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Olive Garden Salad and Breadsticks - Ultimate Easy Copycat Recipe

Updated on November 7, 2012

The past couple of years my family has been living on a very tight budget.  I quit my job and went back to school; the only income I bring in is through my writing jobs (which are VERY part time.)  So, we are not able to go out to eat very often anymore.  One of my favorite places to eat is Olive Garden.  Since we aren’t able to go there very often anymore, I have scoured the internet and experimented myself to create this copycat version of Olive Garden’s salad and bread sticks.  I’m sharing the recipes with you and hope you enjoy them as much as my family has.  They require a bit of prep work, but are overall very easy for anyone to make.

Cherry Coke

We always serve this meal with “homemade” cherry coke because that’s our favorite thing to drink at Olive Garden.  To make this I add 2 tablespoons of grenadine to a large glass.  Pour coke about 2/3 full, add ice and top with a cherry.  Yum! This is much tastier than the already flavored cherry coke in a bottle

Olive Garden Breadsticks


  • 1 ½ cups warm water
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 4 ¼ cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 tablespoon fine salt
  • 1 ( ¼ ounce) package active dry yeast

Add ingredients to your bread maker in the order listed and prepare it on the dough setting. When bread maker is finished separate into 16 even pieces and make breadstick shapes approximately 7 inches long. Allow to rise for around 45 minutes until doubled. Bake at 400 degrees for around 15 minutes. Let cool for about 5 minutes and brush with topping.


  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 pinch dried oregano
  • Melt butter and add in seasonings. Brush on breadsticks and serve warm.

Olive Garden Salad

  •  1 (12 ounce) bag iceberg garden salad mix
  •  1/4 small red onion, sliced-thin
  •  6 -12 pitted black olives
  •  6 mild pickled pepperoncini. peppers
  •  1 -2 small Roma tomato, sliced
  •  1/2 cup croutons
  •  freshly grated Parmesan cheese, to taste

Simply layer ingredients in a large salad bowl and serve with dressing. We love Olive Garden’s dressing. I have tried probably a dozen different copycat recipes and have not found one that holds a candle to the original. You can purchase the dressing at your local restaurant or my favorite alternative is Ken’s Light Northern Italian dressing.. However, this salad is also very good with ranch, thousand island or blue cheese dressing too.


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