There’s so much goodness in this salad that I think the title could have gone on, such as the Crunchy Chili Lime Chicken Fiesta Salad with Pico de Gallo and Chili Lime Ranch and Avocado.
Whew! Yeah, I’m glad I didn’t do that, too, but rest assured that is exactly what you will find in this salad. It’s awesome! It only takes a little bit of prep work and then you’ve got a fantastic one-dish meal that will blow your socks off and everyone else’s at the table as well.
This salad is very filling but not heavy. Perfect. Oh, and BTW this chili lime dressing/marinade is great for your chicken any time, so keep the recipe for a day you want to grill a bird with a little pizzaz.
Chili Lime Chicken Fiesta Salad
4 chicken breasts, boneless, skinless
1 recipe chili lime dressing, divided (following)
Pico de Gallo (recipe following)
Salad greens, as much as you want (I used a green leaf and iceburg mix)
Shredded cheese, Mexican blend, to taste
Tortilla chips or strips, to taste
2 large limes, juice divided
1/2 cup ranch dressing
Chili Lime Dressing/Marinade
1 1/2 T lime juice
1 tsp lime zest
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1/4 tsp cumin
1/3 cup EVOO
Pico de Gallo
1/2 red onion, diced
4 large roma tomatoes, diced
1/2 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
1 cup frozen corn
1 can organic black beans, drained and rinsed
1 tsp salt
1. Mix together ingredients for the dressing/marinade and chill in refrigerator until chilled.
2. Make Pico de Gallo with all ingredients listed and chill in refrigerator until ready to use. Taste and add salt & pepper as needed.
3. You will divided the dressing into 3 parts: 1/2 to marinate the meat, 1/4 for the ranch, and the last 1/4 reserve for brushing onto the chicken. Take the 1/2 measurement of dressing and marinade your chicken breasts for at about 30 minutes. This does not have to be in the refrigerator.
4. While things are chilling and marinating make your ranch dressing by combining it with one of the 1/4 measurements (this comes out to 2 or 3 T.) Mix well and refrigerate until ready to use.
5. You can either grill or pan fry the chicken. If using a pan, heat up some EVOO over medium heat and use the remaining bit of dressing/marinade on the meat while it’s cooking. Meat should be tender and juicy. Slice or cube.
6. Mash your avocado. Take the remaining bit of lemon juice and mix it with the avocado and a pinch of salt, to taste.
7. Chop up your greens and arrange on a plate. Scoop some pico de gallo, top with shredded cheese and chicken. Top that with some crushed tortilla chips and avocado, then drizzle the chili lime ranch over it all. *Use extra ranch if needed.
*You could even go ahead and combine the chili lime ranch with the avocado mixture to make a heavenly dressing, but for those who don’t like avocado I left it separate for this recipe.