I’ve made at least a dozen different versions of taco salad in my life.
My all-time favorite version is a classic: meat, ranch-style beans, lettuce, cheese, tortilla chips and Catalina dressing. It’s not really the most healthy salad on the planet, but it sure is good.
I’ve made a nice turkey version before with mini bell peppers. That would probably come in third place when it comes to the best taco salads I’ve ever made.
As for second place, that goes to this taco salad.
It’s phenomenal. A winner. A deliciously different-enough-taco-salad. I’ll probably end up making this a few times this summer.
Let’s start with the changes from a classic taco salad: this uses taco-spiced chicken. I cubed two chicken breasts and tossed them around in some cumin, chili powder, garlic powder and onion powder. I was out of red chili powder so I had to use yellow chili powder–but it still came out great.
Next change: make an avocado-cilantro dressing. I used Greek yogurt and mashed avocado for my dressing.
After that, chop up different salad greens: I used Romaine, kale and iceberg. You don’t want big leaves for this salad. You want greens that have been chopped down like herbs.
I topped this salad with salad and chopped tomatoes, corn and black beans and had a mini feast for lunch. I hope you try this recipe out; it’s a winner!
Chopped Chicken Taco Salad
A mega-chopped salad with corn, beans, cheese, tomatoes and chicken topped with an avocado-cilantro dressing.
- 1 lb. chicken breast, cubed
- 1 TBS. chili powder
- 1 tsp. cumin
- 2 tsp. garlic powder
- 1 tsp. onion powder
- salt & pepper
- 1 TBS. olive oil
- 2 cups chopped Romaine
- 2 cups chopped kale
- 2 cups chopped iceberg lettuce
- 1 cup chopped cilantro
- 2 Roma tomatoes, diced
- 1 jalapeno, sliced
- 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 can corn, drained and rinsed
- 1 cup shredded cheese
For the Avocado-Cilantro dressing:
- 1/4 cup Greek yogurt
- 1/2 cup mashed avocado
- 1 handful choppped cilantro
- 2 TBS. lime juice, plus more if you want dressing thinner
- Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Season chicken with chili powder, cumin, garlic powder, onion powder, salt and pepper. Cook in hot oil for 6-7 minutes or until chicken is cooked through.
- Make the dressing: stir together yogurt, avocado, cilantro and lime juice until well combined. Add more lime juice if you like your dressing thinner.
- Make the salad: in a large bowl, toss together Romaine, kale, iceberg and cilantro. Top with beans, corn, jalapeno, tomatoes chicken and cheese. Drizzle dressing over the top and serve.