This Vegan Wedge Salad is full of fresh and flavorful ingredients like smoked apple bits, and tomatoes. There’s a light and refreshing Vegan Blue Cheese Dressing, too. Wedge salad recipes are served as either a side dish or even as a main meal salad by adding some vegan protein options.
If you’re looking for some vegan salad dressing options, everyone loves this Vegan Ranch Dressing. For something lighter, this Strawberry Vinaigrette and this Italian Vinaigrette are delicious options!
Vegetarian Wedge Salad
Nick Kindlesperger of The Chicago Tribune referred to the wedge salad as America’s silliest salad. He says, “It’s built upon the back of the least flavorful and least nutrient-dense lettuce available and blanketed in some of the fattiest ingredients around.”
Of course, he follows that statement by saying how much he loves this salad.
I get it. I love it too. However, it’s one of the salads that I gave up when I became vegan. I know what you must be thinking… that is some hardcore diet when you can’t even eat a salad!
But before you get all crazy on me (thanks, Heart!), just think about some of today’s salads. The greens at the base are all good, but the toppings don’t always weigh in on the healthy side.
Take for example your typical Wedge Salad. This one-time favorite found its way on my “forbidden” list because it usually includes blue cheese and bacon bits. If you remove the blue cheese, dressing, and bacon, you’re left with just a hunk of iceberg lettuce on a plate. What’s the point?
But recently I felt motivated to make this wedge salad vegetarian. And then I took it a step further and made it vegan! This Spring Wedge Salad checks off all the boxes now!
I wanted a healthy alternative to bacon, something nutritious, and filling. If you think about the flavors of bacon, it’s sweet, salty, and smoky. So, I chopped up an apple into bit-size pieces, sautéed them in a skillet with maple syrup and smoke sauce, added a little salt and there you have it! Smoky Apple Bits.
Of course, the texture is not crispy like bacon, but I didn’t mind that at all. Maybe it was because the iceberg lettuce provided the crunch I was craving.
If you’d like a more “traditional” veggie bacon, just make this Tempeh Bacon and break it down into crumbles.
You can find the full printable recipe, including ingredient quantities below. But first, here are some explanations of ingredients and steps to help you make this recipe perfect every time!
- Vegan mayo — I use Just Mayo or Hellman’s Vegan Mayo
- Vegan sour cream — Cashew Cream works as a substitute here
- White wine vinegar — I highly recommend the mild flavor of this vinegar
- Garlic powder
- White miso paste — Found in health food stores (or the refrigerated section of health food areas of your grocery store), this miso paste adds umami flavor
- Soy milk — make sure it’s plain…not vanilla flavored
- Ground black pepper
- Extra-firm tofu — we’ll need just a bit here
- Liquid smoke sauce
- Maple syrup
- iceberg lettuce
- Green onion
- Cherry tomatoes
- Chopped chives (fresh or dried)
How to Make Vegan Wedge Salad
This blue cheese wedge salad begins with the best dressing! Because that’s what keeps us coming back for more… and more… and more!
- Blue Cheese Vegan Salad Dressing — In a small bowl combine the mayo, soymilk, garlic powder, vinegar, salt, and pepper. Give it a good whisk or two to incorporate all the ingredients and place in the fridge. You know, so it can chill out awhile.
- Prepare the Lettuce — Get out that head of iceberg lettuce, tear off any frazzled outer leaves, then remove the core and cut it into quarters.
- Serving — Arrange the quartered iceberg wedges on serving plates, drizzle them with the vegan blue cheese dressing, and top each with the Smoky Apple Bits, onions, and chopped tomatoes.
How do I make Lettuce Wedges?
First, wash the iceberg lettuce head and remove any ragged leaves. Then cut down the center of the head, straight down to the core. Then cut each piece in half, cutting down to the core. Finally, cut off the core piece and you’re left with 4 iceberg lettuce wedges.
How do you eat an Iceberg Wedge Salad?
To be honest, it’s a little tricky to eat a lettuce wedge salad. You want the crisp bite of the iceberg wedge, but this salad requires two utensils to eat it. Gently stab the salad with the tines of a fork, preferably in the middle of the wedge, to stabilize the salad. Then, use a knife in a sawing motion to cut off a piece of the wedge. Repeat this until the salad is all gone.
Smoky Apple Bits
Seems like I’m always looking for ways to add a bit of smoky flavor to my recipes. Anything smoky is a great substitute for bacon. For example, there are my Bacon-Flavored Almond Slivers. In fact, that would be great on this vegan wedge salad, too.
Instead, I took bits of apple and infused them with smoky flavor. It begins with these ingredients:
- Apple — I used 1/2 of a red delicious apple, cored and diced into bits (I left the skin on… that’s the healthy part!)
- Smoke sauce
- Maple syrup
- Sea salt
These ingredients, combined in the right quantities and cooked together, create a tasty, smoky-sweet topping for any salad. It’s perfect!
Vegan Salads with Protein
I love this vegan wedge salad! In fact, eating salads as a side or even a main meal is my go-to favorite, especially in the summer. Here are some of my favorite options for vegan main meal salads:
- Vegan Seven-Layer Salad makes a complete and filling meal, although it can be served as a side salad during the holidays.
- Of course, if you want some more vegan salad meals, be sure to try my Vegan Cobb Salad recipe. It’s full of all the tasty toppings.
- This Harvest Salad is easy to make and adds fall flavors to any meal.
- Make this crowd-pleasing Vegan Caesar Salad as a main meal or side salad.
Make any vegetarian salad a main meal feast with these tasty vegan protein options:
- Add some sautéed Vegan Chicken strips over any salad
- Make some Roasted Chickpeas croutons to add to your salads
- Add a few Air Fryer Falafels to your salads for protein and flavor
- Some Carrot Hummus is a flavorful protein option to add to any salad too!
I hope you love this recipe as we do! Have you tried it? Be sure and leave a comment and a rating of this recipe below and then take a quick photo and share it with me using #namelymarly on Instagram. I love seeing your creations!
Vegan Wedge Salad
Vegan Blue Cheese Dressing
- ½ cup vegan mayo (or cashew cream – see link in post)
- ¼ cup vegan sour cream
- 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon white miso paste
- 2 tablespoons unsweetened soy milk make sure it’s plain…not vanilla flavored
- 1 pinch freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons extra firm tofu , pressed to remove excess liquid
Smoky Apple Bits
- ½ medium apple cored and diced (I left the skin on)
- 2 tablespoons liquid smoke sauce
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup
- 1 pinch salt
Vegan Wedge Salad
- 1 head iceberg lettuce
- 2 tablespoons chopped green onion
- 4 cherry tomatoes , halved (or as many as you’d like)
- 1 tablespoon chopped chives (fresh or dried)
For the Vegan Blue Cheese Dressing
- In a small bowl, combine the mayo, sour cream, miso paste, garlic powder, and vinegar. Give it a good whisk or two to incorporate all the ingredients. Salt and pepper to taste. If the dressing is too thick, add a tablespoon of soy milk (unsweetened plain) and stir to combine. Finally, crumble the tofu into the mixture and stir to combine. Cover and place in the fridge.
For the Smoky Apple Bits
- In a skillet over medium heat, add the diced apple, smoke sauce, and maple syrup. Cook over medium heat until the liquid is incorporated into the apple. Sprinkle with a pinch of sea salt and then set aside to cool.
Spring Wedge Salad
- Wash the iceberg head and remove any ragged leaves. Cut down the center of the head to the core. Then cut each piece in half, cutting down to the core. Cut off the core from each quarter.
- Arrange the quartered iceberg wedges on serving plates, drizzle each with the vegan blue cheese dressing and top each with apple bits, chives, chopped green onions, and tomatoes halves. Serve immediately.
The nutrition information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator and should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.
Serve this salad with a tall glass of iced tea out on your deck or patio…because that’s the best way to eat a Wedge Salad. Enjoy!
This post was originally published in 2012 and was updated to include new photos, new text, and an updated recipe in 2020.