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Classic 7 Layer Salad

This classic salad is a favorite for potlucks and big parties. Layer on the lettuce, peppers, onions, celery, cheese and peas and then top it off with a sweet Hellmann's mayonnaise dressing.


  • 1 medium head lettuce, shredded
  • 1/2 cup green pepper (some red, if desired)
  • 1/2 cup onion, chopped
  • 1/2 cup celery, chopped
  • 1 (10 oz.) pkg. frozen green peas, uncooked
  • 1 cup Hellmann's Light Mayo (or your favorite brand)
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 cups grated cheese
  • Bacon bits (optional)


  1. Layer first 5 ingredients. (May use one can English peas, drained, for frozen).
  2. Mix mayonnaise and sugar. Dot over salad and spread carefully over top to cover.
  3. Top with grated cheese and bacon bits.

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This is the BEST 7-layer salad. I do substitue water chestnuts for the celery and sprinkle the sugar vs. mixing it in however. And sometimes I sprinkle seasoning salt on top of the cheese. Melodae - The cheese is always the top layer!!

Hi Melodae, Thanks for the great tips! I know many of our readers will try this variation. -Editors of RecipeLion

The shredded cheese should be the last layer UNDER the dressing. Canned peas should NOT be used -- frozen peas are best. Shredded carrots and finely sliced broccoli and/or cauliflower each make a good layer, too. The dressing should be half salad dressing (Miracle Whip) and half sour cream, with a little sugar and some lemon juice. The dressing should seal the salad in the pan.

@LadyLizz: Thanks for all the suggestions! We're glad you enjoy this recipe so much. -- Editors of RecipeLion

I love 7-layer salad, but never wind up with 7-layers. I often add carrots and radishes and other crunchy veggies to mine as well as water chestnuts. I don't think you can mess this salad up no matter what you do. I would suggest if someone wanted any tomato on their salad that they do it after they serve their portion to avoid sogging up the salad. Of course, one could sprinkle some whole cherry or grape tomatoes over the salad and not hurt it at all... The different layers are so pretty in a bowl you can see through, but I like serving mine in a square pan and serving it in squares.


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