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Where is your Favorite... Salad in LA?

Hello everyone... I love rich food but, well, there are times when you got to order something healthier (even if it's marginally healthier). I realize this post isn't going to get as much traction as exilekiss's burgerextravaganza review and I don't foresee the Travel Channel doing 30 minutes on "Extreme Salads" or Adam Richman taking on some type of "10 pound o' greens challenge." I also don't see the Food Network doing the "best thing I ever ate" salad edition (well, I suppose I could see that... they're getting desperate for topics...).

My wife loves salads and I'm learning to love them more and more. My current favorite salad in LA is the calamari salad at Asia de Cuba. This salad has crispy calamari (the marginally healthier part of this salad), chayote, hearts of palm, banana, cashews, chicory, radicchio and a sesame orange dressing.

I'd like to hear where you go and what you order when you want a great salad. While, ideally, I'd love it if it you could suggest an entree sized salad, but smaller creative dinner salads also count. I'd like to find salads other than the traditional wedges with blue cheese or Caesar salads (but hey, if that's your favorite, let me know).

Also, if you know of a great salad bar, I've love to hear it. I'd prefer restaurant suggestions rather than supermarket suggestions. Oh, and, yes I've heard of Sizzler and Souplantation, so no need to mention those.

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  1. Best salad bar in LA is Fogo de Chow in Beverly Hills. It has over 30 items. It's a feast of gourmet salads, fresh vegetables, imported cheeses, artisan breads, cured meats and more including
    24 Month, Aged Parmesan, Aged Manchego Cheese, Prosciutto, Brazilian Hearts of Palm,
    Artichoke Bottoms Sun-Dried Tomatoes, Fresh Mozzarella, Smoked Salmon,Italian Salami, Jumbo AsparagusTabbouleh, Shitake Mushrooms.

    Plus you get all those great Brazilian meats as your main course and this year they are part of Dine LA week.
    And yes you can order just the salad bar.

    4 Replies
    1. re: wienermobile

      but if you are intending to order just the salad bar, the regular price for salad bar only is cheaper than the Restalurant Week DineLA menu.

      (i.e. $24..50 for lunch instead of $28)
      ($28.50 for dinner instead of $44)

      1. re: wienermobile

        I was going to post this as well. Fogo's salad bar is through-the-roof amazing.

        1. re: HastaLaPasta

          Yeah, I forgot about Fogo. It's spectacular(ly expensive). However, whenever you can go to town on a wheel of aged parm reg, it's worth it.

          1. re: DrBruin

            During DineLA dinner at Fogo is $44! (instead of $56)

      2. Chinese chicken salad from Feast from the East (on westwood blvd). havent been there in a few years but i remember it being pretty good salad..

        1 Reply
        1. re: samtron608

          Went a couple of months ago and it was still excellent... Although we prefer the one at Tender Greens better...


          Tender Greens
          9523 Culver Blvd, Culver City, CA 90232

        2. I think Cafe Pinot offers some great salad choices during lunch. Even if the their menu selections don't entice, ask for the salads of the day (which is usu. part of their Spa menu) and is generally very interesting.

          And I think the potato salad at Porta Via Foods in Pasadena is like a Oxycontin and Vicodin cocktail tonic for a cancer patient. (Does potato salad count as "salad"? Who cares, it's so good, you won't ponder the question too long.)

          Cafe Pinot
          700 West Fifth St., Los Angeles, CA 90071

          Porta Via
          424 N. Canon Dr, Beverly Hills, CA 90210

          1. Chopped salad at La Scala (and Presto).
            Chopped salad with chicken at Zabies
            Gorgonzola with Walnuts salad at Fritto Misto
            Chinese Chicken salad at Chinois
            Steak Salad at Chaya Venice
            Chef Salad at Nate n Als
            Cobb Salad at Daily Grill

            Those are my favorites, anyway. Not very gourmet, but yummy.

            Fritto Misto
            601 Colorado Ave, Santa Monica, CA 90401

            3003 Ocean Park Blvd, Santa Monica, CA 90405

            1. I don't have a favorite salad, but I just thought it would be hilarious if Adam Richman did a salad challenge. And why not... his heart and colon could probably use the break from all the insanely hot and insanely large meals.

              Just to add to the salad conversation, I like the herring salad at Church & State, but haven't been back recently, and I actually wouldn't call it my favorite... it's just the only noticeable one that comes to mind.

              Church & State
              1850 Industrial Street, Los Angeles, CA 90021

              1 Reply
              1. re: andytseng

                Unfortunately, Richman will probably die before then.... but he'll film it and call it Man vs Coronary Artery Disease, or Man V. CAD for those in the know. ;)

              2. california chicken cafe - california chicken salad (by far my favorite in the city and a great deal)
                pizzeria mozza - nancy's chopped salad
                corner bakery - chopped salad

                i'm kind of a fan of chopped salads

                7 Replies
                1. re: cdub

                  I've always thought that the chopped salad at Emilio's Prestro Trattoria in Encino was very good.

                  Emilio's Presto Trattoria
                  16234 Ventura Blvd, Encino, CA 91436

                  1. re: Servorg

                    that's close to me. i'll have to try it.

                    nothing annoys me more than a place that calls their salad a chopped salad and it's not chopped.

                    1. re: cdub

                      I used to work for a company almost across the street from Emilio's (quite a long time ago) and I hope it's still as good as it was then. A lot of people in our office ate it frequently.

                      1. re: cdub

                        AGREED! I've been tempted to buy one of these and put it in my purse for such occassions...


                        Chopped Salad is my favorite as well... but my faves are Alejos and Victor Jr's... I do not get Nancy's Chopped at ALL.


                        Victor Jr's
                        10113 Washington Blvd, Culver City, CA 90232

                        1. re: Dommy

                          I wasn't a fan of nancy's chopped salad either! It was waaaay overdressed and all it tasted like was dried oregano; it's as if the cap fell off the shaker as they were shaking it on and the entire jar of dried oregano fell into the salad. Could have been a one time incident, but I'm not inclined to order it again. I like Lemonade's offerings when I'm looking for something salad-like.

                  2. I get SO bored eating salad; it feels like you chew and chew and it all tastes the same. For a small salad, I love Beacon's sugar snap pea, goat cheese and cashew salad. Leaves you wanting more!

                    1. yum. salads. I love salads. Let's see....
                      I love the vegetarian chopped salad at Pace as it's loaded with vegetables, also excellent with grilled chicken added to it.
                      A week or two ago I had a great salad at the Curious Palate that had figs, cheese, raspberries. Again I added grilled chicken to it, delicious.
                      When I lived closer to it, I loved getting a salad from Pizzicotto in Brentwood that had chicken, mozzarella and pistachios in it. I can't remember the name of it.
                      I also always loved any of the salads from San Gennaro cafe, bonus because they delivered.
                      Also also, thumbs up for L'Grande Orange on Main Street- Sonoma Salad (butter lettuce, beets, almonds, asparagus and goat cheese) and/or Brussel Sprout Salad with a slight edge going to the Sonoma...

                      The Curious Palate
                      12034 Venice Boulevard, Mar Vista, CA

                      11758 San Vicente Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90049

                      San Gennaro Restaurant
                      140 S Barrington Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90049

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: hyacinthgirl

                        I love that Pizzicoto salad! Forgot all about it, thanks for reminding me.

                        A couple more that I love, Rosti's chicken and pine nuts salad and the Ivy's grilled vegetable salad.

                        1. re: hyacinthgirl

                          Brussel Sprout Salad... I'm SO there...

                          I ADORE Curious Palate's salads... Their Italian is one of my favorites! YUM!


                          The Curious Palate
                          12034 Venice Boulevard, Mar Vista, CA

                        2. My favorite salad in LA right now is the Tricolore Salad at Pizzeria Mozza. The dressing has anchovies in it, but it's not a traditional Caesar salad - it's delicious. I truly would eat it daily if I could.

                          I've also had several salads at the Lazy Ox Canteen that I've really liked. I like the arugula salad at Bottega Louie. I also quite like the steak salad at Houston's (I think it's called Thai Evil Jungle salad, or something like that).

                          All of these salads are quite strongly flavored and boldly-dressed. I know some people prefer less dressing, but this is what I like!

                          Bottega Louie
                          700 S Grand Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90017

                          Pizzeria Mozza
                          641 N. Highland Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90036

                          Lazy Ox Canteen
                          241 S San Pedro St, Los Angeles, CA 90012

                          5 Replies
                          1. re: aching

                            Oh my... yes, I forgot about that delicious salad at Houston's. I love it because I feel like I am eating steak, but my wife thinks I'm eating salad. So, for me, it's a win-win.

                            1. re: DrBruin

                              Yes, between all that steak and avocado it's definitely not that healthy - but delish! They seem to be calling it "THAI STEAK & NOODLE SALAD" now - I don't think that was what it used to be called, but it looks like what I remember.

                              1. re: DrBruin

                                I love the Evil Jungle salad too, but ... is it just me or did it used to be more "evil"? I remember the first time I ordered it, at the Santa Monica location just after it opened, so I suppose 7-8 years ago, it really packed a punch, but ever since it seems to have gotten gradually wimpier.

                                Next time I order it (my last few Houston's visits, I've eaten the veggie burger or a fish special) I'll see if they can put a little more heat into it...

                                Speaking of bold salads, I'm also a fan of the crispy rice & lemongrass salad at Jitlada, and the Vietnamese duck salad at Brodard.

                                1. re: Bradbury

                                  Our favorite Asian duck salad is from Savoy. It's a total mishmash. Greens, Pasta (in fact it's called Pasta Salad), but the duck they add is amazing and it really makes the whole thing come together! :D

                              2. re: aching

                                I used to love the macho salad at Bandera's as well. Again, not exactly a health dish, but hits the spot in the evening hours.

                                11704 Wilshire Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90025

                              3. Currently, one of my favorites is the Coco mango salad at Jitlada

                                5233 1/2 W Sunset Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90027

                                1. I know this isn't very chowy...but I love the grilled vegetable salad at Woodranch. Grilled eggplant, corn, peppers and zucchini. Have them hold the feta (they don't use good feta) and have add a med-rare sirloin to the top. A great, low carb dinner.

                                  1. Grilled seafood salad with their Pesto dressing at Panini Cafe in Marina del Rey -- it's the Panini in the Pavilions/CVS Complex on Glencoe (there are some similarly-named cafes elsewhere in LA)

                                    1. Thai Chicken Salad at the Montebello Country Club Coffee Shop. $7.95.

                                      The only thing that might be Thai about it is the peanut sauce dressing, but a good sized salad with different greens and plenty of chicken.

                                      They also have a great burger they'll cook anyway you want if you ask.

                                      1. I can't believe that no one has mentioned Mrs. Winston's. It's definitely the best salad bar I've ever seen.

                                        6 Replies
                                        1. re: mollyomormon

                                          +1 for Mrs. Winston's!

                                          and i can't believe no one has mentioned the Grilled Vegetable Salad (w/shrimp or chicken) at The Ivy.

                                          a few others:
                                          Chopped Grilled Vegetable Salad at 17th Street Cafe in SM
                                          Boa Chop Chop at Boa Steakhouse
                                          Chopped Vegetable Salad at BLT Steak

                                          think i like chopped salads?

                                          26 Beach has some excellent salads as well.

                                          26 Beach
                                          3100 Washington Blvd., Venice, CA 90292

                                          Boa Steakhouse
                                          9200 W Sunset Blvd, West Hollywood, CA 90069

                                          1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                                            Yes, the menu at 26 Beach has an extensive salad list. Which one(s) have you tried?

                                            26 Beach
                                            3100 Washington Blvd., Venice, CA 90292

                                            1. re: DrBruin

                                              Carne Asada, Cobb, and Grilled Veggie...all good.

                                              1. re: DrBruin

                                                i vote for the TUSCAN salad and the almond crusted PAN FRIED GOAT CHEESE salad at 26 beach

                                            2. re: mollyomormon

                                              Yes, Mrs. Winston's.
                                              Love that I don't have to source, store, clean and prep all those vegetables myself.

                                              1. re: mollyomormon

                                                Another vote for Mrs. Winstons. Best variety.

                                              2. I want to thank everyone for contributing so far. "Lettuce" continue to post our delicious salad recommendations.. ;)

                                                I'm very excited with many of the places mentioned. I actually thought this post may end up with a big Goose Egg.

                                                1. I am a salad fiend. I love too many in this town to list here so I'll narrow it down to my two recent favorites...

                                                  Tender Green's Vegan Salad: Those bacon breadstix in the picture were from a bake sale and proof I wasn't exactly who Tender Greens had in mind when they made this salad... but man it was awesome even without the bacon...)


                                                  Nickle Diner's Steak Salad: This is perhaps my favorite salad right now. I love wedge salad (Trader Joes just came out with one that is my version of lunch crack) and this combined my other favorite thing, RARE steak. So good...


                                                  Starry Kitchen's Thai Chop Salad: Okay, despite all the hype, I've found most of the items at Starry Kitchen to be okay to meh. I recently went back with some friends and on a whim ordered the Thai Cobb salad with the Tofu. I wasn't expecting much (as I've their tofu in the Bahn Mi before and it was pretty flavorless) but with the tangy dressing and the smoky bacon it worked TOTALLY... I ignored the Mac N Cheese Covered in bacon (Okay) to eat up every last bit of this salad...



                                                  Tender Greens
                                                  9523 Culver Blvd, Culver City, CA 90232

                                                  Starry Kitchen
                                                  350 S Grand Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90071

                                                  1. I am a Caesar fiend. DELPHINE, at the W in Hollywood, has one of the best Caesar's I've ever had.

                                                    I love The Molly Salad at TAYLOR'S STEAKHOUSE in Koreatown.

                                                    TENDER GREENS: all their salads are terrific.

                                                    CANELE: Coria's simple Farmer's Market Salad is just lovely.

                                                    1 Reply
                                                    1. re: Tom P

                                                      Okay, this cesar salad is not for everyong, but Cacao Mexicatessan tops their FUNKY Cesar with fried anchovies...


                                                      I also really love the Mexican Cesar Salad at La Sirena Grill in Manhattan Beach...


                                                      La Sirena Grill
                                                      3931 Portola Pkwy, Irvine, CA 92602

                                                    2. i'm a huge fan of "Go Veggie" salad bar in the marina, just off the 90 and centinela. you make your own and it's awesome.
                                                      i like the swordfish caesar salad at Cha Cha Cha on vermont. it's really good.
                                                      i had a great salad at kate mandelini (sp???)
                                                      i love salads and i'm drawing a blank. a good one is hard to find.

                                                      Cha Cha Cha
                                                      656 N Virgil Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90004

                                                      1. I have had good salads from Classic Pizza (I normally get their Greek salad and I ask them to add avocado to it) which has grilled chicken with kalamata olives, asparagus, red peppers,cucumber, red onions, romaine, feta cheese, capers tossed With vinaigrette and at Bossa Nova, (these places are both on Pico Bvd.) the salad I like is their Edgar's Goat Cheese Seafood Salad with fresh spinach, fresh arugula, sliced red onions, sundried tomatoes, goat cheese and walnuts, tossed in a light dijon vinaigrette dressing served with sauteed scallops, seasoned shrimp and shitake mushrooms (deglazed with white wine)

                                                        Bossa Nova Brazilian Cuisine
                                                        10982 W Pico Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90064

                                                        Classic Pizzeria
                                                        2624 Pico Blvd, Santa Monica, CA 90405

                                                        1. Ruth Chopped Salad at Ruth's Chris Steakhouse is my all time favorite salad. It's got lots of stuff (blue cheese, hearts of palm, fried onions, mushrooms, etc) but it's so fresh and light.

                                                          I also like the blue cheese endive salad at Cheesecake Factory -- simple but good, with a balsamic vinaigrette.

                                                          Stanley's in Sherman Oaks has Amy's Grapefruit Salad which I also like. Butter lettuce, shredded chicken, pink grapefruit segments, toasted cashews and avocado in a sesame dressing.

                                                          There is a thai restaurant in Granada Hills called Rincome that does a nice Spicy Beef Salad. It's thin sliced of beef with lettuce, cucumber, red onions, and tomatoes and tossed in a cilantro lime and red chilli dressing. Great for a summer dinner.

                                                          Rincome Restaurant
                                                          17050 Devonshire St, Northridge, CA 91325

                                                          1 Reply
                                                          1. re: boogiebaby

                                                            Grilled vegetable salad with shrimp at The Ivy or Ivy at the Shore.

                                                          2. Just had an excellent beet and lentil salad with goat cheese at Clementine's.

                                                            1. It's not gourment and definitely not good for you but I loved "Rascal's" Chinese Chicken Salad and "Chicken Dijon's" CD House Salad (Chicken Caeser tossed with rice) and I agree, Fodo de Chow has a very impressive salad bar.

                                                              1. Nicola's Kitchen on Ventura Blvd in Woodland Hills has the best chopped salad. Their dressing is amazing.

                                                                Nicola's Kitchen
                                                                20969 Ventura Blvd Ste 14, Woodland Hills, CA 91364

                                                                1. I Wanted to add that for prepared salads, the ones at Huckleberry are excellent. I love the tuna salad (which has no mayo). Also want to third the recs for the prepared salads at Lemonade. I haven't tried the ones at Mendocino Farms, but if they're as good as the sandwiches there, then I need to try them.

                                                                  Mendocino Farms
                                                                  300 S Grand Ave Ste Lp40, Los Angeles, CA 90071

                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                  1. re: mollyomormon

                                                                    I also love the mayo-free tuna salad at Huckleberry. Also, still crazy about Bite Bar's chicken salad.

                                                                  2. Chopped salad at Portillo's

                                                                    Chopped Romaine & Iceberg lettuce mixed with Ditalini pasta, chicken breast, bacon, tomato, red cabbage, Gorgonzola cheese, green onion and our house dressing.*

                                                                    1. Entree-sized salad: another vote for THE IVY'S grilled veggie salad w/shrimp.
                                                                      Appetizer-sized salad: another vote for RUTH'S CHRIS'S Ruth's Chopped Salad. Actually, the Chopped Salad and the appetizer BBQ Shrimp appetizer (with lots of sourdough to sop up the sauce) make a great dinner.

                                                                      1. the urth salad at urth cafe is fantastic - radish, fennel, pecans, shaved parmesan, and all kinds of other goodies. the fruit and nut bread that comes with it is phenomenal. i also enjoy the chopped salad at m chaya on melrose. and the green papaya salad with shrimp at xioa in exho park is a new fave.

                                                                        2 Replies
                                                                        1. re: tastycakes

                                                                          wow, I might have to get this for lunch!

                                                                          1. re: tastycakes

                                                                            i tend to like pretty much everything at m cafe. their scarlet quinoa is great as is their brocollini.

                                                                          2. I luv the Gorgonzola salad at Antica in MDR..ive probably ordered 500 times over the last 10 years....also the chopped salad at Matteo's on Westwood(actually Hoboken,next door).

                                                                            1. I like the Dianne Salad at Green Street Restaurant-it's super popular. Their dinner portion could feed a small village.

                                                                              Green Street Restaurant
                                                                              146 S Shopper's Lane, Pasadena, CA 91101

                                                                              3 Replies
                                                                                  1. re: Servorg

                                                                                    Oh, I just looked at their dinner menu and there was no description. Thank you Servorg. It's basically a chinese chicken salad.

                                                                                    So, Crystaw, what about this salad do you find delicious? Is it the dressing?

                                                                              1. I went to the new salad place on Montana Avenue in Santa Monica today, Greens Up. Meh.

                                                                                Cost was $12 for processed turkey breast cubed and some other stuff, but what turned me off and will keep me from returning was the unwashed lettuce. Every bite tasted like dirt and had the unfortunate crunch of sand.

                                                                                2 Replies
                                                                                1. re: yogachik

                                                                                  Wow, good to know. I've been meaning to try it out since they've moved closer to my work, but $12 is a steep price to pay for a mouthful of sand. I'll probably give them a few weeks to work out new-location issues.

                                                                                  1. re: yogachik

                                                                                    yikes. thanks for taking one for the team! those salad places are one of the only things i miss about NYC, so it was on my list of places to try. crossing it off...

                                                                                  2. I haven't seen it mentioned, but Westside Tavern has some good salads. I'm partial to butter lettuce, so I really dig their shrimp salad:
                                                                                    Poached Pacific Shrimp Salad 16
                                                                                    Feta | Grilled Onions | Cucumber | Tomatoes
                                                                                    Kalamata Olives | Pepperoncini | Tarragon Vinaigrette

                                                                                    Westside Tavern
                                                                                    10850 W Pico Blvd, Los Angeles, CA

                                                                                    2 Replies
                                                                                    1. re: Faulkner99

                                                                                      I love the westside tavern's salads! My fave was their Nicoise Salad, hopefully it will show up again on their menu!



                                                                                      1. re: Faulkner99

                                                                                        That poached shrimp salad is amazing!

                                                                                      2. Does potato salad count? If so, my vote goes to:

                                                                                        The Japanese potato salad at Raku.

                                                                                        Raku Restaurant
                                                                                        11678 W Olympic Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90064

                                                                                        1. I'm in Santa Monica several times a week for take out. I have found that Earth, Wind and Flour has some really good salads with fresh ingredients. I like to get them chopped and they are nice about leaving things out or adding things in.

                                                                                          1. I'm not a big salad person because I do loves my meat. But my absolute favorite salad is the grilled mushroom salad at Metro Diner. They use a few different kinds of mushrooms, all grilled just right over a big bed of varied greens tossed in a light dressing. I can't go to their and not order that salad. I easily could have just this and some of their bread and red pepper spread for a meal and nothing else. And I'm a hard core carnivore.

                                                                                            1. When it comes to salads, I LOVE the mushroom salad at Fraiche. The mushrooms taste meaty, and the salad is really punched up by the shaved parmesan. Plus, the citrus dressing really brings everything into balance. I truly could eat this salad everyday (well, maybe every week...) :-)

                                                                                              1. I'm surprised no one yet has mentioned Marston's on Walnut St. in Pasadena. Their salads are massive, big enough for two lunches! My favorites are the California Orange Salad (lettuce, chicken, mandarin oranges, apple slices, avocado, blue cheese, raisins, candied pecans) and the Cordierra Salad (a little more savory, with warm breaded chicken strips, olives, bacon bits, and some other stuff). I like their house dressing enough that I bought a bottle for home use.

                                                                                                Plus, your salad comes with these cheese popovers, straight out of the oven, which are delicious though I'm sure anything but healthy.

                                                                                                1. Insalata di Mare (i.e. seafood salad) at Briganti's in South Pasadena.

                                                                                                  I can't not order it when I go there. Great dressing, little baby oysters, shrimp, calamari, crisp veggies. That salad, a basket of their bread and a glass of cold white wine is a perfect meal. Real cozy place too.

                                                                                                  1423 Mission St, South Pasadena, CA 91030

                                                                                                  1. The Ocean Salad at Cafe Verona, 201 S. La Brea. Greens, tuna, white beans, red onion & an unbelievably good mustard vinaigrette.

                                                                                                    Cafe Verona
                                                                                                    1138 S Diamond Bar Blvd, Diamond Bar, CA 91765

                                                                                                    1. I'm going to add another vote to Tender Green. I normally get their happy vegan or their steak salad. I also like Alcove's house salad.

                                                                                                      Tender Greens
                                                                                                      9523 Culver Blvd, Culver City, CA 90232