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Experience The Goodness Of Fall at P.F. Changs’s and Apple Kale Quinoa Recipe

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of P.F. Chang’s. All opinions are 100% mine.

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You may recall that my birthday was last week, but we held off celebrating because it fell on a busy school night. I’m happy to say it was worth the wait. On Saturday we celebrated at PF Chang’s (the Phillip’s Place Charlotte NC location) with my mother and brother, who incidentally was in the hospital recently with bacterial pneumonia. Thanks for all the get well wishes! He’s been laying low, trying to get his energy back, but when he heard we’d be going to PF Chang’s, there was no chance he’d miss it. It’s been a family favorite for years.

I was extra excited for this visit to PF Chang’s not only because it was my birthday celebration, but because they have a new Fall Seasonal Menu. Like there weren’t already enough fabulous dishes to choose from at PF Chang’s, right?

Among the items on the seasonal menu are and Apple Cinnamon Martini, Ginger Jalapeno Mule and Apple Cinnamon Martini, Shanghai Waldorf Salad, Crispy Korean Chicken Wings, Miso Chicken, Harvest Vegetable “Fried Rice”, Vietnamese Noodles with Steak & Shrimp, Citrus Mustard Prawns, Apple Dessert Wontons, and Pumpkin Dessert Wontons.

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I had a difficult time choosing what to order. Can you blame me? Ultimately I went with my old stand by, the Kung Pao Scallops (nice and spicy!), but luckily my mother ordered the Citrus Mustard Prawns and she shared. They were some of the best shrimp ever- huge, tender, and moist. Absolutely cooked to perfection. They were served over hand cut zucchini ribbons and both the waiter and the lady who cleared our table mentioned that the Citrus Mustard Prawns were there favorite among the seasonal items. It’s one of those meals that’s so good you find yourself daydreaming about it the next day. Please tell me I’m not the only one who does that.

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We also tried the Pumpkin Wontons. One word- Fabulous. Think I may need to try and recreate that recipe for my blog. Crispy wontons filled with a pumpkin/cream cheese filling and served with a vanilla, pumpkin sauce and walnuts.

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If you like to get creative in the kitchen, I have some great news for you! P.F. Chang’s is hosting  The Goodness of Fall Contest and they are accepting recipe entries through Friday November 15. To enter you must create a recipe using at least 3 of the seasonal ingredients listed on the contest page.

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Voting takes place daily on Facebook and a panel of Judges will choose a grand prize winner from the 5 recipes with the most votes. In addition, each day a $50 gift card to P.F. Chang’s will be awarded.  Judges for the Grand Prize winner include Philip Chiang, Cofounder of P.F. Chang’s; Yuji Iwasa, Head Development Chef at P.F. Chang’s; Mary Melton, Director of Beverage at P.F. Chang’s; and Jennifer Chong, a prominent blogger partner.

The grand prize winner plus a lucky guest will win a 2-night trip to Napa Valley in the Spring of 2014 which will include an exclusive visit to a guest house at a vineyard where judges Philip Chiang and Yuji Iwasa will cook some of their favorite dishes. Mary Melton, the Director of Beverage for P.F. Chang’s will be host an extensive wine tasting. Talk about a once-in-a-lifetime Getaway to Napa Valley. If you win, will you take me? 😉

Apple, Kale, and Quinoa Salad with Spicy Shrimp #recipe

Be sure to  Follow @pfchangs on Twitter and Follow P.F. Chang’s on Pinterest to keep track of the contest and other goings on at P.F. Chang’s.

Today I made an Apple, Quinoa, Kale Salad topped with Spicy Shrimp and Bacon. This salad has fall written all over it. First I cooked some diced bacon in a skillet. I reserved the bacon crumble to go on top and sautéed some red onion and thinly sliced apple in the bacon grease and added a little fresh ginger. Next I added some torn curly kale and cooked it just until a little softened. I stirred in some red quinoa that I cooked separately.

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For a light dressing I mixed together a little apple juice concentrate, white balsamic vinegar, and olive oil. Finally I sautéed some shrimp that I sprinkle with cayenne pepper and paprika. I thought it was the perfect union of sweet, spicy, and salty. Plus with the exception of a little bacon, it’s a really healthy salad.

If there’s a P.F. Chang’s in your area, make sure you try their new seasonal menu. And if there’s not one in your area, get in your car and drive until you find one. You won’t regret it. Plus, you can visit the Recipe Contest Page and print a $10 off $40 coupon!!! I forgot to print mine before going this past weekend. But that just means I get to go again this weekend. And I’m so trying the Apple Cinnamon Martini.

Which P.F. Chang’s seasonal dish are you most interested in trying?

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Apple, Kale, Quinoa Salad with Spicy Shrimp and Bacon

½ cup red quinoa

1 cup water

2 slices bacon, diced

2 medium apples, thinly sliced

½ red onion, thinly sliced

1 small bunch kale, rinsed well, stems discarded, and leaves torn into pieces

1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger

1 pound shrimp, peeled and deveined

½ teaspoon paprika

¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper

2 tablespoons olive oil, divided plus additional

1 tablespoon apple juice concentrate

1 tablespoon white balsamic vinegar

¾ teaspoon salt

Freshly ground black pepper


Rinse quinoa under running water if it is not prerinsed. Combine quinoa and water in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil, cover, reduce heat to low and cook 15 minutes.

Cook bacon in a large nonstick skillet until crisp. Remove bacon a reserve. Add enough olive oil to the skillet to equal about 2 tablespoons when combined with bacon grease.

Heat oil over medium heat and add red onion and apple slices. Saute for 3-4 minutes.

Add kale and ginger and cook until kale is wilted, using tongs to turn it every so often so it cooks evenly. I like my kale to still be a little crunchy so I only cook it for a minute or 2. Cook it longer if you want the kale softer.

Stir in quinoa and ¾ teaspoon salt.

Sprinkle shrimp with paprika, cayenne pepper, and salt to taste. In a separate skillet or on a grill pan, heat 1 tablespoon oil and sauté shrimp for 2-3 minutes, turning over halfway through.

In a small bowl, whisk together apple juice concentrate, balsamic vinegar, and 1 tablespoon olive oil. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Pour over quinoa/kale mixture. To serve top with shrimp and bacon crumbles.

Yield: 4 servingsFall Seasonal Menu

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33 thoughts on “Experience The Goodness Of Fall at P.F. Changs’s and Apple Kale Quinoa Recipe”

  1. Your recipe sounds great and I’d like to make it. I’ve never heard of apple juice concentrate before. Where do I find it in the store? Thanks.

    1. Christin
      Christin Mahrlig

      You can find it in the freezer section. It seems like it’s usually near the frozen breakfast foods. You mix water with it to make apple juice.

  2. This salad looks lovely tho I was a little confused by the instructions at first. In the second sentence you say to combine quinoa and kale in a saucepan and bring to a boil. I’m assuming you meant to combine quinoa and water and bring to a boil. Planning on trying this today. Thanks for the recipe.

    1. Christin
      Christin Mahrlig

      Thanks for pointing out my typo! You are right, the quinoa and water. Hope you enjoy!

  3. Bam's Kitchen

    This sounds like a very nutritious and power packed meal. I love this idea and it is a great gluten fee recipe too.

  4. Cara @ Craftdictator

    Oh I’m definitely going to have to try this! How yummy!!! Thanks for sharing! I came over from the Daily Blog Boost! 🙂

  5. Amy @ Elephant Eats

    Oh my goodness those things all sound so good! I don’t know if there’s a PF Changs near me…i haven’t ever seen one except when I was in FL. Will have to search!

  6. So glad to hear you had a great time celebrating your birthday with your family after all and that your brother is getting better 🙂 So many yummy items on P.F. Chang’s fall menu, I always have a hard time choosing what to order too 🙂
    I love how fresh and bright this salad looks! The shrimp looks gorgeous and I love the sound of the dressing, thanks for sharing Christin 🙂

    1. Christin
      Christin Mahrlig

      Thanks Kelly! It is a herd decision choosing what to order at PF Chang’s but at least you know whatever you choose will be good!

  7. Glad your brother is better and you had a great celebration! That seasonal menu sounds wonderful — pumpkin wontons? Yes! I’m craving so many things. Your dish looks wonderful, Christin! I’m pinning it. Thanks for the heads up on the contest.

  8. Shundara@SavyNaturalista

    I love the salad! Are you enter in the contest? I would vote for you and I am pinning!!! I would love to try the pumpkin wontons they sound yummy!

    1. Christin
      Christin Mahrlig

      I am going to enter this recipe. Just need to find the time to submit it! Thanks for offering to vote for me! 🙂 I’ll let you know.

  9. Ashley | Spoonful of Flavor

    I am glad that you got to enjoy your birthday with your family at P.F. Chang’s. I will be thinking about this salad all day! It looks so incredibly fresh and love all the fall flavors.

  10. Shannah @ Just Us Four

    This salad sounds fantastic and perfect for fall. I am definitely pinning to try it later.

  11. Consuelo @ Honey & Figs

    I’m so happy to know that you had a fun day after all! Those wontons look amazing, I’d love you to recreate them 😉
    And the combo of apple + quinoa sounds spectacular to me, I must try it!

    1. Christin
      Christin Mahrlig

      Thanks Consuelo! We really had a good time. And I will definitely be recreating those wontons in the near future! Have a great day! 🙂

  12. Julia | JuliasAlbum.com

    Christin, this is such a beautiful dish! The shrimp sauteed to perfection, crisp bacon + all those veggies. Yum!

    1. Christin
      Christin Mahrlig

      Thank you Julia! I was really happy with how it turned out, but it can’t match your shrimp dishes. They always look amazing!

  13. Cailee @ hellohealthyeating.com

    Oh yum! Your version looks so healthy and delicious! Looks like you had a fun time w. your fam 🙂 Very sweet!

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