This Healthy Salmon Cobb Salad is a wonderfully satisfying meal featuring fresh lettuce, tender grilled or broiled salmon, crispy bacon, savory hard-boiled eggs and so much more! It’s easy to make from scratch with countless customization possibilities! Keto and low-carb with vegetarian, paleo, dairy-free and Whole30 options.
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Updated April 2023
Easy Grilled Salmon Cobb Salad Recipe
Looking to add a delicious twist to your favorite salad? This Salmon Cobb Salad features all the flavors of a classic Cobb salad made with perfectly tender and flakey salmon. From the crispy bacon to the creamy avocado, every bite is packed with a mouthwatering medley of flavors and textures.
Salmon is one of our favorite fish to make since it takes no time at all to cook and is packed with protein and healthy Omega’3 fatty acids. The salmon is soaked in a simple lemon garlic marinade that pairs perfectly with the salad’s creamy apple cider vinaigrette. We like to cut up the veggies, cook the eggs, sauté the bacon and make the dressing while the salmon marinates, but you can easily use leftover salmon and prepare some of the other components a day ahead of time. This way, the salad will come together in a matter of minutes once you’re ready to eat!
Are Salmon Salads Healthy?
They are indeed. Salmon Cobb salads contain a ton of protein and fiber, plenty of healthy fats, and a variety of vitamins and minerals from the various ingredients used. Many main course salads require a side dish to make you feel full, but Salmon salads are great at satisfying hungry tummies with no sidekick needed.
While these classic American salads tend to be healthy across the board, some recipes rely heavily on sodium and saturated fat. This healthy salmon Cobb salad recipe steers clear of undesirable ingredients to give you the healthiest Cobb salad you could make without sacrificing any of the elements you love.
What You’ll Need
The ingredients listed below come together to form pure Cobb salad perfection. Scroll down to the recipe card for the exact amounts associated with each item.
For the Cobb Salad
- Salmon Fillet:
- Salt & Pepper: Added to taste.
- Garlic Powder
- Lemon Juice: Freshly squeezed.
- Olive Oil
- Avocados: Peeled, pitted and cut into slices or chopped.
- Mixed Green Lettuce: Chopped.
- Hard-Boiled Eggs: Peeled and sliced. I recommend making either Instant Pot Hard-Boiled Eggs or Air Fryer Hard Boiled Eggs. You’ll never boil eggs over the stove again!
- Bacon: Cooked and chopped.
- Grape Tomatoes: Or cherry tomatoes, cut in half.
- Cucumber: Sliced into rounds or chopped.
- Crumbled Dairy-Free Feta Cheese: We like this particular brand but you can leave off the cheese altogether if you’re paleo or Whole30.
For the Apple Cider Vinaigrette
- Apple Cider Vinegar: This provides a tangy flavor and a truckload of vital nutrients.
- Dairy-Free Sour Cream: We like the one from this brand which is completely vegan, paleo, keto-friendly and Whole30 but you can also swap this out for tahini, mashed avocado or regular if not following any particular diet.
- Garlic Powder
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil: Or avocado oil.
- Salt & Pepper: To taste.
Can I Make This in Advance?
This salad recipe calls for pre-cooked eggs and bacon, but those aren’t the only components you can prep ahead of time.
Feel free to marinate the salmon ahead of time or even cook it the day before you plan to make your salad. The dressing can also be made a day in advance if you refrigerate it in a separate airtight container from the chicken. Finally, the mixed green lettuce can be washed and dried a day ahead of time and refrigerated in a resealable storage bag.
How to make Salmon Cobb Salad
- Marinate Salmon: Start off by seasoning the salmon with salt, pepper and drizzle with olive oil and lemon.
- Grill: Preheat your grill to medium-high heat and cook the marinated salmon for 4-5 minutes on each side, or until the internal temperature reaches 145 F (62.8 degrees celsius). Use a fork to flake the cooked salmon into bite-sized pieces and set aside. You can also bake,broil, air fry or pan fry your salmon until perfectly tender and flakey.
- Make Vinaigrette: Whisk together all of the ingredients for the vinaigrette. Drizzle 1 teaspoon of the dressing over the sliced avocado to prevent it from browning.
- Combine Ingredients & Enjoy! Add the lettuce to a large bowl, then top it with the cooked chicken, hard-boiled eggs, avocado, cooked bacon, tomatoes, cucumber and cheese. Drizzle on the dressing just before serving.
Tips for Success
Check out these handy tips and tricks before you whip up your Cobb salmon salad.
- The Marinating Time is Key: Be sure to let your salmon marinate for a minimum of 30 minutes. This ensures great flavor. We don’t suggest marinating it for longer than 12 hours, as the salmon could go from tender to mushy.
- Add the Dressing Right Before Enjoying: After a while, the apple cider vinaigrette will cause the lettuce in your salad to wilt. We recommend adding the dressing to individual portions right before you serve them, especially if you expect to have leftovers.
Don’t hesitate to make changes to this healthy Cobb salad as you see fit. It’s super versatile!
- Switch Up the Greens: Got spinach in your garden or arugula hanging around in the fridge? You can use any greens of your choice in place of the lettuce. We like to mix and match!
- Turn It Into a Pasta Salad: Adding pasta is just as irresistible as the classic version. It brings rotini pasta into the mix and swaps the red wine vinaigrette for ranch dressing.
- Use Another Dressing: Speaking of ranch, there are plenty of other dressings you can pair with Cobb salad. Caesar dressing, Poppy Seed Dressing, or even balsamic dressing would be absolutely scrumptious.
- Ditch the Meats: Need a vegetarian version of this salad? Simply leave out the bacon and the salmon (as well as the seasonings used to flavor the chicken). Alternatively, you could omit the bacon and substitute the chicken for tofu.
- Make Chicken Cobb Salad: If you’re in the mood for a classic Cobb Salad, this Chicken Cobb Salad is calling your name. It’s easy to make with grilled, broiled or Air-Fried chicken.
While it would go well with all sorts of side dishes, this salad is honestly quite filling on its own. If you’re feeling particularly hungry, we highly recommend pairing it with a warm piece of Keto Bread topped with melty grass-fed butter. If you’d like to enjoy it alongside a refreshing drink, you can’t go wrong with any of these 5 Healthy Smoothies.
It’s best to build each serving as you go if you think you might end up with extra salad. This way, you can refrigerate each component in its own airtight container. The hard-boiled eggs and the dressing will last for up to 5 days, the bacon and chicken will last for up to 3 days, and the salad veggies should be used within 1-2 days.
We personally prefer a cold and refreshing salad, but you can heat up your salmon if you’d like. Simply pop it into the microwave for 10-15 seconds at a time until it’s warmed through. The bacon can be reheated the same way.
More Hearty Dinner Salads to Try
This Healthy Salmon Cobb Salad is a wonderfully satisfying meal featuring fresh lettuce, tender grilled or broiled salmon, crispy bacon, savory hard-boiled eggs and so much more! It's easy to make from scratch with countless customization possibilities! Keto and low-carb with vegetarian, paleo, dairy-free and Whole30 options.
- 1 6-ounce salmon fillets
- salt and black pepper to taste
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 large avocado peeled pitted and cut into slices or chopped
- 4 cups mixed green lettuce chopped
- 2 hard boiled eggs peeled and sliced
- 4 slices bacon cooked and chopped
- 1 cup grape or cherry tomatoes halved
- 1/2 cucumber sliced in rounds or chopped
- 1/2 cup crumbled feta or blue cheese (leave out for paleo or Whole 30)
- 3-4 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 2 tbsp sour cream (leave out for paleo or Whole 30 & swap in mashed avocado instead)
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil or avocado oil
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Pat salmon dry. Rub both sides with olive oil and lemon juice. Season with salt, pepper and garlic powder.
Preheat grill to medium-high heat and cook for 4-5 minutes on each side or until the internal temperature reaches 145 F (62.8 degrees celsius). Use a fork to flake the cooked salmon into bite-sized pieces and set aside.
- Heat broiler and line a baking sheet with parchment paper (or foil). Place salmon on pan and broil 8 to 10 minutes or until fish flakes easily when tested with a fork.
- Whisk together all the ingredients for the vinaigrette. Drizzle 1 teaspoon over the sliced avocado (to prevent from browning).
- In a large bowl, add the lettuce, then top with flaked salmon, eggs, avocado, bacon, tomatoes, cucumber and cheese. Drizzle with dressing right before serving.
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