Southwestern Grilled Chicken Salad with Tomato and Black Bean Salsa

Southwestern Grilled Chicken Salad with Tomato and Black Bean Salsa

Late one afternoon, The Grillmaster came into my office, took one look at the intense frustration on my face and immediately said “How about if I make dinner tonight?” Without hesitation, I pointed him to a recipe I’d been wanting to try and he did the rest. He even remembered to take photos! What a guy.

This salad is featured on the cover of CookFresh 2011 by the folks at FineCooking magazine. This is the first recipe we’ve tried, but the concept mirrors how we like to eat and I’m very much looking forward to making more of the recipes in this magazine.

To butterfly a chicken breast (or, technically, a half breast), start slicing horizontally from one side, but don’t cut all the way through the other side. You want to be able to open the breast like, uh, the wings of a butterfly.

Don’t feel like you need to use all of the spice rub or all of the dressing. A light touch, especially with the dressing, is the way to go. Who likes soggy salad? If you don’t have any pepitas (pumpkin seeds), use pine nuts or sliced almonds. I bet pistachios would also be amazing.

This salad is a good source of Protein, Vitamin A and Vitamin K.


Adapted from The Best of Fine Cooking: CookFresh 2011

½ Tbsp chili powder
1 tsp. brown sugar (dark or light)
½ tsp ground coriander
½ tsp ground cumin
kosher salt
8 oz. boneless, skinless chicken breast, butterflied
4 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil plus more for the grill
juice from 1 medium lime
2 Tbsp chopped fresh cilantro
2 tsp honey
freshly ground black pepper
green Tabasco sauce (optional)
1 cup canned black beans, rinsed and drained
4 oz. cherry or grape tomatoes, halved
1 large scallion, thinly sliced
2 small heads Bibb lettuce, torn into bite-sized pieces
1 medium avocado
¼ cup toasted pepitas or Spicy Pepitas

In a small bowl, combine the chili powder, brown sugar, coriander, cumin and 1/2 tsp salt. Rub spice mixture over both sides of butterflied chicken breast. (You will have some of the spice mixture left over.)

Heat grill pan over medium-high heat. Brush lightly with oil and add the chicken. Grill until edges of the top side are white, about 3 minutes. Flip and cook until just done, another 1-2 minutes. Let the chicken rest.

In a glass jar with a screw-top lid, combine olive oil, lime juice, 1 Tbsp of cilantro, honey, a dash of salt, a few grinds of pepper and a few drops of Tabasco (if using). Shake well to combine.

Combine the black beans, tomatoes, scallion and remaining cilantro in a small bowl. Add about 2 Tbsp dressing and lightly toss.

Place lettuce in a large bowl and toss with just enough dressing to lightly coat. (Reserve some dressing to drizzle on chicken.) Arrange lettuce on serving plates. Thinly slice chicken and avocado and add to plates. Drizzle with some of the remaining dressing. Add salsa and garnish with pepitas.

Makes 4 servings
Per serving: 429 calories, 28g fat (4g sat), 32mg cholesterol, 726mg sodium, 25g carb, 10g fiber, 6g sugar, 24g protein


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *