chicken cobb salad recipe with homemade ranch dressing

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Why I love this Cobb salad recipe

I think we should all make a pact. No more bottled dressings. Homemade salad dressing has been a game changer for me. I went from never really loving salad to being completely satisfied by it when I started making my own.

But this salad takes satisfaction to a whole new level. Crisp romaine lettuce is topped with not one, but 4 sources of protein, and a creamy, homemade ranch dressing.

More homemade salad dressing: ginger dressing / Caesar vinaigrette / Dijon vinaigrette / maple miso vinaigrette

chicken cobb salad with avocados and hardboiled eggs in a large, shallow bowl
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Here’s what you’ll need to make this chicken Cobb salad

You may want to use a food processor or immersion blender to make your homemade ranch dressing, but if you don’t have one, you can easily chop the ingredients instead.

overhead view of a jar of dairy free ranch dressing with a spoon in it, a chicken cobb salad in a large bowl and some bowls with chopped veggies sitting behind it, a black and white striped napkin in the foreground

How to make a chicken Cobb salad

Make your dressing

To make the dressing for this salad, combine all the ingredients in a mason jar and blend with an immersion blender until smooth. I love using my immersion blender because I can leave the dressing in the jar and there’s so little to clean up.

Plus, this recipe only make a half batch of my favorite homemade ranch dressing recipe so it’s just enough for this Cobb salad recipe. Feel free to make a full bath if you want to use it for more than this recipe.

Chicken Cobb Salad Recipe
Cook the chicken

Start by pounding your chicken breast to a uniform thickness (about 3/4″ – 1″). This helps them cook more evenly and faster.  Then, liberally season the chicken with salt & pepper, and sprinkle it with granulated garlic.

Next, heat a skillet to medium-high. Add a little canola oil (or a little less if you’re cooking in a non-stick skillet). Add the seasoned chicken breast and cook for about 6 minutes per side.

Be sure to double check with a meat thermometer that your chicken has reached 165˚F. Then, transfer your chicken to a cutting board and let it rest until the rest of your salad is prepared.

Chicken Cobb Salad Recipe
Prep your other ingredients

While the chicken is cooking, chop your other veggies and make sure your salad is cleaned and ready to go. You can even buy pre-washed and chopped lettuce to make your life easier.

If you need to, peel your eggs, crumbled the bacon and dice your ham. I’ve been loving pre-cooked eggs and bacon bits for this salad though. It’s just so much easier.

Assemble your salad

Add your lettuce to a large bowl and top with the rest of your salad ingredients. Top with homemade ranch dressing and sprinkle with fresh chives before servings.

Chicken Cobb Salad Recipe with homemade ranch dressing

FAQs about Chicken Cobb Salad

What is a Cobb salad made of?

Cobb salad is traditionally made with lettuce, chicken, hard boiled eggs, bacon, tomatoes, avocado and blue cheese. Since there’s no substitute for blue cheese, I just left it off.

Traditionally, a Cobb salad features a red wine vinaigrette, but since we’ve lost the cheese in this recipe, I thought a creamy ranch dressing would be a great replacement.

What the difference between a Cobb salad & a chef salad?

The main difference between a chef’s salad and a Cobb salad is that a chef’s salad won’t typically include avocados. A chef’s includes avocado, blue cheese (or Roquefort) and chives.

Usually, the meats in a chef’s salad are thinly sliced or julienned, while the Cobb salad tends to have chopped ingredients.

Are Cobb salads bad for you?

This Cobb salad recipe features crumbled bacon and creamy ranch dressing, which aren’t the best for you, but it also includes fresh lettuce, vegetables and lean proteins that a great, healthy choices.

It’s all about balance, and I really believe that eating all foods in moderation should help you maintain a healthy lifestyle.

Chicken Cobb Salad Recipe

Tips for making this chicken Cobb salad recipe

  • Many of these Cobb salad ingredients can be purchased cooked or prepped (i.e. bagged lettuce, precooked chicken, bacon bits, etc.). Feel free to use these the cut down on prep time.
  • Make your dressing a day or two in advance to save time.
  • To prevent it from turning brown, don’t slice your avocado until you’re ready to serve.

More dairy free salad recipes: kale caesar salad / strawberry poppyseed salad / maple bourbon grilled peach salad / southwestern chopped salad / apple fennel salad


Chicken Cobb Salad Recipe

Chicken Cobb Salad Recipe | This traditional salad is made dairy free with homemade ranch dressing and no cheese. It’s layered with eggs, chicken, bacon and diced ham, along with creamy avocados, tomatoes, and cucumbers. #salad #dairyfree

  • Author: Melissa Belanger
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 6 servings 1x
  • Category: Salad
  • Cuisine: American



For the Cobb salad

  • 2 boneless, skinless chicken breast
  • Salt & pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon granulated garlic
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 6 cups chopped romaine lettuce (1 large head)
  • 1/2 cup bacon bits (about 46 slices, crumbled)
  • 1/2 cup diced ham
  • 3 hard boiled eggs, sliced or cubed
  • 1 avocado, sliced
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 cup sliced or chopped cucumber
  • 1/4 chopped fresh chives (or thinly sliced green onion)

For the dressing

  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/2 cup sour cream*
  • 1/2 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons fresh chives
  • 2 tablespoons fresh parsley leaves
  • 1 small clove garlic
  • 1/2 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 12 tablespoons milk of choice*


For the salad

  1. Using a meat mallet, pound chicken to a 1″ thickness. Season both sides liberally with salt, pepper and granulated garlic.
  2. Heat a large skillet to medium-high. Add canola oil and cook chicken, for about 6 minutes per side. Remove from pan and allow chicken to cool for about 5 minutes before slicing.
  3. Add remaining ingredients to a large bowl. Top with sliced chicken and dressing before serving.

For the dressing

  1. Combine ingredients in a mason jar or glass.
  2. Using an immersion blender, blend until smooth.


  • Serving Size:
  • Calories: 298
  • Sugar: 3.3 g
  • Sodium: 393.7 mg
  • Fat: 17.7 g
  • Saturated Fat: 4 g
  • Carbohydrates: 8.1 g
  • Fiber: 1.8 g
  • Protein: 26.4 g
  • Cholesterol: 307.2 mg

Keywords: dairy free


Last Updated on November 5, 2021 by Melissa Belanger

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