If salad isn’t the first thing to pop in your head when you crave a decadent dinner, Healthy Steak Salad is about to move in rent free. Reimagine your salad game with tender, juicy sirloin on a bed of fresh, crisp greens, dressed up with all your favorite salad veggies and a homemade vinaigrette. Keto and Whole30 variations in the recipe below!
We’re just about 3 weeks into the new year which means that if you’re one of the millions of people who are 3 weeks into a new diet, you’re probably about to hit a wall. I don’t mean the “I need a donut” wall. (Pfft. That’s like the 3 day mark.) I mean the “Hear me, please, refrigerator gods, and send me something other than chicken breast (or tuna fish or eggs or maybe even solid food in any form)” wall.
We’ve all been stuck in that rut because cooking on a restrictive diet is, well, restrictive. You can’t just nuke some pizza rolls and pretend it’s lunch. (Although, if you’re on that diet and have discovered health benefits the rest of us don’t know about, please share with the rest of class.)
Whether you’re trying Whole30 or paleo or keto or going grain-free, you’re going to find yourself missing out on a lot of the grab-and-go foods that made life easy. So we plan, prep, schedule and hopefully learn to tolerate (or, if you’re lucky, love) carrot sticks instead of Oreos, so that we can live long enough to love Oreos another day.
This is why it’s so important to splurge where you can. And if steak isn’t a splurge, well… I don’t know how else to help you fancypants, cause I’m not made of enough money to recipe test lobster for a week. Steak Salad is a perfect way to gussy up your salad routine (which you know you have because salad is always the easiest go-to) and reward yourself for making it 3 weeks without that donut. Way to go, champ!
What’s the best steak for steak salad?
Choose a well-marbled cut that will cook quickly. We used sirloin, but you could substitute for strip steak or ribeye as well.
Tips for making perfect steakhouse-style steak at home
- Pat the steak dry using paper towels or a cotton kitchen towel. A steak will help avoid steaming ensure a browned crust.
- Bring the meat up to room temperature for even cooking. Remove packaging, pat dry, then place on a plate; usually 30 minutes will do the trick.
- Get that skillet sizzling! Wait until it starts smoking to ensure it’s at the right temperature (AKA screaming hot).
- Always check temperature using an instant read thermometer for accurate results.
- Top with butter while resting. This is a little trick I learned back in the dark ages (my early 20’s) when I was working in restaurants. A little butter adds just one more rich layer of flavor to steak.
- Remember, resting generally adds about 5°F to the cook time, so take this into account when checking the internal temperature.
- Always slice steak against the grain for the most tender bites.
Times and temperatures for seared steak
Cooking times will vary base on the cut and thickness of your steaks. To cook to your desired temperature most accurately, always use an instant read thermometer inserted into the center of the steak.
- 3-4 minutes per side: for RARE, or until the thermometer registers 110-115°F (final temperature after resting will register around 120°F).
- 5-6 minutes per side: for MEDIUM RARE, or until the thermometer registers 120-125°F (final temperature after resting will register around 130°F).
- 6-7 minutes per side: for MEDIUM, or until the thermometer registers 125-130°F (final temperature after resting will register around 135°F).
- 8-10 minutes per side: for MEDIUM WELL, or until the thermometer registers 135-140°F (final temperature after resting will register around 145°F).
Whole30 steak salad
- Serve with roasted fingerling potatoes and skip the crumbled blue cheese.
- Swap the vinaigrette for my Whole30 Ranch Dressing if you’re craving something creamy.
Keto steak salad
- Skip the potatoes; garnish with crumbled blue cheese
- Balsamic vinegar will add some to your carb count, so be mindful. Go easy on the dressing or skip the vinaigrette altogether – use your favorite keto dressing or try my keto-friendly Whole30 Ranch Dressing.
More healthy dinner worthy salads
- Whole30 BLT Chicken Salad
- Steak Fajita Salad
- Chicken Caprese Salad
- BLT Salad with Hot Bacon Dressing
- Chicken Shawarma Salad
Did you make this steak salad recipe? I’d love to know how it turned out! Leave a comment and a rating below.
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Healthy Steak Salad (Whole30 or Keto)Print Recipe Rate this Recipe Pin Recipe
- Cast Iron Skillet
- 2 12- oz sirloin steaks
- Kosher salt, to taste
- Ground pepper, to taste
- 12 oz fingerling potatoes, halved lengthwise (whole30 only)
- 2 tsp olive oil
- 1 head romaine, chopped
- ½ head radicchio, chopped
- 1 english cucumber, sliced
- 8 radishes, sliced
- ½ pint cherry tomatoes, halved
- 1 avocado, sliced
- 4 tbsp blue cheese crumbles, keto only
- 1 tbsp butter or ghee
- 4 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 6 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tsp dijon mustard
- Pinch sea salt
- Pinch ground pepper
- Pat the steak dry, then season with salt and pepper to taste. Set onto a plate to come to room temperature for 15-30 minutes.
- Heat oven to 425°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Make the dressing. Combine the balsamic vinegar, olive oil, mustard, salt, and pepper in a small lidded jar; shake vigorously until emulsified. Alternatively, combine ingredients in a one-cup glass measuring cup or small bowl and whisk until emulsified.
- Whole30 only. Toss the fingerling potatoes with the olive oil, ½ tsp kosher salt, and ½ tsp ground pepper. Spread evenly over the prepared baking sheet in a single layer, cut side down. Transfer to the oven and roast until golden brown on the outside and tender on the inside, 20-22 minutes.
- Heat a cast iron skillet until smoking. Add the steak and sear 5-6 minutes per side for medium rare, or until an instant read thermometer registers 125-130°F using an instant read thermometer. Remove from heat and top each steak with a ½ tbsp butter. Rest 10 minutes.
- While the steak rests, make the salad base. Toss the romaine, radicchio, cucumbers, radishes, and tomatoes. Divide evenly between 4 plates, then top each with one quarter of the avocado.
- Keto only: divide the blue cheese between the 4 plates.
- Whole30 only: divide the roasted potatoes between the 4 plates.
- Slice the steaks against the grain, then divide between the plates. Drizzle with vinaigrette and serve immediately.
- Nutrition card information reflects Whole30 options/add-ons.
- Keto nutritional information: 423 calories; 26g fat; 5g net carbs; 38g protein.