A quintessential summer salad featuring any favorite grilled meat- designed to use up leftover BBQ! Try it with thin sliced steak, chunks of chicken, or even pulled pork. We like to have BBQ chicken/steak/pork and corn on the cob one night for dinner, and then make a little extra to throw this salad together the next day. It combines your favorite BBQ flavors with fresh crisp greens, corn, red onion, bell peppers, tomatoes, black beans, avocado and crispy fried onions to take it over the top. Top it with our homemade Buttermilk Ranch, or my hack for BBQ Ranch Dressing and create a salad worthy of a restaurant!
BBQ Ranch Salad
A quintessential summer salad featuring any favorite grilled meat- designed to use up leftover BBQ! Try it with thin sliced steak, chunks of chicken, or even pulled pork.
Recipe measurements are approximate! The following should be plenty to prepare 4-6 dinner salads. You can obviously adjust and make to taste.
- leftover BBQ (such as bbq chicken, steak, or pork). If you’re cooking it up fresh, season 1 1/2-2 pounds chicken thighs with salt and pepper, or a bbq rub and grill, brushing with your favorite bbq sauce in the last few mins of grilling.
- 1–2 heads romaine, clean and chopped/torn
- 2–3 ears corn on the cob
- 2 large tomatoes, diced
- 1 bell pepper, diced
- 1/2 red onion diced or sliced thin
- 1–2 avocados, diced or sliced
- 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 package french fried onions (look for them in the produce dept)
- chopped cilantro, optional
- Buttermilk Ranch Dressing
- BBQ Sauce
Slice leftover BBQ meat, or grill up your choice of BBQ meat.
Corn: If using leftovers, simply slice off the cob. You can add it to the salad warm or cold! If using un-cooked, cut off the cob and saute in a pan with a pat of butter for 4-5 minutes until golden. You can also defrost fresh frozen corn from a bag.
For Dressing: You may enjoy just our classic Buttermilk Ranch Dressing, as-is! OR try my BBQ Ranch by placing 1 cup of ranch dressing in a bowl and whisking in your favorite BBQ sauce 1 tablespoon at a time, tasting as you go until you like it best. (Pro Tip: This makes for a really great dipping sauce for fries, as well.)
Arrange greens in bowls. Add BBQ meat and vegetables on top. Sprinkle with french fried onions and top with dressing.
BBQ Ranch Salad – What meat to use
You can use any grilled BBQ meat you like, here. Leftovers work great- tried pulled pork, thin sliced steak, or leftover bbq chicken. If you’re grilling up something fresh, I like to grill chicken thighs seasoned with BBQ Rub and brushed with bbq sauce in the last few minutes. You can prep the rest of the ingredients while your chicken is cooking!
Veggies for the BBQ Ranch Salad
Leftover Corn on the cob works fantastic here. Just cut off the cob and you’re good to go. You can throw it in cold, or warm it up in a skillet. If I’m making it fresh for this salad, I slice the corn off the un-cooked cob and toss it in a skillet with a pat of butter. Cook for 4-5 minutes until golden. You can also simply use frozen fresh corn from a bag!
You can be creative with the other add-ins, but here’s what I use:
Chopped or cherry tomatoes
Diced bell pepper
Crispy Fried Onions (grab a bag from the produce section, by the salad nuts, etc. or make your own)
Pile everything in your bowl and then top it with the dreamiest dressing! This is great with my Homemade Buttermilk Ranch. I’d start there. For a quick and easy BBQ Ranch Dressing, simply whisk in a little BBQ Sauce to give it an extra kick. I’d mix up a little in a small bowl first to make sure you like it- my kids prefer the plain ranch, but I like mine with the BBQ Sauce!
This is my favorite kind of summer salad. Thanks! I do a similar salad and never get tired of it. For the dressing I start with ranch dressing and slowly add Sriracha sauce to taste. It gives the salad an awesome kick!