I’ve been craving a big salad lately, and let’s face it: you can’t have a big salad without a fab dressing. This Kale Cobb Salad with Buttermilk Ranch Dressing hits the spot and delivers some serious flavor.
It seems like I’ve been making a lot of indulgent dishes lately, and loading up on the sweets, too. Is it because the holidays are basically here and I’ve already succumbed to “the holiday season of eating?” Whatever the reason, it’s time for a big salad!
This Kale Cobb Salad with Buttermilk Ranch Dressing hits the spot, and it has a bit of indulgence to it, too (the dressing, for one!). I like to use kale in this traditional-style salad for some extra heartiness, flavor, and nutrition – wimpy lettuce in a big salad is the worst.
I made this salad on a special TV sports night for my household: The Cleveland Cavaliers were receiving their Championship rings and having their banner raised before playing their season opener. AND the Cleveland Indians were playing just next door to them in their first World Series game in 19 years! I knew we’d work up an appetite with all the cheering and yelling.
(You can take the girl out of Ohio, but you can’t take Ohio sports – good or bad – out of the girl! This past year has been good!)
It was easy to have some items made up ahead of prepping this salad. I had boiled some eggs earlier in the day, and cooked up some bacon, too. The dressing took minutes to make, and I spent a few extra minutes massaging the kale, which is so worth the time.
Have you ever ordered a kale salad out at a restaurant and it was bitter or a little tough? Likely, the kale was just washed up, chopped, and tossed for you without having had a little massage first. This “treatment” can reduce some bitterness in the kale, and sort of, tenderize it.
Interested in adding your own touches to this salad? No problem. Toss in some dried fruit and nuts. Change up the type of cheese. Make it meatless by leaving out the chicken and bacon, and adding some baked or grilled tofu. Whatever makes you happy!
Let’s not forget how amazing it is to make and serve your own salad dressing. It’s almost always better than the bottled variety, and you can make it in a snap. This Buttermilk Ranch Dressing is a perfect example. You’ll likely have some leftover dressing to use as a dip for veggies the next day, or to serve with your weekend pizza – that might be a Midwest thing, but try it. You’ll like it!
If you’re interested in more salad recipes, try one of my other creations:
Spinach & Salmon Salad with Creamy Dairy-Free Herbed Dressing
Brussels Sprouts Salad with Apples, Blueberries & Lemon Vinaigrette
Grilled Eggplant, Cherries, and Couscous Salad
This is a hearty salad full of big flavor! Perfect for lunch or dinner.
- 1 large bunch kale (I used Tuscan kale), leaves cut from ribs, then cut into bite-sized pieces
- 2 hard boiled eggs, shelled and halved
- 1 (6-ounce) grilled chicken breast, sliced thin
- 4 slices cooked bacon, broken up into large pieces
- 2-4 ounces cubed cheddar cheese
- 1/3 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
- 1 large avocado (or two small ones), sliced
- 2 tablespoons pepitas for garnish (optional)
- 1/2 cup buttermilk
- 2 tablespoons milk, as needed
- 1/2 cup mayonnaise
- 1/4 cup Greek non-fat yogurt
- 2 teaspoons dried dill
- 1 teaspoon dried parsley
- 1 teaspoon dried mustard powder
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 2 garlic cloves
- Transfer the kale to a serving bowl. Add the remaining ingredients over the top of the kale, sectioned around the bowl.
- Sprinkle the pepitas over the top if using and serve with the Buttermilk Ranch dressing.
It's easy to personalize this salad with your favorite ingredients. It's also easy to double so you can serve more people.