This Mexican Chopped Salad recipe was created in partnership with Hidden Valley Ranch. All thoughts and opinions, however are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that make ¡Hola! Jalapeño possible.
With all the holiday madness, I’ve been leaning pretty heavily on quick, veggie-packed dinners for our weeknight meals. I don’t know about you, but even in the colder winter months, I still crave a good crunchy Mexican salad recipe filled with all my favorite ingredients like ripe avocado, crisp jicama, and chipotle-lime chicken. Now top all that with creamy Buttermilk Ranch and you’ve really got my attention.
The Secret To Making Restaurant Style Ranch Dressing
Not too many people can resist the creamy, tangy, zing of Ranch Dressing but have you ever wondered why it always tastes better at your favorite steak house than when you twist off the lid at home? Hidden Valley has always been the secret ingredient in many restaurants’ ranch dressing. They combine the triple threat of sour cream, buttermilk, and mayo with Hidden Valley Restaurant Style Ranch packets to create that irresistible flavor.
Now you can easily make it at home. Add some fresh garlic, chives, and even a touch of paprika if you want. Then drizzle it over this incredible chopped salad recipe or use it as a dip for veggies, wings, fries, you name it!
Essential Mexican Ingredients in this Mexican Chopped Salad
A chopped salad is a pretty loosely-based term that means a salad of chopped up ingredients tossed together. We’re taking our typical liberties of combining Mexican flavors with American favorites by chopping up a few of our favorite Mexican ingredients that go amazingly well with herby ranch dressing. Here’s the essentials:
- Chipotle-Lime Chicken
- You can substitute rotisserie chicken if you don’t want to make your own, but this flavor-packed chicken pieces are pretty key to this recipe.
- Vegetarian Option: Use the chipotle-lime marinade on sweet potatoes instead.
- Fresh Cilantro Leaves
- Love the herbaceous punch of whole cilantro leaves mixed with the Romaine and arugula.
- Julienned Jicama
- Taking the crunch factor to like a million and a half.
- Ripe avocado
- Creamy chunks of avocado are a chopped salad must in my book.
What You Need
This is a pretty simple, almost no-cook recipe. If you decide to make the chicken—which I highly recommend—you’ll just need a few things:
- Large Frying Pan, for sautéing the chicken
- A sharp Chef’s Knife for all that chopping
- A small whisk and bowl for combining the dressing ingredients
- A large salad bowl or platter for tossing and serving
How To Make This Happen On a Weeknight
This recipe takes a little more than 30 minutes, depending on your knife skills. The hardest part is chopping up all the veggies. You can make some of the ingredients in advance to make it even faster come dinnertime. The chicken and the dressing can be made the night before. Cover and keep in the fridge until you’re ready to eat. Other shortcuts would be to buy already cleaned and prepped lettuce, jicama sticks, and even bagged slaw instead of the sliced cabbage.
Mexican Salad Recipes, They’re What’s for Dinner
It may seem unorthodox to have a main course salad for dinner in the winter but sometimes a big, crunchy salad is just what you need to brighten up those cold winter nights. Here are some of my other favorite Mexican winter salad recipes:
- Chili-Lime Broiled Salmon Salad
- Salpicón Fattoush Salad with Chipotle Dressing
- Black Bean Taco Salad with Green Chile Dressing
Ready To Dig In?
I love a big, indulgent holiday meal as much as anyone, but sometimes a deep bowl of crunch is what I’m craving. If you are feeling the same, give this chopped salad a try and let me know how you like it! Snap a picture a make sure you tag me #holajalapeno and @holajalapeno on Instagram so I can see your beautiful creation! Buen Provecho!
For the Salad:
- zest and juice of 1 lime
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon chipotle chili powder
- 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breast tenders
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 3 cups chopped romaine lettuce
- 2 cups baby arugula
- 4 radishes, thinly sliced
- 1 cup cilantro leaves
- 1 red bell pepper, seeded and sliced
- 1/2 small jicama, peeled and julienned
- 1/2 cup cherry tomatoes, sliced
- 1/2 large English cucumber, quartered and sliced
- 1 (15-ounce) can garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
- 1/2 ripe avocado, pitted, peeled, quartered, and sliced
- 1/4 red onion, thinly sliced
- 1/4 red cabbage, thinly sliced
For the Dressing:
- 1 cup mayonnaise
- 1/2 cup sour cream
- 1/2 cup buttermilk
- 1 packet Hidden Valley Restaurant Style Ranch
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- 1 teaspoon minced chives
- 1/2 teaspoon paprika (optional)
For the Salad:
Sprinkle lime zest, lime juice, salt, and chipotle chili powder all over chicken breast. Heat oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat. Add chicken and sauté until browned on both sides and cooked through, about 8 minutes. Set aside and cool slightly, then slice.
In a large serving platter or bowl combine remaining salad ingredients.
For the Dressing:
Combine all ingredients in a medium bowl and whisk until combined.