Sunday, May 5, 2013

Cinco de Mayo #SundaySupper...Featuring Festive Tex-Mex Chopped Chicken Salad with Honey-Lime Dressing

This week's #SundaySupper theme is Cinco de we're sharing all of our favorite Mexican-inspired foods and drinks to get your fiesta celebration started! Our hostess this week is my friend and fellow Texan Jen, from Juanita's Cocina...and she knows a thing of two about the big-flavor, spicy foods that I love! Since May is officially Healthy Eating Month here at The Weekend Gourmet, I decided to take a slightly different approach to today's recipe. I wanted my dish to be colorful, flavorful...and also healthy. I think I accomplished all three objectives with my Tex-Mex Chopped Chicken Salad with Honey-Lime Dressing. This salad is a cinch to whip up, it looks gorgeous on the plate, it tastes AMAZING...and it's chock full of healthy ingredients! Who says healthy food is boring?!?!?
The great thing about this salad is that it's pretty adaptable. To make it veg-friendly, simply sub in a can of rinsed and drained black or pinto beans in place of the chicken. Don't like avocado? Swap in some sliced olives in their place. The key is to have fun and adjust for your family's tastebuds. The homemade vinaigrette takes a few minutes to make, but it really gives a great flavor to the finished salad. Let me show you how quick and easy this main dish salad is to make!

Tex-Mex Chopped Chicken Salad with Honey-Lime Dressing
Inspired by Epicurious
Step 1: Place the following ingredients in a large mixing bowl: 4 cups chopped romaine and/or Napa cabbage, 4 ounces diced cooked chicken breast, 1/2 cup reduced-fat cheese colby/jack cheese crumbles, 1 diced seeded Roma tomato, 1/2 cup corn kernels, 2 sliced green onions, 1/4 cup pepitas (pumpkin seeds), and 1/3 cup tortilla strips. Toss and set aside.

NOTE: I found a chopped salad blend at the grocery store to save time, but you can easily chop your favorite lettuce...make sure to chop it pretty fine so it's bite-size. 

Step 2: Make the dressing by combining the following ingredients in a large measuring cup: 1/4 cup fresh lime juice, 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil, 2 tbs. honey or agave, a few shakes of Tabasco, one finely chopped garlic clove, 1 tsp. dried cilantro, and salt & pepper to taste. Whisk well to combine.
Step 3: Add the dressing to the reserved salad, and toss to evenly coat the salad with the dressing. This can be made an hour or two ahead and stored in the fridge. I find that it lets the flavors combine really nicely if you have time to let it hang out in the fridge. Just before serving, top the bowl with 1/2 diced avocado and more tortilla strips. 
This fun salad looks like festive confetti...and it's full of fresh Springtime ingredients! The homemade dressing is what brings all the different flavors and textures together -- it's tangy-sweet-spicy and not at all heavy. Each bite of this salad is a bit different, depending on what goodies end up on your fork. Bottom line: this fun salad is a fiesta on a plate, my friends!

Make sure to join the #SundaySupper contributors for our weekly Twitter chat tonight at 600 CST. We'll be sharing our Cinco de Mayo tips and recipes and having a fantastic time chatting. In the meantime, check out all the fabulous dishes that the #SundaySupper writers are sharing matter what you might want for today's celebration, we've got you covered.

Cinco de Mayo Appetizers & Sides {Aperitivos}:
Cinco de Mayo Main Dishes {Platos Principales}:
Cinco de Mayo Desserts {Postres}:
Cinco de Mayo Drinks {Bebidas}:

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