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Southwest Chicken Salad on a serving platter.

Southwest Chicken Salad

Marinated chicken, colorful Tex-Mex toppings, and a creamy Cilantro Lime Vinaigrette top a bed of crispy lettuce for this mouthwatering Southwest Chicken Salad. It’s gluten-free, dairy-free, and packed with all the good things your body craves. Prep ingredients ahead and enjoy all week long.

Yield: 4 entree-sized salads 1x
Prep: 20 minutesCook: 5 minutesTotal: 25 minutes


  • 2 cooked large chicken breasts, diced or sliced (approximately 2 1/2 cups diced) (Tip: Use our Southwest Chicken or Cilantro Lime Chicken recipes for amazing flavor!)
  • 8 cups chopped lettuce (recommend: Green Leaf or Romaine lettuce)
  • 1 cup canned black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup corn (cut fresh off the ear or drained and rinsed from the can)
  • 1/2 cup finely diced red onion
  • 1 large ripe avocado, diced
  • 1 cup halved cherry tomatoes
  • 1 batch of Cilantro Lime Vinaigrette (or Southwest Ranch Dressing)
  • 1 lime, cut into wedges

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Note: Before beginning, make sure all ingredients are prepped and ready to go. The weekend is a great time to do this!

To Make a Large Salad:

  1. To a large serving platter, add the lettuce, black beans, corn, red onion, avocado, cherry tomatoes, and diced or sliced chicken.
  2. Either drizzle most of the dressing over the top and toss OR serve the dressing on the side.
  3. Serve each individual salad with a lime wedge to squeeze over the top.

To Make an Individual Salad:

Add the following to a bowl:

    • 2 cups chopped lettuce
    • 1/4 cup black beans
    • 1/4 cup corn
    • 1/4 cup halved cherry tomatoes
    • 1-2 tablespoons diced red onion
    • 1/4 of a diced avocado
    • 1/2 of a diced/sliced chicken breast or about 3/4 cup diced chicken
    • 3-4 tablespoons Cilantro Lime Dressing
    • 1 lime wedge (squeeze over the top, if desired)


Short Cuts: Use bagged salad and rotisserie chicken from the store.

Additional Topping Ideas: tortilla strips, shredded cheddar cheese or cotija cheese, roasted red peppers, pickled red onion, sliced radishes (see more ideas in article above).

Where We Get Our Chicken: We get our meat from ButcherBox. The chicken is organic and curated from small, trusted farms. We highly recommend this service to source healthy meat–like uncured bacon, wild salmon, and grass-fed beef–and have used it for years ourselves. 

© Author: Rachel Tiemeyer
Cuisine: Southwest Method: Any