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Cobb Salad Recipe (and how to plate it so it’s gorgeous)

This Cobb Salad Recipe is not only incredibly delicious and easy to make, it’s gorgeous, too!

One of the things I often hear when talking to people about cooking is “Oh, I could never do what you do.” Which always strikes me, because either I don’t think highly enough of what I do or they think too low of what they’re capable of.

Tarragon Ranch Cobb Salad Recipe

It’s probably somewhere in the middle.

The one thing I do know is that presentation plays a major part in a great dish. Take this cobb salad recipe, for example. There are no special or exotic ingredients in it, it’s just your run-of-the-mill cobb salad recipe. But it looks like a salad you’d be served in a five star restaurant.

You don’t need any special equipment to achieve it. You can purchase food rings – the ones I own work really well and they’re fairly inexpensive – but I’ve been told that a can with both ends removed will do the same thing. A few things to keep in mind when stacking your salads:

Best Cobb Salad with Food Rings
  • Think about the colors and textures of each layer. I chose vibrant red tomatoes for the first layer in this cobb salad recipe to contrast with the color of the plate.
  • Decide what layer will look best on the top. I could have easily switched the avocado and bacon layers, but I like the bright green on the very top. It ties in the green from the lettuce layer above the tomatoes. The texture is also important. I chose to dice the avocado because I liked the chunky look for our casual lunch, but thinly sliced and fanned over the top would add an elegant touch.
  • Adding a small amount of dressing to certain foods will help them “stick” better. I did this with the lettuce and not one piece fell out.
  • Use a large enough plate so that when the stack falls there’s room for the food. The plate I used for this cobb salad recipe is actually a bit too small, but the photographer side of me really wanted that particular plate!
  • Tamper each layer as you go. Pressing the food into compact layers will ensure it stays together.
  • Be sure to lift the ring straight up when removing it.
  • Have fun with it! What’s the worst that could happen? It’s just dinner.
Stacked Cobb Salad Recipe

Here’s an example of another salad made using this technique: Tarragon Lemon Salad with Fresh Crab and Avocado

Best Cobb Salad with Food Rings

Cobb Salad Recipe (and how to plate it so it's GORGEOUS)

Yield: 0

Quick tip: If I have roughly a cup of mayo left in the jar, I’ll add all the other ingredients to the jar and use that as my container. All you have to do is shake it and there’s no dirty bowl!



  • 12 very large cherry tomatoes, sliced
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped romaine lettuce
  • 1 1/2 cups cooked, diced rotisserie chicken
  • 4 hard-boiled eggs, diced
  • 1/2 cup blue cheese crumbles
  • 1 cup crumbled bacon
  • 2 avocados, diced


  • 1 cup good-quality mayonnaise
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 4 oz blue cheese, crumbled
  • a few dashes worcestershire sauce
  • 3/4 t kosher salt
  • freshly ground black pepper


  1. Make the dressing: Mix together mayo, sour cream, 4 oz. blue cheese crumbles, worcestershire, kosher salt and pepper. Place in fridge for at least an hour to let flavors meld.
  2. Place a ring onto a plate and add the ingredients in the order listed above (divide amounts for four salads). Mix a tablespoon of dressing with the lettuce before layering to ensure that it stays in place.
  3. Tamper layers after each addition. Use some pressure but don’t press so hard that ingredients lose their shape. Carefully remove ring, garnish and serve immediately.
Kristy Bernardo
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Tuesday 16th of March 2021

Recipe only mentions adding dressing to lettuce. Did you add any dressing between layers or in chicken? Thank you. It looks beautiful.

Kristy Bernardo

Monday 19th of April 2021

I typically don't but adding it to the chicken will also help it to stay put. Between the layers isn't necessary as I like to drizzle some on after or serve it on the side. I hope you enjoy it!


Wednesday 9th of October 2019

For a special P.E.O. luncheon, a sister made 10 of your individual layered Cobb salads. They were delicious, but the presentation was fantastic! We were all so impressed. Since she needed so many, she had her husband cut pvc pipe in about 4” lengths. It was about 3 1/2 “-4” wide, I’m guessing. She garnished the top with avocado, hard boiled egg and bay leaves. I wish I knew how to add a picture. It was definitely a high end presentation!


Monday 4th of March 2019

what size food molds do you use?

Jenn Schoffner

Saturday 12th of November 2016

I am going to try to make this for a ladies luncheon tomorrow. Wish me luck! Did you put dressing on chicken too I'm guessing? I'm excited to try it. Thanks for the idea.

Kristy Bernardo

Saturday 12th of November 2016

Hey Jenn! I actually didn't but you definitely can, it'll just help that stick together better, too. Hope you enjoy!

Joanne Kotz

Tuesday 28th of June 2016


Hi Kristy,

I'm all set to construct my cobb salad but...did you dress all parts of the salad? I can't tell if you threw everything in a bowl...but the bacon doesn't look dressed nor the avocado. I have so much dressing...what do I do?

Kristy Bernardo

Tuesday 28th of June 2016

Hi Joanne! I tossed everything first (lettuce, etc.) but then topped with the bacon and avocado. You can also toss the bacon and just layer the avocado on top if that is easier for you, too!

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