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Cheeseburger Salad

An Unusual Flavor Combination For Rush Days

By Natasja RosePublished 2 years ago Updated 2 years ago 3 min read
Cheeseburger Salad
Photo by Luisa Brimble on Unsplash

It's always a trial to get people to try something new, especially if they aren't expecting it to taste good. I've lost count of how many times I've experimented with a new recipe, and cackled through my partner ranting about how it shouldn't have turned out to taste this good.

Salads especially can be very hit-or-miss, especially for those with sensory issues relating to taste and/or texture. It took me until my 20s before I started to actually make and eat salads of my own free will, rather than because of the stern looks my mother was aiming across the dinner table. Cheeseburger Salad is one of those recipes that no-one expects to taste good, based off the ingredient list, but is honestly quite tasty.

Despite the title (and the horrified faces my Beloved is making at me as I type this), Cheeseburger Salad has very little to do with actual burgers.

I just couldn't think of a better description while writing up the recipe, and let's face it, we've all eaten something purely because of the expression on a friend or family member's face at least once. Sometimes, that weird dish that had your romantic partner swearing to never kiss you again even tasted nice, after all.

That's the case with this dish. You might recoil mentally from the very idea of such a salad, but if you get past that initial reaction and try it, you'll probably enjoy the flavors.

Plus, it's a great low-energy option for days where you're running late or have an emergency and just want to throw things into a Tupperware container and let the drive to work do the tossing for you. It's also great if you're trying to expand the range of someone who likes burgers but rebels against eating their vegetables, or are throwing something together from what you have in the fridge.


  • Leafy base (this can be baby spinach, rocket, lettuce, or any other leaf that you're willing to put in your mouth.)
  • Chunky Ham (either off-the-bone or diced) OR pre-cooked meatballs OR hot dog bites. Primo has a fairly decent selection of options that you can buy, to minimize the preparation time, or you can make your own from scratch.
  • Pickles. I tend to get the sweet spiced gherkin pickles that come pre-sliced, or the sandwich spread pickles if I'm in a sensory state where I prefer to use them as a dressing rather than an active ingredient.
  • Shredded or Shaved Cheese, preferable cheddar, though I will occasionally opt for shaved parmesan if I manage to run out of cheddar.
  • Shredded carrot or other vegetables (Optional).
  • Sundried Tomato, if you absolutely must (Optional).
  • Croutons (Optional).
  • Honey Mustard dressing (Optional). You honestly don't need it, but some people insist on drowning their salad in dressing, and this is the one best suited. The pickle residue usually serves as enough of a dressing on it's own.
  • Method

    1. Starting with the greens, place all the ingredients into a large bowl (if you're cooking at home) or whichever Tupperware container you can find the lid for (if making to take to work or class).
    2. Toss lightly.
    3. If you're feeling fancy, or just want extra vegetables, Coles has a wide range of pre-made slaw options that mix well into salads. Go wild.
    4. If you're really missing the taste of burger buns, you can sprinkle in croutons, as well.

    Serving Suggestions

    • This makes a surprisingly filling lunch by itself, or can be served in smaller quantities as part of a multi-dish meal.
    • You can add cooked and diced bacon as a garnish

    If you liked this story, leave a heart, a comment or a tip and share it around, and check out my other work on Medium and Amazon.

    I'm putting together a cookbook for sensory eaters, and working on a recipe Masterpost, so keep an eye out for that at the link below.


    About the Creator

    Natasja Rose

    I've been writing since I learned how, but those have been lost and will never see daylight (I hope).

    I'm an Indie Author, with 30+ books published.

    I live in Sydney, Australia

    Follow me on Facebook or Medium if you like my work!

    Reader insights


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    Comments (3)

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    • Mariann Carroll2 years ago

      The hamburger caught my eye. Cool using meatballs for hamburger. I never heard of Hamburger salad. Thanks for sharing this recipe. ♥️Hearted

    • Heather Hubler2 years ago

      I love experimenting with salads! Thanks for the ideas :)

    • Call Me Les2 years ago

      Yum! That does sound good. Never thought of how pickles can almost be a dressing in themselves. I'm with you on not having much dressing. Can't take most sauces in general! Will be saving this <3

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