The Big Mac is an iconic burger from the golden arches of McDonald’s. With its sesame seed bun, special sauce, melty cheese, pickles, onions, and beef patties, it’s a fast food favorite across America and beyond. But what if you could enjoy all the delicious flavors of a Big Mac in a fresh, healthier salad form? Enter: the Big Mac salad!

Why You’ll Love This Big Mac Salad Recipe

This easy Big Mac salad recipe combines all the textures and tastes of a Big Mac into a crisp, flavor-packed salad. To start, it uses hamburger beef so you get that delicious burger flavor in every bite. To give it the Big Mac taste profile, we mix up a tangy “special sauce” with ingredients like mayo, mustard, vinegar, and more. Chopped lettuce, shredded cheese, pickles, and onions round it out for crunch and freshness.

The best part is that by turning this into a salad rather than a sandwich, it’s lighter and better for you. Using lean ground beef and loading up on veggies pumps up the nutritional value. It’s lower in carbs, calories, and fat compared to a traditional Big Mac, but doesn’t sacrifice any of the flavor. This cheeseburger salad will satisfy your cravings and leaves you feeling satisfied, not stuffed.

Benefits of the Big Mac Salad

  • Packed with protein from the ground beef
  • Lots of fiber from the lettuce and veggies
  • Lower in carbs and calories than a regular Big Mac
  • Delivers all the nostalgic flavors you love
  • Fresh, crunchy, and delicious
  • Endlessly customizable with mix-ins

Whether you’re craving a burger or just looking for a flavorful salad loaded with textures and flavors, this recipe will hit the spot. The homemade Big Mac dressing really brings it all together for a creamy, tangy finish. Let’s get into how to make this flavor-packed cheeseburger salad at home!

Ingredients & Substitutions

For the Cheeseburger Salad:

  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 6 cups chopped romaine lettuce
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1/4 cup diced onion
  • 1/4 cup diced dill pickles
  • 1 medium tomato, diced

For the Big Mac Sauce:

  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons ketchup
  • 1 tablespoon yellow mustard
  • 1 teaspoon white vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder

Feel free to tweak the ingredients to suit your tastes. Try different lettuces like green leaf or iceberg. Use your favorite melty shredded cheese like mozzarella or pepper jack. Add bacon crumbles for extra smokiness. The great thing about salads is you can customize them endlessly to make the perfect bite!

How to Make Big Mac Salad

This easy salad comes together in just 20 minutes. Here’s a simple step-by-step to make it:

  1. Cook the ground beef: Add the beef to a skillet and cook over medium heat. Break it up with a wooden spoon as it cooks until no longer pink, about 5 minutes. Drain any excess grease.
  2. Make the sauce: In a small bowl, whisk together the mayo, ketchup, mustard, vinegar, garlic powder, paprika, and onion powder until smooth.
  3. Toss the salad: In a large bowl, mix together the lettuce, shredded cheese, onions, pickles, and tomatoes.
  4. Add the beef and sauce: Pour the cooked ground beef and 3/4 of the Big Mac sauce over the salad. Toss everything together until evenly coated.
  5. Finish and serve: Top the salad with more sauce and sprinkle over extra shredded cheese. Enjoy immediately while the beef is still warm!

The whole salad comes together in just 5 easy steps. The hands-on time is only about 10 minutes – most of it just chopping veggies. Once assembled, dig right in!

Tips for Making the Best Big Mac Salad

  • Use the leanest ground beef you can find – at least 80% lean.
  • Make sure to drain the beef well after cooking to limit excess grease.
  • Chop the lettuce and veggies into bite-sized pieces for easier eating.
  • Feel free to double the sauce recipe – you’ll want extra for drizzling over the top!
  • Add any extra toppings you love like bacon, jalapenos, avocado, etc.
  • Toss the salad well to distribute all the flavors evenly.
  • Enjoy immediately for the crispiest lettuce and warm beef.

Storage Instructions

To make ahead: Store the chopped salad ingredients and dressing separately in the fridge for up to 3 days. Cook the ground beef when ready to serve. Toss everything together just before eating for maximum freshness and texture.

Leftovers: Transfer leftovers to an airtight container and store in the fridge for up to 4 days. Give it a brief stir or shake when ready to eat again.

Tools to Make Big Mac Salad

You don’t need any special tools or equipment to whip up this classic salad. Here are the basics you’ll need:

  • Large skillet for cooking the ground beef
  • Wooden spoon for breaking up and stirring the beef as it cooks
  • Small bowl for making the dressing
  • Large bowl for tossing the salad
  • Spatula for ease of tossing and serving
  • Knife and cutting board to chop lettuce and veggies

And that’s it – you probably have all these kitchen staples on hand already. No special appliances or equipment needed for this easy weeknight salad.

Big Mac Salad Recipe

Get ready to enjoy the flavors of a Big Mac in fresh, salad form. This homemade copycat is crave-worthy and customizable. The tangy special sauce brings it all together for maximum deliciousness. Let’s get to the full recipe!


For the salad:

  • 1 lb lean ground beef
  • 6 cups chopped romaine lettuce
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1/4 cup diced onion
  • 1/4 cup diced dill pickles
  • 1 medium tomato, diced

For the dressing:

  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 tbsp ketchup
  • 1 tbsp yellow mustard
  • 1 tsp white vinegar
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp onion powder


  1. Add ground beef to a skillet over medium heat. Cook for 5 minutes, breaking up meat with a wooden spoon, until no longer pink.
  2. In a small bowl, make dressing by whisking together mayo, ketchup, mustard, vinegar, garlic powder, paprika, and onion powder.
  3. In a large bowl, toss together lettuce, cheese, onions, pickles, and tomatoes.
  4. Pour cooked beef over salad along with 3/4 of the dressing. Toss until fully coated.
  5. Top with more dressing and cheese. Serve immediately and enjoy!


Leftovers will keep refrigerated for 4 days. Reheat in the microwave if desired before serving again.

Get creative with mix-ins and toppings like bacon, jalapenos, avocado, etc.


Calories: 426kcal | Carbohydrates: 6g | Protein: 32g | Fat: 31g | Sodium: 528mg

Additional Info

Serving Size: 1/4th recipe

Notes on Nutritional Info

Nutrition information is a rough estimate and will vary based on specific ingredients used.


Recreate the flavors of a fast food classic with this crave-worthy Big Mac salad recipe. It delivers the tastes you love from the McDonald’s burger in a lighter, healthier salad packed with protein, fiber, and crunch. The homemade special sauce is simple to whip up and really brings the whole dish together. Customize it with your favorite flavors and enjoy this versatile salad for lunch or dinner anytime.


Myra Henry created the Keto Taco Salad blog to share my favorite delicious low-carb recipes without sacrificing flavor. when i started the keto diet 2 years ago, I discovered a love for making healthy Mexican dishes like keto taco salads. My blog features easy keto taco salad recipes and tips for keto success.

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