southwestern chopped chicken salad

I think I’ve mentioned before that I’m not the biggest fan of cleaning.  I’m also pretty terrible at organizing things.  I don’t have files for important documents.  I don’t have certain drawers for certain things (except in the kitchen, of course).  And I certainly don’t remember where I put things like cords, extra buttons, keys, and most recently my camera charger.  It’s nowhere to be found.  For the past 2 weeks I’ve been hanging on to the last little bit of life in my camera while hoping my charger would show up.  Well, now my camera is dead and there’s still no charger.  It has to show up at some point, right?  

So until the little fairy who snuck into my unorganized chaos and took my camera charger decides to come put it back, I’m fancy camera-less.  Or until I cave in and buy a new charger.  Hopefully this explains the Instagram pictures I’m using.  Maybe fun filters will make up for the blurriness?  We’ll see. 

I made this chopped chicken salad tonight for dinner and while I have quite a few recipes stocked up to blog about, I couldn’t wait to share this with you.  It. Is. So. Good.  I love chopped salads because the lettuce doesn’t overpower the salad.  Instead of lettuce in big chunks or leaves with all of the little toppings, it’s little too.  It’s just another component of the salad, not the main idea.  And while I used a sub-par lettuce nutritional wise (iceberg) you could definitely use romaine or any other lettuce of your liking.  I happen to love the crisp crunch of iceberg.  I know, it’s very un-foodie of me.  

So in addition to the lettuce, we’ve got a lot going on in this salad.  Like, a lot.  There’s black beans, corn, green peppers, tomatoes, cilantro, green onions, chicken, avocado aaaaaaaand tortilla chips.  All tossed together with a taco ranch dressing that is way too good for how easy it is.  Marc and I both went back for seconds because it is, after all, a salad and so seconds are allowed.  I may have even eaten some of the leftovers with a spoon as I was cleaning up.  Seriously, so good. 

southwestern chopped chicken salad

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 15 minutes

4 dinner-sized salads


    for the salad:
  • 2 cups shredded chicken
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced
  • 1 can black beans, rinsed
  • 1 can sweet yellow corn (or 1 cup frozen corn, thawed)
  • 2 roma tomatoes, diced
  • 4 green onions, sliced
  • 1 head ice berg lettuce, washed and chopped
  • 1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
  • 2 ripe avocados, diced
  • 1 cup crushed tortilla chips
  • for the dressing:
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 2/3 cup Greek yogurt
  • 1 tbsp ranch seasoning
  • 1 tbsp taco seasoning


  1. In a large bowl, combine all salad ingredients together, excluding the tortilla chips.
  2. In a small bowl stir all dressing ingredients together.
  3. Pour dressing over salad, starting with about half of the dressing.
  4. Toss to combine, then gradually add more dressing until it is dressed to your liking.
  5. Top with tortilla chips. Enjoy!
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  1. Anonymous says

    I just made this salad and it is delicious! I used Romaine lettuce and added chopped jalapeños. I also used a cilantro lime ranch dressing I made for a recipe posted on Pinterest. This is one of the best salads I’ve ever eaten so I’m glad it makes a lot so I can have it for lunch tomorrow. Thanks for sharing!

  2. charlotte says

    this sounds really good,I’ll be trying it…if you catch that tiny little charger thief hold’em for me ’cause they have mine too…lol

  3. Anonymous says

    How did u do your chicken exactly? Was it previously cooked n cooled or did u buy chicken that was already cooked n shredded it up?
    To anonymous… What’s the cilantro lime ranch dressing recipe?? Sounds awesome!!

  4. Angela says

    Made this tonight & my family loved it!! Added black olives & used a rotiserie chicken from the store . The dressing was wonderful & tasted better than the fattening bottled spicy ranch.

  5. RebeccaVC says

    Another dressing idea is to use 1 cup of salsa mixed with 1/4 cup low fat ranch dressing. I shake it up in a container with a lid until combined. It’s like the dressing on the Applebee’s Southwest Chicken Salad.

    Thanks for sharing this recipe! Yum!

  6. Anonymous says

    I used half the corn called for, will make this again. Lots of things you can add, I used black olives & lime. Yummy

  7. Joanne cropper says

    Sounds great. I love chopped so much better than regular salad. I usually use ranch dressing and salsa mixed on this type salad but can’t wait to try this one

  8. Nicole says

    This salad totally reminds me of the Fiesta Chopped Chicken salad from Applebees ! I used leftover chicken from this recipe:

    and added an additional 2 tomatoes, I also served it with salsa,shredded cheese and lime wedges…for those so inclined to use them :-)

    thanks for a fabulous recipe! I am linking it back to you on my blog

  9. nancy says

    When you say ranch seasoning, do you mean the ranch DRESSING MIX in a packet? If not, what and where would I find it. Thanks. Am anxiously awaiting answer so I can go to store and get ingredients to make.

  10. Melanie Schmidt says

    How long does it keep before lettuce gets nasty….or is it so good that noone has had to worry about it? :)

    • says

      I’ve never had leftovers, but if you’re worrying about making too much, I would add the dressing individually, or to as much as you think you’ll need. Otherwise the leftover lettuce will probably get soggy overnight.

  11. Rachel says

    There was an Avacado dressing recipe on here the first time I made this recipe. Now I can’t find it. Does anyone have it? It was so YUMMY! I love this recipe and recommend it any chance I get.

    • says

      Shoot, I’m not sure which recipe you’re looking for…was it in the comments or in this post? I haven’t changed it since I posted…

    • Sara Wheeler says

      There’s an avocado dressing recipe made with one avocado, 1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt, 1/4 cup olive oil, 1tbsp + 2tsp lemon juice, 2 cloves garlic, 3/4 tsp salt and 1 tsp hot sauce. Blend all together, so good, tastes just like ranch. Don’t leave out the hot sauce, I think that’s what makes it! Hope this is the recipe that you were looking for, if not try it, it’s delicious!

  12. Jackie says

    I just wanted to tell you how fabulous this salad was. I cut all the ingredients ahead of time and bagged separately and brought it for lunch today at work.

    the only difference I did was with the dressing… fat mayo, low fat greek dressing and spicy ranch. Fabulous! Thanks for sharing!

  13. Gina says

    This was the recipe that made me find your site (someone posted on FB) and I finally made it this weekend. It was very good, but as I find with most things, even better with cheese :-) I love how many veggies are packed into it, but the servings are HUGE! I’d probably say 6 servings. My husband looked at me like I was crazy when I served him a quarter of it…LOL!

  14. Deanna says

    love this recipe – made it twice. 2nd time subbed the crushed chips with roasted pumpkin seeds for crunch and then served topping bowls of brown rice with the salad. On the side I had chips, salsa and sour cream for sides and served with chilled sangria. Very refreshing for light dinner on a wram day since I served cold.

  15. Janet Cesmat says

    This was super yummy! Made it for my boys (39,16,14,10) and they loved it!!!!! It was all gone and i will be making this again.

  16. Kb14 says

    Pinned this on Pinterest quite some time ago and finally made it today! Oh my goodness its amazing- can not wait to try more of your recipes!!

  17. Jen says

    Found this recipe a few months ago and make it about every two weeks! Tasted absolutely wonderful; restaurant quality! Perfect for a hot, summer day! Hubby said “You can make that again.”, so it HAD to be good. Next day leftovers are great and it’s a perfect meal for dinner guests! Thank you!

  18. Kim says

    I made this several times and I have been asked for the recipe every place I take it! Thanks for the great post!!

  19. Linda s says

    For those asking about the chicken, there’s a really easy way to do it if you have a kitchenaid (I saw this on Pinterest.) Make your chicken–I use boneless, skinless chicken breast and actually just boil it; I usually do it right from the freezer so I don’t have to defrost; just boil it a little longer and cut it opened when you are done to make sure it is white all the way through. Then, put the chicken (while it is still warm) into the kitchen aid and turn it on. It shreds it perfectly with very little effort. Hope this helps and thanks for the great recipe.

  20. Jackie H says

    I tried this because the simplicity and ingredients appealed to me…it was fantastic! My husband loved it, and even came up with the idea to make it into wraps. To make it into a wrap I didn’t add as much lettuce. So excellent. I’ll be keeping this recipe for sure :)

  21. Naomi says

    I made this awhile back and my husband and I loved it! I’m not pregnant and craving tons of salads, praise Jesus for that! We are omitting MSG from our diet so I searched today to find homemade ranch seasoning just so I could make this recipe again. Keep up the great posts and delish recipes!!!


  1. […] This kind of dish must be heavenly made! Gods must have sent this dish so we can experience heaven here on earth! All angels must have carefully selected all ingredients to come up with this delectable salad! I know having this on your plate would give you the satisfaction that you’ve been looking for! This salad is exceptionally GOOD! The source can be found here […]

  2. […] Next, we have my first ever salad-as-dinner, and if you think I made to much, you’re absolutely right. While Trey was willing to admit that it was a very good salad, he still didn’t want to have salad for dinner. He was a trooper though and ate two bowl fulls (washed down with a half a row of Oreos ). If you do like salad for dinner, however, this is a great Southwestern take on it, and the creamy dressing keeps it from being too healthy. Note that you probably don’t need an entire head of lettuce for two people, though. Recipe from […]

  3. […] I think I’ve mentioned before that I’m not the biggest fan of cleaning. I’m also pretty terrible at organizing things. I don’t have files for important documents. I don’t have certain drawers for certain things (except in the kitchen, of course). And I certainly don’t remember where I put things like cords, extra buttons, keys,… Read MoreRecipe […]

  4. […] Monday: Southwestern Chopped Chicken Salad Tuesday: Baked Salmon Stuffed with Mascarpone Spinach Wednesday: Slow Cooker Lasagna Thursday: Balsamic Roast Beef French Dip Sandwich and Crispy Parmesan Zucchini Fries Weekend: leftovers and Mexican Shrimp Bisque […]

  5. […] Monday: Southwestern Chopped Chicken Salad Tuesday: Baked Salmon Stuffed with Mascarpone Spinach Wednesday: Slow Cooker Lasagna Thursday: Balsamic Roast Beef French Dip Sandwich and Crispy Parmesan Zucchini Fries Weekend: leftovers and Mexican Shrimp Bisque Julie Meyers Pron mom of 3 and wife living in the Philadelphia suburbs, Julie is a former elementary school teacher and a Public Relations manager. She is the owner/editor of Julieverse, a merchaniser with Chloe + Isabel and founder VlogMom and Splash Creative Media. A marketing strategist and freelance education and parenting writer by trade, Julie attempts to carve out time to enjoy playing with her kids, PTO, cooking and exercise. […]

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