Antipasto Salad

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If you like sub sandwiches, you’re going to love this Antipasto Salad! It has all of the flavor of a big Italian sub sandwich, without the carb-heavy bread.

If you like Subway sandwiches, you're going to love this Antipasto Salad! It has all of the flavor of a big Italian sub sandwich, without the heavy bread.
This Antipasto Salad has all the components of a subway sandwich without the bread!

My husband is not really partial to any kind of salad that consists of field greens, which he calls, “weeds“.

If he had his way, he’d eat a 1/2 of a head of romaine lettuce with blue cheese dressing and bacon every night. I like all salad greens, but I think that there is the perfect green for each salad. Delicate field greens do best with light dressings and toppings, Chinese Chicken Salad is great with super crunchy cabbage. This Antipasto Salad needs a hearty lettuce like crisp iceberg or romaine, or both! (This post was originally published on June 13th, 2013 and has been updated. This post contains affiliate links).

I don’t eat many sandwiches these days, but when I did, I loved a big Italian sub with a splash of red wine vinegar and spicy pepperoncini. When I created this recipe, I wanted a salad that had all the flavors of an Italian sub, without the bread. The fact that it fits so deliciously into a low-carb, keto, and gluten free diet is a bonus!

If you like Subway sandwiches, you're going to love this Antipasto Salad! It has all of the flavor of a big Italian sub sandwich, without the heavy bread.

What to put in an “Antipasto” Salad

There really isn’t a “recipe” per se. Start with a lettuce; romaine or iceberg work well, for crunch, but you can also add red or green leaf. Next add your favorite Italian meats and cheeses. I usually figure on about 3-4 ounces of meat and about 1-2 ounces of cheese per person. Some suggestions for meats are salami, coppa, prosciutto or soppressata. For cheeses, I suggest provolone, but fontina or even a fresh mozzarella would work as well. If you live in a large enough town, chances are there is a great Italian delicatessen nearby. Usually they are more than happy to give samples before you make a purchase. You’ll also find Italian olive oil, pastas, and other imported goods, which are most certainly a better quality than what you’d find in a chain grocery store.

Marinated Mushrooms. Whole30
Marinated Mushrooms are a great addition to any salad.

After you’ve chosen your meats and cheeses, you can begin adding other vegetables. While some of them might not be traditional or authentic to an antipasto platter you’d find in Italy, I always love to add more veggies. I use homemade marinated mushrooms, just because they are a family favorite and they’re cheaper than store-bought. Thin slices of fresh or roasted red bell peppers from a jar, like these are delicious. Other vegetables you can add are; Kalamata olives, artichoke hearts and pepperoncini.

red and yellow bell peppers

For this classic vinaigrette  I prefer red vinegar which is what is generally sprinkled on a sub sandwich. Add more vinegar for a tangier dressing.

This antipasto salad serves 3-4 for dinner, with enough left over for a couple of lunches the next day.

Antipasto Salad

This Italian sub salad has all the flavors of a subway sandwich without the carbs! It’s low-carb, keto friendly and gluten free! 
5 from 5 votes
Prep Time 15 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Course Salad
Cuisine Italian
Servings 4 people
Calories 1045 kcal


Salad Ingredients

  • 1 head of iceberg lettuce shredded or sliced
  • 1 head romaine lettuce shredded or sliced
  • 6 ounces Genoa salami sliced
  • 6 ounces sopressata sliced
  • 6 ounces mortadella sliced
  • 12 ounces provolone cheese (1-2 ounces per person), fontina or mozzarella.
  • 1 cup marinated mushrooms quartered (reserved 3/4 cup liquid from marinade)
  • 1/2 cup kalamata olives sliced
  • 1/4 cup peperoncini sliced thin
  • 1/4 cup roasted red bell peppers sliced
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes cut in half


  • 3/4 cup olive oil (you can also use some of the marinade from the olive, mushrooms or artichoke hearts if you’re using them).
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • Kosher salt to taste
  • Fresh ground black pepper


  • Slice meats, cheese and veggies. Toss with lettuce. Add dressing just before serving.
  • Dressing
  • Whisk olive and vinegar in a small bowl season to taste with black pepper and kosher salt. 


Serving: 1servingCalories: 1045kcalCarbohydrates: 17gProtein: 41gFat: 91gSaturated Fat: 30gPolyunsaturated Fat: 8gMonounsaturated Fat: 49gCholesterol: 116mgSodium: 2587mgPotassium: 859mgFiber: 4gSugar: 6gVitamin A: 2751IUVitamin C: 42mgCalcium: 710mgIron: 3mg
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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  1. 5 stars
    Haha. Read your intro to my husband “bacon boy” who said….well it’s not like he’s eating a ribeye every night. I think that means men need meat 😉
    I personally love this salad and it fits perfectly with my new Lunch Bowl vibe.

  2. 5 stars
    Dear Cynthia – with four boys and one husband in the house I have to make a pretty substantial salad to call it dinner. My husband is also averse to weeds. I know everyone in the house would be happy with this gorgeous salad, though I might have to hold the kalamata olives from a few plates….

  3. I could eat this salad every day! but I’d probably get carried away with the cheeses and charcuterie, since they’re my favorite parts. Love the idea of utilizing marinated mushrooms! I also like using the olive oil from marinated artichokes.

5 from 5 votes (1 rating without comment)

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