These Make Ahead 7-Layer Salads in a Jar are an updated Meal Prep version of a popular retro salad. The classic 7-layer salad is made in a large glass bowl to showcase each and every layer, but these mini versions are perfectly proportioned for one serving!
Make Ahead 7-Layer Salads in a Jar
I loved original version of the 7-layer salad that debuted sometime in the 1950’s if I were to hazard a guess. The salad’s history has been traced back to the south where it was referred to as a 7-layer pea salad because of the requisite layer of vibrant green peas.
The hubby is always excited when this delicious combination is on the menu; I’m pretty sure the bacon seals the deal. This “salad” is nowhere near health food, but worth a splurge every now and then.
Preferably served in a glass bowl to showcase each separate layer, this salad was de rigeur in the 1970’s when I was growing up. I’ve brought a modern, meal prep version to the table today by making a couple individual servings in mason jars to have ready for lunches or a dinner side.
Adapt Your Layers
I started with lettuce, then salad dressing, tomatoes, peas, red onion, cheese and finally bacon. Optional ingredients include hard boiled eggs, cucumbers, mushrooms and I’ve even added diced artichoke hearts. Whatever your heart desires.
I add the lettuce before the dressing, so you don’t lose one drop of the creamy topping. To serve, just flip out the contents of the jar onto your plate and dig in!
Meal Prep Dinners
Here are a few more “Meal Prep” dinner ideas that you may want to add to your menu. My salad along with easy entrees and even a dessert will help lighten the load at the end of a busy day!
- Ham and Broccoli Meal Prep Bowls by Cindy’s Recipes and Writings
- Make Ahead Bagel Sandwiches by A Kitchen Hoor’s Adventures
- Meatballs for Three Different Dinners by Positively Stacey
- One Easy Roast Chicken: Four Meals by Hardly A Goddess
- Slice and Bake Chocolate Chip Cookies by Palatable Pastime
- Stuffed Beef Roll Meal Prep Dinner by Sunday Supper Movement
- Vietnamese Banh Mi Pork by Caroline’s Cooking
For another fun, mini salad, check out these Mediterranean Endive Boats!
7-Layer Salads in a Jar
The retro 7-layer salad made in single serving mason jars!
- Prep Time: 20 minutes
- Total Time: 20 minutes
- Yield: 2 1x
- Category: Side Dish, Salad
- Method: Mixing
- Cuisine: American
- 1/2 cup mayonnaise
- 1 1/2 teaspoons sugar
- 2 tablespoons plain yogurt
- 1/4 teaspoon seasoning salt (I used Morton’s Nature’s Seasoning)
- 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan
- 1–2 cups shredded iceberg lettuce
- 1/2 cup cherry or grape tomatoes, cut in half
- 3/4 cup frozen green peas, defrosted
- 1 tablespoon finely diced red onion (I soak in ice water while prepping ingredients to remove some of the bite)
- 3/4 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
- 2–3 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled
Whisk together dressing ingredients. Taste and add more sugar or seasoning salt if needed.
Divide ingredients between 2 mason jars (about 2 cup capacity), starting with lettuce, then 2-3 tablespoons salad dressing, tomatoes, peas, onion, cheese and finally the bacon.
Feel free to add other favorite ingredients or add more or less of each to your tastes.
Save leftover dressing for a wedge salad or a simple green salad.