Chipotle Ranch Chicken Salad

Location: San Diego, CA

Have you ever been on a food kick and everything you eat seems to be the same or the same type of food?  Well, I’m working on getting back on that salad kick.  I used to make a lot of salads and they were good too!  Even my husband liked them and would make requests for them.  If I can convert him to a salad eater, then anything is possible….almost.  Here’s one of our faves and is my take on Smashburger‘s Chicken Baja Cobb Salad.

First things first – make the Pico de Gallo so the flavors have time to marry. I make a Pico de Gallo because I’m bratty and don’t like the taste of tomatoes on it’s own.  It’s pretty simple and doesn’t take much time to make.  My version requires: tomatoes, onions, jalapeñ0s, cilantro, lime, salt, pepper, garlic powder, and cumin.  Dice everything up, through it in a bowl, sprinkle in the seasonings, squeeze in the lime, stir, and refrigerate.  Easy peasy.


Next comes the Taco Seasoning.  I like to make my own mix so that there aren’t any crazy preservatives and you can control the level of spice.  This is a recipe borrow from The Nourished Life.  The only ingredient I didn’t add was the Arrowroot because I didn’t need a sauce to thicken. I also reduced the amount of Salt by a little more than half, because let’s face it, we don’t all want to become puffer fishes.  I feel like Pico de Gallo and Taco Seasoning are the basics for Mexican cooking.

Once the Taco Seasoning is made, heat up about a tablespoon of vegetable oil in a medium pan.  Cut up a chicken breast into bite sized pieces and sprinkle about 2 tablespoons of the Taco Seasoning and mix until all the chicken is coated.  Cook the chicken for about 5 to 6 minutes, and be sure to cook it all the way through.  We don’t want anyone catching that nasty salmonella.


Since this is a salad, it’s only appropriate that we get the lettuce ready.  I’m using Romaine lettuce for this recipe. 2 heads to be exact.  Chop them up, tear them up – whichever you prefer.  Be sure to rinse the suckers too.  I don’t care if the package says pre-washed.  They’re never “pre-washed” enough.  And see that salad spinner, right there?  Best investment EVER!  Well, not ever, but it’s pretty cool.


Hang in there because we’re almost done.  Crack open a can of corn, a can of black beans, and dice up some avocados.  It’s time for plating.  Oh wait…how could I forget?!?!?!  The Chipotle Ranch Dressing…


I ran out of canned Chipotle/Adobo, so I used my handy dandy Chipotle flavored Tobasco Sauce instead.  And guess what?!?!?!  I liked it even more.  Well, that’s it.  I hope you give it a try and join me on my attempted salad kick.  Until next time….

Chipotle Ranch Chicken Salad

  • Servings: 4
  • Print

IMG_20160306_230316Pico de Gallo
1 Vine Ripened Tomato, diced
4 Tbsp Red Onion, diced
1 Tbsp Jalepeño, seeded and diced
2 Tbsp Cilantro, roughly chopped
1/2 Lime, juiced
1/2 Tbsp Garlic Powder
1 Tbsp Cumin

-Combine all ingredients in a bowl.
-Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.

Taco Seasoning with Tumeric – adapted by The Nourished LifeIMG_20160306_230111
1 Tbsp Chili Powder
1 Tsp Kosher Salt, rounded
1/2 Tsp Garlic Powder
1 Tsp Tumeric
1/2 Tsp Cumin
1 Tsp Cayenne Pepper
1/2 Tsp Dried Oregano

-Mix all ingredients together until combined.
-Store in an airtight jar.


Chipotle Ranch Dressing
1/2 C Ranch Dressing
1/4 C Chipotle flavored Tobasco Sauce

-Mix all ingredients until well combined.





Chipotle Ranch Chicken Salad
1 Chicken Breast, halved and cut into bite sized pieces
2 Tbsp Taco Seasoning
1 Tbsp Vegetable Oil
2 Heads of Romaine Lettuce, rinsed and chopped
1 Avocado, diced
1 Can of Corn, drained
1 Can of Black Beans, drained and rinsed
Pico de Gallo
Chipotle Ranch Dressing

-Heat up the vegetable oil in a medium pan over medium-high heat.
-Sprinkle the Taco Seasoning over the Chicken and mix until all coated.
-Cook the Chicken until well done.
-Place the Romaine Lettuce in a Salad Bowl or Platter.
-Line the top of the with the Corn, Avocado, Chicken, Pico de Gallo, and Black Beans.
-Drizzle on the dressing and sprinkle some Cilantro to garnish.

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