Use cupboard staples and a handful of easy-to-find ingredients to get all the flavours of the McDonald’s classic, in a good-for-you form. These Big Mac salad bowls take just 20 minutes, are keto-friendly and make the perfect weeknight lunch or dinner the whole family will love.
This super moreish salad is essentially a deconstructed Big Mac (or a Big Mac without the bun). It’s honestly just as tasty, is packed with protein thanks to the beef and cheese, plus, it has all the flavours you expect from the classic burger. Super savoury ground beef, fresh crunchy salad, sweet and sour pickles, sharp cheese and that glorious sauce.
It’s perfect for lunches, quick weeknight dinners and is great for feeding a crowd. You can serve the salad in one large bowl and let people help themselves, or make everyone their own individual bowls. It’s up to you!
Want more Big Mac inspiration? You have to try these easy Big Mac smash burger tacos.
This recipe is split into three easy parts – the ground beef, the salad toppings and the Big Mac sauce.
- The beef. To keep things lean, I’m using 5% fat ground beef, but you could use one with a higher percentage of fat if you like. You could also swap it for ground turkey, chicken, pork or a plant-based alternative. Onion, garlic, soy sauce and fish sauce help to create a lovely savoury flavour. Use Worcestershire sauce if you don’t have fish sauce.
- The Big Mac sauce. You’ll need aioli (or mayo), garlic, pickles, smoked paprika and Dijon mustard.
- The salad toppings. You can play around here, based on what you like, but the non-negotiables are the shredded lettuce, pickles and cheese (the standard ingredients in a Big Mac). I’ve added pickled onions for extra colour and flavour, tomatoes to freshen things up and scallions instead of chopped raw onions (which I personally don’t like!)
How to make it
Mix all the ingredients for your Big Mac sauce, then set aside.
Cook your onion and garlic, then add the ground beef and cook for a couple of minutes, until brown. Then pour in the soy sauce and fish sauce and let it cook for another couple of minutes.
All that’s left to do is assemble! Layer your lettuce, tomatoes, pickles, scallions and beef, then top with the grated cheese and lots of Big Mac sauce.
You can serve the salad either on one large platter or in a bowl for people to serve themselves, or make individual salad bowls.
Got a question?
Yes, you can. You can make the elements in advance, and then just assemble the bowls when you’re ready. The beef will keep for 4 days in the fridge, and the sauce will keep for 1 week in the fridge. You can chop all your salad ingredients too (keep the lettuce separate so it doesn’t go soggy).
Swap ground beef for ground turkey, chicken, pork or a plant-based meat alternative.
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