Cooking, Baking & Cocktail Shaking

Tequila-Lime Chicken Chopped Salad

A fresh and hearty salad topped with tequila and lime marinated chicken. This vibrant salad is loaded to the brim with seasonal summer veggies.

Tequila-Lime Chicken Chopped Salad |

Some evenings are just so dang busy around here. I work all day, sit in a traffic jam for an hour, and finally arrive home an hour late to a starving husband and droopy-eyed dog.

Dinner ain’t gonna make itself. Sometimes Squirrel will cook, but when he has household chores to complete, there’s no getting him to make dinner on top of mowing his precious grass (the dude is obsessed with his grass).

So, I have no choice but to take charge and make a meal that’s both filling and easy to prepare.

Tequila-Lime Chicken Chopped Salad |

That’s where salad comes in handy. This tequila-lime chicken chopped salad takes minutes to prepare, making it the perfect salad for a busy weeknight. Topping it with protein-packed chicken ensures that our bellies will be full after one (or two) bowls.

Tequila-Lime Chicken Chopped Salad |

Since Squirrel and I love a fresh, hearty salad on a hot summer evening, this recipe is the perfect addition to our summer salad rotation.

I recommend preparing the marinade for the chicken the night before. You could get away with marinating the chicken for 8 hours, but I prefer the flavor the marinade produces if the chicken is prepared the night before.

Grilled to perfection and sliced thin, the chicken is a moist and flavorful addition to the top of the salad. The salad can be made with whatever summer veggies you have laying around. I happened to have some leftover grilled corn, tomatoes and cucumbers from my garden, half a red onion, and an over-ripe avocado. I tossed it all together with some crispy romaine and topped it with crispy onions and my cilantro-lime vinaigrette that made a few nights before. If you prefer a creamy dressing, try my homemade buttermilk ranch dressing.

Tequila-Lime Chicken Chopped Salad |

Grab your fork and don’t fret about extras–it’s healthy!

Tequila-Lime Chicken Chopped Salad

Grilled tequila-lime chicken gets sliced thin and topped on a fresh bed of crunchy greens and seasonal summer veggies.

Yield: 1 large salad

Total Time: 12 hours 30 minutes

Prep Time: 12 hours 15 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes


Tequila-Lime Chicken:

2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts

1/4 cup tequila

juice of 2 limes

1 tablespoon olive oil

2 cloves garlic, chopped

1 jalapeño, chopped

1/4 cup cilantro, chopped

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1/4 teaspoon black pepper


1 large head romaine lettuce (about 4 cups)

1/2 pint cherry tomatoes, halved

1 cup grilled corn kernels

1 cucumber, quartered and chopped

1 avocado, chopped

1/3 cup red onion, finely diced

1 cup crispy onions

1 recipe Buttermilk Ranch Dressing or Cilantro-Lime Vinaigrette





In a small bowl, whisk together tequila, lime juice, olive oil, garlic, jalapeño, cilantro, cumin, kosher salt, and black pepper. Add the chicken breasts to a plastic zip-top bag and pour in the marinade. Place the chicken in the refrigerator overnight.

Preheat the grill to high. Sprinkle the chicken with a pinch of kosher salt. Grill for 5-6 minutes on each side, or until the juices run clear and the chicken is cooked through. Allow the chicken to rest for 5 minutes before slicing into bite-sized pieces.

Toss all of your salad ingredients in a large bowl. Top with sliced chicken and drizzle with dressing of your choice. Serve immediately.

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Disclosure: I was compensated for work by AmFam. All opinions are my own.

20 Responses to “Tequila-Lime Chicken Chopped Salad”

  1. #
    Cindys Recipes and Writings — August 19, 2014 at 8:29 am

    Sounds like a great dinner to me. Your marinade and dressing sound so good together!


  2. #
    Emily {Jelly Toast} — August 19, 2014 at 9:38 am

    My husband LOVES chopped salads! This looks wonderful and I love how you added the fresh corn :)


  3. #
    Julia — August 19, 2014 at 10:33 am

    I’m all about quick and easy meals! I’d like to say I go all out on the weekends and whip up all the fancy things, but that really doesn’t happen. Simply and straight-forward’s the way to go! Loving the tequila-lime chicken in this delish salad!


  4. #
    Alice // Hip Foodie Mom — August 19, 2014 at 10:41 am

    simple, yet delicious salad . love it!


  5. #
    Susan — August 19, 2014 at 11:16 am

    Tequila, lime, chicken? All good things I say! Pinned!


  6. #
    Stefanie @ Sarcastic Cooking — August 19, 2014 at 11:43 am

    I wish my husband would eat a salad for dinner and I wish he was obsessed with the grass. It seriously takes him two weeks of me pestering him about how we are that house on the block for him to mow the lawn.


  7. #
    Bobbi's Kozy Kitchen — August 19, 2014 at 2:22 pm

    This sounds like my kind of salad!! Stumbled and shared on FB :)


  8. #
    Lindsey @ American Heritage Cooking — August 19, 2014 at 5:18 pm

    This looks so fresh and perfect for the last lingering days of summer when you don’t want to slave all day in front of a hot stove! Love the marinade!


  9. #
    Jeff @ — August 19, 2014 at 10:21 pm

    Tequila and lime on a salad sounds very delicious! I can’t wait to make this.


  10. #
    Renee — August 20, 2014 at 8:10 am

    What a great salad Jennie. Great toppings and I really enjoy chopped salads too (and so does my husband).


  11. #
    Choc Chip Uru — August 21, 2014 at 9:44 am

    A kick from tequila never hurt :P
    Great idea!

    Choc Chip Uru


  12. #
    Thalia @ butter and brioche — August 24, 2014 at 11:27 pm

    loving the look and sound of this chicken salad. anything with added tequila is a winner in my books, i definitely need to try the recipe.


  13. #
    SMA Chick — September 1, 2014 at 8:18 am

    Can’t wait to do chicken this way. Thanks. Question….how do you do your lettuce to make and keep it crunchy. Is it a wash, spin, use it or a do-ahead method to save time?


    • Jennie replied September 2nd, 2014 at 8:01 pm

      Thank you so much! I rinse and spin my lettuce until it’s dry. Then I place the freshly washed lettuce in a zip close bag and remove all of the air. It will stay fresh in the fridge for days.


  14. #
    [email protected] — September 2, 2014 at 3:16 am

    First of all, every time I read you calling your hubby ‘Squirrel’, I laugh! :) Too funny! Secondly, this salad is awesome! It looks super easy, and super filling!


    • Jennie replied September 2nd, 2014 at 7:59 pm

      Thanks, Jocelyn. I can’t even remember how that nickname came about.



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