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Seven Layered Salad Recipes: 10 Easy Recipes for Summer

Rose is a full-time freelance writer who frequently writes about education, special education, DIY projects, food, Milwaukee, and more.


You can make a layered salad any time of year, but it is an ideal choice for summer. When the weather is hot and you aren't in the mood to turn on the oven or even spend a lot of time in the kitchen when you could be outside, salads are perfect. One of the biggest advantages of layered salads is that you can make almost all of them ahead of time. Make the salad when you have time and then pull it out just before lunch, dinner, or a party. Many of these recipes are vegetarian and gluten free. For the ones that aren't, it's easy to make a couple minor changes so that they are.

If possible, always serve your layered salads in clear glass or plastic bowls so that people can admire the full effect of the beautiful layers of food.


1. Cobb

This is one of my personal favorite recipes. I make it throughout the spring and summer and frequently change up the ingredients depending on what we have on hand. Traditionally Cobb salads are made with bleu cheese dressing, but many recipes substitute a different dressing. My personal choice is honey mustard dressing. Just about any creamy dressing will work well. If you don't have cooked chicken on hand, shredded deli meat is another great choice.

Special Bleu Cheese Dressing...Perfect for Salads or Buffalo Wings


2. BLT

Turning this classic recipe into a salad is a great idea. The recipe suggests making your own croutons ahead of time. It calls for Thousand Island dressing, but you can switch this up for another creamy dressing, such as Ranch, or just use the mayo by itself.

Homemade Thousand Island Dressing


3. Summer

It doesn't get much more classic than this for summer with fresh tomatoes and basil. You can use frozen peas like the recipe suggests, but using fresh peas will intensify the fresh summer flavor even more. I love how colorful this salad is with bright layers of green, yellow, and red.


4. Caribbean

If you're never tried a lime Caribbean dressing before, you don't know what you're missing. It pairs perfectly with the chicken and mango. Don't skimp on the cashews.


5. Mediterranean

An updated version of a classic recipe, the combination of spinach and whole wheat tortellini makes this both filling and packed with nutrition. This is a meal in itself. The flavor combination is amazing here with feta cheese, fresh basil, tomatoes, artichokes, and olives.

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6. Southwestern/Taco

One of my favorite aspects of making tacos is that I get to use some of the leftovers to make taco salad the next day. I have included a few different variations of this recipe idea. Pick one or adapt your own version of one to suit your preferences. if you decide to include guacamole, I highly recommend making your own fresh right before you serve it.


7. Cornbread

I've never had a cornbread salad before, but now I'm intrigued to try it. Keep it simple with cornbread mix or wow everyone at dinner with your favorite cornbread recipe. This recipe includes two full cans of corn in addition to the corn bread. If that's too much for your taste, just use one can or substitute other veggies, such as more peppers or tomatoes.


8. Italian

You'll get a full mix of flavor, nutrition, and color with this mix of green and red veggies, mayo, creamy Italian dressing, and Asiago cheese. A handful of fresh parsley on top right before you serve it will complete the dish. Make sure that you allow a couple hours for the salad to marinate and chill before serving.


9. Pasta

It doesn't seem fitting to write a summer salad article without a pasta salad. If you're looking for a change from one of the traditional pasta salad options, a layered salad is a great choice. This is an old Kraft recipe. If you're like me and aren't crazy about mayo or Miracle Whip heavy salads, substitute the mayo for sour cream.

Easy Italian Pasta Salad | Pinch of Yum


10. Fruit

It also doesn't seem fitting to write a summer salad article without including at least one fruit salad recipe. Don't feel limited by the fruit choices here. Pick seasonal fruits or go with your own favorites and make it as sweet or as tart as you like. This recipe includes vanilla pudding and whipped cream, both of which are classic choices for a layered fruit salad.

More summer recipes from the author.


Rose Clearfield (author) from Milwaukee, Wisconsin on May 29, 2013:

That's a good problem! Thanks, kittythedreamer! :)

Kitty Fields from Summerland on May 29, 2013:

Ahhhh, I'M DROOLING NOW. Thanks! LOL

Rose Clearfield (author) from Milwaukee, Wisconsin on May 15, 2013:

I'm glad, Specialk! Enjoy!

Karen Metz from Michigan on May 15, 2013:

These look awesome! I can't wait to try a few of them. Thanks for the ideas and recipes.

Rose Clearfield (author) from Milwaukee, Wisconsin on September 16, 2012:

That's great, Angela! Thanks. :)

Angela Michelle Schultz from United States on September 16, 2012:

Several of these looked really appetizing, especially the southwestern and the layered caribbean ones. I'm curious about the corn bread salad and italian sald, but I'm not sure if my family would like them.

Rose Clearfield (author) from Milwaukee, Wisconsin on May 27, 2012:


Amy L. Tarr from Home on May 27, 2012:

That Caribean salad looks like a winner to me.

Rose Clearfield (author) from Milwaukee, Wisconsin on May 03, 2012:

Thanks Duchess! Enjoy!

Duchess OBlunt on May 03, 2012:

ooooo these look delightful. Going to try your cobb salad. Nice combination

Rose Clearfield (author) from Milwaukee, Wisconsin on May 03, 2012:

Thanks Om! It seems like that's the one to try. If you do, let me know what you think.

Om Paramapoonya on May 03, 2012:

I love Cobb salad! The only salad on your list that I haven't tried is the cornbread salad, but I'll give it a go soon. Thanks for sharing this hub. Rated up!

Rose Clearfield (author) from Milwaukee, Wisconsin on May 02, 2012:

Thanks Cara! You're right that these would be great options for a potluck picnic or dinner. You're very welcome for the link!

cardelean from Michigan on May 02, 2012:

This is a great selection of salads. I think that I've tried all of them except the cornbread salad and like you I think I'll have to give it a whirl! These would also be great to take to a potluck picnic or dinner. Thanks so much for these great resources and a special thanks for the link. It was a nice surprise at the end! :)

Rose Clearfield (author) from Milwaukee, Wisconsin on May 02, 2012:

Thanks Billy! I'm glad that the other salad eaters out there are enjoying this.

Thanks Jools! I agree that it's hard to go wrong with nuts in a salad. Enjoy your salads this summer.

Thanks Nancy! They do look lovely. It would be a beautiful option for a party. The summer salad does have so many great choices.

Nancy on May 02, 2012:

I hadn't really thought of making a layered salad like this before but they look so lovely! I'd love to try the layered summer salad- so many great choices!

Jools Hogg from North-East UK on May 02, 2012:

These look great. We often have Mediterranean salad at home and I love any salad which includes nuts, especially the one with celery, apple and nut - yum. The first time I ever ate Blue Cheese Dressing was in the USA (so thanks America! :o))and I still adore it. I like the look of the Caribbean Salad too. Just have to wait for Summer to arrive here to try some....could be a while :o(

Voted up, etc.

Bill Holland from Olympia, WA on May 02, 2012:

For all the salad eaters out there this is a great hub filled with some fantastic recipes. Well-documented and explained. Nice job Rose!

Rose Clearfield (author) from Milwaukee, Wisconsin on May 02, 2012:

Thanks PurvisBobbi! I hope that you're enjoying your pasta salad. :)

Barbara Purvis Hunter from Florida on May 02, 2012:

Hi randomcreative,

Such an awesome hub, and I am reading it while eating my pasta salad. I will follow one of your recipes the next I make a salad.



Rose Clearfield (author) from Milwaukee, Wisconsin on May 02, 2012:

Thanks Linda! HOTD again would be amazing.

Linda Bilyeu from Orlando, FL on May 02, 2012:

I intend to make each of these salads! Thank you for this awesome hub! I sense a HOTD.

Rose Clearfield (author) from Milwaukee, Wisconsin on May 02, 2012:

Thanks so much Kelley and Claudia!

Claudia Tello from Mexico on May 02, 2012:

Hi randomcreative,

The layered salads look beautiful, great idea for a nice presentation. My favorite one, without a doubt, is the Mediterranean salad.

Great work!

kelleyward on May 02, 2012:

Randomcreative Thanks for putting all these great salad ideas together in one hub! Voted up and useful! Take care, Kelley

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