grannie geek healthy thousand island dressing & chef salad

This is one of my husband’s favorite dinners/lunches. Any grilled meat will be fabulous. Most likely, we make this salad from leftover grilled steak (I always grill an extra to have on hand for this exact purpose), or if we bring home a dogie bag from our favorite steakhouse. But, you could use grilled chicken or shrimp, too.

Any combination of veggies will do. We like Romaine lettuce, hard boiled eggs, tomatoes, steak, and grated cheddar cheese. I’ll throw in some sliced green onions or thinly sliced red onion (my particular favorite). I mean, it’s not really difficult to put together a chef’s salad. I like to make mine “deconstructed” – had no idea what that meant until watching too many Chopped episodes on the Food Network.

grannie geek healthy thousand island dressing & chef salad star of the show

Anyway, the real star of this show is the Healthy Thousand Island Dressing. (Please refer above to my lousy picture of my beloved dressing.) Nonetheless, it’s awesome – rich, creamy, flavorful, and you can use it for so many things. How about a dressing for a grilled Reuben sandwich? Or as a yummy condiment for grilled burgers – special sauce, indeed? Or on top of cottage cheese? Or with a roasted beet salad? Or how about as a dipping sauce for roasted or grilled shrimp?? (Go ask Ina Garten – the inspiration for this dressing.)

What helps to make this dressing healthy and cut the fat and calories is the substitution of Greek yogurt for half the mayonnaise. I do this a lot for any creamy based dressing or sauce I make. I’m sure a most discerning palate would be able to taste the tanginess of the yogurt, but I don’t notice a difference. So any mayonnaise-based dressing would benefit: tartar sauce, homemade ranch dressing, coleslaw dressing.

grannie geek healthy thousand island dressing




I confess – I LOVE Thousand Island Dressing. When I was a wee Grannie Geek, I remember ordering it for my salad when my parents took our family out for dinner. In those days, Thousand Island Dressing cost 25¢ extra. Back in the day, 25¢ was a big deal, especially when you could buy five loaves of bread for $1.00! No matter, my folks were thrilled I wanted to eat a salad, for crying out loud!

Want to make perfect hard boiled eggs?

grannie geek tips Doesn’t make any difference how may you’re making. Put cold eggs in a pot – 2,4,6,8 – a pot large enough so the eggs are in a single layer at the bottom of the pot. Add enough water to cover the eggs. Put the pot on the stove over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil, reduce the temperature slightly, and cook for 8 minutes. Immediately after the eggs are done boiling, bring the pot to the sink. Drain off the hot water, and immediately run cold tap water over the eggs. Immediately rinse, and fill the pot with more cold water. Drain and rinse again with cold water 3-4 more times. Immediately crack the eggs and peel, starting at the fat end of the egg.

grannie geek perfect hard boiled eggs


You can leave the peeled eggs out for a while, if you’re making a salad, deviled eggs, potato salad, etc, but no longer than 30 minutes. The peeled eggs can be refrigerated to use within a day or two.

Healthy Thousand Island Dressing
Prep time
Total time
A rich, creamy and flavorful dressing for any salad, topping for grilled burgers, dressing for grilled Reuben sandwiches, shrimp cocktail with grilled or roasted shrimp, endless ideas.
Recipe type: Salad Dressing
Cuisine: American
Serves: 2 cups
  • ½ cup of mayonnaise, whatever kind you like to use
  • ½ cup of plain Greek yogurt, whole, low fat or fat-free
  • ¼ cup of ketchup
  • ½ Tablespoon of minced capers
  • 2 Tablespoons sweet pickle relish
  • Squeeze of fresh lemon juice
  • ¼ teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
  • ½ teaspoon Tabasco sauce (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon Sriracha, (optional)
  1. Mix all ingredients in a bowl. Cover and refrigerate for one hour.
  2. Before serving, stir dressing and serve.
The Tabasco and/or Sriracha are optional, depending on whether you like a spicy kick.

Any unused dressing will keep, covered, in the refrigerator for 2 weeks.