Who has the best salad in Pigeon Forge, Gatlinburg? Here’s our top 6

A house salad at the local goat

A house salad from The Local Goat in Pigeon Forge (photo by Morgan Overholt/TheSmokies.com)

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For some folks, a salad is essentially an afterthought.

A handful of lettuce, a couple of crunchy vegetables and a healthy dollop of ranch and then you can get down to the real eating. 

But, for many of us, the pursuit of the perfect salad is an art form. 

Finding the right balance of lettuce, toppings and dressings – the pursuit of the perfect bite – is a worthy endeavor. 

I love a good salad, especially for lunch, and will often go to a favorite place in pursuit of one.

For some, it’s a lifestyle choice. They want to eat healthier. For others, it’s a philosophical choice. They don’t believe in eating meat and so, a good salad is often a fantastic option. 

Me? I just like salad. 

The irony, if you’d like to think of it that way, is that many of the best places to get a salad in Gatlinburg or Pigeon Forge are also the best places to get some meat.

I suppose if you have a menu that leans heavily to carnivores, it pays to have some quality vegetarian or healthy options. Otherwise you’ll lose customers whose friends or family are not quite as ravenous as they are. 

Not surprisingly, there are several great places to get a salad in the region. 

So who has the best salad in Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg? Let’s dive in.

A personalized house salad from The Local Goat with fried devil eggs (photo by Morgan Overholt/TheSmokies.com)

6. The Local Goat in Pigeon Forge, Tenn.

Billed as a new American restaurant, the Local Goat has something for everyone, including a variety of salads that are meals unto themselves.

I’m partial to the Southern, with hand-breaded chicken tenders and served with a honey mustard dressing, but the Tavern Steak Salad with avocado, pineapple and a honey-lime vinaigrette is also quite tasty.

The Local Goat also offers ways to personalize your Mediterranean or house salads with a variety of add-ons. It can be tough to get into the Local Goat, but if you can, it’s worth the effort. 

5. Alamo Steakhouse in Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg Tenn.

I suppose Alamo Salad House would really not really park butts in the seats, but the salads (and soups) at Alamo Steakhouse should not take second billing to anyone.

I’m crazy for the Alamo Spinach Salad – which is just spinach, mushrooms and bacon with a poppy seed dressing as a side, but the Black-n-Bleu Filet Salad is the best of both worlds. 

Read Also: The Peddler vs. The Alamo: Which steakhouse is better?

4. Johnny Carino’s in Pigeon Forge, Tenn.

I didn’t want to necessarily include a chain restaurant on this list, but the Chopped Club Salad at Johnny Carino’s is undeniable.

It comes with bleu cheese and vinaigrette dressing with grilled chicken, applewood bacon, pepperoni, pepperoncini, basil and gorgonzola and asiago cheeses.

It’s delicious. It also comes with the added bonus of Johnny Carino’s family friendly Italian menu that will keep most everyone in your group happy. 

3. Puckett’s Grocery in Pigeon Forge, Tenn.

The thing about non-salad bar salad dining is the limits to the imagination.

Sure, you’ll see a garden, a Caesar or a chef. If you’re really out and about maybe they’ll offer a Greek, or a Cobb or a strawberry vinaigrette. But sometimes you want something a little further flung. In comes the BBQ Taco Salad at Puckett’s. 

“BBQ Taco Salad?” you might say. “Say no more.” 

I will say more. 

It has romaine lettuce, cowboy caviar – which sounds like a some sort of questionable euphemism but is really just a bean and corn relish – tortilla strips and cherrywood smoked barbecue with a chipotle ranch dressing.

Read Also: These are the top 4 best BBQ places in Pigeon Forge, ranked

2. Gaucho Urbano Brazilian Steakhouse in Pigeon Forge, Tenn.

It may seem odd to talk about the salad at a place known for roving bands of servers delivering a wide variety of meats to your table at semi-regular intervals but The Harvest Table at Gaucho’s is a salad aficionado’s happy place. 

Editor’s Note: If you’re a vegetarian for moral reasons, there is no salad bar in the world worth walking through the doors of a Brazilian Steakhouse. You’re just punishing yourself at that point. 

The Harvest Table features a wide variety of salads made from scratch as well as fresh hand cut and/or steamed vegetables for your dining pleasure. A variety of cheeses are also available.  

A customized salad creation from The Peddler salad bar (photo contributed by Greg and Laura Akens)

1. The Peddler in Gatlinburg, Tenn.

There is a science to a great salad bar.

It isn’t just some random assortment of legumes to be slung on a plate and then Jackson Pollock’d in ranch dressing.

It’s about balance, proportion, finding the right cauliflower to broccoli ratio, architecture and asset allocation.

There’s only so much room on a plate, are you sure you want to take up that real estate with garbanzo beans?

The Peddler gets it. The Peddler gives you the necessary tools with which to construct a masterpiece of a salad.

Read Also: The Peddler Steakhouse: The most romantic dinner for two in Gatlinburg

What are your favorite spots to grab a salad in the Smokies? Let us know in the comments!

Disclaimer: While we do our best to bring you the most up-to-date information, attractions or prices mentioned in this article may vary by season and are subject to change. Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any mentioned business, and have not been reviewed or endorsed these entities. Contact us at info@thesmokies.com for questions or comments.


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12 thoughts on “Who has the best salad in Pigeon Forge, Gatlinburg? Here’s our top 6”

  1. The Chop House has a delicious salad! Worth mentioning all the food that can be paired with it, is also phenomenal! Manager Rick W. has been there for years, and he always stays on top of sharing an incredible dining experience! PS. Don’t forget to order the Sweet Corn Tamale Cakes for your appetizer!

  2. Spot on the Peddler is the tops and I would remove the Alamos bagged salad and replace it with the Pottery Cafes salads very fresh clean and made to order

  3. The Chop House has a delicious salad! We will definitely eat there again. Great staff, great food.

  4. 1st. I AGREE With Robb Sparks! But my favorite salad is always The Outback.
    I love the crispy fresh flavor & especially that they add fresh peeled cucumbers. But their honey mustard dressing makes their salad even more incredible.
    Wish they made it bigger.

  5. I agree that the Peddler has the very best salad. But I really miss the salads and family style meals at Trotters in Pigeon Forge and Ogles in Gatlinburg. Those restaurants have been gone.

  6. I agree that Chophouse is great food and great salad. Outback gets my vote for best blu-filet!! (You have to order the steak salad-sub filet) they’re in-house blue cheese vinaigrette is amazing with they’re seasoned filet. Local goat rock’s too

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