I'm not going to lie to you here. The thing that really puts this BLT Layered Salad over the top is the homemade croutons! Well, that and the bacon, of course!
If you've never made your own homemade croutons before I urge you to finally give it a go. The freshness, flavor, and crunch that a homemade crouton provides are about one million percent better than the prepackaged store-bought variety, and they hardly take any time (or effort) to make.
I learned a few things while making this BLT Layered Salad that I need to share with you.
1. A large, clear glass bowl works best for viewing all the layers of bacon, lettuce, tomatoes, croutons, and Parmesan cheese.
2. A large, clear glass bowl is not the best when it comes to taking pictures due to glare and reflection. Drats.
3. Make sure you prepare double the croutons that you think you'll need because you'll be snacking on them all throughout the salad assembly.
4. As long as you don't dress the salad in advance, if you should have any salad leftovers they'll be just as tasty the second (or even third) day. And, even if the croutons on top get a little stale, you'll most likely proceed in chowing down on them because they'll still taste amazing! But maybe that's just me! LOL
The easy instructions:
Use a serrated knife to cut 4-6 crusty rolls into 1" cubes. Toss them in a bowl along with some olive oil, salt, and pepper. Lay the croutons in a single layer on a baking sheet and bake in a preheated 350-degree oven for 12-15 minutes (turning once), being careful to keep an eye on them so they don't burn. Remove from the oven and cool.
Meanwhile, chop 1 pound of pre-cooked bacon into bite-sized pieces, chop 2 heads of romaine lettuce, and cut one pint of grape tomatoes in half. Begin by layering the salad in a large, clear, glass bowl starting with a generous layer of baked croutons, followed by the lettuce...
...halved tomatoes, chopped bacon, salt, pepper, Parmesan cheese, and the remainder of the homemade croutons. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and chill until ready to serve with your favorite dressing. I'm sharing my recipe for homemade Dijon vinaigrette in the printable recipe below.
BLT Layered Salad
- 4-6 crusty rolls cut into 1" pieces
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- 1 pound bacon cooked until crispy and then cut (or crumbled) into bite sized pieces.
- 2 heads romaine lettuce chopped
- 1 pint grape tomatoes halved
- 1 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
- additional salt and pepper if desired to season the salad
To make the Dijon vinaigrette
- ¾ cup extra virgin olive oil
- ¼ cup apple cider vinegar
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1 pinch salt and pepper
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 1 teaspoon dried coriander
Tools and equipment
- serrated knife for cutting the bread
- cutting board
- large bowl for tossing the croutons
- baking sheet for toasting the croutons
- parchment paper optional, for the baking sheet
- paring knife for cutting the tomatoes
- large glass bowl for serving the salad
- salad tongs for serving the salad
- plastic wrap
- mason jar with a lid for making the dressing
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Toss the cut bread cubes in a large bowl with the olive oil, salt and pepper.
- Lay the bread cubes in an even layer on the baking sheet and bake in a preheated oven for 12-15 minutes (turning once) until golden brown.
- Remove the croutons from the oven and allow to cool completely.
- Layering the salad in the large, glass bowl, starting with a thick layer of cooled croutons.
- Continue layering with the lettuce, bacon, tomatoes and Parmesan cheese.
- Season the salad with salt and pepper if desired.
- Top the salad with the remainder of the homemade croutons.
- Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and chill until ready to serve.
To make the dressing
- Add all ingredients in a mason jar, or jar with a tight fitting lid.
- Screw the lid on tightly and shake until the dressing is thoroughly combined.
- Serve with the BLT salad.
This salad was a huge hit the day I served it, and even though a lot was eaten, I still had enough leftover to cover and eat the following two days for dinner. For me, that's a huge plus on these dog days of summer when the last thing I feel like doing is heating up the kitchen to make dinner.
Thank you so much for visiting me today in my Kudos Kitchen. I hope you found something you'll love and that you'll come back and visit me often. There is always room for you around my table!
Should you have any questions or comments regarding anything you've seen here on my blog, please don't hesitate to reach out to me. It is always my distinct pleasure to respond to you just as soon as I possibly can.