OH MY GOODNESS, I need to start off by telling you about how much I adore a cobb salad and even better a keto cobb salad full of healthy fats!
They are by far my absolute favorite food and since going keto, they have been my number one menu item that I order when at a restaurant. I will review the menu and look for two items, one being a cobb salad and the other being traditional chicken wings. If those items are on the menu, I’m good to go.
You would think you might need to make changes to a cobb salad to make it keto, however, a traditional cobb salad doesn’t have any high-carbs in it, it is only when the restaurant gets a little fancy and puts their own spin on it that you might need to make some modifications. Otherwise, a keto cobb salad recipe should be the same as a regular cobb salad.
What is a Cobb Salad anyways?
Strange name isn’t it? According to Wikipedia, “Origin. Various stories exist recounting how the salad was invented. One says that it came about in 1937 at the Hollywood Brown Derby restaurant, where it became a signature dish. It is named for the restaurant’s owner, Robert Howard Cobb.”
So there you have it, it was a menu item invented and named after the restaurant owner. Doesn’t seen too far off. I remember thinking a cobb salad stood for ingredients in the salad, but then you go through the list and there are no C’s, O’s, and only one B being the bacon! Best part!
The cobb salad is an American garden salad that will generally consist of chopped lettuce, romaine or iceberg, tomatoes, crispy bacon, hard boiled egg, roasted chicken breast, avocado, chives, a little cheese of some sort and then a red-wine vinaigrette.
Nowadays you will see restaurants changing things up a bit with changing the hard-boiled egg to a soft-boiled egg, or using a deep-fried breaded chicken, but for the most part, I think a lot of restaurants know that there are some dishes that are best left untouched and this is one of them.
Now that I have reviewed the ingredients, you can clearly see that all of those ingredients keep this salad low-carb and the only modification you might want to do, is scale back on a tomato filled salad, or omit them altogether. This is exactly what I do.
A cobb salad typically will come with a vinaigrette of some sort, and sometimes you will get lucky and it will be sugar-free but often times a vinaigrette on a salad will contain a bit of sugar to break down the acidity of the vinegar used in the dressing. For this reason, I will typically swap out the vinaigrette for a creamy dressing.
This means that I will typically ask the server to switch the vinaigrette for a house-made Caesar, blue cheese, ranch or my personal favorite chipotle mayonnaise. I love a good spicy mayonnaise and I love chipotle because it keeps the mayo thick and doesn’t thin it out.
You can use any creamy dressing on a cobb salad and for the most part, it will keep your fat content up and your carbohydrate content down without adding any protein, so be creative and pick whichever one appeals to you. Lastly, I would just ask the server if they add any sugar to the creamy dressing. I was once at a restaurant in the airport and I ordered the “chili heat mayo” for the dressing and never thought that they would just mix together “sweet Thai chili dipping sauce” and mayonnaise together to make a dressing. I took one bite and wanted to be sick.
Once you have rid your body of sugar, the taste is way too overwhelming and I couldn’t enjoy my salad. I felt bad sending it back but I think that restaurant should have felt shame serving up such a nasty dressing and calling it one of their signature dressings.
The Best Part
Let’s be clear here, although all the ingredients put together to make one heaven of a dish, the star of the show, in my opinion, is most definitely the avocado and the crispy bacon!
The bacon on a cobb is traditionally crispy bacon, so it is cooked much longer than bacon you’d put on your burger, to the point that it’s cooked in it’s fat to the point that you can put it into a food processor to give you tiny bacon crispy pieces.
The avocado adds that layer of creaminess to the dish and is also meaty. It just puts the dish over the top, above all other salads.
Keto Cobb Salad
- 2 slices of regular bacon, baked until crispy
- 3 oz chicken breast, grilled
- 1/2 medium avocado, shell removed & chopped or sliced
- 1 large hard-boiled egg
- 2 ounces romaine lettuce, chopped
- 1 sprig chives, chopped
- Optional: 1-ounce cheddar cheese, shredded
- 2 Tbsp mayonnaise
- 1 tsp chipotle spice
- Salt & pepper
Bacon: you can either bake your bacon at 350 degrees until it is crispy or you could chop it up into small pieces raw and fry it in a frying pan until it is crispy, either way, it will be crispy, but the frying pan method is quicker
Chicken: Roast chicken in the oven, seasoned with salt & pepper, or chop it up and fry in the bacon grease following removing the bacon pieces
Hard-Boiled Egg: If you can buy these pre-made, this is my go-to option because I like to keep things simple, but to prepare one at home, add the egg to a small pot of cold water, add vinegar and salt the water, bring to a boil on medium-high heat, after it hits boiling point, turn burner off, cover pot and let sit for 10 minutes. Peel, rinse with water, pat dry and slice in half
- In a small bowl, combine the mayo and chipotle, and stir until it is a consistent mixture, add salt if needed – set aside
- In a medium-large bowl, lay your lettuce, then add all other vegetables & avocado, top with cooked bacon, chicken, and cheese if having and then pour the salad dressing on top & toss the salad with tongs or large spoon, season with salt & pepper & dig in!
Enjoy your keto cobb salad!