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Copycat Applebee’s Southwest Steak Recipe


Photos of Copycat Applebee’s Southwest Steak Recipe

Fancy some steak for lunch? Try recreating Applebee’s Southwest Steak Bowl salad! If you love Applebee’s fiesta chicken salad, then you’ll want a bite of their hearty steak salad too. Every slice of the juicy sirloin steak pairs perfectly with the crunchy greens, corn black bean salsa, and rich ranch dressing. Applebee’s steak uses black steak seasoning, giving you the perfect bite of spicy and savory.

Now an Applebee’s Southwestern steak salad is not complete without its signature dressings. This Applebee’s salad is served with cilantro ranch dressing and chimichurri sauce for a creamy-tangy flavor combo. These added extra layers of flavors make it an ultimate salad dish.  We guarantee that this’ll be one of those great steak dinner ideas you’ll want to keep in your back pocket at all times.

Tips on Making Copycat Applebee’s Southwest Steak Salad

Applebee's steak salad, tips on how to make

Can’t get enough of Applebee’s steak salad? Read along and learn how to make your very own Southwest steak salad bowl that tastes just like Applebee’s! We listed some helpful tips for you so you can fully enjoy the savory flavors of the steak: 

  • No sirloin steak? Try other types of steak cuts. While Applebee’s only uses sirloin steak, you don’t have to limit your choices to just one type of steak. Sirloin steak is a leaner cut of meat, but you can also opt for rib-eye steak or New York strip for a more flavorful output. Alternatively, you can also go for a filet mignon if you want a more tender cut. 
  • Experiment with your spices. Applebee’s uses grilled chipotle lime seasoning for their sirloin steak. It has smokey and tangy flavors with just the right heat. But in this copycat recipe, we decided to use blackened steak seasoning instead. It blends together to create a savory flavor with a hint of spice. Both seasonings are versatile and you can control the heat level by adding or substituting your spices. If you’re a fan of some heat in your steak, try using paprika powder for a milder heat level. Crushed chili flakes also work if you’re looking for something in between. Or, add in chopped bird’s eye chili for a fiery flavor profile! 
  • Allow the steak to come to room temperature before cooking. Remove your steak from the fridge at least 30 minutes to 1 hour before cooking. This will prevent the steak from cooking unevenly and give you tender, juicy steaks every time. 
  • Mix things up by adding either kale or spinach. Applebee’s southwestern steak salad uses mixed greens for their recipe while our Applebees steak salad recipe only uses romaine lettuce. It is one of the best types of lettuce to use for salads as it has a crunchy texture that makes it more delightful to eat. You can also mix your romaine lettuce with kale or spinach, but don’t feel too limited as you can toss in other greens just like what Applebee’s did! 

This Applebee’s steak salad copycat mixes together a delectable steak with a hearty serving of veggies. Its combination of dressings and the added cheese and tortilla strips on top makes it all the more flavorful and filling!

Prep: 25 mins
Cook: 10 mins
Total: 35 mins


For Steak:

  • 20 oz sirloin steaks, or choice of cut
  • 1 tsp blackened steak seasoning
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter
  • ¼ cup olive oil

For Salad:

  • ½ cup corn kernels
  • ½ cup black beans, canned
  • 2 pcs heirloom tomatoes, ripe, deseeded, diced
  • 1 red onion, medium, diced
  • ¼ cup Monterey jack cheese, or sharp cheddar cheese, grated
  • 1 romaine lettuce, medium, chopped
  • ½ bunch cilantro
  • 1 tortilla, cut into strips and deep-fried
  • salt and ground black pepper, to taste
  • cilantro ranch dressing, *see Recipe Notes for recipe
  • chimichurri sauce, **see Recipe Notes for recipe



  1. Preheat the skillet over medium heat.
  2. Season the steaks with blackened steak seasoning on both sides.
  3. Melt the butter in a pan and add the olive oil. Grill the steaks for 4 minutes on each side. Set aside.


  1. Dice the deseeded tomatillos and red onions and combine with your corn kernels and black beans.
  2. Add the romaine lettuce and tomatillo mix and drizzle with cilantro ranch dressing.
  3. Top the salad with Monterey jack cheese and strips of fried tortilla.
  4. Serve with the cut steak topped with chimichurri sauce.

Recipe Notes


  • Sugar: 5g
  • :
  • Calcium: 242mg
  • Calories: 932kcal
  • Carbohydrates: 30g
  • Cholesterol: 216mg
  • Fat: 58g
  • Fiber: 6g
  • Iron: 7mg
  • Monounsaturated Fat: 30g
  • Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g
  • Potassium: 1338mg
  • Protein: 73g
  • Saturated Fat: 19g
  • Sodium: 448mg
  • Trans Fat: 1g
  • Vitamin A: 1843IU
  • Vitamin C: 6mg
Nutrition Disclaimer
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Copycat Applebee's Southwest Steak, Steak Recipe, Copycat Recipes, Mains


Enjoy the best steak dish at home by making this copycat Applebee’s steak salad! Enjoy succulent steak, black bean corn salsa, and cilantro dressing, all served on a bed of greens. This steak salad is an overload of flavors packed into one hearty serving. So grab a pan and a few bowls, and get cooking! 
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