Monday, March 5, 2012

Kitchen Sink Chopped Salad with Creamy Balsamic Dressing

I couldn’t decide whether to call this a chopped salad or a cobb salad… because, well, is there a difference? Or is a cobb salad simply a type of chopped salad? What is the specific distinction between the two? Anyone? … Anyone? (these really are the things that go through my mind! hah)

Oh well, whatever you want to call it… it’s DELICIOUS. For. Real.

I love a good hearty salad… one with all kinds of goodies in it! This fits the bill.

There are very few things I don’t like: raw meat -aka SUSHI- , oatmeal (it’s the texture – bleh), bananas (but I love banana bread), and fishy fish like salmon(I’m a Florida girl… I’m used to mild saltwater fish). Anyhow, when it comes to salads… the more ingredients the merrier!

My brother however, would gag at the mere thought of olives, tomatoes, and cucumbers being mixed into a salad haha He can be a picky little punk! 😉 I have to say he’s come a long way though, thanks to Heather (my sister in-law). She’s got him eating things that he once wouldn’t allow to touch his plate!

The dressing… OH the dressing. I could drink it. This recipe is based loosely off of another balsamic drissing recipe I got from my Aunt Kathy… I changed around a bunch since her secrets aren’t mine to give away…  😉

None-the-less this dressing is one you may just want to keep on Tap… yes, that good!

Make this salad ASAP. Add some grilled chicken, some chopped eggs (I actually intended to add eggs, but forgot… yah, i’m not perfect), whatever. you. want. Don’t like Balsamic? Use my favorite Garlic Ranch or Honey Mustard instead!

Make it your own, people!

NOTE: this dressing is more of a vinaigrette (the little bit of mayonnaise gives it a bit of a creaminess). It is meant to be thin, but will thicken up slightly after refrigeration. Also, I like my vinaigrettes more on the tangy side, but feel free to cut back the amount of vinegar in this if desired.

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Kitchen Sink Chopped Salad with Creamy Balsamic Dressing

Yield: 4-6 servings

Prep Time: 20-30 minutes

Total Time: 20-30 minutes


For the Creamy Balsamic Dressing:
(makes 1 2/3 cups of dressing)

4 cloves garlic, grated
3 tablespoons mayonnaise
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 Tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon sugar
2 teaspoons Morton's Nature's Seasoning
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
3/4 cup extra light olive oil

For the Salad:
2-3 heads of Romaine lettuce, finely chopped
1/2 pound of bacon, cooked and crumbled
1 - 1 1/2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
1 avacado, pitted peeled and diced
1 cucumber, peeled seeded and diced
1/2 small red onion, diced
1/2 can of artichoke hearts, coarse chopped
4-6 ounces crumbled gorgonzola cheese


For the Creamy Balsamic Dressing:
Whisk together garlic, mayo, lemon juice, dijon mustard, sugar, Nature's Seasoning, and salt until well combined. Add the balsamic vinegar and whisk well. Slowly add in the olive oil (while whisking).

For the Salad:
Add all ingredients to a large bowl (more or less of each ingredient depending on personal preferences). Toss with desired amount of dressing and serve.

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139 Responses to “Kitchen Sink Chopped Salad with Creamy Balsamic Dressing”

  1. 1

    Tanya K — June 26, 2013 @ 11:16 pm

    Hubs and I just devoured a HUGE bowl of this for a light dinner — so delicious, definitely the best creamy balsamic dressing I’ve ever tasted!

  2. 2

    Nicole Dilbeck — July 3, 2013 @ 6:11 pm

    I have made this several times following the recipe exactly and it comes out looking much darker than the picture here and has a slightly odd flavor. Any ideas what might be going on? Thanks!

    • Tina replied: — July 7th, 2013 @ 11:50 am

      1. it could be the brand of balsamic used (they may slightly vary). 2. Try making it in the blender to get it good and emulsified.

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  5. 5

    Jen — July 30, 2013 @ 8:01 am

    I’m blogging about this recipe next week 😉 Just wanted to say thank you and I gave you all credit for this awesome recipe. Just wanted to let you know and that I’m sharing it with my readers for a creative cooking blog hop next week 😉 Thank you soooo much for this yummy dressing!!

  6. 6

    Kristin — August 1, 2013 @ 4:46 pm

    Chemistry lesson! I was out of mayo and made the dressing with veganaise. It was ok. The next day, however, it had turned chunky. I made it again with mayo and its keeping just great. Love!

  7. 7

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  8. 8

    Mary — October 17, 2013 @ 6:01 am

    The “cobb” in cobb salad is an indicator of the presence of bacon. Chopped salad can be anything chopped. I will make mine without the bacon. But thanks!

  9. 9

    Nancy — October 17, 2013 @ 2:22 pm

    I am so excited to try this recipe!! Have you ever tried making it with Greek yogurt instead of mayo? I’m allergic to eggs so I’m looking for a substitute. Thanks!!

    • Tina replied: — October 17th, 2013 @ 4:51 pm

      I haven’t done it personally, so I can’t vouch for it… but a few readers have commented that they have done so.

  10. 10

    Jo — November 23, 2013 @ 4:18 am

    This dressing sounds yummy but why do Americans always put sugar in salad dressings??

  11. 11

    Ogreletmama — November 24, 2013 @ 7:57 am

    Most American’s do not like straight vinegar “sour” tastes, so they place a little sugar in to balance that a bit. Keep in mind also that the vinegars here in the States (including “Balsamic”) is not like vinegars anywhere else. Our “balsamic” isn’t Modena certified most of the time, so it hasn’t had time to age and condense the natural sugars anyway; it has corn syrup and other agents and additives into it usually.

  12. 12

    Margaret — April 28, 2014 @ 11:21 pm

    I make this dressing every week now…I use Extra Virgin Olive Oil, however, and Ijust use my own seasonings instead of the Morton’s stuff…my friends and coworkers love this dressing! It disappears fast!

  13. 13

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  15. 15

    LaDana Johnson — November 9, 2014 @ 1:06 pm

    I just love the picture of this decadent salad recipe. I’ll be prepping my own very soon!I must find more beautifully salads w/ a taste which surpasses a meal. I love to eat, yet I must preserve my health. I fast periodically; therefore, salads are my main meal. Looks absolutely delicioso…

  16. 16

    ERin — November 22, 2014 @ 5:53 pm

    what is that seasoning?

  17. 17

    Joann — February 27, 2015 @ 6:53 pm

    Just made the dressing. Didn’t have Djon mustard so I used spicy brown. Loved it. . Mine was very creamy. I used my ninja to blend everything. Maybe that’s the secret to being more creamy. Thanks so much! Will be using it from now on

  18. 18

    Zeda — May 24, 2015 @ 10:29 pm

    My understanding is that a Chopped Salad and a Chefs Salad are pretty much the same thing but there is a difference in a Cobb Salad. I got this from the Wise Geek in case you want to reference it as well…

  19. 19

    kimi — June 3, 2015 @ 10:47 pm

    <3 Love this salad. I used to get one very similar at a deli in Connecticut for lunch several times a week. The one I had, had grilled chicken and no avocado. The dressing was also a creamy balsamic. I found your recipe on Pinterest. Thanks for sharing.

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