at least twice a week as the rest of my family like Chick Fil A too. But I have tried all three of the new salads and the problem with the Asian and the Cobb is they taste so SALTY. I felt like I was eating a salt shaker. In fact, I returned one of the salads and told them for $7 bucks, I can’t eat this. I am disappointed. I will probably try the market salad again and try customizing it. But I do feel the salads are smaller (first comment my husband said after seeing mine) and to raise the price turns me off more. I started on the salads as I’m burned out on their chicken for now. Unfortunately, except for the warm chocolate chip cookie, not much I want to eat there for dinner now. :)

  13. Jane says:

    I really miss the old salads and for me it is not the cost, it is the taste and mixture. They also changed their side salad. It used to have a nice mix of vegetables in it and now, it is lettuce with two tomatoes. I actually took the time to write to them and I got a “too bad we don’t care” marketing email. I for one, won’t be a CFA customer any longer.

  14. Missy says:

    Not good!! Too pricey for a fast food salad and way too small for the new price. Not going back to chick fil a for a salad -.-

  15. Heather says:

    I had this yesterday, with a free coupon of course, but really enjoyed it. You can get it with grilled chicken at no extra cost.

  16. Nick says:

    I just ate this … at a hefty price of almost $8 with tax .. this salad is seemingly a ridiculous joke.

    Comparing to the salad I ate yesterday from Panera … at a lower cost … this was awful.

    This is the first and last time I eat a salad from Chik-Fil-A, I will just stick with what fast food places are good at … Sandwiches.

    At 1900 milligrams of sodium … I don’t see how this is at all a healthy choice meal.

  17. Janet says:

    The new salads are terrible! They also got rid of the Caesar dressing and sunflower seeds! What were they thinking!!!!

  18. saladlover says:

    I came up with 640 calories for the entire salad, not 610 calories. I added 330 (for the salad), 40 for the almonds, 100 for the crispy wontons and 170 for the dressing. I have ordered this salad with grilled chicken nuggets and it was just as delicious but with about 90 less calories 8 grams less of fat. Personally, I have no problem paying 7 bucks for a good salad. In 2013, many fast food combo meals are 6 dollars plus. I would rather have a tasty salad over a burger, fries and soda which is loaded with a lot more fat, calories and sodium. I have tried McDonald’s salads which are a couple of dollars less and they are hit or miss. Sometimes the grilled chicken is a rubbery or fatty blob. I am thrilled Chick fil a changed their salads. Their old ones were bland and I could barely choke them down and I tried them all! I also love Wendy’s apple pecan chicken salad and their almond berry chicken one – YUM!

  19. jason says:

    I hate the new salads. I always used to get a side salad with my grilled chicken sandwich, but I can’t stand the new salads. I loved the sunflower seeds, which have been replaced by some horrible red peppers. And now there’s no more broccoli. My wife always used to get the chicken strip salad, and now she won’t eat chick fil a’s salads anymore either. I’m very disappointed. I used to eat there multiple times per week, now, maybe once or twice per month.

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