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Applebee's

Nice Work. You just found recipes for all your favorite famous foods! Bestselling author and TV Host Todd Wilbur shows you how to easily duplicate the taste of iconic dishes and treats at home for less money than eating out. Todd’s recipes are easy to follow and fun to make! Find your favorite copycat recipes from Applebee's here. New recipes added every week.

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  • Score: 4.88 (votes: 8)
    Applebee's Almond Rice Pilaf

    You're grilling some steaks or baking some chicken and don't know what to serve on the side? Try out this simple clone for a dish that's served along with several of Applebee's entrees. Since the recipe requires converted rice because instant rice is gross, you have to plan ahead about 25 minutes to give the rice time to cook. It's worth the wait. The secret to an authentic, great-tasting rice pilaf is sauteing the uncooked rice kernels in butter first, before adding the liquid—in this case chicken broth. Then, as the rice is cooking, you have plenty of time to saute the almonds, celery, and onions that are tossed into the rice at the end.

    Want some more of my Applebee's recipes? I've got a bunch right here.

    Source: Top Secret Restaurant Recipes 2 by Todd Wilbur.

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  • Not rated yet
    Applebee's Baja Potato Boats Reduced-Fat

    This is Applebee’s variation on the popular potato skins appetizer made famous by T.G.I. Friday’s. Many seem to prefer these to regular potato skins because of their south-of-the-border flair. The only problem is a serving has around 12 grams of fat (even more if you plop on some sour cream). And that’s for only three pieces. If you usually don’t stop there, you might be interested in my Applebee's Baja Potato Boats recipe below, which cuts the fat by 66 percent. Now you can eat three times as much of these Mexican-style potato skin wedges for the same amount of fat as the real deal, thanks to reduced-fat cheese and fat-free sour cream.

    Find more of your favorite Applebee's copycat recipes here.

    Nutrition facts 
    Serving size–3 pieces
    Total servings–4
    Calories per serving–246 (Original–390)
    Fat per serving–4g (Original–12g)

    Source: Top Secret Recipes Lite by Todd Wilbur.

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  • Score: 5.00 (votes: 1)
    Applebee's Quesadillas

    Menu Description: "Two cheeses, bacon, tomatoes, onion, jalapenos grilled between tortillas with guacamole, sour cream and salsa."

    When Bill and T.J. Palmer opened their first restaurant in Atlanta, Georgia, in 1980, they realized their dream of building a full-service, reasonably-priced restaurant in a neighborhood setting. They called their first place T.J. Applebee's Edibles and Elixirs, and soon began franchising the concept. In 1988 some franchisees bought the rights to the name and changed it to Applebee's Neighborhood Grill and Bar. By that time, there were over 650 outlets, making Applebee's one of the fastest-growing restaurant chains in the world.

    According to waiters at the restaurant, the easy-to-make and slightly spicy quesadillas are one of the most popular appetizers on the Applebee's menu. My Applebee's quesadillas recipe calls for 10-inch or "burrito-size" flour tortillas, which can be found in most supermarkets, but any size can be used in a pinch. Look for the jalapeño "nacho slices" in the ethnic or Mexican food section of the supermarket. You'll find these in jars or cans. 

    Find more of your favorite Applebee's copycat recipes here.

    Source: Top Secret Restaurant Recipes by Todd Wilbur.

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  • Score: 5.00 (votes: 1)
    Applebee's Pizza Sticks

    Menu Description: "Parmesan: Thin crusty strips of pizza dough topped with herbs and melted Italian cheese, served with marinara sauce. Loaded: Add Italian sausage and pepperoni."

    Each Applebee's makes an effort to decorate the inside of the restaurant with pictures and memorabilia from the neighborhood in which it is located. You'll see photographs of local heroes and students, license plates, banners, old souvenirs, trinkets, and antiques-all representing area history. Take a look around the walls of the next Applebee's you visit. Maybe you can find something you lost several years ago.

    Meanwhile, here's a find: pizza sticks that are made from dough that is proofed, fried, and then broiled. The frying adds a unique flavor and texture to the dough that you won't get with traditional pizza. I've designed my Applebee's pizza sticks copycat recipe to use the premade dough that comes in tubes. You know, like the stuff from that dough boy. But you can make this with any dough recipe you like. Just roll the dough into a 10x15-inch rectangle before slicing.

    These appetizers can be made either in the Parmesan version without meat, or "loaded" with sausage and pepperoni. This recipe yields a lot, so it makes good party food.

    Speaking of party food, you can check out more of my copycat appetizers here

    Source: Top Secret Restaurant Recipes by Todd Wilbur.

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  • Score: 5.00 (votes: 2)
    Applebee's Club House Grill

    Menu Description: "Applebee's signature hot club sandwich with warm sliced ham and turkey, cheddar, tomatoes, mayonnaise and Bar-B-Que sauce on thick-sliced grilled French bread. Served with a side of coleslaw."

    Here's a sandwich that Applebee's claims is a signature item for the chain. It's a cross between a club sandwich and a grilled cheese. So, if you like both of those, you'll love this.

    My Applebee's Club House Grill recipe below calls for sliced turkey and ham. Go to your deli service counter in the supermarket and get the stuff they machine-slice real thin for sandwiches. This usually tastes the best. If you don't have a service counter, thin-sliced prepackaged meats will also work great.

    Find more of your favorite Applebee's copycat recipes here

    Source: Top Secret Restaurant Recipes by Todd Wilbur. 

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  • Not rated yet
    Applebee's Tijuana Philly Steak Sandwich

    Menu Description: "Lean shaved Philly steak folded into a grilled tortilla roll with Monterey Jack and Cheddar, sauteed mushrooms, onions, tomatoes, bacon and jalapenos."

    With the acquisition of 13 Rio Bravo cantinas in 1994, Applebee's made its move into the competitive "Mexican casual dining sector." Perhaps it's the company's interest in Mexican food that inspired this Philadelphia-Tijuana hybrid sandwich. The steak, cheese, mushrooms, and onions give the sandwich a Philly taste, while the tomatoes, bacon, jalapenos, and the tortilla take you across the border.

    I really like this newer addition to the menu, probably because I'm a big cheesesteak fan who also loves Mexican food. As you can see from this dish, Applebee's has a knack for breathing new life into old sandwich concepts. I hope you'll find this one worth a try.

    If you want to make a "lite" version, refer to the Tidbits at the bottom of the recipe.

    Source: Top Secret Restaurant Recipes by Todd Wilbur.

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  • Not rated yet
    Applebee's Mozzarella Sticks Low-Fat/Low-Calorie

    I originally created this recipe for an appearance on The Dr. Oz Show in a segment about healthier clone versions of popular restaurant appetizers (watch it here). But with two other recipes to demo the segment was too fat, and this one got cut. So, I've parked my recipe here on the site for you to use. This formula duplicates the taste of Applebee’s Mozzarella Sticks, but the fat and calories are cut significantly by baking the sticks rather than using the traditional frying method. Prepare these ahead of time, since the sticks have to sit for at least 2 hours in your freezer before you bake them.

    Try more of my Applebee's copycat recipes here.

    Todd’s Dr. Oz Clone
    Calories (per serving)–83
    Fat (per serving)–3.5g

    Original
    Calories (per serving)–116
    Fat (per serving)–6g

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  • Score: 4.88 (votes: 8)
    Applebee's Bananaberry Freeze

    Ah, if only kitchen cloning was an exact science. While working on this one I saw the same bartender make the drink two different ways on two different days. Only after a firm grilling did I get her to admit to her personal "improvement" to the chain's secret recipe. The official clone includes the ingredients found below. But if you want to add a little pineapple juice—as some independent thinking bartenders are apt to do—you might discover you have indeed created a tastier version of this refreshing smoothie. On that day the cloning gods shall be looking the other way. But, for heaven's sake, be sure your banana is soft and ripe. 

    Source: Top Secret Recipes: Sodas, Smoothies, Spirits & Shakes by Todd Wilbur.

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  • Score: 5.00 (votes: 1)
    Applebee's Low-Fat and Fabulous Brownie Sundae

    The Applebee's chain is now the world's largest casual dining restaurant, with over one thousand units in seven countries and forty-eight states. In less than four years, the chain has doubled in size. That's great if you're a restaurant chain, but put enough fat-filled desserts in your belly, and you'll double in size, too. That's why we're happy to see items like this one on the menu. It tastes like a decadent, guilty pleasure, but it actually contains only four grams of fat per serving. That's possible because the brownie "pie" is made in a special way using a combination of low-fat and fat-free chocolates, some egg whites, and just a bit of shortening. Grab yourself some fat-free frozen yogurt and use my Applebee's Low-Fat and Fabulous Brownie Sundae recipe below to share this guilt-free dessert with eight hungry friends.

    Nutrition Facts
    Serving size–1 dessert
    Total servings–9
    Calories per serving–424
    Fat per serving–4g

    Find more of my Applebee's copycat recipes here.

    Source: Low-Fat Top Secret Recipes by Todd Wilbur.

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  • Score: 4.93 (votes: 14)
    Applebee's Low-Fat Blackened Chicken Salad

    Menu Description: "Our non-fat Honey Mustard dressing and non-fat Cheddar/Mozzarella blend give this Blackened Chicken Salad the same great taste as our original with less than 5 grams of fat."

    Applebee's original Blackened Chicken Salad quickly became a favorite, encouraging this popular full-service chain to create a low-fat version of the delish dish. Since most of the fat in the original comes from the tasty honey mustard dressing, this version creates a dressing that tastes just as good, yet has not a single gram of fat. Combine that with fresh lettuce, shredded carrot, a little egg white, non-fat shredded cheese, and a delicious Cajun spice blend which generously coats grilled chicken, and you have a majorly munchable salad which is incredibly easy on the waistline. Who says you need gobs of fat to create a tasty meal?

    Click here for more of my Applebee's copycat recipes. 

    Nutrition facts
    Serving size–1 salad
    Total serving–2
    Calories per serving–420
    Fat per serving–5 g

    Source: Top Secret Recipes Lite by Todd Wilbur.

     
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  • Score: 4.71 (votes: 101)
    Applebee's Oriental Chicken Salad

    Menu Description: "Crisp Oriental greens topped with chunks of crunchy Chicken Fingers, toasted almonds and crispy rice noodles tossed in a light Oriental vinaigrette."

    Applebee's 60-item menu is revised twice a year. That means about 40 percent of the entire menu changes on a regular basis. The other 60 percent are items that are found on menus in all of the Applebee's restaurants, and seldom ever change. One item that has been on the menu for some time now is this Oriental Chicken salad, which is considered one of the restaurant's signature items. My Applebee's Oriental Chicken Salad recipe below makes one dinner-size salad and can be easily doubled or quadrupled for additional servings. This recipe comes from the third book, Top Secret Restaurant Recipes, but the dressing has been improved to more closely match the current dressing served at the restaurant.

    Want more Applebee's? See if I hacked your favorites here

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  • Score: 5.00 (votes: 4)
    Applebee's Perfect Apple Margarita

    Here's a great twist on the traditional margarita. Sour apple schnapps and apple juice join forces with tequila and sweet-and-sour mix in a martini glass that's rimmed with cinnamon sugar. Hey, it's like drinking apple pie! This recipe makes one drink, but it's easy to double up. That's a good thing, since it seems like one is never enough.

    Source: Top Secret Restaurant Recipes 2 by Todd Wilbur.

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  • Score: 4.89 (votes: 9)
    Applebee's Mud Slide

    Menu Description: "Bury your sweet tooth with smooth Kahlua, creamy vanilla ice cream, whipped cream and rich Hershey's chocolate syrup."

    Sure, there's a little Kahlua in there, but this famous Applebee's drink is more dessert than cocktail, really. And the presentation will make you look like a pro because you spiral the chocolate syrup around the inside of the glass before adding the drink. This Applebee's mudslide copycat recipe looks cool and its easy to do...even after you've had a couple. Grab a straw and prepare to crave another when this one's gone. No wonder this drink also comes in a larger size.

    Source: Top Secret Restaurant Recipes 2 by Todd Wilbur.

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  • Score: 5.00 (votes: 1)
    Applebee's Low-Fat Veggie Quesadilla

    Menu Description: "Fresh mushrooms, red pepper, onion, broccoli, & carrots smothered in nonfat shredded Cheddar/mozzarella blend & sandwiched between two wheat tortillas. Served with fat-free sour cream & shredded lettuce. Less than 10 grams of fat."

    The TSR version of this tasty favorite appetizer comes in with a fat gram count that's even lower than the original, at only 6 grams. The fat-free cheese is where you're spared the major fat gram dosage. And the fat-free sour cream on the side, which nicely completes this guilt-free veggie-filled finger food, certainly helps to keep the waistline in check.

    Nutrition facts
    Serving size–1/2 quesadilla
    Total servings–2
    Calories per serving–274
    Fat per serving–6g

    Source: Top Secret Recipes Lite by Todd Wilbur.

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  • Not rated yet
    Applebee's Bananaberry Split

    The secret to re-creating many of Applebee’s drinks is to stay away from the bottled cocktail mixers and make your own from scratch. The recipe for the pina colada mix is a simple 2-to-1 ratio of pineapple juice to cream of coconut. You’ll be making two drinks here, so have a companion ready.

    Source: Top Secret Recipes: Sodas, Smoothies, Spirits & Shakes by Todd Wilbur.

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  • Score: 5.00 (votes: 1)
    Applebee's Blue Skies

    The blue curacao is drizzled over the top of the white frozen pina colada-like drink, then it sinks down the inside of the glass with groovy lava lamp flair.

    Find more yummy cocktail recipes over here

    Source: Top Secret Recipes: Sodas, Smoothies, Spirits & Shakes by Todd Wilbur.

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  • Score: 5.00 (votes: 3)
    Applebee's Perfect Margarita

    You’ll need a cocktail shaker for this one. If you want to serve it up the same way as in the restaurant, you need a small martini glass. You’ll also need some simple syrup to sweeten the drink. You can buy it or make your own by mixing two parts sugar to one part boiling water. You can make sweet and sour mix from scratch with this recipe

    You’ll have some leftover ingredients for an additional serving if you like. And once you taste this, you’ll like.

    Source: Top Secret Recipes: Sodas, Smoothies, Spirits, and Shakes by Todd Wilbur.

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  • Not rated yet
    Applebee's Summer Squeeze

    For this drink, you'll make the lemonade from scratch to re-create that familiar Applebee’s barstool experience. Okay, so maybe it’s just familiar to me, and I probably shouldn’t go around announcing it. My Applebee's Summer Squeeze recipe makes two drinks.

    Click here for more Applebee's copycat recipes. 

    Source: Top Secret Recipes: Sodas, Smoothies, Spirits and Shakes by Todd Wilbur.

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  • Score: 5.00 (votes: 2)
    Applebee's Perfect Sunrise

    I found this Applebee's concoction to be an accommodating TV viewing companion. The combination of tequilas, juices and syrups serve in a chilled martini glass is a refreshing recreation of the classic tequila sunrise, and it never wants to change the channel.

    Source: Top Secret Restaurant Recipes 2 by Todd Wilbur.

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  • Score: 4.73 (votes: 15)
    Applebee's Crispy Orange Chicken Bowl

    Menu Description: "Breaded boneless chicken breast is delicately spiced and covered in a spicy-sweet orange glaze. Served in a big bowl over almond rice pilaf and a flavorful mixture of mushrooms, broccoli, red pepper, sugar snap peas, and shredded carrots. Topped with toasted almonds and crispy noodles."

    In a dish like this, it's important to get the sauce tasting just right or the whole hack will be off. Simmering a secret blend of orange juice, brown sugar, marmalade, and few other ingredients will give you a sauce that's sweet, tangy, spicy and really, really freakin' good. Rather than going to the trouble of breading and frying the chicken from scratch, I've cut time off your prep by including frozen breaded chicken fingers that you simply bake in the oven when you're ready to assemble the dish. I used Claim Jumper brand chicken tenderloins for this recipe since one 20-ounce box was perfect for the two servings this recipe yields. However, these are mongo-huge restaurant-size portions, so you'll be able to divide this recipe up into four more modest servings if you like.

    Make more of your favorite dishes from Applebee's. 

    Source: Top Secret Restaurant Recipes 2 by Todd Wilbur.

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  • Score: 5.00 (votes: 14)
    Applebee's Red Apple Sangria

    Menu Description: "Drink in the passions of Spain! A delightful mix of Sutter Home Cabernet Sauvignon, Shakka Apple Liqueur, Dole pineapple juice, Ocean Spray cranberry juice, and grenadine. Garnished with maraschino cherry, orange, lime and fresh apple."

    The menu description for this quenching Applebee's red apple sangria specifies brand names that the restaurant uses to create this drink. For the best clone, I suggest you use the same brands. However, if you must substitute with other brands, I don't suspect anyone will care. I certainly won't, and I promise not to tell anyone your secret. If you can't find Shakka brand apple liqueur, use any sour apple flavored liqueur. If you don't have Sierra Mist lemon-lime soda, you can use Sprite or 7-Up. 

    Source: Top Secret Restaurant Recipes 3 by Todd Wilbur.

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  • Score: 5.00 (votes: 10)
    Applebee's White Peach Sangria

    Menu Description: "Sutter Home White Zinfandel with DeKuyper Luscious Peachtree schnapps, pineapple juice and lemon-lime soda. Served Mucho size over ice with fresh fruit."

    No need to waste expensive wine duplicating this incredibly refreshing cocktail from Applebee's. Sutter Home White Zinfandel, which runs around 5 bucks a bottle, is the brand of choice at the chain, but feel free to use any white zinfandel on the shelf, even if it's in a box. The wine will be diluted with peach schnapps and other ingredients, so no matter which wine you pick, you'll always get a delicious, thirst-quenching cocktail that's perfect for warm weather hang time.

    Try my Applebee's White Peach Sangria recipe below today, and check out more famous cocktail recipes here.

    Source: Top Secret Restaurant Recipes 3 by Todd Wilbur.

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  • Not rated yet
    Applebee's Oreo Cookie Milkshake

    This delicious made-to-order oreo cookie milkshake was one of several items cut from the menu in 2020 when the pandemic brought the dine-in restaurant business to a crawl. But in June 2021 when the song “Fancy Like” from country singer Walker Hayes, which mentions the milkshake by name, went viral on TikTok, Applebee’s brought back the shake to satisfy the increased demand.

    Now you can make your own Applebee's Oreo Cookie Milkshake without leaving home with this simple hack that requires just a few ingredients and a blender. Start by getting the ice cream smooth in the blender with the milk before adding in the Oreo pieces so that you don’t make the Oreo cookie crumbs too small. You want a few little bits in there for crunch, but they shouldn’t be big enough to clog the straw. Add some whipped cream on top with some Oreo crumbs and you’ve just made enough for two 12-ounce shakes.

    As the song goes, “We fancy like Applebee’s on a date night, got that Bourbon Street steak with the Oreo shake.” Now that you’ve got your Oreo shake, how about a Bourbon Street steak

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  • Score: 4.50 (votes: 2)
    Applebee's Tequila Lime (Fiesta Lime) Chicken

    Menu Description: "A tender boneless chicken breast marinated with lime juice and tequila flavors and grilled. Served on a bed of crisp tortilla strips. Topped with a Mexi-ranch and Cheddar-Jack cheese. Served with Southwest rice and pico de gallo."

    Because of the huge success of this dish, Applebee's has recently changed the name to "Fiesta Lime Chicken," and trademarked the name. Many people still know this dish by its original title: Tequila Lime Chicken. Whatever you call it, my recipe very closely duplicates the successful dish from Applebee's.

    When you're making my Applebee's Tequila Lime Chicken recipe, just be sure not to marinate the chicken for much longer than the 2 to 3 hours specified, or the acid in the lime juice may toughen your chicken. The bed of crispy corn tortilla strips can be easily made by crumbling store-bought tortilla chips, or, if you want strips more closely resembling those served at the restaurant, just follow the Tidbits below. 

    Serve this dish with your choice of rice and some pico de gallo on the side.

    Source: Top Secret Restaurant Recipes 2 by Todd Wilbur.

    Try my improved version in Top Secret Recipes Step-by-Step.

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Show: 24

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  • Not rated yet
    Applebee's Spinach & Artichoke Dip

    When I saw a recent Mashed.com poll where most people picked the spinach & artichoke dip as their favorite appetizer on the Applebee’s menu, I realized I haven’t yet cracked the recipe, and immediately got to work.

    I've hacked many spinach & artichoke dips over the years, but this one is different with a blend of Italian cheese in the mix. Thankfully, grocery stores usually have bags of pre-blended shredded Italian cheese, to make things easy. With that cheese blend, plus some additional Asiago and Parmesan, we've got a spot-on match to Applebee's Spinach & Artichoke Dip.

    No need to defrost the frozen spinach ahead of time—that will be taken care of when it steams in your microwave. Add the steamed spinach to the cheese and other ingredients in a saucepan with the trimmed artichoke hearts, and when it’s hot, sprinkle on some more Parm, brown it under your broiler, and bust out the chips.

    Check out my recipe for Applebee's Chicken Wonton Tacos and more here

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  • Not rated yet
    Applebee's Riblets

    Ever wonder where Riblets come from?

    "Riblets" is Applebee’s trademarked name for button ribs or rib tips (as they are called at Walmart), which is a short cut trimmed from the back end of pork spareribs, packed with lots of connective tissue. And that's a good thing because, after 3 to 4 hours of braising, that connective tissue will break down, producing fork-tender meat that slips off the bone. Of the cooking methods I tried for my version of Applebee's Riblets recipe, which included steaming, slow-roasting, and smoking; braising made the most tender, flavorful ribs—even before the sauce went on. 

    For the braising formula, I found that chicken broth infused with liquid smoke creates tender ribs that taste as if they came out of a smoker. Finish off the braised ribs on your grill and baste them with the original TSR hack below that clones Applebee’s honey barbecue sauce, or use your favorite bottled sauce. 

    And if you'd like to serve these riblets with almond rice pilaf as they do in the restaurant, you can find my clone recipe here on the site.

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  • Not rated yet
    Applebee's Oreo Cookie Milkshake

    This delicious made-to-order oreo cookie milkshake was one of several items cut from the menu in 2020 when the pandemic brought the dine-in restaurant business to a crawl. But in June 2021 when the song “Fancy Like” from country singer Walker Hayes, which mentions the milkshake by name, went viral on TikTok, Applebee’s brought back the shake to satisfy the increased demand.

    Now you can make your own Applebee's Oreo Cookie Milkshake without leaving home with this simple hack that requires just a few ingredients and a blender. Start by getting the ice cream smooth in the blender with the milk before adding in the Oreo pieces so that you don’t make the Oreo cookie crumbs too small. You want a few little bits in there for crunch, but they shouldn’t be big enough to clog the straw. Add some whipped cream on top with some Oreo crumbs and you’ve just made enough for two 12-ounce shakes.

    As the song goes, “We fancy like Applebee’s on a date night, got that Bourbon Street steak with the Oreo shake.” Now that you’ve got your Oreo shake, how about a Bourbon Street steak

    Read more
  • Score: 5.00 (votes: 4)
    Applebee's Chicken Wonton Tacos

    Menu Description: “A deliciously different way to taco. Tangy grilled chicken, sweet Asian chile sauce and dumpling sauce stuffed into crispy wonton shells and topped with a crunchy slaw and cilantro mix.”

    Re-creating Applebee's Chicken Wonton Tacos requires cloning four parts; none of which are difficult: Grilled chicken, coleslaw, secret dumpling sauce, and the crispy wonton shell to hold all of it together. For the chicken, we’ll grill a couple of thighs and chop them up. Then we’ll use bottled sweet chili sauce—usually found in your grocery store where Asian foods are parked—to punch up the flavor.

    The coleslaw is easy with a dressing that’s only five ingredients. The slaw is best when it has some time to sit and wilt a bit, so plan ahead for the best flavor. You can slice the cabbage yourself, but a coleslaw kit that’s a combo of sliced cabbage and shredded carrots is a big time-saver. Just measure out 4 cups of the cabbage blend and mix it with the minced cilantro and dressing.  

    Wonton taco shells are not a thing you can usually find in stores, so we’ll make our own using wonton wrappers and a skillet of hot oil. When the oil is hot, add a wonton wrapper and use tongs to fold it over diagonally as it fries until it’s crispy on both sides. It takes less than a minute to fry each wonton taco shell, and you’ll get better at it as you go. Just be sure to leave plenty of room in the taco for the delicious fillings to come.  

    I've cloned a lot of dishes from Applebee's. See if I hacked your favorites here

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  • Score: 4.83 (votes: 6)
    Applebee's Strawberry Cheesecake Dessert Shooter

    Menu Description: "Classic cheesecake, graham cracker crumbs, strawberry sauce and whipped cream make this one to savor."

    Making cheesecake like this means you don't need to crank up your oven and run it for the hour or more that traditional cheesecake recipes require. Since the cheesecake filling is layered into a small glass, you make it ahead of time on your stovetop, which substantially shortens cooking and cooling times. When the filling is chilled, it's spooned into 6-ounce glasses on top of graham cracker crumbs, then thawed sliced strawberries in syrup are spooned on top. After finishing off each dessert with a pile of whipped cream, you get to pass out some spoons, sit back, and enjoy a roomful of "mmmm" and "aww" at your homemade Applebee's Strawberry Cheesecake Dessert Shooter. 

    Find more of your favorite Applebee's recipes here

    Source: Top Secret Restaurant Recipes 3 by Todd Wilbur.

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  • Score: 4.93 (votes: 14)
    Applebee's Low-Fat Blackened Chicken Salad

    Menu Description: "Our non-fat Honey Mustard dressing and non-fat Cheddar/Mozzarella blend give this Blackened Chicken Salad the same great taste as our original with less than 5 grams of fat."

    Applebee's original Blackened Chicken Salad quickly became a favorite, encouraging this popular full-service chain to create a low-fat version of the delish dish. Since most of the fat in the original comes from the tasty honey mustard dressing, this version creates a dressing that tastes just as good, yet has not a single gram of fat. Combine that with fresh lettuce, shredded carrot, a little egg white, non-fat shredded cheese, and a delicious Cajun spice blend which generously coats grilled chicken, and you have a majorly munchable salad which is incredibly easy on the waistline. Who says you need gobs of fat to create a tasty meal?

    Click here for more of my Applebee's copycat recipes. 

    Nutrition facts
    Serving size–1 salad
    Total serving–2
    Calories per serving–420
    Fat per serving–5 g

    Source: Top Secret Recipes Lite by Todd Wilbur.

     
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  • Score: 5.00 (votes: 2)
    Applebee's Perfect Sunrise

    I found this Applebee's concoction to be an accommodating TV viewing companion. The combination of tequilas, juices and syrups serve in a chilled martini glass is a refreshing recreation of the classic tequila sunrise, and it never wants to change the channel.

    Source: Top Secret Restaurant Recipes 2 by Todd Wilbur.

    Read more
  • Score: 4.69 (votes: 13)
    Applebee's Grilled Shrimp 'N Spinach Salad

    Menu Description: "Fresh spinach tossed with tomatoes, red peppers, onions, almonds and topped with grilled shrimp. Served with bacon vinaigrette."

    Here's another great vinaigrette from Applebee's—a perfectly sweet and sour concoction packed with bits of real bacon. Medium shrimp are sprinkled with a secret seasoning blend, then grilled and arranged on top of the two large dinner-size salads this recipe yields. You can also split these up to serve four smaller side salads. There will be extra vinaigrette, so by adding a bit more spinach, you can even stretch this recipe to serve six when that couple who never calls ahead shows up unexpectedly on your stoop at chow time.

    Source: Top Secret Restaurant Recipes 3 by Todd Wilbur.
     

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  • Not rated yet
    Applebee's Tijuana Philly Steak Sandwich

    Menu Description: "Lean shaved Philly steak folded into a grilled tortilla roll with Monterey Jack and Cheddar, sauteed mushrooms, onions, tomatoes, bacon and jalapenos."

    With the acquisition of 13 Rio Bravo cantinas in 1994, Applebee's made its move into the competitive "Mexican casual dining sector." Perhaps it's the company's interest in Mexican food that inspired this Philadelphia-Tijuana hybrid sandwich. The steak, cheese, mushrooms, and onions give the sandwich a Philly taste, while the tomatoes, bacon, jalapenos, and the tortilla take you across the border.

    I really like this newer addition to the menu, probably because I'm a big cheesesteak fan who also loves Mexican food. As you can see from this dish, Applebee's has a knack for breathing new life into old sandwich concepts. I hope you'll find this one worth a try.

    If you want to make a "lite" version, refer to the Tidbits at the bottom of the recipe.

    Source: Top Secret Restaurant Recipes by Todd Wilbur.

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  • Not rated yet
    Applebee's Tequila Lime Chicken Reduced-Fat

    This item has been a huge best-seller since it was first added to Applebee's menu in 1993 as promotional summer chow. The original version of this chicken dish is topped with an oil-based Mexi-ranch dressing, plus a melted cheddar and Monterey Jack cheese blend, making it every shade of tasty, yet brutal on the midriff. This lighter version of the original recipe cuts the fat in half. You'll need only a small amount of tequila to make this taste like the original—we're not making a margarita here! I learned the hard way that if you add more than the seemingly minuscule 1/4 teaspoon of tequila to your chicken, it'll taste like it just got back from a bachelor party in Tijuana. 

    Nutrition Facts
    Serving size–1 entree
    Total servings–4
    Calories per serving–495 (Original–580)
    Fat per serving–15g (Original–30g)

    Source: Low Fat Top Secret Recipes by Todd Wilbur.

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  • Score: 5.00 (votes: 10)
    Applebee's White Peach Sangria

    Menu Description: "Sutter Home White Zinfandel with DeKuyper Luscious Peachtree schnapps, pineapple juice and lemon-lime soda. Served Mucho size over ice with fresh fruit."

    No need to waste expensive wine duplicating this incredibly refreshing cocktail from Applebee's. Sutter Home White Zinfandel, which runs around 5 bucks a bottle, is the brand of choice at the chain, but feel free to use any white zinfandel on the shelf, even if it's in a box. The wine will be diluted with peach schnapps and other ingredients, so no matter which wine you pick, you'll always get a delicious, thirst-quenching cocktail that's perfect for warm weather hang time.

    Try my Applebee's White Peach Sangria recipe below today, and check out more famous cocktail recipes here.

    Source: Top Secret Restaurant Recipes 3 by Todd Wilbur.

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  • Score: 5.00 (votes: 14)
    Applebee's Red Apple Sangria

    Menu Description: "Drink in the passions of Spain! A delightful mix of Sutter Home Cabernet Sauvignon, Shakka Apple Liqueur, Dole pineapple juice, Ocean Spray cranberry juice, and grenadine. Garnished with maraschino cherry, orange, lime and fresh apple."

    The menu description for this quenching Applebee's red apple sangria specifies brand names that the restaurant uses to create this drink. For the best clone, I suggest you use the same brands. However, if you must substitute with other brands, I don't suspect anyone will care. I certainly won't, and I promise not to tell anyone your secret. If you can't find Shakka brand apple liqueur, use any sour apple flavored liqueur. If you don't have Sierra Mist lemon-lime soda, you can use Sprite or 7-Up. 

    Source: Top Secret Restaurant Recipes 3 by Todd Wilbur.

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  • Score: 5.00 (votes: 4)
    Applebee's Perfect Apple Margarita

    Here's a great twist on the traditional margarita. Sour apple schnapps and apple juice join forces with tequila and sweet-and-sour mix in a martini glass that's rimmed with cinnamon sugar. Hey, it's like drinking apple pie! This recipe makes one drink, but it's easy to double up. That's a good thing, since it seems like one is never enough.

    Source: Top Secret Restaurant Recipes 2 by Todd Wilbur.

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    Applebee's Mozzarella Sticks Low-Fat/Low-Calorie

    I originally created this recipe for an appearance on The Dr. Oz Show in a segment about healthier clone versions of popular restaurant appetizers (watch it here). But with two other recipes to demo the segment was too fat, and this one got cut. So, I've parked my recipe here on the site for you to use. This formula duplicates the taste of Applebee’s Mozzarella Sticks, but the fat and calories are cut significantly by baking the sticks rather than using the traditional frying method. Prepare these ahead of time, since the sticks have to sit for at least 2 hours in your freezer before you bake them.

    Try more of my Applebee's copycat recipes here.

    Todd’s Dr. Oz Clone
    Calories (per serving)–83
    Fat (per serving)–3.5g

    Original
    Calories (per serving)–116
    Fat (per serving)–6g

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    Applebee's Bananaberry Split

    The secret to re-creating many of Applebee’s drinks is to stay away from the bottled cocktail mixers and make your own from scratch. The recipe for the pina colada mix is a simple 2-to-1 ratio of pineapple juice to cream of coconut. You’ll be making two drinks here, so have a companion ready.

    Source: Top Secret Recipes: Sodas, Smoothies, Spirits & Shakes by Todd Wilbur.

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I'm Todd Wilbur, Chronic Food Hacker

For over 30 years I've been deconstructing America's most iconic brand-name foods to make the best original clone recipes for you to use at home. Welcome to my lab.

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