Fall Cobb Salad with Rosemary Croutons and Cider Vinaigrette – This delicious autumn take on a classic Cobb is the perfect fall or winter salad!
I am 110% here for soup and chili season, but there’s also something so nice about changing things up with a great fall salad here and there.
Cobb salad has been one of my favorite salads since I was in my teens, primarily because there are SO many goodies in it! Smoky bacon, delicious dressing, veggies, etc. So good! A waiter once taught me an acronym for what goes into a Cobb that’s always made it easy for me to remember…
EAT COBB = Eggs + Avocado + Tomatoes + Chicken + Onion + Bacon + Blue Cheese.
See? So many goodies! Since Cobb salads became popular so many years ago, there have been endless riffs on the classic Cobb salad. Some people put the blue cheese into a creamy dressing, some people swap out the chicken for ham, or add some extra veggies, like cucumber and carrots, or even things like black olives.
I’ve done lots of variations myself, but I’ve got to say, this fall Cobb salad is one of my favorite twists. I swapped out some of the summery parts (like tomatoes) for an autumn twist. I used some Honeycrisp apples (my favorite!) and some roasted squash to fill out the veggies, and instead of a classic vinaigrette, I made a cider vinaigrette which complements the flavors so nicely.
Here’s what you need to make this delicious harvest Cobb salad…
Ingredients For a Great Fall Cobb Salad:
- Homemade Croutons. We made a variation on our classic gluten-free croutons and added rosemary and garlic for a delicious spin. They’re quick and easy, but feel free to swap in store-bought croutons or use pumpkin seeds or toasted pecans instead for some crunch.
- Our Yummy Cider Vinaigrette. Next up is an apple cider vinaigrette. This yummy apple salad dressing tastes amazing with the fall flavors going on in this cobb salad. Sweet, bright, and full of flavor!
- Salad Greens. For the salad itself, you’ll start with a bed of lettuce. We love green leaf lettuce or romaine lettuce, but feel free to use any blend you love!
- Cooked Chicken Or Turkey. Then, you’ll cube up some cooked chicken breast or turkey. This is a great way to use up grilled, roasted, or rotisserie chicken, or even Thanksgiving leftovers after turkey day!
- Crumbled Bacon. A little cooked, crumbled bacon adds a smoky, salty, savory note that’s tough to beat!
- Green Onion. I prefer the milder flavor of green onions to the bite of red onion or white onion, but feel free to use whichever your family enjoys.
- Boiled Eggs. Another classic element of a Cobb salad we’ve kept! They add an extra boost of protein.
- Apple Slices or Dices. Some sliced or diced apples add sweetness, crunch, and vibrance to every bite. I gravitate toward a sweet, crisp apple like Honeycrisp, but Fuji is another nice option.
- Roasted Diced Butternut Squash. If you have it on hand, some cooked or roasted butternut squash adds a nice pop of color and sweet flavor. (We love this squash or this squash!)
- Avocado. I love the creaminess and healthy fats!
Faq + Tips And Tricks For The Best Fall Cobb Salad:
PALEO & WHOLE 30 NOTES: This salad is VERY Whole30 friendly. Simply be sure your bacon is compliant, and swap out the croutons for pumpkin seeds or pecans. The cider dressing is 100% approved, but you can also try it with this compliant ranch if you like. (It’s delicious!)
SWAPS AND SUBSTITUTIONS: There are so many ways to play with this salad:
- Don’t like avocado? Skip it.
- Aren’t into squash? Try sweet potatoes or some halved grapes.
- Try tossing in seasoned roasted squash or a mix of apples and pears.
- You can even drizzle this with a different dressing if you like, or
- Add extra fruits or veggies, like celery, dried cherries or cranberries!
A TIP FOR HARD BOILED EGGS. I started steaming my eggs earlier this year and it’s made SUCH a difference! They’re so easy to peel and I haven’t yet had an overcooked one. I also love this little gadget for chopping them up once they’re cooked. (It’s great for potato or egg salad, too!)
Originally posted November 17, 2017. Fully updated September 2022.