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Big Mac Salad

Big Mac Salad – turn the classic Big Mac sandwich into a quick and easy homemade salad that is actually pretty good for you and down right delicious!

When I was growing up McDonald’s wasn’t really a “thing” in our house. We had fast food, but my dad was always associated with either Hardee’s or Burger King, so that is where we went. But McDonald’s was so iconic everyone knew the song and what a Big Mac was.

And let’s just say, after I wasn’t in the house anymore McDonald’s happened a lot more frequently.

big mac salad topped with dressing and sesame seeds

Big Mac Salad

Everyone knows what a Big Mac is, they are known all around the world. Some people love them, some people aren’t big fans. But you make it at home, and it is a game changer! You get to control the quality of ingredients, no fillers, all whatever you want to put in it. And it is so much better than anything you will find out.

Plus, even if you are trying to eat better, or eat fewer crabs, you can get all the flavor of a classic in no time. Complete with a homemade dressing. And yes, you can just use store bought Thousand Island if you want, almost exactly the same.

Why You’ll Love This

  • A low carb version of a fast food favorite! You can definitely control the carbs in this recipe by making your own dressing and tweaking those ingredients a little. But no bun and lots of veggies makes for a low carb meal with flavors you love.
  • You can use homemade “special sauce” or a store bought Thousand Island dressing, either works great, just how much work do you want to put in.
  • This is great to have all the parts prepped ahead of time, and then just throw together on a busy night. You can have the dressing made and the meat cooked the day before, so dinner can be on the table in just minutes!
big mac salad in a white bowl with dressing in a jar behind it

What You’ll Need

  • Ground Beef
  • Worcestershire Sauce
  • Garlic Powder
  • Salt & Pepper
  • Lettuce
  • Onion
  • Cheddar Cheese
  • Pickles
  • Tomatoes (optional)

You know the song… “Two all beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, onions, on a sesame seed bun” Tomatoes are not in the song, I know. But I think it is the one thing missing from a Big Mac, so I add them to my salad when I make it. You don’t have to .

making big mac salad dressing

Big Mac Special Sauce

We all know that the “special sauce” is essentially thousand island dressing. So by all means, go for it and use a bottle from the store if you like. But I love a good homemade salad dressing, they are just so easy to make and control what is in them.

  • Mayo
  • Grated Onion
  • Ketchup
  • Mustard
  • Sweet Pickle Relish
  • White Vinegar
  • Paprika

There are a million versions out there claiming they are the one. I am not making any claims. This just tastes similar, is a homemade thousand island, and we like it!

pouring dressing over big mac salad

How To Make Big Mac Salad

Be sure to scroll down to the recipe card to get the measurements and full instructions!

  1. If you are making the homemade dressing, whisk all of the ingredients together until smooth. Store in the fridge until ready to use.
  2. In a large skillet brown ground beef over medium high heat, breaking apart into small pieces. Drain any grease away once it is cooked.
  3. Season the meat with salt, pepper, garlic powder, and a dash of Worcestershire sauce. Stir until well combined. Set aside to cool while you prepare the salads.
  4. This makes enough for 4 salads, so you can arrange the lettuce in 4 bowls, and then divide the onions, cheddar cheese, pickles, and tomatoes evenly over the salads.
  5. Top each salad with meat and then pour over the dressing. Toss to combine and serve. If you want to go all out, you can sprinkle a few sesame seeds on before serving.

And if you want more that just a salad, throw it in a wrap like this Big Mac Wrap for an on the go version.

bowl with a salad in it topped with beef, pickles, onion, cheese, tomatoes

Make Ahead

This Big Mac Salad is one of those salads you really want to assemble right when you are going to eat it. You can definitely meal prep parts of the salad to make dinner or lunch time quick and easy. Cook the meat and divide into airtight containers and store in the fridge or even freeze until ready to use. Thaw and heat on the stove or in the microwave until just warmed through.

The dressing will last for about a week in the fridge, just give it a good stir before using it. And you can chop the veggies and have them in the fridge waiting for you. So meal time and really just be assembly. But you do not want to mix everything together and store in the fridge, it will get soggy and not be very good.

a bite of salad on a fork

Recipe Substitutions

  • Lettuce – Iceberg lettuce is used here because that is what is used on the original sandwich, but you can use romaine or any leafy lettuce you have.
  • The meat – obviously “all-beef patties” means I used ground beef for the recipe. But ground turkey works great or you could even use a meat substitute if you wanted to make this vegetarian.
  • Toppings – the thing that makes a salad good to me is the toppings! I love Homemade Croutons or pumpkin seeds. Make this salad your own. I always add avocado to hamburgers, so not on the original Big Mac, it would still be delicious here. Top with anything that you like.
  • Store bought Thousand Island dressing works great in place of this homemade version. I just like homemade dressings, so I am including a super simple version.
close up big mac salad for pinterest

More Tasty Salad Recipes

Yield: 4

Big Mac Salad

cropped in close up of big mac salad

Big Mac Salad - turn the classic Big Mac sandwich into a quick and easy homemade salad that is actually pretty good for you and down right delicious!

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 8 cups chopped iceberg lettuce
  • 1/2 cup sliced onion
  • 1/2 cup pickles
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese

Homemade Dressing (optional)

  • 1/2 cup mayo
  • 2 Tablespoons grated onion
  • 2 Tablespoons ketchup
  • 1 Tablespoon sweet pickle relish
  • 2 teaspoons mustard
  • 1 teaspoon white vinegar
  • 1/4 teaspoon paprika

Instructions

  1. If you are making the homemade dressing, whisk all of the ingredients together until smooth. Store in the fridge until ready to use.
  2. In a large skillet brown ground beef over medium high heat, breaking apart into small pieces. Drain any grease away once it is cooked.
  3. Season the meat with salt, pepper, garlic powder, and a dash of Worcestershire sauce. Stir until well combined. Set aside to cool while you prepare the salads.
  4. This makes enough for 4 salads, so you can arrange the lettuce in 4 bowls, and then divide the onions, cheddar cheese, pickles, and tomatoes evenly over the salads.
  5. Top each salad with meat and then pour over the dressing. Toss to combine and serve. If you want to go all out, you can sprinkle a few sesame seeds on before serving.

Notes

You can use store bought Thousand Island Dressing if you don't want to make your own.

Nutrition Information

Yield

4

Serving Size

1

Amount Per Serving Calories 615Total Fat 44gSaturated Fat 14gTrans Fat 1gUnsaturated Fat 26gCholesterol 140mgSodium 1290mgCarbohydrates 13gFiber 3gSugar 8gProtein 41g

Nutrition Disclaimer: All information presented on this site is intended for informational purposes only. I am not a certified nutritionist and any nutritional information shared on dinnersdishesanddesserts.com should only be used as a general guideline.

Did you make this recipe?

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Catalina

Wednesday 22nd of February 2023

It's healthier but has all the flavor of the Big Mac! My type of dinner!

Allyson Zea

Tuesday 21st of February 2023

So good! Thanks for the easy recipe!

Beth

Monday 20th of February 2023

Yes, yes, yes. This right here. This is what I call a salad! Amazing.

Radwa

Monday 20th of February 2023

This big mac salad looks so delicious, and the instructions are easy to follow as well.

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