Wilted Endive

Recipes

Wilted Endive is an old-fashioned salad recipe served with onion, hard-boiled egg, and a hot bacon dressing. It’s an easy recipe that can be assembled in under fifteen minutes and enjoyed by all.

wilted endive in a bowl and on plates.

What is Wilted Endive

Before we get into this recipe, it’s worth mentioning that this is not a healthy salad. (Please do not come at me.) It’s made with sugar, eggs, and bacon grease. This is a recipe I grew up on, but it wasn’t something we ate often. It was a treat.

Nowadays I’m lucky to have it once a year. While most wouldn’t consider a salad to be comfort food, to me, this is the ultimate comfort food. It takes me back to my childhood. I think we all have foods like that, don’t we?

wilted endive in a bowl.

As far as I know, this is an old German recipe. However, after doing some research I’ve also read that it could have originated in Poland and/or been a Southern (USA) cuisine. Who knows?

Regardless, Wilted Endive is a family favorite. It’s such a delicious combination of flavors. I love the sourness of the vinegar, the sweetness of the sugar, and the creaminess that the eggs add. So good!

Want more green salads? Try these:

Let me teach you how to make it the way my mom taught me.

plated wilted endive with fork.

How to Make:

For your convenience, I’ve provided a detailed ingredients list and instructions in the printable recipe card below.

  1. Begin by preparing your endive. Wash thoroughly and dry. Remove any hard stems and roughly chop. Add to a large bowl.
  2. Sprinkle the endive with the sugar, then top with sliced onion and two of the sliced hard-boiled eggs.
adding sugar to endive.
  1. Cook the bacon in a small frying pan over medium-high heat.
  2. Once the bacon is cooked and crispy, but not burnt, pour the hot bacon and bacon grease evenly over the endive.
cooking bacon in a pan.
  1. Add the water to the frying pan, then pour over the endive.
  2. Pour the apple cider vinegar onto the endive.
pouring bacon and grease onto wilted endive.
making wilted endive in a bowl.
  1. Use your hands to massage the dressing into the endive to evenly combine.
  2. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Decorate the top of the salad with the third egg.
  4. Serve immediately.

That’s it! You’ve just made Wilted Endive!

wilted endive in a bowl.

Variations:

Here are a few variations to this Wilted Endive recipe you might consider trying:

  • Make it a meal. Add grilled chicken to make this salad a quick and easy dinner.
  • Use a different green. Can’t find or don’t like endive. You can create this with head lettuce as well. In fact, any crispy/firm leafy green will work.
  • Add croutons. Want a little extra crunch? Toss some croutons onto the finished salad.
wilted endive in a bowl.
hand with fork into plated wilted endive.

Frequently Asked Question:

I’ve tried to anticipate any questions you may have about this recipe and have shared them below. Have other questions? Let me know in the comments area.

Can I make this salad in advance?

No. This is best enjoyed immediately after making.

Can I make this without sugar?

Maybe, but I wouldn’t. While not considered “healthy,” the sugar and bacon grease makes this recipe what it is. You could try using a bit less of each if you prefer.

Want a “healthier” salad? Try my Summer Berry Spinach Salad or Shaved Brussels Sprout Salad.

plated wilted endive.

And You’re Ready to Enjoy!

If you’re looking for a new salad recipe to have as a treat, I definitely recommend giving this Wilted Endive a try. I just know you’re going to love it as much as my family and I do. Maybe it will become a new tradition in your home.

Happy cooking!

wilted endive on a plate.

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Course: Appetizer, Salad, Side Dish
Cuisine: American, German
Keyword: bacon, bread salad, endive, lettuce, wilted
Servings: 6
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Total Time 30 mins
Wilted Endive is an old-fashioned salad recipe served with onion, hard-boiled egg, and a hot bacon dressing. It’s an easy recipe that can be assembled in under fifteen minutes and enjoyed by all.

Ingredients

  • 1 head endive
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 small sweet white onion - sliced
  • 3 hard-boiled eggs - sliced
  • 6 slices bacon - chopped into 1-inch pieces
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • kosher salt and pepper

Instructions

  • Begin by preparing your endive. Wash thoroughly and dry. Remove any hard stems and roughly chop. Add to a large bowl.
  • Sprinkle the endive with the sugar, then top with sliced onion and two of the sliced hard-boiled eggs.
  • Cook the bacon in a small frying pan over medium-high heat.
  • Once the bacon is cooked and crispy, but not burnt, pour the hot bacon and bacon grease evenly over the endive. Add the water to the frying pan, then pour over the endive. Pour the apple cider vinegar onto the endive.
  • Use your hands to massage the dressing into the endive to evenly combine. This process will also break up the eggs, incorporating them into the dressing.
  • Add salt and pepper to taste. Decorate the top of the salad with the third sliced egg.
  • Serve immediately.

Nutrition Facts

Calories: 193kcalCarbohydrates: 15gProtein: 7gFat: 12gSaturated Fat: 4gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 0.03gCholesterol: 108mgSodium: 196mgPotassium: 275mgFiber: 2gSugar: 12gVitamin A: 2292IUVitamin C: 10mgCalcium: 58mgIron: 1mg
Made it? Share it!Tag @inspiredbycharm on Instagram and use the tag #myIBC so we can see what you’re cooking in the kitchen!
Disclosure: This blog post may contain affiliate links as part of the Amazon Services LLC Associate Programs and other affiliate services. This means that inspiredbycharm.com receives a small commission by linking to Amazon.com and other sites at no cost to the readers.

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Comments

  • Rose at

    Yes, I remember my mom loved wilted endive. Hey, would your mom have a recipe for butterscotch icebox cookies? I can’t seem to get the dough the correct consistency. Mom’s came out firm before she refrigerated it. Also the flavor doesn’t seem as rich. I know her recipe had brown sugar, cream of tartar and it called for lard but she used Blue Bonnet margarine. Thanks for sharing your great recipes and ideas.

  • Molly T. at

    Oh my! My mother used to make this! I remember her telling me her grandmother would make it for her. She didn’t use eggs with it though. I can remember the smell of the hot vinegar right now! Yuuuuummmm. I just might need to make this. 🥰

  • Susan at

    This brings back such good memories. This was something my aunt used to make. Thank you for sharing.

    • Michael Wurm, Jr. at

      That’s one of the things I love the most about old fashioned recipes. Enjoy!

      xo Michael

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