Friday, June 12, 2015

Crunchy Chopped Salad with Gorgonzola and Radishes (Gluten-Free, Can Be Low-Carb)

This Crunchy Chopped Salad with Gorgonzola and Radishes is a summer favorite!

Crunchy Chopped Salad with Gorgonzola and Radishes found on

(For Friday Flashbacks I feature favorite recipes from the past that have been my personal favorites, and this Crunchy Chopped Salad Recipe with Gorgonzola and Radishes is something I love to make in early summer when garden radishes start to show up.  I just bought radishes last night at the farmers market, so I think this will be on the menu soon!)

When it's summer, something like this Crunchy Chopped Salad with Gorgonzola and Radishes is one of my favorite things to have for lunch.  What makes chopped salad so appealing in my mind is the crunch factor, often achieved by using less lettuce and proportionally more other ingredients than most salads.  This salad has romaine, arugula, radishes, celery, carrots, and sometimes cucumbers, but it's the savory combination of radishes, arugula, and Gorgonzola cheese that make it a wow for me.  If you don't like all those flavors, use the ones you like and it will still be a nice crunchy salad.

Let's talk a little about the Gorgonzola cheese and blue cheese dressing I'm using here so the South Beach Diet police don't come and ring my doorbell.  The Gorgonzola I buy at Costco has only 8 grams of fat in 1/4 cup of cheese, so that's pretty low in fat for the tablespoon of cheese I use on each salad.  Blue cheese is not prohibited for South Beach, but the books do say "use in moderation." 

My trick for Blue Cheese Dressing (which I could never give up completely for any diet) is to buy a famous brand of blue cheese dressing and then mix it half and half with buttermilk when I bring it home from the store.  I actually prefer that lighter dressing, and since buttermilk only has 2.5 grams of fat in a cup, it makes the dressing much lower in fat.  I even used to feed this "light" blue cheese dressing to my dad, a real blue cheese lover, and he never noticed a thing. (Ridiculously Easy Blue Cheese Coleslaw is another recipe where I use that trick to lighten up the blue cheese.)

I like a combination of chopped arugula and chopped romaine in this salad, but if you're not a fan of arugula just use all romaine.

For me, the radishes are a must.

I also love the crunch of celery in this, and it tempers the other strong flavors.

I leave out carrots if I want a lower-carb version of this salad, but I do think they add a nice flavor.

I use enough crumbled Gorgonzola to sprinkle about a tablespoon on each salad.

Toss all the salad ingredients together with enough lightened blue cheese dressing to barely moisten the ingredients.

Dish up the salad for each person and sprinkle with a little Gorgonzola cheese.  Yum.  I could eat this right now.

Crunchy Chopped Salad with Gorgonzola and Radishes was updated with photos and step-by-step directions June 2011, and just for fun, here's the one-and-only photo of this salad from the original post in June of 2006. Aren't you glad I'm updating my old posts with better photos?

Crunchy Chopped Salad with Gorgonzola
and Radishes

(Makes 2 large lunch salads or four side dish salads, recipe created by Kalyn.)

1 large handful (about 2 cups) chopped romaine lettuce
1 large handful (about 2 cups) chopped arugula or spinach
1 cup celery, sliced in 1/2 inch slices
1 cup radishes, cut in fourths lengthwise
2/3 cup carrots, cut in 1/2 inch slices
2 small cucumbers, cut in fourths, then sliced in 1/2 inch pieces (optional, I often leave out the cucumber)
3-4 T your favorite blue cheese salad dressing (I mix bottled blue cheese dressing half and half with buttermilk for a "light" blue cheese)
crumbled Gorgonzola cheese, about 1 T for each salad
fresh ground pepper to taste

Chop arugula and romaine, wash in salad spinner, and spin dry.  (Or wash by hand and pat dry with paper towels.  Chop radishes, celery, carrots, and cucumbers (if using).  

Put romaine, arugula, cucumbers, celery, radishes, and carrots into large bowl and toss with blue cheese dressing. Arrange on two plates (or four small plates for side dish salads), sprinkle Gorgonzola cheese over, and season with pepper.

Other veggies I might try in a salad with the radish/Gorgonzola cheese combination include chopped broccoli or cauliflower, red bell pepper, or fennel.

South Beach Suggestions:
This salad would be a perfect lunch for any phase of the South Beach Diet.  As a side dish, this salad would taste great with Greek Meatballs or Very Greek Grilled Chicken.

Nutritional Information?
I chose the South Beach Diet to manage my weight using The Glycemic Index partly so I wouldn't have to count calories, carbs, points, or fat grams, but if you want nutritional information for a recipe, I recommend entering the recipe into Calorie Count, which will calculate it for you.

More Chopped Salads with Crunchy Ingredients:
(Recipes from other blogs not always South Beach Diet friendly; check ingredients.)

Zucchini Feta Chopped Salad from Family Fresh Cooking

Chopped Salad with Sugar Snap Peas, Jicama, Radishes, Tomatoes, and Green Garbanzo Beans from Kalyn's Kitchen

Chopped Greek Salad from Use Real Butter

Crunchy Cruciferous Chopped Salad from Kalyn's Kitchen

Summer Chopped Salad with Garbanzo Beans from Mountain Mama Cooks
(Want even more recipes? I find these recipes from other blogs using Food Blog Search.)

Blogger Disclosures:
Posts may include links to my affiliate account at, and Kalyn's Kitchen earns a few cents on the dollar if readers purchase the items I recommend, so thanks for supporting my blog when you shop at Amazon!

This recipe was originally posted in 2006 for Sweetnicks ARF/5-A-Day, the weekly food blogger event where Cate reminded us to eat plenty of fruits, veggies, and anti-oxidant rich foods.
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Posts may include links to my affiliate account at, and this blog earns a few cents on the dollar if readers purchase the items I recommend, so thanks for supporting my blog when you shop at Amazon!

More to Chew On:


  1. Nice salad... thanks for the recipe.

  2. Good to know...about the radishes and gorgonzola. I've been eyeing the radishes at the market--they're so pretty--but I have yet to find a way to fix them where I love them. Maybe this will do the trick!

  3. I love chopped salad--and radishes--and gorgonzola. So, I'm betting I will enjoy this alot.

  4. Alanna, BNA, ORchidea, Jennifer and Sher, it was really tasty. Jennifer, think of arugula and gorgonzola, similar flavor combination. Hey, what about arugula, radishes and gorgonzola? I bet it would be good. (Hey wouldn't just about anything taste good with Gorgonzola?)

  5. It looks gorgeous, Kalyn! Now I want salad ...

  6. I love salad recipes! I love crunchy salads! I'm adding this to my list!


  7. Ivonne and Paz, thanks. I agree, I love salad any time. Paz, it made me happy to see Elizabeth Smart looking so well too. They looked just like any other family having fun together.

  8. Made this tonight -- delicious stuff! Can't go wrong with gorgonzola!

  9. A great simple salad. thanks for the recipie.

  10. That sounds really delicious and such beautiful photos that are making my mouth water.

  11. This looks great! Your photography really has come along :)

    I love the look of radishes and I buy them now and again but I just can't really warm to them. Which is unusual for me with veggies!

  12. If you don't like radishes I'd just use more of the other crunchy ingredients.

  13. The problem with these fabulous round ups is that I want each and every recipe from your one sitting. :) Thanks for all the goody info!

  14. Chris, too much good food is what my mom used to call "a good problem to have"!

  15. I think radishes are under used - crispy and delicious with a bite!

  16. I agree! But of course I love radishes.

  17. Made this last night, perfect side for grilled steak!

  18. Thanks Trish; so glad you enjoyed it!

  19. Tis the season for chopped salads! It's warm and steamy here in the Northeast, and nothing cools you down like a nice crisp salad for dinner. This one will be on our menu soon.

  20. Hi

    Which dressing do use?
    Imam in the UK
    And wonder if we can get it here?

    1. Hi Delphine,
      You can read in this blue cheese coleslaw recipe about the dressing I use, but I don't know if it's available out of the U.S.

  21. I live in Massachusetts. Would you or any of your readers know of a dressing that is comparable to the Litehouse Original Bleu Cheese dressing?

    1. Wish I could help, but maybe someone will see this. It's a very thick and creamy blue cheese; I think any dressing that fits that description would work. Litehouse is a dressing that needs to be refrigerated so it doesn't have that bottled dressing taste.


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