Individual Stacked Salad Recipes

Do you have guests with different food allergies or intolerances in your family?  Maybe they just don’t like the same ingredients in their salad?  It’s Thanksgiving and they’re all coming to your house for dinner, so what’s a host to do?


Individual Stacked Salads, of course!

The beauty of these salads is you can make them the day before, cover and store them in the refrigerator and bring the salads out as you sit down to your meal.  How great is that?!?  Salads are always the last thing you’re thinking about and they can sometimes get left off until dinner is almost over and then you jump up and run to get them.  Oh wait, that’s me.  You can also make these salads the same day and let those who want to help in the kitchen keep busy.  You can even have everyone make their own if they are feeling creative.  Simply set out the ingredients, including your dressings, and let them build their own.

Let your creativity out and build your favorite salads in a glass.  Add in what you like, remove what you don’t like or can’t eat.  Mix and match ingredients and you could have a different salad almost everyday, not just holidays.

My salads here are made using the Simply Dressed Salad Dressings from Marzetti.  I had a lot of fun creating these salads and having the dressings all ready to go was great.  These are sweet and tasty dressings that are gluten free and some are dairy free too.  You can read my recent review of their products.

Serve your salads on a plate.  When ready to eat, place the plate on top of the salad, hold tight, and then flip it over.  Slowly and gently pull the glass up and your salad will be completely dressed on your plate.  This is not something I would let your younger  or older guests attempt on their own.  You can even do this yourself and serve them on the plate ready to eat.

Here is the formula to follow for your Individual Stacked Salads.

First you want to prepare all of the ingredients you’ll layer in the glasses.  When you assemble them you’ll want everything at your fingertips.  I LOVE my Spiral Vegetable Slicer (affiliate link).  It makes any vegetable look appealing even to those who say they don’t like vegetables.  

Grab a short tumbler glass with straight sides. I bought my glasses at Pier One Imports.  Add your dressing first, about 1 – 2 TB.  I used 2 TB, the serving size on the Simply Dressed Salad Dressing labels.

The next layer is something that can sit in the dressing without absorbing it all or making it wilt if you are making these the day before.  Tomatoes, onions, olives, peppers, carrots and such.

Then layer away.  Think about how the layers will look next to each other.  Color and textures are key.

Make sure you lightly press these layers into place so you can keep it compact.  This will also help if you want to have the salad hold this shape when you flip it.  I don’t care either way, stacked on the plate or scattered to fill the plate, it all tastes great.

Oh and here is the best part, there is no wrong way to layer these salads.

You can also use this method with just about any salad recipe you have.  Take the list of ingredients and layer them instead of adding them to a bowl and mixing.  Here are a few salad ideas to choose from to get you started:

Chopped Salad

Pineapple, Bacon and Arugula

Vegan Slow Roasted Tomato and White Bean Salad

Grilled Jicama Bean Salad

Deadly Serious Beet and Spinach Salad

Chinese Chicken Salad

Vegan Jicama Salad

A Little Crunch of Cabbage 

Golden Beet, Persimmon and Pomegranate Salad

Arugula, Pear and Pomegranate Salad

Here are some of the stacked salads that I’ll be serving to my family:

Pictured here:

Simply Dressed Balsamic Salad Dressing with tomatoes, red onions, fennel, red peppers, spinach and beets.

Simply Dressed Ranch Salad Dressing with tomatoes, zucchini, red onions, cucumbers, mushrooms, hard boiled egg, romaine lettuce and carrots.

Simply Dressed Pomegranate Salad Dressing with tomatoes, cucumber, red onion, carrots, romaine lettuce and golden beets.

Other ideas:

Simply Dressed Champagne Salad Dressing with tomatoes, red onion, fennel, bacon, and romaine.

Simply Dressed Strawberry Poppyseed Salad Dressing with tomatoes, onions, spinach, almonds, dried cranberries and mushrooms.

Simply Dressed Caesar Salad Dressing with romaine, onions, cheese, kale, and jicama.

Simply Dressed Greek Feta Salad Dressing with tomatoes, olives, red onions, cucumber, green peppers, parsley and feta cheese.

Disclaimer:  “I was one of six bloggers selected by T. Marzetti Company to be a Simply Dressed Ambassador. They compensated me for my time, however, my opinions are entirely my own and I have not been paid to publish positive comments.”

And now it’s your turn.  Here is your virtual salad bar.  Let me know what combinations you choose for your Individual Stacked Salads.

Leafy Greens

Artichoke, Asparagus, Beets, Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, Carrots, Cauliflower, Corn, Cucumbers, Fennel, Green beans, Green onion, Green pepper, Hearts of palm, Jalapeño, Jicama, Mushrooms, Onion, Radish, Red pepper, Squash, Tomato, Zucchini


Arugula, Beet Greens, Bib lettuce, Cabbage, Chinese cabbage, Collard Greens, Endive, Escarole, Frisee, Kale, Lamb lettuce, Mache, Mesclun, Micro Greens, Mustard Greens, Purple cabbage, Radicchio, Red Leaf, Romaine, Spinach, Sprouts, Swiss Chard, Turnip Greens, Watercress


Bacon, Beans, Chicken, Crab, Hard boiled egg, Lobster, Pancetta, crisped Prosciutto, Shrimp,Turkey


Apple, Clementine, Dried cranberry, Fig, Mango, Orange, Peach, Pear, Pomegranate, Raisin, Strawberry


Almonds, Crouton, Peanuts, Pecans, Pine nuts, Pistachio, Pumpkin seeds, Sunflower seeds, Walnuts

Herbs and Starch

Basil, Cilantro, Mint, Parsley, Pasta, Quinoa, Rice

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22 Responses to Individual Stacked Salad Recipes

  1. Melissa November 18, 2011 at 10:19 am #

    I LOVE this post and the photos are gorgeous! I am definitely getting myself one of those veggie slicers. I have a mandoline, but love those noodle-y looking spirals you've created with beets. That is a must have for me, being a beet girl at heart.

    This is great, Diane. Good ideas, good photos, healthy ingredients. My kind of post!

    P.S. Thanks for the link!

    • Diane Eblin November 21, 2011 at 6:42 pm #

      Thank you Melissa. I thought you would love the beets on top. You will love the spiral slicer. It's so much fun!

  2. Celiacs in the House November 18, 2011 at 10:20 am #

    They're stunning, Diane. I'll take one of each. I love the spiral sliced vibrant veggies.

    • Diane Eblin November 21, 2011 at 6:41 pm #

      Thank you Wendy. The spiral slicer is so much fun.

  3. Melissa November 18, 2011 at 10:23 am #

    I'm not sure my comment posted. I'm having all kinds of tech problems lately. I think it's more me than my computer, but when I came back to tell you I had purchased one of the veggie machines through your link, a half-written comment of mine was in your comment box. I have no clue what happened unless I had your post open in two different windows. Anyway, I just linked from your post to Amazon and did my 1-click ordering for the slicer. Gosh, did you have to make it so easy?!! =)

  4. Alta November 18, 2011 at 10:29 am #

    These look GORGEOUS! Love this idea.

    • Diane Eblin November 21, 2011 at 6:40 pm #

      Thank you Alta.

  5. Shirley @ gfe November 18, 2011 at 10:54 am #

    Those are gorgeous salads and gorgeous photos of them! Who could resist these stacked salads? Not me, that's for sure. Great idea! 🙂 Thanks for linking to my Great Salad recipe. Pre-packaged cole slaw mix is another quick and easy way to make instant salads. 😉 I think you've just convinced more folks to try these salad dressings and add individual stacked salads to their Thanksgiving menu. And making one of these for one's self would be a special healthy treat, too!


    • Diane Eblin November 21, 2011 at 6:40 pm #

      Thank you Shirley. I hope more people will have salads and not just turkey and pie.

  6. Laura November 18, 2011 at 11:09 am #

    These are so gorgeous! What a great idea.

    • Diane Eblin November 21, 2011 at 6:39 pm #

      Thank you Laura.

  7. Kim-Cook It AF November 18, 2011 at 11:29 am #

    Brilliant! Brilliant! Brilliant!! These are the most adorable and perfect idea ever!! I have just the perfect glasses for this. I will be pinning this one FOR SURE! Have I told you lately how much I love you?

    • Diane Eblin November 21, 2011 at 6:39 pm #

      Thank you Kim. Pin away. And thank you more for the love. Back atcha sis!

  8. lillian November 18, 2011 at 12:52 pm #

    these look gorgeous! Nice post Diane!

    • Diane Eblin November 21, 2011 at 6:37 pm #

      Thank you Lillian.

  9. gluten free gift November 18, 2011 at 9:31 pm #

    Martha Stewart would be impressed! These are gorgeous from a presentation perspective. I got a mandolin slicer last Christmas, and it certainly has had me making funkier looking salads. Inspiring post – many thanks!

    • Diane Eblin November 21, 2011 at 6:37 pm #

      Thank you but I'm guessing Martha is hard to impress. Maybe I'll send her one.

  10. Jeanette November 18, 2011 at 10:04 pm #

    Absolutely love this idea – they are beautifully presented and so much healthier than what most holiday fare is all about. I know guests would appreciate this delightful presentation.

    • Diane Eblin November 21, 2011 at 6:36 pm #

      Thank you Jeanette. No sense having the turkey be the only thing people fuss over.

  11. Alisa November 19, 2011 at 1:32 am #

    That is such an adorable idea Diane! I love it!

    • Diane Eblin November 21, 2011 at 6:35 pm #

      Thank you Alisa. They were a lot of fun to make.

  12. Lexie November 29, 2011 at 6:44 pm #

    Pretty pics Diane!! Make me want to dive right in : ) xoLexie