Chopped grilled vegetable salad recipe - Pamela Salzman Skip to content

Chopped grilled vegetable salad recipe

Photo by Sarah Elliott
Photo by Sarah Elliott

Sometimes, a little freshening up is in order.  I put this chopped grilled vegetable salad on my weekly dinner planner and when I pulled the image for it, I cringed a little.  The photo did not do it justice at all.  This salad is one of my absolute favorites and one that I posted almost 5 years ago.  In all fairness to me, I didn’t even know how to use a camera when I started this blog, and although I am still no photography expert, I think my images have improved since 2011.  So I thought I would pull this post from the archives and give it a facelift, especially on the eve of Memorial Day weekend when you might be inclined to make a fantastic, crowd-pleasing salad such as this one.

This chopped grilled vegetable salad is my version of a salad I used to love at a West Hollywood restaurant called The Ivy, where they charge an outrageous $28 for it (and it’s for one person!)  (BTW, in 2011 when I first wrote this post, The Ivy charged $24 for the salad.)  I made this recently for some friends and served it on my new salad board.  Everyone went gaga for it.  Although the prep shots here show mushrooms in the mix, I made it with small Japanese eggplants in the final shots.  They’re both great.  This is a hearty salad that can be a meal or a side dish.   You can served it tossed together or composed where each ingredient is separate.  However you arrange it, it’s a delicious way to eat a ton of good-for-you vegetables!

grilled vegetablesgrilled vegetables

When I make this salad for my family, I usually add a little grilled chicken or salmon on top or some feta and that’s dinner.  But for entertaining or to bring to a potluck, it’s great because it’s versatile enough to go with everything being served and all the components can be prepped ahead.  The recipe is written with my favorite vegetables, but you can certainly substitute what you like better or what looks good at the farm stand that day.  Corn and avocado always make it in there, as does some kind of summer squash, green or yellow.  I generally like to add some type of meaty vegetable like portobello mushrooms or eggplant, and an onion, my favorite being scallions.  I think grilled sweet bell peppers would be yummy, too.  The key is knowing how long to grill the vegetables since they all take a different amount of time.  This is one reason I prefer to prepare this salad before my guests arrive so I’m not too distracted (happens easily with me.)  The scallions grill up especially quickly, say 60-90 seconds on each side.  You just want to make sure you don’t overcook the vegetables so they don’t turn to mush in the salad.  As you can see from my photographs, I wasn’t too caught up in making this salad look too perfect since I knew it would taste delicious and really my family and friends were the stars of the show.

chopped grilled vegetable salad | pamela salzman

chopped grilled vegetable salad | Pamela Salzman

5.0 from 2 reviews
Chopped Grilled Vegetable Salad
Serves: 4-6 as an entree, 6-8 as a side dish, or many more if part of a larger buffet
  • Dressing:
  • 2 Tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 2 Tablespoons unseasoned rice vinegar
  • 1 small shallot, finely chopped
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 2 teaspoons raw honey
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • freshly ground pepper to taste
  • ½ cup unrefined, cold-pressed extra-virgin olive oil
  • Salad:
  • 2 ears corn
  • 1 bunch asparagus, about ¾ pound, ends trimmed
  • 3 Japanese eggplant, about ¾ pound, halved lengthwise or 3 Portobello mushrooms (less commonly know as Portabellas, but really just oversized cremini mushrooms)
  • 3 medium zucchini, about 1 pound, halved lengthwise
  • 1 bunch scallions, left whole or 1 red onion, sliced thickly
  • sea salt and black pepper for seasoning
  • 8 cups romaine or red leaf lettuce, chopped (optional)
  • 2 ripe avocados, peeled and cubed
  1. Prepare corn: Pull husks down and remove silks. Replace one layer of husks and discard the rest. Soak in water until grill is ready.
  2. Preheat a grill over medium high heat or heat a grill pan.
  3. Place all dressing ingredients except oil in a small bowl. Add olive oil slowly, whisking continuously to emulsify. Lightly brush the asparagus, eggplant or mushrooms, zucchini and scallions with dressing (I used 7-8 tablespoons.) Sprinkle with sea salt and black pepper to taste.
  4. Grill each vegetable according to doneness. Each one takes a different amount of time. Corn takes about 5 minutes on each side. Do not overcook! Allow to cool slightly, then chop into bite-sized chunks. Cut corn off the cob.
  5. Place lettuce on a large platter and drizzle lightly with some of the dressing. Toss to coat. Drizzle the chopped vegetables with most of the remaining dressing and arrange on top of the lettuce. Dress the avocado cubes with any remaining dressing and arrange on top.
Delicious with crumbled feta or goat cheese, or grilled shrimp or chicken.

An Alternative Dressing – Lemon-Basil:

¼ cup fresh lemon juice

1 Tablespoon Dijon mustard

¾ teaspoon fine sea salt

2 small garlic cloves

¾ cup basil leaves

½ cup unrefined, cold-pressed extra-virgin olive oil

Puree everything in a blender.


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  1. I made this last night and it was AMAZING! My husband cannot stop gushing about it and complimenting me (I gave you all the credit, though, lol). Not just our new favorite salad, but our new favorite dinner, period. I used the lemon basil dressing, and topped it with grilled pesto shrimp. LOVE! Thank you for being so awesome!

    • I refuse credit! It’s all you! Great job 🙂

  2. Do you need to salt the zucchini and eggplant first and get some of the moisture out of them?

    • I don’t salt zucchini before I grill it. It’s up to you if you want to salt the eggplant. I do if I have time since it helps to soften them up a little and remove a bit of the bitterness. But I have to be honest and say I don’t do it all the time.

  3. I don’t have a grill, but luckily this cooks nice in the oven on broil. Easier than cleaning a grill too!

    • Good point! Not everyone has access to a grill. Nice to know it works in the oven too. Thanks!

  4. This recipe is amazing… Thanks so much for sharing!!!!

    • You bet, David! Glad you tried it. I make it all the time!

  5. I made this yesterday with roasted zucchini, red bell pepper, asparagus & sweet onion. I used the lemon basil dressing and it was delicious! Took it to a BBQ and everyone loved it. Thanks for the recipe!

    • YUM!! Thanks for sharing, Karen! 🙂

  6. I need to make this salad. I love the one at The Ivy. Can you describe your technique if you make it in advance? Do you just keep the grilled vegetables together, allowing them to come to room temperature and top the lettuce and dress the salad just before serving?

    • I would do just that! Or if you grill the vegetables a few hours in advance, they can sit at room temperature on your countertop until you’re ready to assemble the salad. Yum!

  7. WOW! Great salad! Thanks for the great inspiration! LOVED IT!

    • Rebecca, you’re such fabulous cook, you can take this in a hundred directions. Have fun!

  8. Pamela, this is absolutely lovely! It’s not summer here in Australia but I used vegies that were in season and added baby spinach, chicken and grilled baby potatoes, it worked out brilliantly! Love your site and all the wonderful advice too by the way, I especially love the flexibility of your recipes – to be able to interchange ingredients depending on what works for our little family is great.
    Cheers from Melbourne!

    • Thanks for your comment! I love hearing from readers how they changed a recipe to suit their families. I am a big fan of grilled potatoes, by the way!

  9. Great recipe! We loved the lime juice dressing so much that I made more the next day and used it on grilled salmon and a quinoa salad made with grilled zucchini and red onion,
    dill, and feta cheese. Yummy!

    • Mia, that sounds A-mazing! I am trying that combo asap! Thanks~

    • Wow that does sound fantastic – that’s for tomorrow night!

  10. This is a really good dish. My mom is also a huge fan of your website. She made your grilled vegetable salad and brought it over for dinner. It was fabulous! I added grilled chicken to it when I ate it again. It was a very satisfying meal. You create the best recipes!

    • Thanks, Isabella! I agree, this salad is really hearty and a meal unto itself.

  11. What a fabulous dish…filling but light. I want to now experiment with other veggies. Since we have so much basil in the garden, I used the lemon-basil alternative dressing. Excellent!

    • I actually prefer the lemon-basil dressing, but my family likes the lime-based one better. The lemon-basil dressing also goes nicely with grilled baby potatoes (parboil them before grilling.)

  12. much less expensive at Fresh Corn Grill and no paparazzi!

  13. great recipe. I eat this salad at the Ivy or Fresh corn Grill

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I come from a large Italian-American family with 28 first cousins (on one side of the family!) where sit-down holiday dinners for 85 people are the norm (how, you might ask – organization! But more on that later …).

Some of my fondest memories are of simple family gatherings, both large and small, with long tables of bowls and platters piled high, the laughter of my cousins echoing and the comfort of tradition warming my soul.

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