Thursday, July 30, 2009

Healthier Cobb Salad (CEIMB)

It's Thursday, and time for another Craving Ellie in my Belly recipe! This time it was a Cobb salad. I do like Cobb salad generally, but I have to say I can see why it's not for everyone. There are usually lots of decadent flavors mixed together, and it could get ugly really quickly.

Well with Ellie, you can count on her finding a more disciplined and less decadent version of the salad, without losing the variety of flavors. The dressing is a little odd, and I wasn't sure whether I liked it or not at first. But as I worked my way through the salad, it started to grow on me. Also, I served it up salad bar style, since there are a lot of toppings and not everyone in this house likes all of them.

And a note about the blue cheese - yes, it's pungent, but as Ellie always says, strong cheese are better for you because you can use less of them.

I also made a couple of changes due to personal preference, but the spirit of Ellie's version is still there. So here it is in all its glory, a healthier and yet every bit as flavorful version of Cobb salad.

Healthier Cobb Salad
adapted from Ellie Krieger's Healthy Appetite (2007)
serves 3


cooking spray
2 slices Canadian bacon
1 hard-boiled egg, chopped
3 cups romaine lettuce, coarsely chopped
1 cup watercress, thick stems removed
1 large tomato, diced
1 small avocado, diced
1/4 cup crumbled blue cheese
1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1/2 tablespoon lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
pinch salt and pepper


1. Spray a small skillet with cooking spray and cook the Canadian bacon over medium-high heat until browned and heated through. Set aside to cool slightly while you prepare the other ingredients, then chop.

2. Put the romaine and watercress together in a large bowl. Set out separate small bowls of the bacon, egg, tomato, avocado, and blue cheese with small spoons for serving.

3. In a jar or salad dressing shaker, combine oil, vinegar, lemon juice, dijon, Worcestershire, salt and pepper and shake to combine. (Or whisk in a small bowl). Pour over the lettuce and cress and toss to coat. Serve salad with toppings on the side.

You can, of course, serve it in the more traditional form with the toppings in stripes across the top of the greens, but I like the element of choice. Enjoy!


  1. I missed that note about the stronger cheeses being good for you because you use less. Great point! So true.

  2. I totally agree with you on the cheese, in theory, but once I start eating cheese I just can't stop. I actually love strong sharp cheeses, but I just can't get on the blue cheese band wagon. Anyway, the salad bar is wonderful, so glad you liked this recipe. I was also unsure about the dressing at first.

  3. I really like the idea of serving this salad bar style so that everyone can get just what they want. Great job!

    And I agree with Sara - I love cheese and it's harder to stop than potato chips. I love really sharp cheeses but can't get behind blue cheese.

  4. I think I'm gonna make this for dinner tomorrow night. I will probably modify the salad dressing a little bit.

  5. I made a big bowl and it disappeared immediately. I like how you surrounded the greens with the different choices. It is hard for one to like every different choice.