Need a go-to salad recipe to pair with meals or for whenever you’re hungry for a bowl of greens? This easy House Salad is so good, and the vinaigrette is sweet, tangy, and pretty nearly perfect!

green salad with croutons

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I love this salad! It’s colorful, flavorful, healthy, and loaded with all the things a great salad should have! I also love that I can mix and match to create different versions of this salad, and I’ll often double the vinaigrette to keep some extra in the fridge.

The Best House Salad

The best house salad–is delicious served with most meals that serve a protein entree, but there are many options when serving a green salad. Another version that we love with terragon dressing (homemade) is our Irish Pub Salad. So good!

bite of house salad

What’s a House Salad?

Restaurants that offer a mixed greens salad often call it a House Salad, thus the name. These salads can differ from restaurant to restaurant, but they’re often composed of leafy greens, veggies like tomatoes and cucumber, and a variety of other toppings. Plus, you usually get your choice of salad, but with this version, I’m offering my favorite Apple Cider Vinaigrette recipe.

deconstructed tossed salads

What goes into a House Salad

These salads can have so many different things in them. My favorite House Salad features crispy romaine and tender leaf lettuce, cheese, veggies, a bit of salty cheese, and creamy avocado. 

small side salad

Why I love this recipe

  • It makes enough for 4 side salad-sized portions, but you can easily double it to make more.
  • It’s bright and colorful and tasty with lots of different textures.
  • The vinaigrette ties it all together and is so good!

ingredients to make a tossed salad

Gather these ingredients

  • Romaine lettuce – Washed and torn into bite-sized pieces about the same size.
  • Green leaf lettuce – Washed and torn into bite-sized pieces about the same size.
  • Cheddar cheese – Finely cubed or shredded.
  • Croutons – Use your favorite croutons.
  • Grape tomatoes – Look for small ones or cut them in half.
  • Cucumber – Sliced ¼-inch thick.
  • Red cabbage – Thinly sliced.
  • Shredded carrots
  • Red onion – Halved and thinly sliced.
  • Avocado – Sliced.
  • Freshly cracked black pepper

how to make a green tossed house salad

For the Apple Cider Vinaigrette

  • Apple cider vinegar
  • Olive oil
  • Dijon mustard
  • Garlic – 1 clove; finely minced.
  • Salt and pepper

tossing a salad

How to make the best House Salad

  1. Toss the romaine and leaf lettuce, half the croutons, ⅔ of the cheese, the tomatoes, cucumber, red cabbage, and red onion in a large salad bowl.
  2. Whisk the apple cider vinegar, olive oil, Dijon mustard, garlic, salt and pepper in a small bowl until emulsified. Adjust the seasoning if necessary.
  3. Drizzle the house salad dressing over the top of the salad and toss to combine.
  4. Top the salad with the remaining croutons and cheese, Garnish with the sliced avocado, and crack fresh pepper over the top, if desired.
  5. Serve immediately.

grated cheese on a salad

Tips & substitutions

  • You can use any kind of dressing with this scratch-made House Salad recipe, but this easy vinaigrette goes so well with it.
  • Make the dressing in a jar with a lid – instead of whisking, put the ingredients into the jar and give it a good shake.
  • Add a drizzle of honey if the dressing is too tart for you.
  • To make this a vegan House Salad, omit the cheese or use a vegan cheese substitute.
  • Swap out the cheddar for Swiss, smoked gouda, or jalapeno Jack cheese and change up the flavor.
  • I love making a big batch of this salad and keeping it and the dressing in the fridge. This makes it really easy to add to a meal or just to enjoy as a light lunch.

The Best House Salads

Serving suggestions

This is such an easy salad recipe, and it goes so well with so many different dishes. I love serving this simple side dish with Sweet Potato Turkey Burgers, delicious seafood like this cedar-planked salmon, or a simple grilled cheese sandwich.

salad with tomatoes, cucumber, avocado

How to turn a House Salad into a meal

If you’re looking for a veggie-forward meal, this easy salad is a great starting point. Add some grilled chicken, shrimp, or beef to it to add some protein, or add a scoop of tuna salad or egg salad on the side. A slice of crusty bread with it will add some carbs, and voila, dinner is served.

the best house salad


Once dressed, this salad should be eaten right away. If you think you’ll have leftovers, pop the salad into an airtight container and store it in the fridge. Keep the dressing separate, in its own container. Then, just use as much salad as you need and nibble on the leftovers for a day or two.

Check out these awesome salad recipes while you’re here

deconstructed tossed salads
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The Best House Salad

So easy and so delicious, this House Salad with Apple Cider Vinaigrette is the perfect side to just about any meal!
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Yield: 4
Print Recipe Pin Recipe


  • 4 c mixed Romaine and Green Leaf Lettuce washed and cut into bite-sized pieces, equal size pieces
  • 1 c yellow Cheddar Cheese, separated
  • 1 c croutons
  • 1 ½ c grape tomatoes, very small ones
  • 1 ½ c cucumber sliced, ¼” thick
  • ½ cup red cabbage, very thinly sliced
  • ½ cup shredded carrots
  • ¾ c red onion halved and thinly sliced
  • 1 avocado, sliced
  • Fresh cracked pepper

Apple Cider Vinaigrette:

  • 4 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1-2 tsp dijon mustard
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • ½ teaspoon
  • ½ tsp pepper


  • In a large serving bowl, toss together lettuce, ½ of the croutons, about ⅔ of the cheese, tomatoes, cucumber, red cabbage, and red onion.
  • In a small bowl or glass jar, whisk together the apple cider vinegar, olive oil, dijon, garlic and salt + pepper. Season to taste.
  • Drizzle the dressing overtop and toss to combine. Top with remaining croutons and cheese. Add sliced avocado and fresh cracked pepper. Serve.
Cuisine: American
Course: Salad
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The Best House Salad