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best cobb salad, with ingredients lined up across a wooden plate
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4.92 from 12 votes

Best Cobb Salad Recipe with Chicken and Bacon

The Best Cobb Salad Recipe will never let you down! This salad is absolutely LOADED with treasure ingredients (you know, the ones you're always hunting for) like chicken, bacon, hard boiled eggs, and cheese. Plus 2 dressing recipes to try!
Prep Time30 minutes
Cook Time30 minutes
Total Time1 hour
Course: Main Course, Salad
Cuisine: American
Servings: 6
Calories: 1362kcal
Author: Karen


For the salad

  • 9 eggs older eggs are best
  • 2 heads romaine or iceberg lettuce cleaned, dried, and chopped
  • 1 bunch watercress or Spring Mix salad
  • 1 bunch green onions chopped
  • 6 tomatoes sliced or chopped
  • 6 ounces Roquefort cheese or gorgonzola or blue cheese
  • 1 pound bacon cooked until crisp
  • 1 pound chicken breast* or chicken tenders
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt for seasoning chicken
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper for seasoning chicken
  • 1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil for searing chicken
  • 1 tablespoon butter for searing chicken
  • 3 avocados sliced or chopped

Honey Mustard Dressing Recipe

  • 1/3 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/3 cup Dijon mustard or yellow mustard, or a combo of both
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice from 1 large lemon
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 clove garlic


  • Start by boiling the eggs. Fresh eggs are harder to peel than older eggs, so use the ones at the back of the fridge. I actually like to steam my eggs rather than boil them (it makes them even easier to peel). Bring water to a boil in a saucepan, then steam the eggs in a basket over the boiling water for 11 minutes, covered with a lid the whole time. Prepare an ice bath (water and ice in a bowl). Add eggs to the ice bath immediately. If you don't have a steam basket: Place eggs in an empty pot, cover with water, bring to boil over high heat. Once it boils, remove the pot from heat, cover with lid, and set a timer for 8 minutes. Immediately remove to an ice bath so that they stop cooking. Once cool, peel the eggs and halve or slice them. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  • Make the dressing. Skip this step if you are use store bought dressing! The Red Wine Vinaigrette recipe is in the notes.
  • For the Honey Mustard Dressing: Add all ingredients to a blender and pulse until smooth. I squirted Dijon mustard into my 1/3 measuring cup until it was about halfway full, then filled the rest with yellow mustard. You can use just one kind or both! This makes 1 cup of dressing.
  • If you are baking your bacon (which I highly recommend), start that process now before prepping your veggies. See this post for How to Bake Bacon for all the details. Chop the bacon into bite sized pieces once it's cooked. Set aside and keep warm.
  • Prep your veggies and cheese. Rinse and dry all the lettuce. Do you have a salad spinner? I love mine, it makes salad-making way easier! I like to add in some spring mix if I don't have watercress (it's kind of hard to find??) Add all your greens to a large serving bowl.
  • Chop the green onions and add to the bowl with the lettuce. You can chop the whole bunch of green onions or just the green parts if you want your onion flavor more mild. Mix the green onions into the lettuce so it is evenly distributed. Adding onions and herbs to the lettuce and mixing (before adding other toppings) is one of my favorite tips for a super flavorful salad.
  • Slice or chop 6 tomatoes and set aside.
  • Crumble 6 ounces Roquefort cheese in a bowl and set aside.
  • If you are frying your bacon, chop the raw bacon into 1 inch pieces. Fry in a large 12 inch skillet over medium heat for 5-10 minutes until it is as crisp as you like. Remove to a paper-towel lined plate and set aside. Remove all but 1 tablespoon bacon grease (save that liquid gold and use it to make the Best Pancakes if you know what's good for you!)
  • Prepare the chicken. Use a sharp knife to slice each chicken breast or tender in half horizontally, to create a thin cutlet. Start at the thick edge of the chicken breast. See photos. You should end up with pieces of chicken that are the same shape as a chicken breast, just thinner.
  • In a small bowl, combine 1 teaspoon kosher salt, 1/2 teaspoon pepper, and 1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika. Pat the chicken with paper towels on both sides until it is very dry. Sprinkle the spice mixture all over the chicken on both sides, and rub in.
  • Heat a 12-inch skillet over medium high heat for at least 3 minutes. When it is hot, add 1 tablespoon oil. Swirl to coat. The oil should shimmer right away. (If you are using leftover bacon grease, just heat the pan on medium high until it's very hot, probably more like 1-2 minutes. Bacon grease smokes faster than olive oil, so be careful. Get your chicken in the pan before any fat smokes.)
  • Sear the chicken. Carefully place the chicken in the pan. Once it touches the pan you can't move it, so arrange accordingly. Do not crowd the chicken. If your pan isn't big enough, do it in batches. Do not touch, poke, or move the chicken at all. It needs to stay put to get a nice sear.
  • Once all the chicken is in the pan, lower the heat to medium. Cook the chicken for 3-4 minutes. If you try to flip the chicken and it sticks to the pan, it's not ready to turn.
  • Use tongs to flip each piece of chicken, swirling the pan as necessary to coat with fat. Immediately add 1 tablespoon butter to the pan and swirl the pan as it melts. (The butter helps the chicken to brown, and brings flavor.) Cook the chicken on the second side for about 2 minutes, until the other side is a deep golden brown and a meat thermometer registers 160 degrees F. Remove the chicken to a plate and cover to keep warm. After 5-10 minutes of resting, slice or chop the chicken.
  • Chop or slice your avocados just before serving.
  • Assemble your salad. Arrange all the ingredients (except the lettuce) on a large platter, or serve each ingredient in a separate bowl. Allow guests to build their own salad, adding the lettuce to their plate first and then the toppings: eggs, tomatoes, cheese, bacon, chicken, avocado (and green onions if they aren't with the lettuce). Drizzle with Honey Mustard Dressing or Red Wine Vinaigrette < recipe in notes.


*If you are short on time, pick up a rotisserie chicken from the store and use that instead!
Red Wine Vinaigrette:
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1/3 cup + 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 teaspoon oregano
  • 1-2 cloves garlic
  • 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
Add all ingredients to a blender and blend until smooth. Alternatively, you could mix all ingredients except the oil in a bowl, then slowly drizzle in the oil while whisking constantly (so the oil emulsifies). This is a fairly tart dressing because that's how I roll. Add in another couple tablespoons oil if you want to take it down a notch! 


Serving: 1serving | Calories: 1362kcal | Carbohydrates: 35g | Protein: 37g | Fat: 122g | Saturated Fat: 43g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 401mg | Sodium: 1869mg | Potassium: 1764mg | Fiber: 13g | Sugar: 19g | Vitamin A: 20315IU | Vitamin C: 43mg | Calcium: 344mg | Iron: 5mg