Strawberries in a salad are always a good bet. Every time I put them in any salad, I always wonder why I don’t use them more often. They’re also great during spring while you wait for tomato season every year.
The sweet juicy element they add is so welcome, especially along with these savory flavors of bacon, and a mustard vinaigrette. This particular cobb salad is a bit different than the traditional, but not by much. Aside from using strawberries in place of tomatoes, I also left out the blue cheese.
However if you can have cheese, my 2 favorites in a cobb salad is of course the traditional blue cheese. But if blue cheese isn’t your thing, feta is a really good pairing with these flavors as well.
Meal Prepping Tips:
- First up the hardboiled eggs are extra easy if you have an Instant Pot. You can also do more than you’ll need for this salad and use them for breakfast, or in my Avocado Egg Salad as well.
- Instead of making this recipe for dinner, you can prep the individual ingredients and assemble them into mason salad jars. Or you can keep all the ingredients separate, and assemble salads as desired. You can find more tips about how to make any salad into a salad jar with my Mason Salad Jars 101.
How to make this salad:
- Start by hard boiling the eggs so they have plenty of time to cool.
- Prep all the salad ingredients as well as the salad dressing.
- Finally either pan fry or grill the chicken and cook the bacon until crispy.
- You can prep the salad ingredients and dressing ahead, but I prefer to cook the chicken right before tossing the salad so they can go in warm. However there’s nothing wrong with cold chicken in this salad, warm is a nice touch!
If you’re not a fan of raw red onions, try panfrying or grilling them along with the chicken to take the edge off.
You can make the dressing honey mustard by adding 1 Tablespoon of honey, (of course then it’s not Whole30, but it’s a delicious variation).
And one final tip about hard boiled eggs – if you’ve ever struggled like me with the peels always sticking no matter what tricks you try, definitely start cooking hard boiled eggs in the Instant Pot.
They come out perfectly every single time, and I’ve never had the shells stick. Before I got my Instant Pot, I had completely stopped making hard boiled eggs because it was always a hassle, but not anymore!Print
A sweet, juicy twist on the classic salad!
2 heads romaine, cut into bite sized pieces and washed, 14 cups
4 peeled hardboiled eggs, see notes, sliced or cubed
1–2 ripe avocados, cubed
6 strips bacon, cooked and cut into bits
1/2 small red onion, thinly sliced, 1 cup
1 pound strawberries, hulled and quartered/sliced, 4 cups
1 pound boneless skinless chicken thighs, about 4–5
Avocado oil for cooking
2 Tablespoons whole grain mustard
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 Teaspoon sea salt
1/4 Teaspoon black pepper
1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice, or white wine vinegar
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
Prepare and assemble the romaine, hardboiled eggs, avocado, bacon bits, red onion, and strawberries in a large serving bowl.
To pan fry the chicken, preheat a cast iron skillet over medium high heat. When the pan is hot but not smoking, add a touch of oil and swirl to coat the bottom of the pan. Add the chicken thighs to the pan and turn the heat down to medium. Cook for about 6-8 minutes until browned, and then flip the chicken over to cook for an additional 6-8 minutes, or until no longer pink.
If you’re grilling the chicken, preheat the grill until you reach a temperature around 400ºF. Place the chicken on the grill, and lower the heat to medium high. Grill until the chicken loosens from the grill and is easy to flip, about 6-8 minutes. Turn the chicken over and cook until done in the center, about 6-8 more minutes. Timing varies a little depending on the size of your chicken thighs.
While the chicken is cooking making the dressing. Whisk together the mustard, garlic, sea salt, pepper, and lemon juice to combine. Then whisking constantly, add the olive oil in a thin steady stream and continue whisking until all the olive oil has been added and the dressing is emulsified.
When the chicken is cool enough to handle, cut it into bite sized pieces and add it to the salad. Toss with the dressing and serve. Or you can serve everything separately, and let each person assemble their own salad.
To cook the hard boiled eggs in the Instant Pot, place the metal trivet in the bottom and add 1 cup water. Add the eggs to the Instant Pot, (I do 12 at a time) then set to pressure cook for 4 minutes for slightly soft in the middle and no grey ring. When the cooking time is done, use the quick release method, then place the eggs in an ice bath for 10 minutes before you peel them.
Keywords: Whole30, Dairy Free, Gluten Free, Grain Free, Cobb Salad, Paleo