Chipotle Chicken Salad with Avocado Lime Dressing (Whole30)
It may not feel like it where you are just yet, but spring IS coming!
The first day of spring in 2019 is March 20th and if you’re reading this when this post goes live, that means that warmer weather is technically only one week away! I’m not sure about you, but I am ready. It’s around this time every year that I start craving the season change. After a winter that seems like it’s lasted forever, warmer weather, longer days, and putting away my winter coat all sound pretty fabulous right about now.
When the season changes, my taste buds change right along with it. Can you relate? The warmer months of the year always make me crave iced coffee, smoothies, and hearty salads filled with veggies and creamy dressing. This Chipotle Chicken Salad with Avocado Lime Dressing is exactly the kind of heart salad that you’ll be eating all spring and summer long.
The best thing about a salad like this is the combination of flavors and textures. The chicken is smoky and just a little spicy from all of the flavorful spices, the veggies are crisp and give you that cool crunch, and then the avocado lime dressing just ties everything with it’s delicious creaminess. You seriously can’t go wrong.
Not only is this salad perfect for dinner on a warm night, it’s also versatile and a great meal prep option. You can make extra chicken to have for lunch throughout the week or get outside and grill your chicken breast for even more delicious summer flavor. I promise you won’t regret it. Let’s get into the details.
First, you’ll start by rubbing your oil and spices all over you chicken breast. Don’t be shy here. You want the spices to really get into the chicken breast so it’s nice and flavorful. If you have a few extra minutes you can even let the chicken marinate in the dry rub for thirty minutes or so for an even more flavorful end result. You could also season your chicken the night before you’re ready to use it! That’s a great make-ahead step if you’re really trying to maximize your time.
Next, you’ll fire up your cast iron skillet, grill pan, or grill and cook your chicken. I recommend 7-9 minutes on each side over medium heat on the stove top. Try not to move it too much while it’s cooking so you get a good sear and flavorful crust on your chicken.
To help alleviate some of the temptation to move your chicken around the pan, use the cooking time to assemble your salad. Dress your greens with the avocado lime dressing and pile on the veggies. I love using fresh tomatoes, cucumbers, and red onion. You can also add radishes, carrots, a squeeze of lemon juice and whatever else your heart desires! When the chicken is done cooking, remove it from the pan and let rest.
Last, but certainly not least, it’s time to slice that flavorful chicken and top your salad. Add a little more dressing, add a little cheese if you’d like, and enjoy!
Chipotle Chicken Salad with Avocado Lime Dressing
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 tsp cocoa powder
1 tsp chipotle powder
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp paprika
mixed greens, for serving
red onion, for serving
tomatoes, for serving
cucumber, for serving
avocado, for serving
Rub the oil and spices all over the chicken breasts until it’s well coated.
Heat a cast iron skillet or grill pan over medium heat. Once the pan is hot, add in the extra oil. Next, place the chicken breasts in the pan and cook for 7-9 minutes on each side until the chicken breast is fully cooked through. Remove from the pan and let rest.
While the chicken is resting, assemble your salad of mixed greens, cucumber, avocado, tomatoes, and onion. Slice the chicken breast, place on top of the salad, and serve. Enjoy!