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Chef Salad An American Favorite

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Chef Salad on a serving platter
Chef’s Salad

Chef Salad is a crisp leafy green salad topped with a variety of meats, cheeses, hard boiled eggs and other salad friendly vegetables such as cucumbers and tomatoes.

You can really put any ingredient you want onto your Chef Salad. It’s about personal preferences when making these delectable delights at home.

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Chef Salad makes an ideal summer meal when you want to eat lighter.

A classic chef salad recipe would include crisp lettuce topped with a variety of meats such as turkey or ham, large eggs boiled and sliced pretty, cheddar cheese and grape tomatoes.

Add any variety of toppings to your bed of lettuce to create your own favorite salads.

Chef’s Salad Ingredient Options

Free Printable Salad Ingredients Checklist below

Chef Salad without tomatoes and cucumbers
Chef Salad without tomatoes or cucumbers

How To Serve Chef’s Salad

Serve your Chef Salad one of a few different ways depending on the occasion.

Individually prepared bowls of Salad

For a weeknight dinner at home you might want to prepare everyone’s bowl of Chef Salad individually based on what you know they like. You’d be a special person for doing it this way for sure.

One large Salad Platter

You can make one large Chef Salad platter and allow everyone to dip their own.

I recommend serving the lettuce in a separate bowl from the rest of the ingredients. It’s just easier that way.

Salad buffet you can make at home

Salad Buffet

Set up a Chef Salad Buffet and allow everyone to create their own. This is a fun way to serve Chef Salad for a dinner party or other gathering.

cornbread croutons
Cornbread Croutons

What To Serve With Chef Salad

Bread or crackers always go well with salads.

Make Homemade Cornbread. Save a portion to go with the meal and use the rest to make Homemade Croutons to top your salad.

Dressings To Serve with Chef’s Salad

Unlike Caesar Salad which is served with Caesar dressing, you can enjoy a Chef Salad with any dressing of your personal preference.

Popular choices include; Thousand Island dressing, Blue cheese dressing, French dressing and Ranch salad dressing.

Chef Salad Ingredients on a large platter

Preparing The Salad

Preparing the fresh vegetables only takes a few minutes. If you are cooking meat like we are with our bacon and boneless chicken, that will be the only cooking involved.

You can skip the cooking by using deli meats such and ham or turkey.

Step 1

Rinse your lettuce under cool running water and drain on paper toweling. You can use a Salad Spinner to help dry your lettuce quickly.

Lettuce Tip:

You can crisp Iceberg lettuce by putting it into a large colander which then sits inside a large bowl. Top the lettuce with an ample amount of ice and allow it to sit out for about 30 minutes. Pour off the ice and drain on paper toweling. I learned this trick working in the restaurant industry.

Step 2

Peel cut and chop your vegetables.

Peeling cucumbers is a personal preference. Washing them isn’t. Always rinse fresh vegetables under cool running water and pat dry with paper toweling.

Step 3

While your lettuce is drying go ahead and cook any meat you plan to use for your salad, like boneless skinless chicken breast. Since we are talking about chopped meat in small quantities, it will only take a few minutes to cook. I cut my chicken up into bite size pieces prior to cooking so it cooks quicker.

You can totally skip this step and use deli meats like deli ham or turkey breast.

Yield: 4

Chef's Salad Recipe

chef salad on a white plate

Chef Salad is a crisp leafy green salad topped with a variety of meats, cheeses, hard boiled eggs and other salad friendly vegetables such as cucumbers and tomatoes.

My Chef's salad recipe is made with chopped cooked chicken and bacon, no deli meats.

Add your favorite salad ingredients and skip the one's you don't want.

Prep Time 25 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes


  • 1 head Iceberg lettuce, rinsed, drained and dried
  • 8 oz. cooked chopped bacon
  • 2 boneless skinless chicken breast, cooked
  • 2 small cucumbers, peeled and chopped
  • 4 boiled eggs
  • 1 cup Grape tomatoes
  • Sliced mushrooms, rinsed, drained and dried
  • 3/4 cup chopped nuts (Pistachios, Cashews)
  • 1/2 cup Craisins
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese


  1. Rinse the lettuce under cool running water and drain on paper toweling. While the lettuce is draining, cook the meats.
  2. Cook the chopped chicken in a skillet in just about one Tablespoon of olive oil until done. Drain on paper toweling.
  3. Cook the bacon until crispy and drain on paper toweling then chop.
  4. Assemble the salad by adding the lettuce to the bowl first.
  5. Top each bowl of lettuce with remaining ingredients divided equally among the four bowls.
  6. Serve with a choice of salad dressings.

Did you make this recipe?

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Chef salad on a white plate

A good classic salad quick and easy weeknight summer meal with versatile ingredients.

Salad Ingredients Checklist printable
Salad Ingredient Checklist
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