Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Chicken Fajita Salad

I've been trying to make an assortment of lunches lately with the kids both being home most days; one's Independent Study the other's in college and getting ready for the Marines, and my husband works out of the house too.

So we eat a lot of lunches in as you can imagine and sandwiches just don't cut it every day.  AND we could all stand to eat a littler healthier once in awhile, right?

This is one of my favorite types of salad.  I LOVE the one they have at Chili's that is a Southwest Chicken Salad so I tried to recreate it as much as I could.

I Hope you enjoy it as much as we did.

Here's what you need:

2 chicken breasts, boneless and skinless, diced
2 hearts of romaine lettuce, washed, dried, and chopped
1/2 large sweet yellow onion, sliced
3/4 red bell pepper, sliced
1/2 cup black beans, rinsed and drained (you can add as much or as little as you would like)
1/2 cup frozen corn, thawed (you can add as much or as little as you would like)
1- 1-1/2 cups shredded Colby Jack cheese
1/4 fresh diced red bell pepper
cilantro (optional)
2 Tbs. taco seasoning or your favorite fajita seasoning
3 Tbs. water
Fiesta Ranch Dressing
Avocado (optional)

For the quesadillas:

4 large flour tortillas
1 cup shredded Colby Jack cheese
2 tsp. taco seasoning

For the dressing:

1 pint size canning jar
1 cup buttermilk
3/4 cup mayonnaise
1 envelope (0.4 oz) Hidden Valley Buttermilk recipe dressing mix
3 Tbs. taco seasoning, I use Taco Bell brand

First make the dressing so that it has plenty of time to chill in the fridge while you're making the salad.

In a pint sized jar place the buttermilk, dressing packet contents, and the taco seasoning.
Add the mayonnaise and close the jar.  Shake, shake, shake the jar to combine all the ingredients.
Serve with any type of salad, especially southwestern flavored ones.
Store in the refrigerator for up to three weeks.

Now on to the salad.

In a medium skillet with a few tablespoons of oil, stir fry the chicken, sliced onions & bell peppers until done, about 7 minutes depending on the size of the chicken.

When the chicken and veggies are done cooking add the taco/fajita seasoning and water and stir to combine. Cook for a minute until slightly thickened.
To assemble on a serving plate place the lettuce and as much or little cilantro as you would like and add the black beans.
Next add the defrosted corn and fresh diced bell peppers then the fajita chicken mixture.
You can now pile on as much cheese as you would like, usually between 1 - 1-1/2 cups is plenty.
Drizzle the salad with some of the Fiesta Ranch Dressing.  At this point I would have heaped on the avocado too if I had had a ripe one :)

To make the Quesadillas place two tortillas on a skillet over medium high heat to warm a bit.  Add about 1/3 - 1/2 cup shredded cheese depending on the size of your tortillas and give it a sprinkle of taco seasoning.
Place the second tortilla on top and cook until crispy and brown on both sides 2-3 minutes.
Slice into triangles and serve with the salad.
Now you can make yummy lunch salads at home too!

Serves 4

Here's the handy printable - Fajita Chicken Salad
Here's the handy printable - Fiesta Ranch Dressing


  1. Michelle, this salad looks amazing! I LOVE the Quesadilla explosion salad at Chili's! I order it whenever we go there. I am definitely trying your homemade version, asap :) ♥

    1. Holly,
      Thanks for stopping by and thanks for the sweet comment. That is my favorite salad too!


Thank you for your comment. I enjoy reading each and every one. I will try to respond in a timely manner so please make sure you have an email linked to your account.