Chicken Sausage + Cornbread Panzanella Salad

Cornbread is my kryptonite.

Fluffy, slightly sweet, nutty, drizzled in honey. I’m WEAK yall.

I’ll be honest, 9/10 times I use a packaged mix whenever I’m in the mood for cornbread, but I had all the ingredients to make the real deal and really it takes so very little additional effort haha. Let me tell you… I am SO HAPPY that I did! The difference between the packaged version and cornbread from scratch is insane and you probably have 90% of the ingredients already!

Since this recipe does require baking the cornbread for 20 minutes first before you toast, it will take a pinch more time than our usual recipes but I promise the extra few minutes are worth it.

Also, I am ALL about the honey on cornbread. I have no self control!!!! The combination of flavors is so satisfying. If you feel the same way then you’ll flip over this honey mustard dressing!

This salad combines fluffy and golden crisped cornbread croutons, sweet and spicy chicken sausage disks and thinly chopped kale massaged with a honey mustard dressing. Prepare to knock the sweaty socks off your feet!

Here’s how you’ll make Chicken Sausage + Cornbread Panzanella Salad:

  1. Mix and bake your cornbread.
  2. Slice and sauté chicken sausage.
  3. Make dressing + chop veggies.
  4. Cool, slice and crisp cornbread in the same pan as the sausage.
  5. Toss all ingredients together!

TIPS FOR MAKING CHICKEN SAUSAGE + CORNBREAD PANZANELLA SALAD

  • Even though I went on and on about made-from-scratch cornbread, don’t be afraid to use a package you might already have on hand. It will still taste amazing, I promise!
  • I used gorgonzola cheese I had on hand from our Grilled Steak Summer Salad but if you’re not a fan, sub goat cheese or feta.
  • You can use any flavor of chicken sausage links for this recipe — I used sweet Italian and it had a nice little kick to it as well.

MORE CHICKEN SAUSAGE RECIPES: Chicken Sausage, Brussels Sprouts, Apple and + Cauliflower Rice Bowls, Pistachio Pesto with Spaghetti Squash with Chicken Sausage, Red Pepper Pasta, Sausage and Butternut Squash Hash

Hope you enjoy!

Chicken Sausage and Cornbread Panzanella Salad

Made from scratch cornbread gets sliced and toasted for croutons in this sweet and savory kale salad. The honey dijon dressing is the cherry (tomato) on top!
PREP25 mins
COOK15 mins
TOTAL40 mins
SERVING SIZE: 3

INGREDIENTS

  • 3 cups thinly chopped kale leaves, ribs removed
  • 3 links chicken sausage, sliced into disks, any flavor
  • ¼ cup gorgonzola crumbles
  • ½ pint cherry tomatoes, halved
  • cornbread croutons (recipe below)
  • honey dijon dressing (recipe below)

cornbread croutons

  • 1 cup corn meal, like Bob's Red Mill
  • 1 ⅓ cup buttermilk
  • 1 cup gluten free flour, like Bob's Red Mill
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • ½ tsp. baking soda
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • ¼ cup melted butter, cooled
  • 2 eggs

honey dijon dressing

  • 4 tbs. dijon mustard
  • 2 tsp. honey
  • ½ tsp. salt + pepper, each
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 pinch cayenne pepper
  • 4-6 tbs. olive oil

INSTRUCTIONS

  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In one bowl, combine cornmeal and buttermilk. Then in the other, mix together all dry ingredients: flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
  • Add the eggs and melted butter to the corn meal mixture, then fold in the mixed dry ingredients. In a greased 9×13 dish, pour in mixture. Bake for 20 minutes then let cool.
  • Whisk together all ingredients for the dressing, drizzling in the oil last. Season and adjust to taste.
  • Heat a skillet sprayed with cooking spray to medium high heat, then place chicken sausage disks into one layer. Cook for 2-3 mins then flip and cook another 2-3 mins. Remove from pan.
  • Once cornbread has baked and cooled slightly, flip over onto cutting board and slice into 1" croutons. Add more cooking spray to the same pan you sautéed the sausage and heat to medium. Add in croutons and let cook for a few minutes until golden, then flip.
  • In a large salad bowl, add chopped kale and pour half of the dressing over top. Use tongs or hands to massage kale, then add chicken sausage, tomatoes and gorgonzola. Once croutons have crisped on both sides, add to salad along with second half of dressing. Toss carefully!

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