5 Ingredients or Fewer

BLT Salad

October  4, 2022
7 Ratings
Photo by Ty Mecham
  • Prep time 20 minutes
  • Cook time 15 minutes
  • Serves 2
Author Notes

Start with the same ingredients as a BLT sandwich—bread, bacon, lettuce, tomato, and mayo—but end up with a salad instead. The transformation is all about teamwork. Bacon gets crisped up in a cast-iron skillet, then torn bread pieces get toasted in the rendered fat. Yellow tomatoes get tossed in the salad, while others get blended with mayo to create a tangy two-ingredient dressing. Like the classic BLT, I encourage you to be choosy, even fussy, about your ingredients here. Pick your favorite bread (I like sourdough, but what do you like? Whole-wheat? Rye?). Pick your favorite bacon (applewood-smoked? Pepper-crusted?). And pick the happiest-looking lettuce and tomatoes you can find. While I would never tell you one mayo is wrong and another is right, I will tell you that we did an office taste test, and Duke’s won. And don’t be shy with the salt and pepper. —Emma Laperruque

What You'll Need
Watch This Recipe
BLT Salad
  • 2 thick slices sourdough bread
  • 4 thick slices bacon, halved
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 head butterhead lettuce (aka Bibb or Boston)
  • 1 pint yellow cherry tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise
  1. Cut the crust off the bread slices, then use your hand to tear the bread into haphazard pieces.
  2. Add the bacon to a large cast-iron or nonstick skillet, then set over medium heat. Cook for about 8 minutes, or until it’s as crispy as you like (just remember it’ll continue to crisp as it cools). Transfer the bacon to a plate to cool—but leave the fat in the pan and leave the heat on.
  3. Immediately add the bread pieces to the skillet with the fat. Sprinkle with salt and pepper, then toss until the bread is completely coated in the fat. Cook over medium heat for about 4 minutes, turning the bread as it browns on each side, until golden-brown and crispy on the outside but still squishy and soft if you squeeze a crouton with your fingers. Turn off the heat and let the bread cool.
  4. Lop off the end of the butter lettuce, then pull apart the leaves. Tear the big ones into bite-size pieces; leave the little ones be. Wash, then dry very well (if there’s excess water on the lettuce, the dressing will slip right off).
  5. Add a heaping ½ cup (about 100 grams) of the cherry tomatoes to a blender or food processor, along with the mayo, and a pinch each of salt and black pepper. Process until completely smooth and bright yellow, scraping down with a silicone spatula as needed. Taste and adjust the seasonings as needed.
  6. Cut the remaining cherry tomatoes in half lengthwise. Break up the cooled bacon pieces into big bite-sized pieces with your hands.
  7. Combine the prepped lettuce and bacon–fat croutons in a big bowl. Add the tomato-mayo dressing. Toss (preferably with your hands, but two spoons will do). Divide between two plates and evenly top with the tomatoes and bacon. Eat immediately.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • epicharis
  • Emma Laperruque
    Emma Laperruque
  • boulangere
  • Terry
Emma was the food editor at Food52. She created the award-winning column, Big Little Recipes, and turned it into a cookbook in 2021. These days, she's a senior editor at Bon Appétit, leading digital cooking coverage. Say hello on Instagram at @emmalaperruque.

12 Reviews

Terry May 27, 2021
Really easy and very good. I added some additional fresh veggies I had - carrots sliced into thin sticks, small chunks of zucchini and some diced orange pepper. Great dressing!
Jennifer T. March 17, 2021
Truly delish. The croutons in bacon grease - mwah!
Sheri October 14, 2020
So delicious! We didn't have much bacon so I added hard cooked egg to add more protein, and used the sourdough bread I've been making from a recipe also on Food 52. Great way to showcase delicious tomatoes!
Emma L. October 15, 2020
Yum, a hard-boiled egg sounds so good here!
brushjl July 10, 2020
agree, great recipe, didn't change a thing.
Merry July 31, 2019
We made this once again and since we had two ears of beautiful corn, we cut those off the cob and tossed them into the salad. Great recipe and lots of flexibility.
Emma L. July 31, 2019
Love the idea of adding corn!
Linda D. July 22, 2019
Yum! Thanks so much, Emma.
Merry July 18, 2019
This looked so good and after picking up some perfect cherry tomatoes at our local market along with bread from our favorite bakery, what a win! Since we had extra dressing, that went on some arugula the following day - also delicious!
Charlene July 7, 2019
I riffed on the recipe (Romaine, Camparis, etc.) but I used the idea for the dressing. Two fat Camparis and about a 1/2 cup mayo. It makes a very good dressing which would be good on other salads as well. I wanted to use my beautiful basil in the salad, and it was a wonderful addition. I highly recommend it. Thanks for a great idea that I'm sure I'll be using again and again!
epicharis July 6, 2019
It's profoundly weird how both the article and the recipe make this sound like some kind of ingenious invention and not a reader-submitted recipe since 2009 (cf. "BLT Panzanella").
boulangere July 8, 2019
The same thing happened to me over a Caesar salad & dressing I had recently submitted to a contest and for which I was one of the final five.